You see some peculiar things in the web design and online marketing industry. For instance, it’s not unusual for a business owner to pull up to our offices in a luxury car, while drinking an expensive coffee, and then inform us that they’ve selected the cheapest possible web hosting plan they could find.
We chalk these situations up to a lack of information. Because most non-technical people don’t really understand the ins and outs of web hosting, they tend to choose the lowest price option. However, that can be a big mistake.
Before we get into the reasons why, we have to explain the issues you face with regular, bargain-basement shared hosting plans. When you sign up for one of these packages your web hosting company stores your website on a server with hundreds or even thousands of others. That digital overcrowding can decrease performance (i.e., the speed your website loads), especially if some of your “neighbors” send spam, have viruses, or are engaged in other unsavory activities.
Conversely, with the premium web hosting plan you get your own dedicated server, or virtual server space. That comes with a number of advantages that make premium web hosting a worthwhile investment. Let’s look at a few of them now…
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Even if you don’t follow the world of online marketing very closely, you have likely heard about SSL connectivity. The question that may have come to your mind is: “is that something I need on my website?” Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) is a protocol for transmitting private documents via the Internet. SSL uses a cryptographic system that uses two keys to encrypt data.
Strictly speaking, most small business websites that aren’t processing financial transactions don’t need SSL. But, you should probably spend a few dollars to add it to your web presence anyway. Let’s look at a few of the reasons why…
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When business owners and marketing executives turn to us it isn’t because they want an “average” or “great” web design – they want the very best. But what exactly does that mean?
We hear versions of this question almost each and every day. So, we want to help our readers and clients by shedding a little light on what the perfect business web design looks like.
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There are a lot of online marketing tactics worth trying, but few are as universally valuable and powerful as local search engine optimization. Unfortunately, we regularly meet with business owners and business executives who don’t yet understand the importance of being visible in local searches. In today’s post, we want to break down some of the things you need to know in order to make it work for you…
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Is your search traffic from Google starting to dwindle? Have you noticed that your search rankings for important keywords are dropping… and that sales are falling at the same rate?
We meet with at least a dozen business owners and executives every year who are facing the same kinds of problems. The first thing they want to know is why their websites aren’t generating sales opportunities like they used to, especially if they’ve been using search engine optimization for years.
Every situation is different, but below are some of the common reasons we see search traffic dwindle or even dry up completely.
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Most online marketers dream of having a top Google ranking for a high-traffic keyword. That’s because they know those websites attract the most visits, and that those visits frequently turn into phone calls, online inquiries, and even walk-in customers.
However, it’s important to note that there is a potential downside to executing a successful search engine optimization (SEO) campaign. Namely that you could suddenly find yourself with a flood of new interest, and that some of your new prospects might not be a great fit for your company.
Granted, getting too many phone calls, email submissions, and inquiries is usually a great problem to have. However, it can lead to difficulties nonetheless, particularly if all the extra activity stops you from paying enough attention to your best current and potential clients.
So, how do you deal with the extra time needed to handle the additional dozens or hundreds of sales inquiries that come your way when you have a high-ranking Google website? Here are a few proven pieces of advice you can follow…
Continue reading “The Downside to a Successful SEO Campaign (and How to Fix It)”
One of the most difficult things to deal with, as an online marketer, is seeing a trend of customers leaving your website at the last minute. They might abandon a shopping cart, close a window before filling out a lead form, or go back to Google when they should pick up the phone.
Why does this customer indecision cost you money? And more importantly, what can you do about it?
Although every buyer and visit is unique, potential customers generally leave you without taking action for one of three reasons: they didn’t intend to buy anything in the first place, don’t have enough information your product or service, or don’t feel sufficiently motivated on an emotional level to move forward. Almost any conversion problem you face is going to come down to one of those issues.
Luckily, none of them are impossible to solve. With that in mind, look let’s look at some fixes you can employ to get customers to place an order or fill out a form instead of clicking away from your website…
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Most marketers tend to think of search engine optimization (SEO) as being all about content creation. That notion isn’t a bad one – you generally will have to write articles, pages, and reports if you want to rank highly on Google – but it isn’t the end of the story. In fact, you can attract visitors to your website using content you haven’t even created yourself.
Don’t worry, we aren’t about to advise you to scrape or copy ideas from your competitors. Instead, we want you to think about the different ways you could use online reviews to boost your SEO efforts.
SEO and online reputation management (reviews) are often thought of as being completely separate things, but that isn’t the way Google and the other search engines see it. Reviews are valuable buyer-driven content that searchers like. They tend to show up in search previews, meaning they can be seen by potential customers before they ever visit your website or profile. And, reviews demonstrate engagement and authority, which gain more weight every time Google updates its algorithm.
You probably already knew online reviews were important for your business, of course, but if you’re like a lot of the new clients who come to us you might have imagined the quality and quantity of your online reviews were out of your control. That’s simply not the case. Here are some things you can do to boost your SEO campaigns, and your bottom line, using customer feedback…
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When social media marketing started taking off, some business owners sought it as a way to replace search engine optimization (SEO). With a few tweets and posts, they imagined they might be able to break away from the competitive and sometimes-grueling cycle of generating and promoting content.
Lately, we have seen the opposite happening: that some small and medium-sized companies are ignoring their social profiles to get back to the more proven strategy of turning search visitors into customers.
We think that’s a mistake. While SEO might be a more direct route to growing your bottom line, social media marketing still has its place. In fact, we don’t think you should invest time and money in search without also paying attention to your social accounts. Let’s look at why.
Continue reading “Why You Shouldn’t Do SEO Without Social (or Vice Versa)”
Are you one of the millions of business owners who know they need a new website or at least improvements to an existing web presence, but put it off month after month? If so, the good news is you aren’t alone. Many of your peers are procrastinating as well. The bad news is that some of your competitors are taking action and might be well on the way to leaving you behind.
It’s human nature to put off projects that don’t seem urgent, but delaying improvements to your website is a losing strategy. For one thing, your online presence can be your most important sales and marketing tool. It’s nearly impossible to grow your bottom line these days with an underwhelming digital strategy. And for another thing, your excuses for putting things off probably aren’t as strong as you might think.
If you want a little bit of proof, let’s look at five exceptionally bad reasons business owners tend to put off web design projects…
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