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Posts Tagged ‘customer’

SEO May Be the Best Investment for Your Small Business

Tuesday, September 6th, 2011

For most businesses with a website, the foremost source of traffic to their website is user searches. Over 70% of users click only on the top 10 results from a search, and ignore the search results that fall further down on the page or beyond the first page. How do companies get the number one spot? Or one of the top 10? Or at least one in the top half of the first page? Answer: by recognizing the power of optimizing their websites for search engines. Search engines such as Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc., use complex algorithms to determine the order in which companies will appear in the search results. These algorithms include hundreds of ranking factors that determine the position a company website will appear when a user search is made.

 

SEO – search engine optimization – is one of the most important marketing tools a small business can invest in. SEO can produce an extraordinary return on investment (ROI) by increasing a website’s online visibility, thereby attracting visitors who convert into customers. Company listings displaying in the top half of page one search results capture 99% of consumers, which could mean hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenue per year. Most business owners miss out on the vast majority of internet traffic, and sales, that would otherwise be theirs if their website was optimized for search. Small business owners must not underestimate the value of SEO and its impact on the bottom line.

 

Online marketing success requires setting goals and developing a strategic plan to achieve those goals. Some of the elements of search engine marketing – SEM – strategy include:

  • creating an attractive website with rich, constantly updated content
  • developing a carefully researched and employed keyword list to use in headlines and copy
  • properly designing video, photos, graphics and other website features
  • having all of website code reviewed and optimized by an SEO expert
  • developing a strategy to acquire high quality inbound links to the website
  • using metrics to track traffic and rankings

 

A well executed SEM campaign assures your advertisement and website link appear immediately at the top section of page one in the search engines. How sure can you be that SEM will work? How long will the process take? As with other forms of marketing – newspaper, yellow pages, TV, radio, direct mail – there are no guarantees. However, unlike other forms of marketing, SEM allows the small business owner to track rankings, traffic and sales to see quantifiable results.

 

Let’s go on a short journey into cyberspace and review an example of what this might look like.

  • Let’s pretend you are a hair stylist.
  • You cater to the Phoenix, Arizona market.
  • Your business name is “Swank Salon.”
  • A Google search for “Swank Salon” lists you at Page 1, Rank 1.
  • Fantastic!

 

As the owner, you might be overjoyed that you rank well for that search term, but does a high ranking on your name profit you? Probably not! Searches on your company’s name will rank your company high in search engines. But searching on your business name only works when the user already knows it. Usually, new customers will not know the name of your business. They may only be searching for a company that can help them fulfill a need and will instead search for a keyword or phrase that describes what they are looking for in their own words. If your goal is to increase traffic to your site and attract new clients, you need more than high ranking on your name – you need to rank well for the right keywords.

 

Are you using the right keywords in your content for your local market and target audience? Let’s Google “hair salon phoenix” to find Swank Salon. Are you attracting the largest number of local visitors possible to your site with these keywords? At this point, comprehensive research is needed to determine the search terms your business should be ranking well for based on the amount of search engine traffic tied to those terms. This research draws upon specific information collected from the business owner about the top competition, target client, and the industry.

 

As we conduct deep research for Swank Salon in SEO for the hair stylist industry, we learn:

  • 2.8 million people search for “haircut salons” every month
  • 2.3 million people search for “haircuts” every month
  • 1.8 million people search for “hair salon” every month
  • Fewer than 100 people search for “swank salon” every month

 

From this research, the company that can gain the most business from online shoppers is optimized to rank well for “haircut salons.” Only a proper SEO review can ensure that your website is using the correct terms to rank well. If Swank Salon relied on the keywords “beauty salon haircut” for SEO or the keywords “swank salon”, they would get fewer than 300 searches per month. The salon would lose out on the 2.8 million other consumers interested in their services who are searching on “haircut salons.”

 

So how does Swank Salon rank in “haircut salons phoenix”? Doing a Google search places them near the top of the list. But they are not the top. The sites at the very top are pulling in 70% more traffic from these 2.8 million consumers. Swank could use an SEM and SEO campaign to get the number one spot. Is search engine optimization all you need to bring in business? Not quite…

 

What happens when you click on the link to the Swank Salon website? Ugh! The poorly designed website will cause most of those 2.8 million visitors to back out of the page and find a salon with an attractive website that is easy to use. For a small business to achieve a high return on their SEO efforts, visitors must both (a) see the site listed near the top of search results and (b) like what they see so they stay on the site long enough to make a purchase. For example, take Cloud 9 Spa, a competitor to Swank Salon. While Cloud 9 Spa has a superior website design that appeals to their target client, their ranking is horrible. By appearing on page 2 for most relevant searches, they are getting very little of the total traffic available. Their website may be superior, but they suffer from low visibility. They could benefit from increased SEO and SEM that would place them above Swan Salon. Their superior website design would then capture thousands of dollars in increased revenue as a result.

 

SEO is one of the most successful marketing tools today. To take advantage of the tremendous online opportunity to grow your small business, you have to invest either money or time. As a small business owner, do you have time to become an SEO expert? SEO success takes a lot of work and time to achieve, even with the most sophisticated SEO techniques and skills. You may be able to learn the basics, but your business will grow much faster and you’ll see a greater ROI much sooner by using an online marketing firm experienced in web design, SEO, and content writing. You will also save a lot of money, by investing your marketing budget into the proper areas immediately via the expert strategy and guidance your SEO team provides.

 

In addition to expert search engine optimization, you should find a firm that will do more than promise to drive traffic to your website. As demonstrated in the example above, money spent to drive traffic to a poorly designed website will most likely result in lost sales. The professional team at seenBest Web Design in Phoenix, Arizona, provide you with comprehensive online marketing services at affordable rates. We provide you a complete team of experts in the fields of online marketing, content writing, web design, SEO, SEM, programming, and social media. We will design the best website for your business. Then we will drive traffic to your website, and get your website ranked above all of your competitors.

 

Can you afford to let your competitors capture the bulk of the sales from your target market? Give us a call and let us design the best website for your company, and then put expert online marketing strategies in place to get your website seen first, before the competition. We offer a free one hour consultation and will sit down with you to learn about your business and provide a custom plan tailored for your needs, call (602) 456-0150 to learn more.

 

 


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The right website design: Do your web pages reflect your business philosophy?

Thursday, September 9th, 2010

You are a business owner, you have a website, and you’ve worked hard to promote your website on the internet. Yet, for some reason, you fail to generate income or significant leads or calls online. Consider for a moment the possibility that you are using the wrong message, or marketing techniques. As a website service provider, I have seen this on more than once occasion. A company will come to us looking for help with their internet marketing. Everything seems to be right. They have strong traffic, they have a good product. Big warning signs go off, however, upon further examination of their website.

A good website that results in sales must include several elements that are critical to making a sale. Effective calls to action, easy to use navigation, a pleasing look, crisp and clean images, and clarity of message. These elements aren’t easy to wrap together, especially when a website has been pieced together over years – and that’s exactly what happens. Most companies have a website designed all at once, and then spend several years hacking in pictures, text, and little snippets of code here and there to add features. Usually it’s all done without aid of a professional website designer which makes matters worse.

The first thing we will evaluate when a client comes to us with this problem is whether or not it’s worth the time to ‘save’ the website. Some websites in disrepair can be salvaged, and it makes financial sense to do so. Other websites, on the other hand, are so badly managed that the best way to go is a complete re-design. A website should be a copy of your business, an extension of your companies values and benefits. The information must be presented in an easy to read format and must quickly make a positive impression on the visitor. In most cases, it’s easier to start from scratch and design a new, modern website that captures these necessary elements.

Think from a customer’s point of view. It’s very easy to get wrapped up in your website, after all, it’s yours! And if you’ve worked on it yourself, you could be proud of what you’ve done. But it’s often more beneficial to stand outside of the role of business owner and look at your website from the eyes of a complete stranger. Will they really care about what your website is saying to them? If they are in a rush, will they have the time to read through long pages of text? If they have never seen your website before, will it be obvious to them how to find the information they are looking for? And most importantly, will the website be attractive to all customers, not just a few people who are ‘in your industry’?

There really is no point in designing a website without first evaluating all of these ideas. A good website design firm will sit down and meet with you, then they will make a genuine effort to understand your industry. They will understand what your business provides, the values, the benefits. And they will try to understand the philosophy of your company. Quite simply, all of the words, pictures, videos, blog content, links, background colors, links, tabs, and everything else pertaining to your website should be fashioned in a way that matches YOUR business and appeals to YOUR customers.

Your website is the very best tool available to offer up an image of your company to the world. Get that image wrong, and you’ll find that you have a colorful website and no new business. Make sure that your web design company is ready, willing, and available to take the time to understand YOUR needs and your wants and will help design a website accordingly.

seenBEST Web Design is a Phoenix, Arizona web design and online marketing company.

We offer professional web design services. Our initial contact with you will be a free consultation, where we will talk to you about your exact needs and wants for a website or online marketing campaign. After this consultation we will be in a better position to provide you with exactly the right package for your needs. Please feel free to give us a call anytime for a free consultation: (602) 456-0150.



seenBEST Web Design

Web design tips for women focused product and services websites

Tuesday, September 7th, 2010

Being a woman myself, I know the importance of making your business website ‘just right’ when it comes time to market women only services.  Imagine that you own a fashion products business with women are your prime customers. What types of subtle and not so subtle design elements should be included to appeal to your target customer? This consideration must begin at the very early stages of design, and carry itself throughout the entire project in order to reach maximum conversion rates.

Some key elements will matter more to a site targeted at women and must be kept in mind: Attractiveness, content friendly, understandable, eye catching, and customer focused. Women are not a fan of boring websites, and the quickest way to turn them off is to produce a bland or boring look. Web pages that represent social aspects, including pictures of other women using and enjoying your products, will add a lot of value to your project.

My experience thus far with website design and online marketing has taught me of one sure-fire way to impress female customers: video marketing. The use of compelling and relevant videos on your website will do wonders for building word of mouth marketing amongst your clientele. Video marketing and media linking is just another tool in the SEO toolbox, with value that goes far beyond page rank. Marketing to women using video is especially important because women like to see body language and expressions. That level of business to client interaction is impossible when using static images alone.

Decision making processes with women are, of course, very different from men. Color schemes, styles, images and videos are processed differently in the female mind. It is important to hire a web design firm that understands these subtle differences when developing websites for gender specific products. Everything from the inclusion of emotional elements to Social Networking geared towards relationship forming can be on the table and open for discussion. The modern website has become a wonderful source for word of mouth opportunities. Provide a home for women on your website and you will find that they’ve started to recommend your website to other women, all on their own.

For intelligent websites that marketing products and services effectively, based on the needs of your business, visit seenBEST Web Design. We are your best solution when you want the best website and you need it to be seen.



seenBEST Web Design

Top 15 Online Website Development Resources

Sunday, April 6th, 2008

As a website developer, I utilize several online resources on a daily basis to gather facts, check code syntax and share ideas. There are some resources that I just couldn’t live without. I use the following fifteen resources so often that I’ve dedicated an article to them and would like to share with you my thoughts on why they are important. I’m also hoping that others can read this and learn from it, or possibly even teach me a thing or two. Anyways, here’s the list of the top 15 online website development resources that I use, in order of importance:

GoogleGoogle: Google is my homepage. It should be everyone’s homepage. Isn’t it your homepage? There are very few questions in this world that Google can’t help you find an answer to.
 
AdobeAdobe Devnet: I do the majority of my web development using Adobe Dreamweaver CS3. I have the web premium suite that also includes Photoshop CS3, Flash CS3, and Fireworks CS3. The Adobe Devnet is an excellent resource not just for the tools I’ve just mentioned, but development in general. I get a lot of use out of the blogs, exchanges and forums there.
 
Dictionary.comDictionary.com: What webmaster is complete without a thesaurus and online dictionary? I often find myself beautifying text with the thesaurus on dictionary.com. Not only is it great to make sure you don’t use where instead of wear, it’s a hunky-dory way to utilize words like disgruntlement instead of anger.
 
BluehostBluehost: Do you design websites? Have you ever used Bluehost? These guys have excellent customer service, affordable prices, and a ton of hosting features. I use Bluehost for hosting whenever possible and have used them for several years now as a very happy customer. Their services also include a very useful support forum.
 
AdwordsGoogle Adwords: Let’s face it, if you’ve got a product to sell you’re going to need Google Adwords. Since we know that everyone has Google for their homepage (see above), we also know that the first thing they’re going to do when they want to buy something is search for it on Google. All bow before Google, the king of online advertising.
 
iStockPhotoiStockPhoto: Do you need an image for a website? Does it have to be high quality? Do you want to be able to search for it based on concept keywords? How about low cost? iStockPhoto does all of this and they do it well. iStockPhoto, for those times when you need to find an image of ‘goth nosering‘ for a company website.
 
FlashKitFlashkit: I can’t tell you how many hours I’ve spent digging through ActionScript code on this website to find ways to accomplish what I needed to do. Let’s be honest, the Flash CS3 software has really poor built-in actionscript3 reference material. No worries, we’ve got Flashkit, our savior! PS: They’re great for other things, too, like sound clips and example movies.
 
osCommerceosCommerce Forums: There’s a bit of irony here. You’re selling a product, trying to make a quick buck, and the tool you’re using to do it is completely free! Crazy world we live in, I know. Sure enough, osCommerce is a free shopping cart solution that works marvelously and it’s completely customizable via PHP.
 
Google Code SearchGoogle Code Search: I’ve always liked the word snippets. Why couldn’t they have called this Google Snippets? Maybe if Google hadn’t turned down my resume for a position in their company a few years ago, things would be different. Oh well, their loss, my gain! In any case, even though I don’t work for Google, and it isn’t called snippets, I still find their code search a useful tool when hunting down bits of PHP, ASP, ColdFusion or JavaScript.
 
SQL DialectsSQL Dialects Reference: A quality SQL reference, for times when ‘Select * from Widgets’ just doesn’t go deep enough to get the job done.
 
PHP ManualPHP: Manual Quick Reference: PHP is fun. This online PHP reference manual is a shining example of just how fun it really is.
 
VBScript ForumVBScript Forum: When you need a piece of VBScript code, chances are good that the crazy guys at VBScript Forum can help.
 
Web Design ForumWeb Design Forum: No mystery here, it’s all in the name.
 
Webdeveloper.comWebDeveloper.com: The ONLY thing I don’t like about this site is the bland appearance. Everything else rocks, especially the depth of topics and the history of information contained within.
 
Whois.netWhois.net: I used to be a big fan of the Network Solutions whois tool. Not anymore, I’ve tasted the glory of whois.net!

So there you are, 15 web design resources packaged nicely into this seenBEST Web Design blog. Develop until your fingers peel away my friends! Are there are resources that you use regularly for website development that you’d like to share? Let me know, I’d like to hear about them.



seenBEST Web Design

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