12/7/14

Best Way to Find an SEO Company to Generate More Leads for Your Business

Generating More Leads is Just a Click Away

If you’re a company looking for ways to generate more leads for your business, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the way to go. SEO is the most effective way to get your company name out to the masses. While your logo, website and tagline are certainly important tools in your marketing package, equally (and in some cases, even more) important is what drives your potential customers to your website. While you know the value and worth of your business, you may not know the value SEO, SEM (Search Engine Marketing), and PPC (Pay Per Click) services can provide, which will broaden your company’s accessibility to potential clients and customers.

The Power of Words

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When it comes to searching for products and services, the first place people go is to search engine sites like Google. They type in a few words or phrases that describe the type of product or service they’re looking for and voila- an instant wealth of information appears. Pages and pages of companies and businesses offering the same products. How you set your business above the competition is determined by how you (or the company you hire) directly positions your company with regard to SEO.

Familiarizing Yourself with SEO Keeps You on the Competitive Edge

If you’re not familiar with SEO, in order to stay competitive, it is imperative to familiarize yourself with the term. While people can certainly find your website with a one or two keyword click, studies indicate that the best way to increase the effectiveness of your SEM efforts, is to use what are called “long tail keyword phrases” which are a cluster of three words or more. Long tail keyword phrases are very specific, which makes them less competitive than shorter, one or two words, which can generate higher volume and be more competitive. So if you were ranking for Chicago SEO you would go for the phrase “Chicago seo services“. Specificity is key. It allows the customer to narrow their search and eliminate multiple searches, which can waste time. It’s important to establish targeted keywords and then create content around those so people will want to learn more about your business and thus generate more traffic. Let’s face it, much like when you read a newspaper or online article, if you’re not “hooked” by the first one or two sentences, you won’t continue to read. The same theory applies for SEO. If a customer has to search too long, they’re more likely to go with what’s in front of them, leaving you and your company “hidden and stranded in cyberspace.”

When Selecting a SEO Company, Do Your Homework First

If you’re considering hiring a company that specializes in internet marketing and SEO, there are many from which to choose, from medium sized to large firms to individual freelance writers who specialize in SEO. It’s important to find the one best suited for your particular product or business. Research the market to find one that is established in the industry, check their portfolio, client reviews and testimonials. Go to client websites they’ve done work for and then do a keyword search on those sites to see how quickly you arrive at the company’s website. You can even call the company or email them to ask how they would rate the firm on effectiveness and return on their investment.

“Whetting the Appetite” of Potential Customers with Just a Few Words

A good SEO company, such as the one I use Gotch SEO, hires professionals who know internet marketing and what it takes to drive and increase traffic by using a comprehensive approach that combines an effective, functioning website, key words, long-tail keyword phrases and enticing content that will “whet the appetite of potential customers.” and drive them to your site. If you currently use an advertising agency and want to do more online internet marketing, you may want to ask them what advice and ideas they have as you transition and increase your online presence. (If they haven’t already approached you.) In order to stay competitive, your business must have an effective online marketing strategy, and the first step (after choosing the agency, professional, or firm) is to make sure your products or service are prominent whenever a potential client or customer is ready to press their first click. Otherwise, business could literally slip through your fingertips.

11/20/14

Wholesale Business Model: Is It Legit?

You need to have an edge in the world of business that can reflect your skills, talents, as well as your personal interests. This can provide you with a uniqueness for your business so you can stand out from the crowd. Possessing a wholesale business model is one way to ensure your success within the market that you choose to place your business in. Developing a wholesale business can have its challenges but through perseverance and hard work, you will be more likely to succeed and have the edge you need in the business world.

Need to Know

Once you have decided what products and services you will be providing your customers, you’ll need to develop your wholesale business model. For example, whole sale handbags are going to not have a high price point so they have to figure out how to get volume to turn a profit. While this can be frustrating and time consuming due to the number of things that you will ultimately need to pay close attention to, just know that in the beginning the two most important things are the customers and your product. Completing your business model one step at a time will help make your life easier, and once you have all the pieces in place keeping an eye on them will be that much easier.

Product

Let’s begin with your product, as without a product or service you won’t have customers. You will want to spend a lot of time looking into wholesale products before you can really go much further. In the wholesale business, you have four options for purchasing your products. This can be done through the manufacturer directly, distributor, vendor, or supplier. Remember that each of these options comes with many pros and cons that you should consider before making a decision.

Customers

When dealing in wholesale, you are generally selling large batches of a product. This means that your customers will be buying cases of this product rather than just one product at a time. It can be trickier to gain customers when dealing in a wholesale business because most customers may only need one of your product rather than 10. However your customers will eventually become your top priority next to your product or service. There are many ways that you can build a customer base such as providing discounts to loyal customers as well as holding sales on your less expensive products.

Store or Website

The next thing on your to-do-list is to decide if you will be selling your products online or in a store, or both. This can be tricky as it can be hard to decide. Each option has its advantages as well as disadvantages, for instance a store is more costly than a website. Stores require a monthly rental fee or for the property to be purchased as well as the amount of money you will spend on the other bills. Websites only require an annual fee but it is more difficult to attract a customer base online.

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Is Wholesale Effective

Wholesale businesses can be very effective, depending on your product or service. Wholesale designer handbags are very effective, but wholesale candy would be horrible! Or if you are selling hair driers, you may not get many customers as most people only need one and the customers that you do receive may be businesses as well needing supplies. But if your product is something like hair accessories that come in variety packs, you may receive a larger customer base from both residential customers as well as other businesses. This is because your product suits the needs of a business as well as an individual.

Are Wholesale Business Models Legit?

Wholesale business models are just as legit as retail or any other type of business. The only difference is the quantity of the product or service that you offer. While it is perceived that wholesale products are of lower quality than standard retail products, you don’t need to sacrifice quality for the quantity that you offer. If you are selling the same name brand products as retailers but for a lower price than the same amount of product or service from a retailer, then you aren’t sacrificing the quality for excessive quantity. Like all businesses, it is all about supplying the right products that are in high demand. And while most wholesale businesses fail due to the poor quality of their product, there are many ways that you can make it work.

11/18/14

All You Need to Know About Rental Based Businesses

Almost Anything and Everything Can Be Rented

Typically, when we think of renting, our minds travel to two areas: vehicles and homes. (or apartments.) However, in today’s economy and transient society, people are renting everything from tools, construction equipment, a car top carrier, boats, musical instruments, costumes, event items, clothing, toys and much more. Renting is a way for consumers to get the items they need without having to purchase them outright. If someone is planning a one-time cross country trip, but don’t see themselves needing the use of a recreational vehicle more than once, renting is a viable and affordable option. The same can apply to just about any item. Renting is a cost-effective way to get when you need when you need it, for however long you need it, in an affordable manner. In addition to consumers reaping the economic benefits of renting, it is also a growing, potentially very profitable business for those interested in owning their own company. Startup capital, combined with sound advice, drive and determination could lead you down the path to long-term profitability.

Tap Into Your Entrepreneurial Side

If you’ve thought about owning your own business or have an entrepreneurial mindset, you may want to consider opening and operating a rental business. The demand for rentals is increasing every day and there is big profit margin potential in renting just about every type of product or piece of equipment you can think of. The reason being is that not everyone can afford to purchase a $50,000 boat or recreational vehicle, but they can afford to pay a few hundred dollars for a one or two week rental. The same can be said for most items, including clothing. We know that there are costume rentals for holidays such as Halloween, however, in a similar way that men rent tuxedos for a wedding, bridesmaids’ dresses can now be available for rent. (let’s face it, how many opportunities will you have (or would you want to) wear that pink chiffon dress with the bow the size of Texas?) Therefore, the demand for “one time” items is high, which in turn can be a very popular moneymaker for business owners.

Do Your Homework Before Hanging the “Open for Business” Sign

If you’re considering opening a rental business, the first thing you want to do is decide where you want to house it. Working from home, if you’ve got the space, will keep your overhead costs down (just make sure you go through the necessary steps with your local township and check what their guidelines are for running a business out of your home. You may need to secure a permit first. Each municipality has a different set of guidelines, so be certain you know the rules prior to hanging that “open for business” sign. If you don’t have the extra space in your home, you may want to consider renting a commercial space. For example, I doubt you could store roof racks in your apartment, that would be very difficult. While the start up cost can be initially high on commercial space, depending on the types of products and equipment you want to purchase to rent, there are ways to minimize those costs that can still give you a solid inventory. You may want to consider purchasing the items “gently used.” Check your local newspaper’s classified ads or there are various websites such as Craigslist where people post items they want to sell. Just do your homework first and make sure the items are in good condition. Don’t rely on “word of mouth” or a photograph to determine whether or not a particular product is in working condition because once you purchase it, it’s yours.

Seek the Advice of Those Who Have Had Success

Consulting the advice of those who have had success in the rental business market prior to making any major decisions is always a good idea. Study how they operate, what makes them successful, ask questions, shadow them for a period of time to see how they handle customer demand, challenges and the day to day operations of the business. Are they running the business by themselves or have they hired employees? What type of advertising to they invest in? Be a sponge, find out what makes them successful over the competition. Also, study those rental businesses that haven’t been successful. Find out what problems they incurred. Knowledge is power and success is when preparation meets opportunity. The more you know and the better prepared you are, the greater your chances are for success.

11/18/14

How to Find a Web Design Company for Your Business

Your Business Card is No Longer Your Company’s Calling Card

Thirty years ago, three thing were your calling card when it came to promoting your business and getting your name “out to the masses”: Your company logo, business card and brochure. These, along with solid branding and advertising were the primary ways to promote your business. Fast forward to the technological age where everything has transitioned to online marketing. Today’s key marketing tool is having a functioning, attractive, professional, profit-driving website. Whether you’re a long-standing business with 50 years’ experience, a client list with repeat customers and a solid reputation, or a new, start-up company just getting your feet wet, if you don’t have a website, you risk being out of the loop with hundreds of potential clients and customers.

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Know Your Bottom Line Before You Begin Your Search for an Agency

Obtaining a website should be at the top of your “must have marketing tools” list. I live in St Louis and How did I find great web design in St Louis or just a web designer that was a good fit for my business? By using the same set of guidelines you would when choosing any other professional, firm or company to represent your business. Find a company or agency that will deliver the right message to potential customers in a concise, efficient and cost-effective manner. First and foremost, know your business inside and out, along with your expectations of what you want your website to accomplish. Having a clear understanding of exactly what you want helps the agency determine the best route for you. Otherwise, you run the risk of losing valuable time and money in the “speculation” phase. Know your bottom line before you begin to search for an agency. What are your goals, your target market, and how will you measure success.

Avoid Additional Costs by Establishing Your Budget at the Onset

If you’re an already established company with a brand, the transition from hard copy to the virtual world will probably (although not always) be a smoother one vs. a start-up company that needs to establish their brand. An accomplished, effective agency will help you determine the best way to establish your brand and create brand awareness for potential consumers. First and foremost, determine your budget and make it known from the get-go so there are no “surprises” later. There have been countless horror stories about costs that later arise due to one circumstance or another that weren’t accounted for at the onset. Be fair, but be firm. Second, don’t be afraid to ask questions, and no question is off limits. This is your bread and butter, after all. While you are familiar with your specific product or business, you may not (and are probably not) familiar with the aspects and angles of internet marketing and advertising.

Do Your Homework Prior to Selecting an Agency or Web Designer

The best way to find a web design agency or web designer is to do your homework first. Research several agencies online, look at their websites. (if you don’t like how they’re promoting themselves, you certainly won’t be satisfied with what they produce for your business.) Then, once you’ve narrowed your search down to the top three, it’s time to dig a little deeper. Review their portfolios, look at websites they have designed for other clients, check and see if the majority of those clients are long-standing repeat business customers or if the turnover rate is high, which can be a red flag. Check to see if clients have posted testimonials (just make sure the testimonials are legitimate- be wary of testimonials that don’t post a customer’s last name, location or company. Anyone can write a “fake” testimonial.) Take it a step further and actually call the company to see if they’ve been satisfied with the agency’s service. You can also read online reviews and check sites like Angie’s list or see if the company has been approved by the Better Business Bureau.

Drive Sales Home With a Solid Website

Finding the right web design company or designer that will promote your company in the best possible light is key. Competition on the web is high. Make sure the company is current with all the latest technology. Do they have SEO professionals on staff to make sure your business is placed properly and is seen whenever potential customers use search engines to find products? Are they mobile app savvy, do they know what types of marketing will drive sales? Will they offer to monitor and maintain your website? These are all questions you need to ask to ensure your company, business or product will reap the rewards of your investment. When done properly, a good website is what drives traffic through the door, increases awareness, profitability and securely establishes your name among the masses.

11/17/14
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How to Save on Hosting for Your Business Website

There are many ways that you can save on hosting for your business website. You also have an endless number of options available to you in terms of companies you can work with for your hosting needs. Many companies even have specials and coupons for their hosting services as well as other services that they offer. Some of these companies already possess low hosting prices and can save you money simply by providing their hosting services for half the cost of other companies.

Hosting Companies

There are an endless number of hosting companies to choose from, however if you are looking to save money on the hosting for your businesses website then you should pay close attention to the monthly rates of as many options as possible. You can do this by simply looking up companies that provide coupons for their hosting services, then pull each company’s price chart to find the lowest price with the coupon and that has the most benefits.

Hostgator.com

Hostgator is a great hosting site that also offers other services such as domains and VPS hosting. Their prices are reasonable and they have 3 different packages that you can choose from to suit your needs. You also get coupon codes for Hostgator and other discounts for their hosting services as well as year round 24/7 technical support to help you when you are having problems. They also offer deals such as 20% their services in combination with their Hostgator coupons.

GoDaddy

GoDaddy is a huge name in the domain naming business, but did you know they also offer hosting services along with coupons and discounts. This is another company that is there to help you save money hosting your business website. Along with coupon offers, their discounts can easily range up to 50% off or more and they have other services as well that they discount when you purchase several services at once. While GoDaddy is extremely popular so they ensure to provide you with professional and high quality service 24/7 all year round.

Wix.com

Wix is not well known, but they offer many free services and is an excellent choice for new businesses who are just starting out. While they are a template based web services site, they also offer hosting for the websites you create with them. Keep in mind that your design options with Wix is very limited due to the templates, but they will allow you to not only sell your goods and services but offer 24/7 support for when you need it most.

1and1.com

1and1 is possesses an extensive list of services such as domain, online stores, servers, and hosting. They do have specials that they run as well as coupons for their services. Their hosting services are advertised as ‘hosting without limits’ as they offer unlimited space, websites, include a free domain, and many other options. 1and1 has become the next big hosting and website company behind GoDaddy and is one of the largest names in hosting today.

How to Choose?

When you can’t decide who to choose when it comes to hosting, create a list of your hosting needs and compare them to the packages of the companies you are interested in. You may also want to decide if you want a cookie cutter website or one that is professionally designed. This will help you weed out the options that won’t do you or your business much good. You can also compare prices and coupons to help make the decision as some companies have better sales and coupons than others that help to lower their prices. If you still can’t choose, look at the bonus features of your choice packages and choose the one that offers you the most extras.

Conclusion

While it is important to save money when you are running a business, sometimes you can’t skimp on the quality of the hosting services you receive. This can hinder your company more than it can help and you will want to thoroughly research your top 5 hosting choices before continuing with the purchase. Some companies have horrible reviews for a reason, and while the above companies aren’t completely perfect they offer excellent services for a reasonable price.

11/12/14

First Post To Blow Your Mind

Since this is an internet marketing blog I decided to but the number one guru on my first post. Frank Kern is an amazing man who can displace a ton of information onto anyone! If you get a chance you should watch even more of his videos. Check out this one first though.