As a small business owner, having a website is crucial to your success in today's digital age. If you don't already have a website, or if your current website is outdated or hard to use, it's time to consider investing in a new one. Here are 5 reasons why your small business needs a new website:
Reach a wider audience: With a website, you can easily share information about your products and services with potential customers from all over the world. This can help you expand your customer base and increase sales.
Improve your credibility: A professional-looking website can establish your business as an expert in your field, which can help you attract more customers and build trust with potential clients.
Save time and money: A website can streamline your customer service process by allowing customers to find answers to common questions on their own. This can save you time and money, so you can focus on running your business.
Stay competitive: In today's market, having a website is increasingly important for small businesses. Without a website, you may be at a disadvantage compared to your competitors.
Gain valuable insights: A website with built-in analytics can provide valuable data about your visitors, such as where they are coming from, how long they stay on your site, and what pages they visit. This data can help you understand your audience better and make informed decisions about how to improve your website and marketing efforts.
In conclusion, a new website is a crucial investment for any small business looking to stay competitive in today's digital age. With a new website, you can reach a wider audience, improve your credibility, save time and money, and gain valuable insights about your customers. Don't let your small business fall behind, take the first step towards a modern and effective website today by scheduling a demo with Webware. Our team of experts will work with you to understand your business needs and create a website that will help you reach your goals. Don't wait, schedule a demo with Webware today and take your small business to the next level!
Digital Marketing Trends for 2023: The Rise of Video, Personalization, Influencer Marketing, and Chatbots
Digital marketing is constantly evolving, and as we move into 2023, there are several trends that small business owners should be aware of.
One of the biggest trends in digital marketing is the continued rise of video content. More and more businesses are using video to engage with their audience, and this trend is only set to continue in 2023. Whether it's live streaming on platforms like Facebook and Instagram, or creating engaging videos for YouTube and Vimeo, video is a powerful tool for reaching and engaging with potential customers.
Another trend to watch out for in 2023 is the increasing importance of personalization. As consumers become more savvy and more selective about the content they engage with, businesses will need to find ways to tailor their marketing messages to individual customers. This could involve using data and analytics to create personalized email marketing campaigns, or using AI and machine learning to personalize the customer experience on a business's website.
In addition, the use of influencer marketing is also set to grow in 2023. Influencer marketing involves partnering with social media influencers who have a large following in your target market and using their influence to promote your business. This can be a powerful way to reach a large audience and build trust with potential customers.
Finally, the use of chatbots is also set to increase in 2023. Chatbots are AI-powered software programs that can simulate conversations with customers in real-time, providing quick and convenient answers to common questions and helping to improve the customer experience.
In summary, digital marketing in 2023 is all about video content, personalization, influencer marketing, and chatbots. Small business owners who want to stay ahead of the curve should consider incorporating these trends into their marketing strategies.
Need help with website and digital marketing for your small business? Join over 4000 business owners like you that are a part of Webware. Book a Growth Session with us and let’s look at your current efforts and if Webware is the right fit for you.
So, you want to build or update your website? That’s a great decision.
While having your presence felt on the web is an absolute must in the digital era, the catch lies in – the costs involved. We often get tons of queries that are along the lines of – how much does a website cost or how much does it cost to build a website?
Depending on where you look, you will get different answers which can make the process more challenging and confusing. Without further ado, let's dive in.
Hiring a website developer is one of the most common ways to build a website. However, you can always opt to use a website builder or create one directly in WordPress, the world's most popular Content Management Systems, where you can create a basic site with basic features for a low cost.
It's not always necessary to hire a web developer, but then again, going for a free alternative may not align with your business objectives either. A lot of things come into play when trying to figure out how much it costs to build a website such as:
- Domain Name
Your domain name is what people type into their browser such as https://www.google.com. Not only does it represent your brand, it is your address in the online world."
What you will be paying for:
To register a domain name for your website, you have to shell out anywhere between $9 - $14.99 per year. This earns you the rights to use the domain for one year and then must be renewed once expired. Otherwise, anyone else can purchase and use your website domain instead.
- Website Builder
A website builder is a must, regardless of whether you are a rookie or a seasoned developer. It lets you create a website just the way you want while giving you some essential website features such as Plugins, SEO tags, and so on.
WordPress is often the platform of choice for new website owners due to the endless features and possibilities it offers. If you want to get complete control over your website, using an effective website builder and CMS is the only way forward.
Alternatively, you can use other website builders like Webware’s All-in-One Solution, which takes care of all your website needs and helps you get up and running quickly.
- Web Hosting
Web hosting refers to where all of your website content is stored to make it accessible to people online. Usually, this is handled by an external firm that allows you to 'rent space' on their servers to make sure that your site is available to users 24/7.
What are the different types of web hosting services?
Here are a lot of different web hosting services you can opt for depending on your overall business needs.
$2.49 – $15 per month
$20 – $80 per month
$80 – $300 per month
$4.50 – $240 per month
$4.99 – $830 per month
$2 to $20 per month
How much web hosting will cost for you depends on several factors such as the size of your website, the number of custom features it contains, the average number of monthly visitors you expect, and more.
- SSL Certificates
SSL or Secure Sockets Layer is a security protocol that provides privacy, authentication, and integrity to your internet communications.
SSL certificates are an important part of websites as they secure data transfers, logins, personal information, and credit card transactions. With an SSL certificate on your website, a visitor's experience is more secure and will encourage them to stay on your website longer, making them more likely to convert.
If you've ever noticed the little green lock in the URL bar for certain domains, that is an SSL certificate. This is a tell-tale sign of building user trust and is an absolute must when handling financial transactions or requesting personal information.
Last, but certainly not least, Google considers SSL certificates as an important ranking factor. On top of that, search engines are cracking down on websites that are 'not secure' so it is definitely something to consider.
What does all this tell you?
Without an SSL certificate, your potential customers may have a difficult time finding or even accessing your website. This will affect the traffic you receive and therefore, profitability.
How much does an SSL certificate cost?
SSL Certificates can come free of cost and can go up to $450 per year. The average price range can be somewhere around $50.
All Things Considered, Here's How Much a Website Costs:
Depending on your needs, basic web development can cost you anywhere from $100 to $500 to $3000 and if you're looking to add more premium features, this price can easily increase by a few thousand dollars. However, if you just need something simple then you will be able to keep this cost down.
The next set of costs to consider are for your domain name, web hosting, and SSL certificate which costs about $150 per year on average. If you decide to go with a website builder, these will generally have the cost of web hosting and SSL certificates included so you will just need to purchase your domain name separately.
As your website and business expand, so will your online presence which can lead to some additional enhancements to improve functionality. It is important to assess your long-term goals and future needs so you can budget accordingly.
- Set a realistic budget for your website before you decide to spend on various premium themes or plugins.
- Keep the costs low when you are just starting out and settle for a website builder for quick and easy content management.
- Create a checklist to determine whether you need a web developer for something custom or a website builder for something more simple.
- Think about potential features you might need in the future to make sure your website can handle them.
- Handling everything yourself may not be the best option for you so it might be worthwhile to consider an easy-to-use website builder that will give you the flexibility and peace of mind you need.
Need assistance in building your website? Get expert guidance at 1-844-WEBWARE.
The other day, our team was discussing the best shows ever made. We all unanimously voted for Breaking Bad. And why not? It has an IMDB rating of 9.5 for crying out loud. On Google, it is rated 4.9 with 14361 ratings. Yet, some people have given it a lower rating.
“I would rather eat my toes than watch this again,” wrote a viewer. You bet, we were equally shocked.
Moral of the story - not everyone is easy to please.
Second moral of the story – online reviews are gaining traction.
In a 2016 report from Pew Research Center, 82 percent of American adults said that they sometimes or always read online reviews when making new purchases. Over two-thirds of the regular review readers also believed these to be “generally accurate.”
We have additional data to prove the importance of reviews – both negative and positive.
- 93% of customers will read reviews of local businesses to determine its quality.
- Reviews account for about 15% of the method Google uses to rank local businesses.
- 67% of B2B buyers want to see a mix of both positive and negative reviews when checking out a business.
- Seven out of 10 consumers changed their opinion about a brand after the company replied to a review.
- 82% of customers actively seek out negative reviews.
While there are more positive reviews than negative, why do people focus on the latter?
The answer is simple. Five-star reviews can easily be faked ...and force people to look at reviews with fewer stars to get a more genuine response.
The bad news - even one negative review can impact your business for the worse and drive potential customers away. It can undo all the benefits you received from your positive reviews.
The good news – a Harvard Business Review study found that ratings increased when businesses responded to customer reviews.
This is why, apart from setting a goal to get more positive reviews, you need to know how to respond to negative reviews.
Here’s the secret sauce to help you get it right every single time.
- Think Of The People Who Will Read It
The negative reviews are often out there to be read by your potential customers. They will scrutinize each line and you will never know which line or word will influence their buying decision.
Reply in such a way that all the readers form the opinion that your firm or business is dedicated to serving customers in the best manner. Their satisfaction is your prime focus. Show that you are committed to improving their experience.
Pro tip: Before responding publicly, respond to your customers privately over an email or a call, or invite them to solve the matter in person. This increases the chance of them changing their review and rating.
- Constantly Monitor Your Reviews
Thinking of how to respond to negative reviews on Google? Do you struggle with responding to all of your negative reviews on other platforms as well? This is where Online Reputation Management tools (ORM tools) can help you.
You can use them to monitor various online platforms and respond to negative reviews quickly. This is important because customers whose complaints get handled in less than 5 minutes are likely to make a future purchase from your business. If you don't say anything or wait too long to respond, this will only annoy your customers and get them to turn away from you forever. A timely response means you care for your customers. Period.
- Keep Calm and Handle It
Regardless of the outcome, always acknowledge the problem at hand. Without this, the customer may feel like their concerns are not being recognized which can escalate the situation. The rule of the thumb is to stay positive.
Start by thanking them for bringing this issue to your attention and proceed to offer them a resolution with a sincere apology. Anyone who sees the complaint will take into account how positively you handled the situation which will go a long way to improving your company's online reputation.
Pro Tip: Make sure you have a game plan ready before responding. Keep a database of positive responses on hand for anyone to respond with on behalf of your team.
- Be Genuine to a Fault
The first step to addressing a negative review is to understand your customers' point of view by putting yourself in their shoes. Ask them the details of what went wrong and what steps you can take to avoid a similar situation in the future.
Even if the matter is trivial or it is just a misunderstanding, showing customers that you genuinely care, will help your cause in winning their confidence. Be empathetic, and find out what bothered them with clear and succinct communication. And most importantly, be professional, helpful and objective.
Pro Tip: You can also sign the reply with a name to show customers that they are talking to a real person from your company.
- Offer A Solution
This has already been covered in previous points but we are mentioning it again because it's very important. Offering customers an immediate remedy or quick solution can improve their happiness in no time at all and can help end the review thread on a positive note from the customer.
There are many ways to offer a solution based on the situation at hand. If they are unhappy with a specific person from your business, let them know you will look into the matter. If they had an issue with your product, offer them a refund or a discount on their next purchase. If they received poor customer service, offer them a sincere apology with a gift card. At the end of the day, winning back a disgruntled customer is worth more than a few dollars in the long run!
Trying to pretend that a negative review does not exist will do nothing but make a bad situation worse. By making sure you respond to them personally in a timely manner, there is a good chance you can save yourself from losing a valuable customer while displaying your outstanding customer service. Show people that you are a business who cares.
- Negative reviews are not always bad for your business.
- Responding to each negative review is important
- Keep a list of responses handy
- Be prompt, professional, and positive while responding.
- Show that you are authentic
If you’ve been approaching web design agencies or freelancers with a view to getting your first website or a revamp of your current one, you might be worried about going with the wrong company. Will they create your vision properly? Will they abandon you halfway through the job and leave you with an unfinished, non-working website? Or will they be a nightmare to work with?
These are all valid fears, but being a nightmare to work with works both ways. You want a great website that hits all the sweet spots and brings in lots of new business. Well, it helps if you’re a good web design customer, too. You might think it’s down to the web designer to do what you tell them – that the customer’s always right, etc., but this won’t do you any favors and it certainly won’t get the best out of your partnership.
So, how can you be a good web design customer and not a nightmare? Here are a few tips.
Don’t Let Your First Question Be: “How Much Does a Website Cost?”
Yes, of course you want to know how much a website’s going to cost. But until the designer knows the scope and extent of the work, they can’t give you an accurate estimate. Have a look through their portfolio to see who their clients are and if their sites are similar to what you need. This way, you’ll not only see if they can undertake a site on the scale you’re after. If their portfolio is full of fashion brands and you’re an accountant, you might not be the best fit for each other.
Once you’ve found a few designers you like the look of, let them know the kind of site you’re looking for along with your budget. They’ll let you know if that’s something they can work with. You wouldn’t expect a decorator to know how much they should charge to decorate your house until they’ve seen exactly what it is you want done, would you? It’s the same with web design.
Have a Good Idea of What You’re Looking For
Web designers aren’t mind readers. Although you might not know exactly what you want, it’ll be helpful to have some idea of sites you like or dislike. Also include info on why you like or dislike them.
There’s a good chance you’ll be sent a questionnaire to fill in and there’s also a good chance it will be long and daunting. But fill it in as completely and with as much detail as you can. It’s a key document that will help your designer know the type of site you’re after, design- and functionality-wise.
Make a List
Most small businesses need a small site. You can go a long way to becoming a good web design customer by listing the pages you need, for example: a home page, an about page, a contact form, a services page, a features page, and your terms and conditions. Just list the pages you think you’ll need, and you’re well on your way to a proper spec.
Write Some Copy
The number one thing on any website is the words. Cast your fancy graphics and transitions aside, because people will not glean anything from your website without reading the words. Heed this advice: copy comes before design. So, draft some words, start at your homepage and write down what you want to say. If that’s too hard (because copywriting is hard) then try the about page – write about yourself, what do you want to say?
If you’re stuck, then start with the easy stuff and write down what you want to say on your contact form – what do the field labels say? Every little nugget of copy helps the designer get a better understanding of what you want.
Give the Web Designer What They’ve Requested
For you to be a good web design customer and your web designer to do their job properly, you need to give them exactly what they’ve asked for and how they’ve asked for it. For example, if you’ve been asked to provide large hi-res images in a Dropbox link, don’t send a Word document embedded with small compressed images.
Also, don’t just dump everything on them and disappear. Answer their queries promptly and let them have anything else they need, such as copy and images as and when they ask.
Don’t Ask for Free Major Changes After It’s Complete
Your site’s finished and you decide you don’t like blue after all and you want it to be more pink. A few tweaks to get your site exactly how you want it is fine, but with a nod to the decorating analogy above, you wouldn’t expect your decorator to repaint your house pink for free, after you’d asked them to paint it blue, would you?
Don’t Expect to be Number One on Google the Next Day
If you’ve chosen a decent web designer (which you will have done if you’ve read this post covering questions to ask your web designer), they’ll have built you a user-friendly, accessible site with fast-loading images, etc., which are all things that make Google happy.
There’s a lot involved with SEO (Search Engine Optimization) that might be out of their scope (optimized content, for example), but you can ask at the beginning how they can help with this and what you can expect. Just don’t expect miracles.
These are just a few ways you can make your web designer’s job easier and make you a good web design customer. A good working relationship makes things easier for everyone and leaves everyone happy.
Article Source Credits:
Author: Gary Bury
Gary Bury is co-founder and CEO of Timetastic, an independent and profitable web app for managing time off work, used by thousands of companies around the world.
Article Source: www.smallbusinessbonfire.com
Originally Posted on: Jan 10, 2021
Email marketing is one of the digital marketing strategies used by small businesses to generate leads and drive more sales. 73% of millennials prefer communications from businesses to come via email.
While some record a lot of success with it, others don’t. Businesses that don’t have digital marketing experts to help them with email marketing may struggle.
If your business isn’t having success with email marketing, this article should help. Here are five email marketing mistakes small businesses make and how to fix them.
Let’s first look at the basics.
How does email marketing help small businesses with their marketing? Email marketing:
- Builds trust and strong relationships with customers through frequent helpful emails
- Cuts down on advertising costs with a large email list
- Offers solutions to problems because it understands the pain points of the target audience
Let’s go to the common mistakes.
#1. Not analyzing email campaigns using A/B Testing
You may have launched different email campaigns and never bothered to analyze your results to evaluate if you met your goals. In email marketing, the only way to improve your results is to analyze the success of your campaigns.
Assessing how your audience reacts to your emails when they land in their inbox is key.
How to fix it
Use an A/B Testing feature to analyze various campaigns you launched, and the results related to your marketing goals. Email marketing software like SendX has a feature that allows you to test how your subscribers react to your subject line, content, call to action button, etc.
#2. Lack of personalization in emails
How does it feel to receive an email with the sender not addressing you by your name?
Sometimes you might see it as spam. And that’s how some of your audience may react when you send them emails without personalizing them. Occasionally, they may immediately trash it (or even block you) – even though they willingly signed up to receive your emails.
That means they haven’t given you the chance to convert them into buyers.
How to fix it
For a small business that has a blog and acquires subscribers through sign-up forms, ensure you create a field for first name. That way, your audience will enter their first name when signing up.
Also, be sure to check that your message is inserting the first name correctly by sending yourself a test email. Don’t skip this!
#3. Sending emails without segmentation
If you don’t segment your email list, you’re likely to send emails to a person who didn’t subscribe to a particular list. That’s annoying and will turn some people off.
How to fix it
Email marketing software like HubSpot Marketing Hub has the segmentation feature. Use it to categorize your subscribers according to the list they signed up for.
#4. Adding a broken link
When you launch email campaigns, you may add a link that will send your subscribers to another page. Sometimes those links are broken and a customer will get a 404 error (page not found).
How to fix it
Check any link you add to your email campaign to be sure it is working.
#5. Forgetting a call to action button
Call to action buttons are important for your subscribers to convert to sales. If it’s missing, your subscribers may find it difficult to understand what you want them to do.
How to fix it
Use a bold, clear, and simple call to action button telling your subscribers what you want them to do. An example could be “Learn more here” or “Claim your discount now.”
Also, be sure to place it in an obvious location where it will be visible.
Email marketing can help you grow your small business – but only if you do it right.
The mistakes discussed here stop small businesses from seeing results. Implement the solutions offered the next time you launch an email campaign to improve your email marketing.
Article Source Credits:
Author: Chuks Chukwuemeka
Chuks Chukwuemeka is a Content Creator, Blogger and Digital Marketer. He’s the founder of Depreneurdigest, a blog that focuses on helping online businesses succeed. He specializes on providing consultancy services to small businesses on how to grow their online presence through blogging.
Article Source: www.carolroth.com
You may have thought of social media as a passing fad, but it's clear that it is not. Businesses everywhere are now looking to social media to help spread the word about what they do. Can social media and blogs help with business development? Here’s how you can use them.
Develop a relationship with your audience
The communications you put out on social media don’t happen in a vacuum. Whenever you make a post, you’re starting a conversation with your audience. It’s the easiest way to get talking to your customers and really find out what they want. Customers also appreciate when companies respond to their queries online too, so you can build up goodwill this way.
Business development is cost effective with social media
Any business can get started on social media, as it’s totally free to create an account. It won’t cost you a thing to keep posting and interacting with your followers. When it comes to getting the word out there, there’s pretty much no cheaper option. There’s a reason why start ups love using social media.
Even if you do want to advertise, most social media advertising packages are particularly low cost options. You really can get the word out there, without breaking the bank.
There are online tools to help you
Even if social media looks easier, getting the balance right can be difficult. Luckily, there are lots of tools online that will help you get the most out of your online presence. Here are some good services to get you started:
- Blogs and Resources: These blogs offer all kinds of helpful advice on social media, including how to deal with negative feedback and how to use certain social networks for business.
- Wordstream: This cost effective service helps you get the most out of your advertising, and helps you generate more leads through social media and blogging.
Social media has a huge reach
There’s no bigger audience than that on social media. On Facebook alone, it’s estimated that 65% of US adults are using it. When you think of it like that, it’s almost compulsory for you to create and maintain an account. You’ll never have a bigger audience, so be sure to take advantage of it.
Share more about what you do
Want to reduce some of the mystery about your business? give your customers a glimpse behind the curtain? Then social media lets you do that. You can share as much as you’d like with your audience, encouraging them to trust you and buy from you. Getting your brand known to the world by social media and blogs are an easy way to see business development.
Social media posts are indexed by Google, so you can get more information out there about what you’re doing.
Social media is everywhere! Almost no one would be caught dead without their smartphone these days. That means that they’re constantly connected to their social media accounts, 24/7. You can take advantage of this by making sure you’re posting regularly. That way, whenever they open up the Twitter app when waiting for the bus, they’re more likely to be exposed to your work potentially leading to increased business development.
As you can see, social media is vital to a modern online presence. Maintain accounts correctly, and you can reach out to more people than ever before. Give it a try for yourself, and you’ll see how much your audience grows.
Article Source Credits:
Author: Rachel Summers
Author at Exodus Digital Marketing.
Article Source: http://www.exodus-digital-marketing.co.uk/
Ever since Instagram launched in 2010, it has steadily scaled from a photo-sharing app to a marketing platform. With the introduction of Instagram Stories, IGTV, Q & A Instagram Live, new profile view, video calling, shoppable posts, push notifications, and insights along with several other new features, it is clear that Instagram is turning into the most powerful marketing tool for businesses. In 2020, Instagram released nineteen innovative features to improve user experience and engage more customers.
One feature that was introduced in 2016 and has gained a significant amount of momentum has been Insta-stories with over five-hundred million daily active users. While the idea of Instagram stories was picked up from Snapchat, Instagram has added augmented filters, question poll, GIF stickers, hashtags, music, emoji slider, and a lot of other improvements to increase interactivity and bring in more sales. You even have the option to add multiple photos or videos from your camera roll to your Insta-story. Stories disappear after twenty-four hours, but they can live permanently on your profile through Instagram Story Highlights.
What are Instagram Story Highlights?
Instagram Highlights are archived photos or stories that you can pin to your profile. In other words, once your story vanishes after twenty-four hours, they become a part of your archived gallery. You can either create a Highlight by adding stories from your archived gallery or save it directly as a Highlight after you upload a story. Note that they will remain for your followers to see until you choose to remove them.
Instagram Story Highlights gives clarity to your profile by allowing users or consumers to identify the personality of your brand or business. Brands use story highlights to feature their events and promotions, showcase their products or services, and so on. This long-story format has helped many brands draw in more consumers and build a stronger connection with followers. However, if you want to take full advantage of Instagram stories and integrate them into your digital marketing strategies, you need to be aware of all that Instagram Story Highlights has to offer.
Here are a few ways you can effectively use Instagram Story Highlights to represent your brand in the best possible manner.
Tip #1: Categorize your highlights.
When a new user visits your profile, they will likely view your Instagram Story Highlights after reading your bio. To make a great first impression on them and potential customers, it is advisable to organize your content into distinct categories by creating multiple story highlights. For instance, if you have a catering business, you can create separate highlights for your recipes, recent events, client reviews. By utilizing Highlights to categorize your stories, it allows you to display your most valuable content to your followers and gives you the freedom to set the tone for your brand image.
Tip #2: Keep a short name for your story highlights.
By naming each story highlight, you are summarizing exactly what you do or offer in a few letters. Ideally, the entire name or title of your highlight should fit within the area. However, as it is a small space, there is a limit on the number of characters your highlight can have. Ideally, it should be up to fifteen characters long, but if you want it to be fully displayed, keep your highlight name around ten characters.
Tip #3: Use a custom cover image for each highlight.
If you want to come across as a professional brand and set yourself apart from the competition, consider uploading a custom highlight cover to give your profile a cohesive look. Make sure your cover image is not only eye-catching but also in line with your brand identity. You can either design a cover on Instagram or use more resourceful editing apps or software. To establish uniformity, try to create similar covers for your highlights; it could be adding a standard color or background, typography, image, etc.
While Instagram is continually rolling out new features and updates to help business owners boost their brand, there are other digital marketing strategies such as SEO, email marketing, content management, social media promotion that can raise brand awareness and fuel business growth.
As a leading provider of digital marketing services in North America, Webware.io has helped hundreds of small businesses successfully navigate the digital landscape and create a powerful online presence. By providing all the tools, services, and support in one place, your business gets everything it needs to grow.
Article Source Credits:
Author: Melinda Viegas
Article Source: www.webware.io
If you’re a small business owner that cares about your success, then you probably already have a website. It’s important to understand that with so much competition online, merely having a website is not enough. The key question is whether your website is actually working for your business. Furthermore, how much available time do you have to maintain your website without affecting your day-to-day operations?
If your website is not bringing in enough traffic or you spend too much time trying to figure out how you can be successful online, then you probably need some help. Here are 10 most common signs that you need help with your website:
- Your website is not mobile responsive. Even worse, you’re not sure what mobile responsiveness is. You want to make sure that your website is designed to fit all devices so you can provide a consistent user experience without sacrificing results.
80% of online users in 2019 used mobile devices when searching the internet. On top of that, if your website is not designed for mobile you will notice a big drop in your search engine rankings or might not even get ranked at all. If you’re interested in learning more about how your website’s responsiveness could be affecting your ability to be found on search engines, you should speak to an expert immediately.
- You know SEO is important, but don’t know how to get it to work for you. If you don’t know how to utilize Search Engine Optimization tools, this is a sign that you need help. SEO is an essential component of a successful and effective online strategy. Search engines, like Google, run algorithms that measure a number of criteria on your website when deciding where to rank it in the search results. Some of the things that affect your SEO include keyword selection, website content, mobile-friendliness, internal & external links, search relevance, site structure, location, and the overall quality (load speed, duplicate pages, broken links, etc.).
If you can’t find your own website online, how do you expect your customers to find it? If you have trouble finding your website online, without typing in your business name, then that means there is plenty of room to optimize it. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is an essential website practice that makes it easier for search engines, like Google, to find you. There are a number of online practices and strategies, which will affect your website’s SEO. Being able to implement and execute these practices effectively will drastically improve your ability to be found online.
- Your website has little to no traffic. If your website has very little or declining traffic, then that is a clear sign that you need to adjust your current website strategy. Even in heavily saturated industries, there are always opportunities to improve your rankings by trying out new keywords and increasing links. A little help from SEO experts can go a long way.
Sure, there are tons of places where you can go online to learn about setting up your website's SEO, but how much time do you really have to become an SEO expert? Developing a high-quality SEO strategy for your business is a complex process. You need to make sure that your content development, website design, and overall brand story work together to engage audiences. If you feel like ongoing SEO planning and maintenance is outside of your comfort, you will likely need some help.
- Your website visitors are not moving past your home page. If your website has a high bounce rate, your visitors are either clicking the “back” button to leave your site, closing the tab, or going dormant. In any case, your website is not captivating them which could be due to a few things:
- The keywords your audience is searching for does not fit your content.
- Your content and messaging is confusing or difficult to understand.
- Your website is difficult to navigate.
- You do not have the right CTAs (Calls to Action)
- Your website is attracting the wrong traffic.
Whatever the reason, if your website visitors aren’t moving past the initial landing page, now is a good time for a general website review.
- Your website isn’t updated regularly. Regular updates help search engines understand that you have an active website with relevant content. If your website does not contain keyword rich content, a regularly updated blog, and consistent updates, you will likely see a decline in traffic which will affect your search engine rankings. If you’re unsure of the type of content that you need to add to your website, how to edit or add pages, or don’t even have time to manage a blog, you probably need to speak to an expert to get you on track.
- Your website has 404 error pages. You might have seen these messages in the past when you visit a link or a website page and see a message that the URL doesn’t exist anymore. This is either because the page was moved or deleted. This can be an annoying and frustrating experience for visitors who are navigating your website and searching for information. Search engines like Google do not like 404 errors either. This will be reflected in the search engine results page (SERP) with a low rank. A review for 404 error messages and broken links should be a regular part of your website maintenance plan.
- Your website was designed by you. This might have been an important first step in establishing your initial online presence, but successful companies understand how their website can be used as an effective tool to generate business. A well designed website will help you drive more traffic, improve the user experience, and deliver new leads for your business. If your website doesn't look professional, you could be turning away valuable customers.
Professional web designers don’t just create a beautiful website. They understand the psychology behind how a user behaves when they arrive on your website. The chances are that if you’re busy running the day to day operations of your business, you do not have the time nor the expertise to manage your website properly along with all the other optimization activities needed .
- Your website doesn’t have an online marketing plan. Even if your online marketing strategy is not complex, this is still something that needs to be carefully considered. Start by asking yourself the following questions:
- What is the goal of your website?
- What do you want your customers and prospects to do when they get to your website?
- How is the user experience going to guide the customer to achieve that desired outcome?
- Why should they care?
- More importantly, how are you going to get them to your website?
- You don’t know exactly who your ideal customers are. If you don't have a good idea of who your best customers are, you probably should. Not only will this help you create better content to engage them, you will be able to add other elements such as promotions and videos to better communicate with them. This will help your website and business stay top-of-mind to keep people coming back.
At the end of the day, your website should be contributing to your business. If any of the 10 signs mentioned stand out for your, then it is likely that you could benefit from some help with your website. Making the decision to update your online presence could be one of the most valuable decisions you could ever make for your business.
Not sure where to start? Webware.io offers a complete tool-kit to help businesses navigate the internet. Your toolkit includes: a content website or an ecommerce website, blog plus all the digital services your website needs to thrive online.
Every brand wishes to become famous. Well, every entrepreneur, business owner, and marketer wishes for its brand to become famous.
But as you might guess, popularity doesn’t happen overnight. Not for brands. They don’t wake up famous; instead, slowly and steadily, they grow brand awareness.
What is brand awareness?
Brand awareness defines the extent to which consumers are familiar with the qualities or image of a particular brand of goods or services.
The goal of marketing, PR, and even customer service is to grow brand awareness – to make sure people know the brand, talk about it, and recall it when the brand’s industry is discussed. These are the primary perks of brand awareness, but there are others, too.
Brand awareness fosters trust – people rarely buy important products from unknown brands. It creates brand equity – people pay more due to higher perceived value.
Brand awareness also creates communities of loyal customers who keep buying the brand’s products not just because they like them, but also because they associate themselves with the brand and feel as a part of the community. Think about the Apple vs. Microsoft battle, Coke vs. Pepsi; recall people who stick to the same brand over decades, be it cars or cereal.
How do you measure brand awareness?
Growing anything doesn’t work well without regular measuring. Brand awareness is no exception: despite the obvious difficulties – it’s impossible to accurately calculate how many people know your brand – it’s the metric you can’t ignore. In fact, it’s a number of metrics. And here’s how to get some numbers.
Asking a random selection of people over the phone or email whether they’ve heard about your brand is the first step to getting a vague understanding of brand awareness. Ideally, of course, the selection should be representative of your target audience.
Asking existing customers how they heard about your brand is another approach which addresses a different issue. It gives you an understanding of how the word about your brand is spread and which channels are effective in growing brand awareness.
- Social listening
Social listening metrics are the metrics that get you as close to measuring brand awareness as possible. Social listening tools search for mentions of your brand (tagged and untagged) on social media networks, news sites, blogs, forums, and the web. They calculate the number of people talking about your brand, which must correlate with the number of people who know your brand.
Besides, social listening tools show the overall sentiment of brand mentions, allowing you to dig deeper into how people feel about your product or service. Social listening metrics also include the Reach metric. Reach shows the number of people that see mentions of your brand online multiplied by the number of times they see them. This reveals whether you have influential brand advocates (e.g., social media influencers) and/or popular sources (BBC, CNN, etc.) that have mentioned your brand.
- Website traffic
Measuring website traffic is another way in which you can assess brand awareness, not as a total number, but as an increasing or decreasing metric.
Unfortunately, Google Analytics doesn’t show the number of people who’ve arrived on your site by using branded keywords. All you can do in terms of assessing brand awareness is look at Direct traffic – these will be the people who’ve typed your URL into their address bar, along with the ones that arrived on your site through untracked links.
- Search volume
Search volume data adds to website traffic metrics. You can use Google Adwords Keyword Planner and Google Trends to check the volume of your brand searches over time. This, however, will only work if your brand name is unique.
Unlike with social listening, you can’t add “negative keywords” to specify your search, so if your brand name is “Apple”, the data you get will be meaningless.
Top 3 tools to measure brand awareness
- Survey Monkey
Creating surveys isn’t as easy as you might assume. Survey Monkey does most of the work for you. It’s one of the best – and definitely most popular – survey tools out there, and it’s great for creating in-depth online surveys.
Pricing: Free for Basic, $25/mo for Advantage, $75/mo for Premier, and Enterprise pricing is available upon request.
Awario is a social listening tool. It crawls all major social media networks, news sites, blogs, forums, and the web for mentions of any given keyword (usually a brand). It analyzes mentions’ growth, reach, sentiment, as well as popular topics around the keywords and the authors’ gender, locations, and languages. It also finds brand advocates and industry influencers.
The tool has a Boolean search option which ensures that the results include relevant mentions only, even if your brand name is a common or ambiguous word.
Pricing: $29/mo for the Starter plan, $89/mo for Pro, and $299/mo for Enterprise. Save 2 months with a yearly plan and get a free 7-day trial.
Brandwatch is another social listening tool. It’s more sophisticated than Awario and fits enterprises and agencies better. Brandwatch covers all social networks, including niche and local ones, as well as review sites, news sites, comment sections, blogs, forums, and the web. The tool finds not only mentions of the brand’s name, but also images related to a brand, for example, its logo.
The tool analyzes mentions’ growth, reach, and sentiment, and the authors’ demographics, psychographics, locations, and languages. It also reveals trends most popular in your niche.
Pricing: Available upon request.
How do you grow brand awareness?
Now that you know how to keep an eye on your results, let’s talk about all (or some of) the ways you can grow brand awareness.
- Social media marketing
Social media is where communities are built. It’s where the word about a brand (or anything else) spreads far and wide.
Interestingly enough, it’s also a place where people want to hear about brands and to talk about brands. Although social media is often perceived as a place to chat with friends and take part in political discussions and nothing else, for many, it’s also a place to talk to brands, to follow their news, and to discover them.
Social media marketing has many aims. Here are some of them:
- Creating social communities around a brand;
- Spreading the word using promotional, entertaining, and educational content, both from brands and user generated;
- Attracting new people with your brand’s amazing personality that especially shines on social media.
- Influencer marketing
Influencer marketing is one of the most cost-effective forms of marketing, and it’s especially useful for growing brand awareness. Influencers are the people with a large following by definition and if they advertise, review, or even simply mention a product, they get the word out.
While offline influencers are usually extremely expensive, when it comes to online, there is a whole spectrum. You can find niche influencers with an average but dedicated following genuinely interested in products like yours. You can also find Internet celebrities with millions of followers. And, you can find anyone in between.
- Content marketing
Today, people turn to the Internet to find answers to all kinds of questions. And if your product or service might raise some, it’s time to answer them – for free.
Creating free content attracts people looking for content and not, necessarily, ready to buy a product right now. Content gets spread around quicker than anything promotional. It’s the easiest way to establish your brand as a source of information about your industry – the source people will turn to, tell their friends about, and share on social media and beyond.
Over to you
Brand awareness might seem too vague and complicated to mindfully measure and grow. However, it doesn’t mean you should neglect brand awareness, especially considering how vital it is for a brand’s success. Get out there and tell people about your brand!
Article Source Credits:
Author: Aleh Barysevich
Aleh Barysevich is Founder and Chief Marketing Officer at companies behind SEO PowerSuite, professional software for full-cycle SEO campaigns, and Awario, a social media monitoring app. Aleh is a seasoned SEO and social media expert and speaker at major industry conferences.
Article Source: www.jeffbullas.com
Originally Posted on: November 10, 2020
There’s search engine optimization, and then there’s seasonal SEO.
One is a constant companion that deserves consistent attention and focus to drive traffic to your pages and visitors to your profiles. The other – when done correctly – can give you a sweet little bump depending on the time of year.
Search engine optimization is easy to grasp, but more difficult to master. It’s the art of getting your content to rank well in the Google search engine.
Our digital lives revolve around the search engine. Whenever we want to know, buy, or do, we head on over to Google (it’s responsible for 94% of organic traffic) or Bing. And ranking is important:
- Three-quarters of people never scroll past the first page of search engine results.
- Most people ignore the paid ads that appear on the front page.
- Leads that arrive via search have an average close rate of 14.6%, but it’s only 1.7% for those from outbound channels.
- 92% of organic clicks are captured on the first page.
- The result in the #1 spot gets 32.5% of clicks.
If you don’t appear on the first page, it’s like you don’t exist. Outside of the top three spots, the click-through rate or CTR drops very quickly even if you are on the first page.
That’s not to say you won’t see a lot of seasonal fluctuation throughout the year. And you can capitalize on that. “Seasonal” refers to more than just the uptick in spending and buying we see in the weeks leading up to Christmas. It includes Black Friday, Cyber Monday, back-to-school shopping in late summer, Mother’s Day, Valentine’s Day, the seasons themselves, and much more.
Whether you’re a small business looking to capitalize on the trends or a seasonal business only open in the summer or holidays, there are steps you can take to catch those waves of increasing demand. With a little planning, you can produce a consistent uptick in your organic traffic at the same time each year.
Meet the Customer’s Needs
Taking advantage of seasonal SEO is not a shady tactic. You’re going above and beyond to meet consumer needs. They want this, and they want it now. If they’re looking for Christmas decorations in November, it’s because they’re ready to buy. They’re happy. You’re happy. Satisfied customers increase traffic and profit.
Your first step is to identify the naturally-occurring highs and lows for a particular keyword or product. If you sell Christmas ornaments, then you know you’re going to see increased demand in the lead-up to Christmas.
Others may be a bit more difficult to pin down. Maybe it changes from year to year, or maybe there’s more than one uptick. There are simple SEO and keyword research tools to help with this part, including Google Trends, which is free.
It’ll show the relative search volume for any keyword. Choose a geographic region, time period, or type of search, and Trends will display a line graph. You can also compare several keywords on the same graph.
Down jackets experience a major spike in demand starting in the fall and peaking in the winter. Makes sense. But let’s say you sell raw honey. When’s your season? You might think spring or summer.
You’d be wrong.
The highest search volume for ‘raw honey’ occurs every year in early January. Why?
You’d have to do some research, but it may be because that’s the time of year when people set resolutions. Healthy eating is a common one, and raw honey is a healthier alternative to processed sugar.
So, as a raw honey vendor, you’d want to accelerate your SEO efforts starting in November, with content that pushes the health benefits of your product. Then, you’re perfectly situated for the rise in demand. When they go looking for it, they’ll find you.
If you have a website, you can dig into your own data to find the highs and lows for your traffic. Using Google Analytics, you can get valuable insights into your traffic trends over the course of a year.
The Audience > Overview graph provides a convenient snapshot of the peaks and valleys over time.
Check out Acquisition to see where your visitors are coming from. This data provides a roadmap for the seasonal niche events you should be targeting.
Combine it with insight from the Google Search Console on specific keywords and how much traffic they generate, and you know exactly what’s bringing in traffic at any given time, and where customers are going on your site.
What are the keywords that people are using to find your products or service? You might turn to a keyword research tool to find new opportunities. Make a list of those words bringing in the most traffic, and the relevant keywords you’d like to add to the mix.
Don’t forget about long-tail keywords. They may have a lower search volume, but they represent a much higher level of searcher intent. Long-tail is the difference between searching for ‘shoes’ versus ‘brown leather shoes for men’. Lower overall volume, but much more intent to purchase.
Put It All Together
Once you’ve analyzed everything, you should see some clear patterns on what (keywords) and when to use them. Create content to match – content that reflects the peak engagement period and the slow-down period.
Create seasonally-specific calls-to-action, pages, and navigation menus on your site. Highlight the seasonal niche events. Give yourself enough time to generate awareness and momentum. Start your efforts at least a month or two before the peak, and continue them for about a month after it.
Keep your SEO healthy at all times. Create and share high-quality and relevant content. Build and earn strong backlinks. Seasonal spikes can be very lucrative. Find them. And grab them.
Article Source Credits:
Author: Jeshue Betts
Jeshue Betts is the regional marketing representative of LawnStarter.com, an online and mobile platform that connects homeowners with lawn care professionals for care-free and efficient services.
Article Source: succeedasyourownboss.com
Originally Posted on: September 29, 2020
Do you know how to enhance your social media marketing performance using an ambitious yet achievable strategy?
Actually, this is what the majority of marketers think they know. But the truth is many of them are not successful in marketing and usually get low ROI.
In fact, marketers and brands of all sizes and types don’t use social media to its full capacity.
They consider digital marketing to be posting several pics/clips and advertising their products.
This is what any common social media user can do. So what are the differences?
The greatest mistake they’re making is that they think social media is all about the number of followers.
They sometimes don’t care about the followers’ relevancy and the engagement rates they can bring to their accounts.
In other words, they ignore and avoid building a niche community to make their audience consider them as a leader in the community.
Many of them don’t know anything about “Brand Storytelling” on social media, and the only thing they want is to get more followers.
Many of them even try to acquire existing accounts to gain instant access to thousands of followers.
It is clear that building a niche community is not an easy task, and not all marketers can afford to do it.
A versatile and robust strategy is a must in this regard. Otherwise, you’ll repeat your previous mistakes without knowing the reason it isn’t working.
This is so important that many medium and large companies assign their marketing campaigns on social media to agencies.
Table of Contents
- How to Build Efficient Social Media Marketing Strategies
How to Build Efficient Social Media Marketing Strategies
The most important thing these agencies do is to build efficient social media marketing strategies.
That would be especially useful during the COVID-19 pandemic when the staff’s physical presence is limited, and the threat of the coronavirus is still with us.
The time of social media usage per capita has globally increased, and this is a unique opportunity to build a social media marketing strategy.
If you can strengthen your brand identity through informative content and targeting organic audiences, you’ll have a brighter future in the aftermath of COVID-19.
Here is a step-by-step guide through which you can build your own company’s marketing strategy on social media.
1. Analyze your social media performance
First, you have to analyze your current performance to know how well you’re generating leads.
One of the most beneficial aspects of using analytics tools is to recognize your strengths and weaknesses.
Google Analytics is also a great software in this regard.
You can also perform social media A/B testing to know if your ads are of interest to your audience.
2. Define S.M.A.R.T goals
After analyzing your previous performance and knowing what has performed well and what hasn’t, you can define your next objectives.
They need to be specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound so that you can be sure you reach them.
You also need to define certain metrics to measure these objectives and optimize your activities.
3. Know your target audience
Social media marketing is all about reaching out to the most probable customers and encouraging them to buy from you.
So you have to exactly recognize your potential customers to be able to speak with them like them.
Age, gender, location, job, and many other factors can significantly change people’s thinking and buying.
So you can’t have a single strategy for all social media users. Fortunately, there are several useful tools to find and reach out to a niche-relevant audience.
4. Choose the right channels
When you know your audience characteristics, you can target them on social media platforms.
The question is which social network is the best one for your business.
Of course, top social platforms are being used by billions of people, and you have to consider using them.
But you need to be more specific as any social app has its own audience demographic, and you can’t use a single content strategy for all of them.
For example, Pinterest’s users in the U.S. are mainly women. But on the other hand, LinkedIn is being used by CEOs, job seekers, professionals, etc.
So you need to prioritize your marketing strategies based on these differences.
5. Generate informative content and post them at the best time
Content is king! You must have heard this sentence thousands of times. But along with generating informative content, you need to put it in the eyes of as many niche audiences as possible.
Try to use social media scheduling tools to post your content at the best time to get maximum exposure.
6. Constantly survey your industry
Even a strong marketing strategy can fail you if you don’t know the competition well.
If you constantly check out your competitors, you can predict whether your strategy will be successful or not.
You have to track all their activities, including social channels they’re using, content style, followers, posting schedules, etc.
To understand these steps better, you can look at the infographic below.
Article Source Credits:
Author: Tom Siani
Tom Siani is the Content Manager at Blogwaves.com where he shares his years of experience related to social media marketing, brand marketing, blogging, and search visibility.
Article Source: growmap.com
Originally Posted on: October 4, 2020