Archive for the ‘Online Marketing’ Category
Stop whatever you’re doing right now and think to yourself: What are your online marketing goals for 2013.
Probably the vast majority of business owners and executives out there would have to answer that they want “more sales,” or “higher profits.” That’s great – everyone wants those things – but they don’t necessarily make great marketing goals because they aren’t specific enough.
In fact, sometimes the easiest way to increase profitability is by narrowing down to a more specific target. Here are four that we consider especially good online marketing goals for 2013:
1. To improve your online marketing ROI. Granted, this is also a bit vague, but it at least addresses both sides of the equation. It’s good to want to increase sales, but you should also be looking to lower costs at the same time.
2. To gather more social click-throughs to your business website. Why settle for having more followers, when you could have more social engagement at the same time? In other words, you shouldn’t want customers to just look for you online, but to take action on your posts and tweets.
3. To secure higher PPC click-through rates. Although your cost-per-conversion is ultimately more important, raising your click-through rates is a good way to capture more of the market and improve your quality score at the same time – in other words, to reach more people at a lower per-customer cost.
4. To have more return visitors to your business website. Capturing first-time potential customers is wonderful, but bringing them back is even more important. For one thing, return visitors tend to convert at a higher percentage. Plus, the more likely they return, the more engaged they become with your company and the more likely they are to think of you the next time they need to make a purchase.
There’s nothing wrong with setting your sights on bigger sales or higher profits in 2013, but narrowing down to some more specific goals is a good way to ensure that you actually accomplish both.
If you need more help, we’d love to be involved! Just drop us a line to connect.
The biggest challenge to online marketers these days almost sounds like a philosophical riddle: You can’t really find customers over the Internet without a strong search engine optimization profile, but that’s getting harder to build – especially if you want landing pages that convert at a profitable rate.
You’re hurting if you emphasize SEO, and you’re hurting if you don’t.
The solution that most business owners follow is to keep adding keywords and links as quickly as possible. That’s been good advice for quite a while, but the latest Google Penguin update has made below-quality links next to useless, and added more penalties for sites that are too repetitive.
So, it’s getting harder to improve your search engine rankings quickly. And even if it weren’t, Google’s automated spiders are notoriously cheap; we have yet to hear of them buying any product or service anywhere.
Since more traffic and a better search-optimized business website don’t necessarily lead to higher profits, how do you draw the line and maximize the return on investment from your search engine optimization campaign? There isn’t a perfect answer, but here are a few tips to get you started:
Employ more advanced analytics. We are finding more and more that “long tail” keywords tend to be the most profitable, and are less likely to be ignored by Google and the other engines. Find out which keywords and phrases are bringing you real customers, not just traffic, and focus your attention appropriately.
Split-test your landing pages. While split-testing isn’t a search engine optimization tactic, per se, it does help you maximize the revenue you get from any form of traffic to your website. The better you know your buyers, and what they respond to, the higher ROI you’ll get from any SEO effort.
Speed things up with paid ads. The longer time frame needed to execute a search engine optimization campaign in a competitive market means you should do as much research as possible beforehand. Trying out pay-per-click ads is a great way to experiment with different keywords that might be good organic targets later.
You have to have visitors before your business website can be profitable, but you also want your site to be written and designed in a way that appeals to buyers more than search engines. Follow these three pieces of advice, and you’ll have a good starting point for getting the best of both worlds.
Here is our June 2012 SEO Newsletter packed with all of the latest information about Search Engine Optimization and what’s affecting business rankings in Google. Check it out and contact us if you need help ranking higher in Google with your website.
I recently had the opportunity to attend the Front-End Design Conference, with our Creative Director, Trey Ingram. It was held at the Palladium Theatre in St. Pete Florida. The speakers ranged from designers, programmers, and everything in between. The conference was well-organized and the speakers had a great range of topics. One of the main themes was the interest, and propagation of responsive web design for mobile users. There were different opinions as to the best practices, but all agreed it is the future of the web, and the way we use it.
One of the most interesting speeches was in regards to the way the world changed with the invention of the automobile, and how subsequently the screen is the game changer for our generation. The world adapted and the way we do life was forever changed. Similarly the screen has revolutionized our lives in almost every way. And with advances in size, and cost it will continue to do so.
The best benefit from the weekend was the sense of excitement that everyone leaving seemed to have. It truly is a great time to be a designer, and with the prevalence of the internet, it is especially a great time to be in web design. For designers, and programmers, if you get the chance to attend the Front-End Design Conference next year it will be sure to be a pleasure.
Bestselling books and blockbuster movies are continually filled with the theme of heartache. That’s because most of us have, at one point or another, known the terrible, sinking feeling that comes with losing someone we love.
Of course, online marketers can feel the same way when they see their best customers slipping away.
While you might not feel the same kind of depression over a missing account or decreased orders that you do when you lose a lover, either one can keep you up at night wondering what went wrong. And, believe it or not, there are some similarities, both in the way you are left and what you can do about it.
Here are some bad breakup tips you can use to fix your online marketing plan:
Don’t expect your departed customer to tell you what went wrong. You can ask all you want, but once a customer is gone, they aren’t likely to give you the real reasons they left, so it’s going to be up to you to figure it out on your own.
The exception to this rule, of course, is when your company messed up badly enough that it’s obvious to everyone why they took their business elsewhere. In those cases, learn from the experience, improve your customer service, and move on.
You can learn a lot from your customer’s next partner. If you really want to know why someone isn’t buying from you anymore, figure out who they are buying from now. What does that vendor offer that you don’t?
Often, if you lose out on a big account, it isn’t that difficult to find out where it went. Or, if you’re noticing a trend of smaller orders dropping off, see if you can find out which of your competitors is benefiting the most. Either way, you’ll learn something about what they are offering that you can’t match.
Sometimes it really is about the simple things. Differences in price, a more competitive product, a cleaner online reputation, or even better site layouts and navigation structures can all be obvious reasons that a customer might stop responding to your online marketing efforts. The answers are usually simpler than we think, so look for the big explanations first.
Losing customers is tough, but the pain doesn’t last forever. Follow these tips, find out why your online business isn’t stacking up, and then use the knowledge to either win your buyers back or find new ones. And if you want even more powerful tools to bring in those new clients, or find the lost ones, Give us a call at Design Extensions. We’d love to hlep.
If you were pressed for an answer, what would you suppose the most common online marketing mistake is? If you’re like most of the business owners we work with, you might think of spending too much or too little, writing ads that don’t speak to your unique selling proposition, or maybe even pricing your products and services the wrong way.
These are all decent guesses, and maybe half-correct. That’s because the biggest mistake in online marketing is making any mistake over and over again.
How do you stop yourself from repeating costly errors? By evaluating the effectiveness of what you’re doing in a subjective way. In other words, by studying the numbers behind your business website. A lot of business owners can talk about the number of visitors their website is receiving, or how many sales they’ve been making, but getting a good understanding of your online business requires a deeper look than that.
Here are three easy to use and understand metrics you definitely want to keep an eye on:
The numbers of visitors coming from certain sources or advertising campaigns. Often, it isn’t possible to tell that a certain message is or isn’t responding to a segment of your market until you take a closer look at your traffic sources. Viewing these with a critical eye could show you where you need to tweak your offers or benefit statements.
Your most popular pages. In many cases, business owners see this kind of data as simply “the products and prices that customers respond to most.” That’s a starting point, but high numbers of views in your frequently asked questions or shipping policies, for example, could indicate that buyers have concerns about how quickly they’ll receive their order. This is only a simple example, but it’s representative of the kind of trend you should be looking for.
Parts of your site where visitors exit. This is even more important, since they can help you to identify parts of your site that aren’t fully optimized for conversions, or that buyers are responding to. If potential customers are leaving you at any point other than the one that brings them closer to buying from you, then it’s costing you money.
There is any number of mistakes with your content or marketing message that you can inadvertently make on your business website. The real mistake, however, is to keep reproducing errors by failing to study the numbers closely enough. Need help studying those numbers? Let Design Extensions help, and we’ll do what we do best so that you can do what you do best.