10 Tips to Make Your Website Stand Out From The Crowd

10 Tips to Make Your Website Stand Out From The Crowd

Today there are over 1,000,000,000 websites on the internet.

 

And they’re all vying to capture the attention of your customer.

 

I’m not telling you this to scare you. In fact I am probably not telling you anything you are not aware of already.

 

I’m telling you this to demonstrate that since there are over one billion websites online, the chances are there are at least ten, maybe even a couple of hundred in your niche and location alone.

 

And with figures like that, you need to make sure that your website is successful at helping you reach your business goals, capturing the attention of and building trust with your target audience.

 

In this post you will receive ten specific and actionable strategies to turn your online presence into a marketing asset so you can increase the number of leads you generate, the prospects you convert into customers and ultimately enable you to rise above the competition.

 

Have a Mobile Friendly Website

have a mobile friendly website

 

Whether it’s performing a search, opening an app, visiting a website or watching a video, people turn to their mobile device to get answers or take action.

 

If the website you have is not mobile optimised the user experience will be poor; it will be harder to click on buttons, more difficult to read the information and the user may not even be able to “click to call”, all of which can result in them moving on very quickly. Worse, if Google notice this, and they will, you will effectively be penalised and your website will be pushed further down the search rankings as a consequence.

 

Claim Your Google My Business Listing

 

Google is the most powerful and popular search engine, every second there are 54,907 searches globally and it has loads of great resources on offer as well. By taking advantage of Google’s resources you will also make your business more easily searchable. One of the best things to do is claim your Google my Business Profile and make the page your own

 

It’s important to make sure you’re including key contact and location information on your website and Google my business profile.

 

According to research by comScore, address and location are the primary pieces of information sought by local searchers. Here are some of the other types of info searchers are looking for:

 

local-search-intent

  • Businesses by category (In other words, searchers are looking for a particular type of business but haven’t yet decided which one to select.)
  • Phone number
  • Products or services (Again, they don’t have a particular business in mind, they’re searching for a specific product or service.)
  • Opening Hours
  • Driving directions
  • Coupons and special offers
  • Ratings and reviews

Given the desires of local searchers, it’s important to keep your content concise and actionable.

 

CLAIM PROFILES ON SOCIAL MEDIA

 

claim your social media profiles

Social Media can have a huge impact as it can put you in front of a huge targeted audience in a relatively informal setting. It’s also great for backlinks, getting your content shared and increasing the awareness of your brand. Having your own profile to link to also reinforces your brand image and gives you a good link back to a very highly ranked source.

 

These social media profiles are very relevant for your brand and can be used to protect your reputation from other companies or unwanted press articles appearing in brand related search terms.

 

Exclusive Report Reveals 49 Social Media Tips for Business.

Including How to build relationships with you customers so they come back again and again and again! 

Click Here to Get Your Copy Now!

 

Optimse Your Website for Search

 

If you want your site to show up in the search engines, then you have to make sure that the terms that people would use to search for your type of product or service are on your site for the search engines to see. For example if you are a Dentist, your potential customers might be searching for “loose tooth”, “straighten my teeth” rather than just “dentist”. Find out what your customers search for, and then optimise your site for these words and phrases.

 

optimise your website for search

Sit down and create a list of your products and services. Take each service individually and add the problems that you can solve. You then have the basis for a content campaign.

 

PRODUCE QUALITY CONTENT

 

Search engines are hungry for fresh content on websites. They see it as a measure of how up to date and relevant a site is. If you produce a great, fully optimised website don’t think you have done it once and can leave it forever without updating it. You need to add new content to your website regularly, not least because if people see that there is a lot of fresh new information they are more likely to come back time and time again.

 

The more good quality content you have, the greater the opportunity you have to have your website presented to a targeted user in search.

 

Grow your email list.

 

There should be a focus, a desired result so to speak, for everything that you do online. If you are going to create a website and provide educational, entertaining and enlightening content for your target audience then you should enable those targeted users to take the next step and become leads and future clients of your business.

captur

 

In order to do this you have to provide the website user with something of incredible value that will help them solve their problem.

 

An example of such would be that a legal firm who offer conveyancing services could provide a download for a user to subscribe to called “5 Reasons Choosing the Least Cost Conveyancing Quote Could Leave You Thousands of Pounds Out of Pocket”

 

If you are looking to buy a new home then this is something you want to know, so you can provide the user with that information in exchange for their email address and more importantly, permission to email them and market your strengths in that area.

 

ENCOURAGE COMMENTS AND FEEDBACK

 

Social Proof is very important. Think of any major purchase you’ve made and the chances are you did some research online. Customer reviews and feedback are often more valuable than a blurb or product description. They show that real people have bought, used and enjoyed the product or experience enough to come back and review it.

 

MANAGE YOUR REPUTATION

 

The internet is a huge open forum and no matter how many happy customers you have there will always be someone who leaves a bad review or a negative comment. While you can never stop these entirely, you need to be aware of what is being said about you online and make sure that you control your image and reputation as tightly as possible.

 

On the flip side when customers leave great feedback about your business you need to make sure those reviews and testimonials are everywhere that potential clients may be online.

feedback

 

ENGAGE WITH CUSTOMERS

 

It can be all too easy to hide behind the brand, with an online presence it’s good to be visible. Let your customers know who is behind the business, let them know who they’re talking to on Social Media. You don’t need to give away anything personal, just be personable, reply to comments so that people can see they’re being listened to and engage in conversations to create a bit of a buzz about your business.

 

MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR ONLINE PRESENCE!

 

A fully optimised, engaging online presence that draws customers in and encourages customer interaction takes a lot of effort and skill. If your online presence isn’t working for you, it more than likely means customers aren’t finding you, or if they are then they don’t like what they see. Done correctly, your online presence with your website at the centre should provide a constant stream of leads and ultimately be a full time sales person for your business.

 

Click here to get access

 

Does Your Business Website Have These 17 Key Pages?

Does Your Business Website Have These 17 Key Pages?

When it comes to planning your website,

It’s not always easy to visualise all the key elements that you need to fit into it. It’s important to consider what the main of your website is, for example:

  • Do you want to use it to attract new customers?
  • Will you be selling directly from the website?
  • Is it going to be a business blog or more of a brochure site?

To help you figure all of this out, here’s a handy guide to some of the key pages that people might expect to see on a business website. Some of these pages you will definitely need, others may not suit your needs. The end result should be something unique to you and your business and an asset that will help you grow your business.

 

Home Page

This is often the first page that people will land on when they visit your website. A good homepage should act as a snapshot to your business. It should tell people what your business does for its customers and give them a good idea of what type of information they can find across the rest of the site.

 

Always include a call to action on your home page – so if you want people to sign up with their email address they can see exactly how to do that. Make sure it’s easy to find your products if you want people to buy them.

 

About Us

This is where you have the opportunity to tell your customers a little about yourself and your business. If you have a mission statement you can include it here too. Include photos and short biographies of key team members so that customers can get to know who they’ll be dealing with and if you have links for personal social media profiles let your customers know where to follow you.

 

Contact Us

Make it easy for Customers to find you or get in touch with you!  Include your address details, along with phone numbers, email address and business social media accounts. Consider using a Contact Form if you’re not comfortable leaving an email address online. It’s also a good idea to include a Google map link so that the search engines as well as customers can place you.

 

Products/Services

Let your customers know what you can offer them! It’s not always easy to sell services online, so make your descriptions as clear as possible. Think about the best way to show off or demonstrate your products, is it pictures, videos, and do you need a description?

 

Pricing

Some businesses are hesitant to include pricing on their website, particularly for services. Whilst it is sometimes difficult to offer a set price for certain services you might consider showing a price range, or a range of packages. If you sell products then pricing can be clearer. You might also consider adding another clear call to action with your pricing, whether it’s “BUY it Now” button or you’re asking them to call in.

 

Shop

For businesses that sell products then an e-commerce site might be the best option. This allows people to make their transactions online easily. If you want an online shop but not a full blown eCommerce site you could add Paypal buttons to allow your customers to buy from you safely.

 

Search

Some customers will prefer to use a search box rather than look through a menu, so make sure you give them this option. A search box doesn’t take up much room and will allow customers to quickly get to what they want to. Some platforms such as WordPress can include this function for you.

 

Testimonials/Reviews

Including Testimonials and reviews from previous customers proves you have a track record in your field. There are lots of ways to add reviews, showing reviews gathered from across the internet, or making testimonial videos is great. Adding a page of reviews you have copied and pasted is not as helpful because there is no proof that they are real.

 

FAQ

A good FAQ page can free up your time from answering the same questions over and over again. It should be able to answer your customers queries even when you or your staff are not available, or out of office hours. This is another place where video could come into its own – a video tutorial for example.

 

Also Seen On

If you have been featured in any news articles, or if your work has been used anywhere then make sure you showcase this! Showing other places that have wanted to use you and your work adds to your credibility.

 

Events

Let your customers know where they can find you. Do you regularly go to trade shows or conferences? Are you exhibiting your work anywhere? Do you have any speaking engagements coming up that they could get tickets to? Don’t assume that mentioning these things on Social media will automatically mean everyone sees them.

 

Blog

It’s important to keep your website updated with fresh content and one of the best ways to do this is with a blog. Try and post regular updates, there’s nothing worse than seeing a company website that hasn’t been updated since 2 years ago, or even 6 months ago! Ideally, plan a blog posting schedule and stick to it. If you’re stuck for ideas to write about, try some of these.

 

Latest News

Again, only add a Latest News section if you are going to stick to it. You might want to post the latest industry news updates, Staff news or announcements about your brand.

 

Resources

Do you want to recommend certain partner sites to your customers? Or perhaps you want to have a specific page where they can download material from you. This page could be used to collate all your downloads in one place that people can sign up for with their email address,

 

Site Map

A site map is a list of pages of a website that’s accessible to search engine spiders crawlers as well as your users. Typically it’s a webpage that lists the pages on a website, organized in hierarchical fashion.

 

Legal Requirements

Finally, make sure your site ticks all the legal boxes that it has to. Are there any notices that you have to add about your licensing or credentials? Are there any disclaimers you might need to add about your products or services? If you are based in the EU you need to ask site visitors to consent to the use of cookies on your website. You will also need to direct customers to your privacy policy.

 

Whatever you choose to use your website for, you’ll need to make sure that the content is working hard for you. If you’d like more information about how to build Websites that sell then download our free guide.

Power your business with a website that sells

Don’t Make These 7 Mistakes With Your Online Marketing Strategy.

Don’t Make These 7 Mistakes With Your Online Marketing Strategy.

Don’t make these 7 mistakes with your online marketing strategy.

Having an Online Marketing strategy has become absolutely essential for any business. Just getting a website commissioned is not good enough. You need to find and continually work to attract targeted users to your site, in order to convert those browsers into paying clients of your business.

The Internet landscape and search engines constantly update their search algorithms, users change the way they consume and interact with online information and a thus an online marketing strategy that worked well 12 months ago will not be perfect now and can suddenly stop providing results overnight.

Many business’s first reaction may be to panic at thought of the amount of business that is being missed, some won’t even know if changes had impacted them for better or worse and others will sit around cussing Google for their meddling.

The truth is, the search engines are not always at fault and sometimes it would be more prudent to look closer to home to find out where the blame lies.

You are not tracking your results.

Last month your online marketing efforts resulted in a 12% increase in search traffic, 150 new subscribers to your newsletter, 35 new inbound calls, 16 email enquiries resulting in 11 new appointments and 6 new sales.

Now the numbers will vary depending on the niche that you work in but the point is if you don’t know your numbers then stop investing in marketing and advertising until you know where you stand.

Tracking

If your online marketing has resulted in 2 profitable sales then if you doubled your investment would that result in 4 sales, 8 sales 16 sales, 32 sales etc. On the other hand, if you are not getting any sales then there is a problem and you need to find the bottle neck in your marketing system before you waste another penny.

You cannot manage what you cannot track and without those numbers you are doing your online marketing, and ultimately your business, a huge disservice.

Your Reputation Precedes You

Type in the name of your business and or the name of the your business in the city that you operate. What do you see? The majority of search results will pull up the most relevant results. Some of those results maybe from past clients who have left comments about the service that you provided or lack there of.

People trust what other people say online so you need to make sure that the comments and reviews reflect your business in a favourable light. If they are negative then people may take one look at the reviews and simply move to your next competitor.

Your past and current customers are the biggest advocates of your brand. Ask them to share their experiences about how your business helped them. This in turn will provide an insight to future users of your business how they too could benefit from using your products or services.

Your Website is Not Relevant

Is your website helpful? Does it provide sage advice to questions your users ask? Is it easy to navigate? Does it look and feel fresh and modern?

User demands change and a website that was designed to satisfy users five years ago may not be sufficient today. (Think the increase in mobile use as an example, something we will talk about later in this post)

If you have analytics use it. If you don’t have it then install it. Google Analytics is free and can help answer the following questions that might give you an idea as to where your website is going wrong.

Look into how long people are spending on your site, what pages that are visiting? What pages they enter the website on and what pages they leave the website on? Is there a certain page on your website that people spend longer on than most? Is there a way you could capitalise/engage that group of people to take some form of action; sign up to a newsletter, share this information on social media, provide an offer?

You Are Targeting the Wrong Users

Being the authority for branded keywords related to your business is a given. However this only helps people who already know about you find you. Think about the benefits of your services and products and the questions people would ask if they were looking to solve those problems and develop a search engine optimisation strategy that includes content be that blog posts, articles, videos that provides people with the answers to the problem they are looking to solve thus increasing the relevance of your businesses services. You may find a whole new audience that are interested in your products.

Search Engine Optimisation is Not Relevant

Search engines have a very complex algorithm that they use to calculate the search engine rankings of a page for a given keyword term. Pages are presented with the most relevant first. There are many contributing factors as to how the search engines calculate this but one of these is the number of references/backlinks pointing back to your site from authoritative and trustworthy domains.

This means if someone else in your niche finds your website helpful then they point their readers to it by inserting a hyperlink in their article or post. By doing this the search engines can see that your content is trustworthy and will send their users to benefit from the great value it offers.

Problems can arise when the links pointing back to the site are from less than authoritative sites or are from sites that do not offer any relevance to what your site talks about.

If search engine optimisation is part of your overall online marketing plan then think quality over quantity, every time.

Your Website is not optimised for Mobile Browsers

Having a website that is not optimised for mobile browsers is like having an office or a clinic on the second floor without having a lift. You will immediately lose out on a large part of the potential market.


Mobile vs non mobile

Mobile is very important not only because everybody has access to a mobile phone but a lot of people also have access to tablets or smart devices that they can now browse the internet on.

If when that user lands on your site if they can’t read the text because it is too small or they can’t navigate easily between pages because the buttons are too close together or they can’t see all of the screen. They will leave that website and go somewhere else.

Google has made it very clear that sites that do not confirm to their mobile policies will lose out on search visitors.
Read this post about checking to see if your website is mobile friendly or not.

Your Not Social Enough

The world has gone social and to reflect that shift by the user base the search engines place more emphasis on how popular your content is. In other words is your content being shared across social media; Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus etc. By having your content shared it shows to the search engines that the content is valuable to other people and this helps with your rankings.

An example of this is would be if a new restaurant opens up in your town, eventually by the restaurant serving great food, having a friendly atmosphere, and providing an excellent customer experience the restaurant will start to be mentioned by word of mouth to other people in and around the local area.

Social media just mean it can happen quicker. Instead of the word of mouth referral being the next time the bump into their neighbour in the street people are now taking picture of their food, or the party of people at the restaurant and sharing it immediately to their local social following. Therefore instead of a one to one referral there is an instant one to many referral.

Include social media share buttons on your website giving people to tell all their friends and connections about your website if they find something that really engages with them. Also, make an effort to interact with your target audience on social media and encourage conversation and sharing of your content.

There is a Complete Lack of Consistency

Online Marketing is not a set it and forget it strategy. There are too many changes implemented daily for that to happen. That is not to say that you have to adapt to all of them because even businesses with the largest budgets in the world would find that too difficult. Focus on providing the user with an excellent experience, through great content and interaction and you will find that your website becomes a magnet for targeted clients resulting in increased sales.

cLICK HERE TO GET YOUR FREE BLUEPRINT

 

Online Video Marketing Strategy – Why Should You Have one?

Online Video Marketing Strategy – Why Should You Have one?

Online Video Marketing Strategy – Why Should You Have One?

Online Video MarketingDo you have an online video marketing strategy? Answering Yes because you uploaded a video to YouTube 3 years ago, or you invested in a corporate video of you in your 90’s power suit, does not count.

Having an online video marketing strategy means regularly producing online video content that your user base, your clients, patients, customers or social media following, find educational, entertaining or enlightening. Ideally, your content will be so memorable that when one of your targeted following is in need of your services or solutions you are top of mind.

Online video Marketing doesn’t have to be difficult.

Online video marketing is a lot less complicated than you may have been led to believe.

    • Essentially video marketing (and this goes for any marketing) should include the following steps:
    • Identifying your target market – those people who are in need of your products or services, that are in your catchment area and can afford your fees.
    • Discovering the needs and or wants of that target audience.
    • Developing and executing a strategy to create a relevant and unique offering of incredible value to your target audience.
    • Creating and retaining loyal customers who actively engage with your brand.
    • Leveraging your great relationships to win new clients via referrals.

In short, marketing is about creating a positive relationship with your target audience and turning those positive relationships into paying clients who are happy to recommend their friends and family to you. Video is an affordable, accessible and powerful means to do that.

If standing in front of a camera scares the living daylights out of you then don’t worry as there are plenty of alternatives available and depending on the purpose of the video, can be a lot more effective than you reciting a script to camera.

3 Types of Video You Can Incorporate into Your Video Marketing Mix

Slide presentation : Forget those Power Point presentations that you have been forced to sit through via sales reps and training departments. We are talking about creating something that will provide incredible value to your audience.

Animated Explainer Videos: The next time you are watching a program on the television, resist the urge to fast forward through the adverts like most people do and spend those five minutes noting how brands are advertising. Every perceivable product/service is being marketed using animation, from personal injury claim firms to toothpaste. The point is big brands wouldn’t be spending tens of thousands of pounds using animation if it wasn’t providing results. And to produce an animated video for the internet is much more affordable.

Client Reviews – In your own minds eye you may be the best family lawyer in Bournemouth, the leading aesthetic dentist in Preston or the top facial plastic surgeon in central London. It doesn’t matter what you think. What does matter is what your patients, clients and customers think about you and more importantly, what they say about you.

Next time a client thanks you for the service you have provided ask them if they would mind giving you a brief video testimonial where they simply say exactly what they just said. You can even do this via a smart phone.

The more positive affirmations you have about your company the better because potential clients are looking for them in order to help in their decision making process.

Above are three simple methods of video content creation that you could use today, there are many more all of which can be used to increase the awareness of your brand and share relevant messages about your business and the services you offer but the above is a great place to start.

Remember just jumping into video marketing because you feel it is necessary or because your competition is doing it is not a good enough reason, you MUST have a strategy, to ensure your videos grab the interest and attention of your prospective customers or clients.

If you don’t have online video marketing strategy then any videos you create will sit on the internet gathering virtual dust.

To learn more about how video markeing can help you reach out to new customers online call us 0161 850 4413

3 Reasons Your Business Needs to Implement Content Marketing

3 Reasons Your Business Needs to Implement Content Marketing

3 Reasons Your Business Needs to Implement Content Marketing

content marketingAs a small business owner who is looking to increase sales via the internet you will recognise that most of your competition is already investing in one form of internet marketing or another and in some cases will have a well structured online marketing campaign in place.

In order to implement an online marketing campaign you need to invest in quality content that speaks directly to the problems that your target audience face.

Without that compelling content getting in front of the right people at the right time, your voice will not be heard, your business offerings will go unnoticed and you will watch as your competitors thrust open their doors to new clients that could and should have been yours.

Articles, videos, blog posts, pillar content, follow up emails, presentations and proposals: the list is endless!

To many business owners it may seem daunting or even off putting to have to produce an array of meaningful and compelling content on a regular basis that empowers your target audience to reach out and connect with you, and trust me it is.

But the truth of the matter is without the commitment to truly encapsulate your audience, online marketing will never see the results that you may have been promised or dreamed off.

But we already have a website!

To say that you have a website is not good enough. It is not. A website on its own is NOTHING. It is like jumping out of a plane with a parachute on your back and not knowing how to pull the chord. Useless. In fact it is less than useless, your website becomes a cost that sucks cash from your business instead of becoming an investment that adds to your bottom line on a monthly basis.

The content that you create is the means to attracting those profitable clients. Both on your website and on other targeted websites across the internet where your audience may be visiting. When your content creation dries up or doesn’t even get off the ground in the first place you will get fewer eyeballs looking, less subscribers and even fewer sales.

Content drives the internet and quality content engages your targeted audience, arouses their interest, creates a desire and encourages them to act.

3 Benefits of Content Marketing for Your Business

Highly Visible Social Proof

If you claim to be the biggest, the best or the most efficient in your niche or industry then you’d better make sure there is evidence on the internet to substantiate those claims.

It is not difficult for anyone to search the internet to find out information about your business. One simple search in Google of your business name will bring back search results highlighting the most relevant pages on the internet about your business.

Don’t be fooled into thinking that because you have not put anything on the internet about your firm that no one else has done it either. There are so many ways that people can talk about your business: Social media, local business directories, blogs etc that you should implement an online reputation management strategy to keep informed of how your business is being represented online.

If you are the best, then social proof will occur naturally to support these claims and then you will have some great third party generated content that you can use to market your business and win more customers with.

Be seen as a Thought Leader.

content marketing through thought leadership

Pick up a trade magazine and look at the expert opinion articles, those people are providing interviews, writing articles relating to their niche and adding insight around topical issues that may confuse potential clients. By taking time to put that content out there they become a thought leader, the “go to” person in that industry, and when that happens opportunities and business relationships come your way.

The same thing happens on the internet, in fact, the very same content or remarkably similar content to the trade magazine article will be converted into a blog post, a video, an article on an industry related website, an email through to your existing database.

Staying in the spotlight at the top is not easy. It requires attention to detail, original ideas and of course, constant updating.

Top Search Engine Rankings.

Having your business website listed in the top of the search engine rankings for your business niche, the products or services you offer or even the problems that your services solve is a great way to increase sales in your business. In the majority of niches there is fierce competition for the top spots in the search engines.

Google is continually updating they way they rank websites on the internet, one of the key areas they look at is the content both on and off the website. Is it related to the niche, is it good quality, is it being shared by other people, does it have third party comments, does the content get linked back to or linked out to other informative content.

All of these factors and many more are used to make a decision on the relevance and quality of your website and where it sits in the search rankings. Ultimately none of these factors can be taken into consideration if you do not have any content or create content on a regular basis.

The more content you produce which is related to your core competencies, the easier it is for you to place in context links and also get your articles published in leading sites within your niche which again helps your content marketing strategy by raising your profile.

Content marketing alone will not bring a horde of new business but it certainly plays a significant part and it will help your online presence and build you online reputation, set your business apart from your competition as a thought leader and position you as the go to player in your industry.

Small Business Internet Marketing – 7 Things Decision Makers Should Know

Small Business Internet Marketing – 7 Things Decision Makers Should Know

Small Business Internet Marketing – 7 Things Decision Makers Should Know

small business internet marketingThe ways in which businesses can now communicate with potential and existing clients continues to grow at break neck pace. Any decision maker that has invested in a form of small business internet marketing in order to grow their business will have seen the number of options to interact with their audience increase rapidly over the last 5 years. From dynamic website design, blogging, video marketing, email marketing campaigns to social media marketing, the list of methods truly is endless.

With all that choice available it can quite often be very confusing for small business owners who are focused on doing what they do best: delivering value for their clients, regardless of the niche they are in. It could be keeping the family warm by getting the central heating working, providing a beautiful smile through dental surgery or helping individuals through a divorce or the death of a loved with one with professional legal services.

The long and short of it is that the Internet has changed the way in which consumers process information and communicate that information between other people. This in turn means the advertising methods of old are not the same and do not produce the same results as in the past.

In order to compete in a disruptive and often crowded marketplace businesses have to be more creative and outsmart their competition by leveraging strategies and techniques that speak to their target market and invoke a reaction.

The Seven Pillars of small business internet marketing:

1.      Know Your Ideal Audience.

small business internet marketing

You may think this sounds super simple but you would be surprised at the number of small businesses who don’t know exactly who their ideal client is. If you don’t have an idea of who this is then your advertising is not an investment, it is a cost. Unless you know who your target audience is you will be spending money trying to attract people who are not interested in what you have to offer.

Increase your chance of success by being specific about who you want to market to.

2. Always offer Quality Content.

small business internet marketing

While it may be hugely time consuming to update your website or Blog several times a week, having a lot of quality content that backs up your authority and helps keep customers interested in you is almost always going to be of benefit to you. I say almost, because if you don’t then take advantage of that traffic, then you will have wasted your time! Think of some of the Big Name Websites, every time you click on Amazon you will see different offers, different products and new information. If someone has been to your site and enjoyed what they saw, then they come back and see the same again they aren’t likely to give you another visit.

Quality content has become a by word of advertising online over the past few years, but that doesn’t mean that businesses haven’t been practising content marketing successfully for years and creating loyal audiences in the process.

And while it may be difficult for a business owner to justify taking the time out to create content, the more quality and insightful content you create that is distributed online, the more targeted clients will see it and the greater the chance you have of making a connection resulting in an inquiry or lead for your business.

The more you can do to educate potential clients about your business from the outset the easier it becomes to convert those leads into paying clients in the future.

3. Distribute Your Content High and Wide

small business internet marketing

In traditional marketing you have TV, Radio and magazines. Online you have websites, blogs, video sites, article sites, micro blogs, and social media. When your business has invested in creating a piece of content, that one piece of content can be broken up and converted into many different formats and then distributed in many places.

Keep your small business internet marketing interesting and different so people will be able to see your messages on different platforms and recognise that is you increasing your authority and building your brand in the process.

Make sure you are taking full advantage of the different online mediums available as the chances are your audience will be and you can bet your competition is!

4. Targeted Search Engine Campaigns are Priceless

small business internet marketing

Search engine optimisation is where you place your business in front of people who are ACTIVELY searching for your business or services. Targeted potential clients go from not knowing who you are or anything about your business, to seeing the benefits of your services within seconds.

Search engine optimisation is a key way to attract clients, the higher up the search rankings you appear, the more clients will click on your listing and therefore you will have a greater opportunity to convert. That is why a lot of businesses invest in improving SEO so they get the opportunity to attract targeted clients before the competition.

5. Connect with those that have trusted you before.

small business internet marketing repeat salesWhen a client has worked with you in the past they have paid their hard earned money to benefit from your services so they already know about you and how you can help them. Continue to educate your clients even when you have served them to keep them in touch with your business and what you can do. One of the best ways to do this is through email marketing.

Make every possible attempt to get the email addresses of your clients and put together a strategic marketing campaign that uses this prized information.

Tell your clients about how you are helping other clients, inform them through multimedia about other services or products that you offer, offer promotions to entice them to benefit from your business once more.

One of the most expensive things in business is a onetime client – leverage email marketing to make sure that you don’t suffer that huge business failing.

6. Online Marketing is measurable.

small business internet marketing measurable

The beauty about online marketing is that nearly everything is measurable. From positions in the search engines, the number of clicks, number of conversions or downloads and leads generated to sales made. Everything is trackable and when everything is trackable it means that you can test for the best performing adverts or marketing methods and repeat them time and again while constantly improving.

This is one of the major reasons why so many businesses choose to market online because there is a ready source of information that can be provided to decision makers to support the work that is being done.

Small Business Internet Marketing is Part of the Marketing Mix

7. Offline Marketing is still valuable

small business internet marketingOffline marketing is still valuable and supports any marketing campaign that you have. If a targeted clients sees an advert in a trade magazine that arouses their interest they then Google your business services to find out some more and they see you on the first page sharing some great content or with some brilliant third party testimonials then they will truly feel that you are the best company to help them resolve their problems.

Small Business internet Marketing is not a quick fix, and you shouldn’t consider it a miracle way to save your business and get profitable clients overnight. As with anything it can take time, effort and patience to get the results that you crave but don’t give up. Listen to feedback, monitor what does and doesn’t work and remember that if you consistently apply great techniques then online marketing will deliver your business targeted leads, increased sales and higher profits.

The Most Expensive Thing in Your Business is a One Time Client

The Most Expensive Thing in Your Business is a One Time Client

Businesses of all sizes could do well to think more carefully about customer retention. Acquiring new customers is not only critical to ensure your business grows; it also satisfies your need to move on to the next thing and provides a fresh start and a blank slate. Unfortunately, acquiring new customers comes at a cost, which some sources suggest is around 7 times as much as reselling to your existing customer base.

 

Although acquiring new customers is a necessary and very important part of any business, it shouldn’t be your only focus. Once you have done the hard work of getting a customer on board you need to make sure you keep them! After all, how can you expect to grow your business at all if you can’t keep your existing clients happy?

 

Without repeat business from an existing client base you are constantly trying to plug the gap. A great month in terms of new business needs to be repeated month in month out if you have no steady income from your existing customer base. In short, running a business solely on one off sales does not make good business sense.

 

Some sources have suggested that it’s possible to increase your profits by up to 95 per cent just by improving your customer retention rates by five per cent. This seems like a pretty bold claim, but even an increase in profit of 20 per cent would seem like a huge win to most businesses!

 

So why are existing customers worth so much more than new ones?

 

With new business you are likely to have a longer lead time. The prospect has to be convinced that you are the right company to work with. Their doubts have to be addresses, whether they are about your product, service, price, quality, location, personnel or anything else. For every prospect that eventually buys you have to factor in not only the cost and time you’ve spent selling to them, but also to all the other prospects who haven’t bought anything.

 

Once a customer is on board you are likely to have overcome most, if not all of their concerns. The benefit to you, and the reason they’ll become easier to sell to in the future is that you will have built an element of trust with them. They are likely to be less sensitive to price, less likely to shop around and likely to buy from you more readily than go elsewhere. This again means shorter lead times, meaning less time, meaning you can focus more attention in other areas (like winning new customers!).

 

That doesn’t mean to say that existing customers are worth less of your attention, far from it! If you don’t give every customer the respect they deserve then they will leave you and go elsewhere. What I mean is that if you do your job right from the start, the process of retaining customers should be far easier than the process of attracting new ones.

 

Happy customers means you are also in a position to benefit from additional customer referrals. Good old word of mouth marketing is still a great tool for any business, especially now that you utilise the internet. If you have dozens of satisfied customers talking about you online, and possibly sending out referral offers to their friends it means that those friends who approach your business aren’t a “cold” customer. They already know about your business and have had a personal recommendation from a friend.

 

Existing customers should be at the heart of your marketing strategy, without a strategy to retain customers you leave yourself open to losing customers unnecessarily which puts you right back at square one, looking for new customers who cost you seven times more to win than retaining existing customers costs.

 

Given the recent economic turmoil (even the weather is being blamed for a potential triple dip recession!), frankly we could all do with whatever help we can get in order to reduce spending and increase efficiency. Our customer bases are one of our best assets and most valuable resources, make sure you’re getting the most out of yours!

 

Leave your comments below, we would love to know your thoughts are on customer acquisition vs repeat business!

5 Mistakes You Are Making With Your Search Engine Marketing

5 Mistakes You Are Making With Your Search Engine Marketing

5 Mistakes You Are Making With Your Search Engine Marketing?

Despite their being many benefits to search engine marketing is important to remember that it is not risk free. In fact, get it wrong and you stand to lose a lot of money in a short amount of time. Like every other form of business marketing Search engine marketing (SEM) requires careful planning, skilled execution and constant vigilance. Make sure you are not committing these 5 simple search engine marketing mistakes.

1. You Are Not Clear about Your Objectives!

Search engine marketing is a form of advertising, but it is very different from all other advertising that you may have done in the past. Crucially it is not just about creating brands it is about generating targeted leads.

search engine marketing

So begin with a clear understanding of how SEM will fit into your overall marketing mix and how many leads you want it to generate for you. But remember be realistic saying you want one hundred leads from ten pounds of advertising is unrealistic. Work out your average cost per lead and use this as your starting point. You can them come back and refine this figure, but it is always good to have a starting point.

2.You don’t have a suitable landing environment!

There is little point sending visitors to your website if those visitors don’t like what they find there. If you are advertising for conveyancing in Manchester, sending the visitor to a PPI claims web site is misleading and will result in the visitor clicking straight out because the web page is not relevant.

search engine marketing

If you are looking to increase conversion rate, and with pay per click advertising that is what you should be doing, you should think about building a specific landing page for each campaign, or service that you are advertising. People searching for Conveyancing see a page dedicated to conveyancing. People searching for accident claims seeing a page specifically for accident claims. Sending people directly to the home page of your website, unless this is well optimised for conversions can also reduce your conversion rate.

3. You are not getting your words right.

Bid on the right words and phrases and the right people will visit your site. It sounds really simple but the success of your search engine marketing campaign hinges on you getting it exactly right. You need to know exactly who you want to attract to your site, what words they will use to find your site and how to advertise on these specific words or phrases at the right price.

Are your target customers searching for a conveyancing solicitor in Manchester or house sale solicitors? There is a big difference, both mean the same thing but have different amounts of people searching, have a different cost and will convert at differing levels.

Always try to think what people are searching for if you don’t know ask your existing client base what they would search for if they were looking for your business or services in a search engine.

4. Your Ads are not Click worthy

Why oh why would your targeted customer want to click on your advert? What is in it for them? Yes it might be relevant to what they are searching for but what about the other 9 adverts on the page, all the organic listings, the map and Google plus local listings? What makes your advert stand out above all the others?

The whole point of pay per click marketing is to get people to click. If you are not receiving clicks then people will not be seeing your landing page and not be introduced to your products or services. Make you adverts enticing, engaging, and accurate and give a clear call to action.

5. You are not Tracking your results.

And when I say tracking I mean testing, tracking and then enhancing. With SEM you get almost real time information surrounding your campaign. That means you have the opportunity to make changes depending on the reception your adverts are receiving.

Forget traditional marketing where you but an advert for a set amount of time then see the results. The results are there for you to see and adapt so harness that astonishing capability to improve clicks, conversions and results.

If you have accidentally included a keyword that is a brand name or has another meaning which you knew nothing about and it is suddenly receiving hundreds of non relevant clicks then you can omit that keyword from your campaign before it does any lasting damage.

Search engine marketing is an incredibly powerful way to attract targeted visitors to your online presence and managed the right way can provide a large portion of your qualified visitors, leads and sales , so do your homework and make sure that you  get the best possible return on investment.

SEO Reputation Management – Proactively Protecting What’s Great About Your Business

SEO Reputation Management – Proactively Protecting What’s Great About Your Business

SEO Reputation Management – Proactively Protecting What’s Great About Your Business

 

No matter how good your business is the majority of businesses will find themselves under fire from negative press at some point. You can run the best of businesses for decades, surviving by word of mouth referrals resulting in thousands of happy customers but it only takes one disgruntled patron to write a blog post, leave a couple of negative business reviews or shout about their feeling of discord on social media for years of hard work building a brand to come tumbling down. seo reputation management To top it all off, many of the blogs, review sites, forums that people post on and social media platforms are very well respected by Google and therefore rank highly in the search engine results. When people next search on the name of your business or the products and services you offer, these will often show right on the first page. Right under your main website, quite often as part of your listing thanks to Google’s local business directory, Google Plus Local.

How Does Seo Reputation Management Work?

Negative, inaccurate or misleading content appearing in your top Google results makes a bad impression on people searching for you. And while no one can delete that content (except the person who posted it), effective seo reputation management can make it go away. Whether it is a business name, product, service or person within a business that is receiving negative attention online, by employing seo reputation management strategies you can make it go away. This could involve;

  • Performing an audit of online reviews, discussions and articles about your brand
  • Collating all negative mentions and assessing the best way to address them
  • Creating new positive pieces, such as press releases, advice articles or videos to outrank the negative mentions
  • Regularly monitoring the market for new unfavourable mentions
  • Using other web properties that you have to appear more relevant to the search engines.

By being proactive and taking control about what is being said about your business and what prospective clients can see when they search for you, you can help influence their decision about working with you. To put this into context if at your reception or outside your office were posters, posted by former customers advising people to avoid your business like the plague do you think it would impact the number of people that followed through and become a client?

A 2012 survey of internet users in Britain by reevoo found that 88 per cent of consumers consult reviews when making a purchase, and 60 per cent said they were more likely to purchase from a site that has customer reviews. reevoo’s research shows that shoppers trust independently collected reviews more than twice as much as reviews collected by the business being reviewed. This approach also prevents future negative content from appearing where people will see it. So don’t wait — the longer people see the personal attacks, police reports, bankruptcy filings or other negative content in your top search results, the more damage it does. Take back control of your search results before it is too late. Click on the following link to get 4 great tips on how to repair your online reputation.

Improve SEO and Get Highly Targeted Visitors

Improve SEO and Get Highly Targeted Visitors

Improve SEO and Get Highly Targeted Visitors

Small businesses often make classic mistakes with their websites, assuming that having built one, even a custom designed solution, that they will instantly appear highly in Google and win loads of new business. While this can be the case in some situations, it is far more likely that you are going to have to put in some work to improve SEO.

With an average click through rate (CTR) of 36.4%, you’ll benefit from more than a third of clicks from a search engine if you can rank a keyword term in the first position. The top three listings take 58.4% of all the searches! That is why seo is something that all business should take very seriously. [Source Optify CTR Study]

5 Tips to Improve SEO and Rise to the Top!

To make your website rise to the top you need to follow these tips.

improve seo

1. Keyword Selection

The keyword phrase (a term longer than one word, for example “Employment Solicitors Manchester”) that the user will enter into the search engine is hugely important and sits at the very foundation of getting top search engine rankings.

Think about the term your ideal client will enter into the search engine when they are looking for the results that your service can provide.

Your company name and your location are good for brand awareness but it is not addressing the scores of people that don’t yet know about you.

2. Quality content that is keyword optimised

In order for Google to fully understand what your content is about, it first of all sends a spider along to crawl your pages. The spider looks at pre defined areas of the page that help it translate the content and report back as to what the content is about.

The areas that you need to consider are:

  • Page Title
  • Heading
  • Sub headings
  • Alt tags for images
  • URL of the page

All of these elements of the page are considered by the search engines when indexing your content in the correct place so that your ideal visitor can find it. But remember that if your page is over optimised, in other words you are writing for the search engines, then it may not be easily decipherable for a human reader. Think about the user experience first.

3. Internal Linking

Internal linking is about how and where you link a page or post to other content that is relevant within your website. The point being that the search engines want to provide the user with the best possible experience they can.

Continuing with the “Employment Solicitors Manchester” search term earlier, it would be of benefit if you could then link to pages containing information and references to employment tribunals, constructive dismissal cases, and workplace discrimination.

By doing this you are providing greater detail for the user, which will help them make a judgement on your suitability to help them and the search engines will also appreciate. If the internal linking is managed correctly it will contribute to improving SEO, edging your content closer and closer to the very top search engine rankings where all the clicks happen.

4.  Attracting Inbound links.

Google and the other search engines rely highly on other people linking to your website in order for them to establish how popular your website is. The more popular the website, the higher your return in the search results.

The goal here is to create highly valuable, unique, entertaining, thought provoking, controversial content that people want to talk about and share.

The more people that link back to your site signifies to the search engines the popularity and value of the piece of content. Over time generating more links back to your content will result in greater search engine traffic. However, this does not mean that all links are equal; the quality and relevance of the link is highly important too.

Google takes into consideration where the link has come from. If your content is about employment solicitors then a link from the law society is a valuable link. If you receive a link back from a Comedy Club blog then as complimentary as it is that you have received a link it is less relevant and holds less authority.

5. Have a Social Media plan

Social signals such as being liked, tweeted or +1’d now impact your search engine rankings.

That is why you need to have a social media plan that includes identifying which social channels your customers frequent, tracking social conversations, trending topics, managing your online reputation and developing and sharing optimised content.

By ensuring you can easily create and post relevant content to social channels on a regular basis, you will not only improve your search rankings, but reach more potential customers when your content is linked to, liked, or shared.

Search engine optimisation techniques are constantly changing. What doesn’t change, and in fact becomes more prominent, is the fact that if you invest the time creating quality content that has value with the readers on a regular basis you will be able to improve seo and find your site and pages getting top search engine rankings, driving more clicks and ultimately converting to a higher number of sales.