There are countless examples of companies who have spent a lot of time, money, and effort to make their branding the best it can be, only for it to collapse in an instant due to losing the trust of consumers. Without trust, they have no customers, and without customers, there is no business.
The first area you can ensure your brand is seen as trustworthy comes not from your marketing or advertising but in your day-to-day dealings with your customers. It beggars belief that a company will spend a fortune on developing and marketing a product, but then scrimp on its customer service. Nothing kills the trust in your business and its brand quicker than not looking after customers once they have bought your product or service.
If you are using Google Adwords or other pay per click services as part of your marketing strategy hopefully you will never experience click fraud. If you are not sure what click fraud is, or what to do if you are a victim of it, then you need to read on.
As you know Adwords is run on the principle that you pay based on each occasion someone clicks on your ad or when your ad has been displayed a certain number of times. (normally 1000 views)
Click fraud occurs when those clicks or views are generated artificially either by an individual, a group of individuals or software called clickbots. If click fraud is being used on your AdWords ads, your costs can increase dramatically, your ad performance is greatly compromised and at the end of it all you won’t have had a single new customer or sale.
The people who perpetrate click fraud do it mostly for financial gain. Those who have sites in the content network scheme want to artificially inflate the number of clicks or views that appear to be coming from their site. By increasing them, they increase the revenue they receive from Google, which means both you and Google are victims of click fraud.
Another group click fraud could be perpetrated by is your competitors, especially when the primary keywords become part of a bidding war. By increasing your costs, they are hoping you will either lower your bids on a keyword or stop bidding altogether.
Having a professional taking care of your web design can release you from the pressure of having to do it all yourself, however, you need to ensure that the stress doesn’t manifest itself in a different way. What we mean is ensuring that the agreement you have with your web designer is more than just a handshake, because if it isn’t then you are potentially inviting all sorts of problems if anything goes wrong.
To ensure this doesn’t happen a simple written contract which both you and your designer agree to, means both of you know exactly what is required on both sides. There should be five basic sections included and here is an explanation of each one.
#1 Cost and Payment Method: Make sure both parties know what the agreed cost of the work is and what, if any, part payment agreement there is. You’ll also want to agree whether the amount is an hourly rate or a fixed price and the method of payment.
#2 Work Agreed To: This might seem strange but you do actually need to agree what services you are employing your designer for. For a website, this should be detailed and include the agreed process for edits and reworking of the design if it is not satisfactory. It is essential this part makes it clear that the designer is expected to make any changes you want to make as part of the work.
If you have never set up an email marketing campaign before, it can be a daunting task. This is why instead of doing it all themselves, many business owners seek the services of a professional digital marketing agency to set up their email marketing campaigns.
There are several advantages of asking a digital marketing agency to organise and oversee your email marketing, and although their services will require a fee, the benefits both short and long term can be enormous, including the financial ones.
The first advantage is a very simple one…you don’t have to do it. What we mean by this, is any task you undertake which you do not have experience in, is going to take you at least twice as long to complete, than someone who does. In other words, there is no learning curve, plus time isn’t wasted by you having to correct your mistakes or errors.
Another aspect of this is the reduction in your stress levels as you don’t have to fret over whether or not you are setting up your email campaign correctly. With the stress removed, and your time freed up, you can focus on other tasks which your role demands with a clearer mind.
If you have an eCommerce store using Shopify, Woo Commerce or another platform there are a multitude of extra functions you can add to enhance your store’s functionality. Better than that they will increase your profitability and improve your customers’ experience so that they are more likely to return and purchase from you again.
To list every single type of app would take an entire book, and to name specific apps without testing every single one wouldn’t be fair. Instead we are going to tell about what the main functions you want to add to your store so you can research which specific app or plug in to use for your eCommerce store.
#1 Abandoned Cart
We’ve all done it and so do your customers, and that’s go through the process of adding items to the online shopping cart, and then for whatever reason, fail to click the checkout button. An abandoned cart app will remind the customer, either through pop ups, or emails (and sometimes both) that they haven’t checked out. You won’t get everyone to return but those that do add to your sales and profits.
For any new business getting your brand established and easily recognised is an important step, and a big part of this process is the type of logo that you choose for your business.
Every successful business has a logo and some of the world’s largest companies have a logo that is instantly recognisable across the planet. When you are choosing a logo for your business there are four basic types that you can select from with each of them having different elements and characteristics. The four types of logo are:
- Brand Mark
- Letter Mark
- Icon Based
- Text Based
A brand mark logo is one where the representation of your company brand is purely graphical. In other words, there is no text anywhere in the logo. Examples of brand mark logos are the circle and three spars of Mercedes Benz and the blue Twitter bird.
Having a brand mark logo designed will require you to outline to your designer what graphical representation you want your business to have. Sometimes this can be abstract and have no relationship to your business name, as in the case of Mercedes or bear some relationship to it, as with the ‘Twittering’ bird of Twitter.
Carrying out SEO for your business website is one of those tasks that in 99% of cases you will want to outsource. Even if you are a seasoned SEO expert, the amount of time it can take is more than enough reason to employ the services of an internet business consultant who specialises in search engine optimisation.
The first task is to find a consultant who has a track record and upon which you can rely on to get you results. This should never be rushed as the consequences of employing the wrong person or agency can be disastrous for your website and your business. Therefore, always follow up with references and check their testimonials and reviews thoroughly.
Once you have chosen your SEO consultant there are several basic SEO tasks that you will want them to undertake. The first should be to carry out comprehensive keyword research for you and then establish the competitiveness of the ones that you would like to improve your ranking for.
Any decent internet business consultant should have access to keyword and ranking software which they can use to carry out their research. The data and information which this research software can produce are essential for any reasonable assessment to be made about how difficult or easy each keyword will be to rank for.
There are many aspects of web design that relate to how user-friendly the site is going to be in terms of navigation and visitors being able to easily access all areas of the website easily. Whilst it is important to get this right, it is not the only major consideration you should factor into your website design.
Another very important matter to think about carefully, is the visual impact of your site and in particular, those elements which will directly influence how a visitor uses their eyes to scan, read or view your website content on their screen. There are four main ones you should consider when designing your site, which are:
- Text Arrangement
- Reading Behaviour
Text arrangement refers to how your text is arranged on the page and more especially on content pages which have a lot of text. One of the best practices is to utilise a grid system similar to how most newspapers arrange their newsprint text on their pages. The reason this is particularly relevant today is the huge upturn in handheld and mobile devices that people now use to access the internet.
As a business owner, you should be aware of the important role social media should play in promoting and marketing your products and services. This is particularly true of Facebook, which is the biggest and most popular social media site on the internet.
If your business is local as opposed to global you may not see the benefit of using Facebook. You might assume that either there are not enough local people using Facebook to make it worth your while or that Facebook is only for international businesses and corporations. How wrong you would be.
The truth is that Facebook is the perfect platform to market and brand your local business and if you are not taking advantage of it then you can be certain your competitors will be.
The first thing you want to have is a Facebook page. This is where your followers will gravitate to, read your posts, have discussions and most importantly where they will see any offers or promotions you are running. When creating your Facebook page always use a designer who has experience of creating them. Whilst you may have some graphics skills, your time can be better spent on more important matters.
For any business one of the most effective ways to build a relationship with your customers and to communicate with them is email marketing. Whether your business is large, small or just starting, using email must be part of your marketing toolkit.
When a business fails to see any return from their email marketing efforts it is likely down to one of 3 basic errors. These will not only fail to produce any positive results, they can cause some harm.
#1: Emailing messages without any clear objectives
Failing to have an end goal in sight is one of the most fundamental mistakes not just for email marketing but for any form of marketing. When you write an email that you are going to send to your subscribers you must first have a reason to send it in the first place.
The reasons for sending an email could be to further build the relationship by providing useful advice. another might be to get the reader to complete a survey or questionnaire. How about letting them know about a Facebook post you have made and asking them to share it amongst their friends?
Whether it is any of these or a good old sales promotion, ensure you have a goal in mind for your email, and make it clear what, if any, action your subscriber needs to take once they have read it.
You’ll often hear so-called SEO experts say, ‘Choose the best keywords’, which is probably one of the most unhelpful pieces of advice you’ll ever hear. For a start, telling someone to find ‘the best’ keywords doesn’t take into account the multitude of different types of keywords and search terms that exist. A keyword that might be the best for one person’s needs may be completely unsuitable for the next, even if they are in the same industry or niche.
One of the first things you need to recognise is that whenever someone types a search term into Google (or any other search engine) there is a reason behind it. If you are targeting that keyword you need to ensure that if the searcher clicks on the link to your site, what they find there matches their reason for searching in the first place.