How To get New Business Online - Website Marketing Basics
Everyone has a website these days: But how many of them really work and produce income and results?
It’s all too easy to have a website built and then expect to get new business. But there is so much competition out there how do you get your website seen? Then once people visit it how do you attract them s clients?
The website itself is just part of this puzzle. There are a few basic steps that lead to a new client:
1. People who are interested in what you offer visit your website (targeted traffic)
2. Your website is simple to use and navigate
3. You capture peoples information whilst they are at your website
4. You follow up with quality messages
5. You offer them great service and they spread the word
Website traffic is easy. I can get thousands of visitors to any website with ease. However getting targeted traffic is harder. It takes time and effort. And targeted traffic is the key to success.
A website is like a shop window. If you had a shop in your local high street for your business would it work? Chances are no. There may be thousands of people passing by but how many are interested in what you offer – at that time?
Your website needs to be visible to people at the exact moment when they are looking for an offer like yours. So if you sell holiday lodges in North Wales you need people to find you when they are looking for a holiday lodge in Wales.
This means you need to be on the front page of the search results when people put in the relevant terms. But not everyone can be on the front page – there are only 10 spots. Luckily there are other ways to get hot leads. These involve social media, PR, articles, blogs and other forms of inbound marketing.
You may have noticed, as many of our clients have, a fall off in the returns from print advertising. It’s been in decline for years. I remember when I could put an advert in the Mail on Sunday or the News of the World and the phone would ring all day and Monday. Happy days; but they are no more.
80% of people research purchases online before actually buying. So if you place an advert in the paper people may like the idea: They will visit your website or make an enquiry: But they will also research online your competition. So you need to have a strong presence and reputation online to still stand a chance at this new business. At the end of the day a combined approach is what is needed.
Once you get people to your website you need to capture their data. Simple data catchment forms can have a huge effect. Most people will only visit your website once. So while they are there get their email and name. Then you can send them emails and engage with them. In this way you build your reputation and give people reasons to make their purchase from you and not your competition.
Social media now offers your brand the chance to engage with prospects and customers. You can offer them great service and value. And in this way you will be the natural choice when it comes time for their next booking or purchase.
Constant Marketing Leads to Success
Marketing now must be a constant stream of actions and engagement. In this way your business will be the first choice when it comes time to book. Best of all social media allows your audience to recommend you to their network, thus your offer spreads organically. Personal recommendation is more powerful now than ever before. Reputation is key to this and businesses need to have a plan to manage this online.
CR4L charges on results: If we don’t get you new business you don’t pay. For a more information visit the CR4L website or call Alex for a chat.
How does your website perform?
· Is your website working properly?
· Do all the links work?
· How is it ranked?
· What can you do to make it better for no cost?
Find out all this and more with a free website evaluation from CR4L - just click the image
What are the 7 key things every start-up company should be doing to market their business?
1. Build a website
2. Get traffic to that website
3. Build a list of prospects
4. Build relationships with prospects
5. Get feedback
6. Sell product
7. Get feedback – the second cup
You’ll notice that all the way down in 6th is the selling, and get feedback is before and after the sale. Feedback and customer opinion is important in any business. In a startup business feedback is essential in developing the offer and product.
You may be aware that many startup businesses have a great product or service and then proceed to fail in taking it to market. One of the main problems is that as an entrepreneur or business developer you can get so involved in your amazing new product that you lose sight of what the real world will thinks of it.
I am sure that you will agree this is one of the reasons that market testing is essential before committing to a big launch. If you have ever seen Dragons Den on TV you are sure to have seen entrepreneurs that are very enthusiastic about their product. But the sum total of their testing is often just asking their friends what they think. Dragons want to see sales to the public and public feedback; not mates telling you your widget is great.
So you can see the advantage of a soft launch before committing a lot of money to a big launch: See if you can get a few early adopters. Then get feedback from them and develop your offer so that you can get to the next stage and on to the mass market.
Let’s assume that you have some product to sell or your beta system is ready to trial, then the steps are simple:
1. Build a website
You’ll probably remember that a few years ago websites were very expensive things built by geeks. Now ... well actually if you go to a web developer you will be told you need the latest bits, bobs and features to make your site cutting edge. Suddenly we are back to expensive again.
But you know it doesn’t have to be like that. 99% of businesses do not need a fancy state of the art website. 90% of developers know little about making money with a website. So I suggest starting with a simple site. Don’t go mad because you will have to make changes.
If you are building an online shop, try a template, if you want an app do the same to start with. Most things have been done and unless you are in software or web development the chances are you can find something similar and have it adapted rather than pay for development from scratch.
KISS – do the KISS test – Keep It Simple Stupid! Pick a launch date and stick to it. Don’t over develop. I know of startup businesses that kept adding to or adjusting websites before launch and never launched. Just get it out there and start. Add features and usability as you go along. The early adopters will not mind if the offer is good enough.
2. Get traffic to that website
I am sure you know that this is a big subject. How do you get traffic to you website as a new business? Well one way is to employ a marketing company. The other is to do it yourself. Do you or one of your team have the time? If so you can get a book like The Results Marketing Workbook and set up multiple marketing systems yourself.
If not then you will need to spend some money: but don’t blow the budget before you have tested and got feedback from the early adopters. Far better to go in slow and see what works. A little at a time. Here you can use a service like CR4L.com offer to drive traffic to your site and move you up the rankings. Get your fist customers and learn.
The key first steps must include: SEO, great content on the site; PR, back links, a blog, guest blogging, video, social media and above all else data catchment...
3. Build a list of prospects
You will see here that data catchment is essential to success. After all, it’s hard enough getting visitors to your website in the first place, so whilst they are there you want to get their data so that you can engage with them. Data catchment is as simple as asking for visitor’s email address in return for a free product or offer.
There are several companies out there that offer data catchment on websites. Personally I use Aweber but Mail Chimp is another option. Your web developer can help you with that and install the widget on your site. If you develop yourself it couldn’t be easier. Just like adding a PayPal purchase button you get some code from the service provider and pop it on the page where you want it. Use Java script so that any changes you make to the widget later will come through to the site automatically without having to change the code.
How do you get people to share their email with you? In the old days that was easy but now people are weary of giving out their email, they wonder what they will get in return. So you need a really great offer, or fantastic news that they will want every week/month from your newsletter.
There are some great new widgets available too; such as from Rafflecopter which allows you to offer your product in a raffle. People enter through the widget and their data goes to your Aweber list (if that’s who you use).
2 negatives with this offer: $59,99 a month and the biggest one; just because someone wants something for free does not mean they will pay for it. However, because it costs you no more to service 10 people as 100 people with automated emails what does that matter?
There are lots more ways to build a list and once again, if you are doing this yourself I suggest referring to something like the Results Marketing Workbook for ideas.
Your list of potential purchasers is gold. Build the list, build relationships and build profits...
4. Build relationships with prospects
#1 Rule – give value first. There aren’t any other rules to speak of; that is the be all and end all of selling to your list. Form the free offer or product they get to join the list to every email they subsequently receive: send them value and lots of it.
That value might be useful information or it may be ideas or ways to make their life better in ways related to your offer. In my case I am a marketer so I give people help marketing their products and businesses. I give as much away as I can so that people get incredible value and can see the quality of what I offer.
The idea is that if you like what I do for free you should try being a client and then you will get amazing value!
5. Get feedback
This is also a time for you to engage with people. Get them to comment on your blog or Facebook page. Get some feedback. Answer questions that are important to your business development. There may be something stopping people from buying from you that the public can see and you can’t. It may be simple and easy to change but make all the difference to your conversions.
6. Sell product
You will know that in sales people buy from people, or more accurately; personalities. People would rather pay more and buy from someone they know and trust than pay less from a stranger. In mass retail people buy from brands that they identify with and associate themselves and their values with.
Think of Apple and Nike. People buy from Apple because that is the kind of people they are, or want to be seen to be. People put on Nike because they are the people who Just Do It!
During the relationship building phase you should have got your message out about who you are; your company’s personality. You should have built trust through giving value first. Then people will be willing to give you a try and buy from you.
Hopefully your prospects are aligned with your company’s ethos and that will make the selling stage all the easier. It will also help you to retain customers.
7. Get feedback – The Second Cup
I am sure that you can see a pattern building here. You will understand how important feedback is. However many companies just move on to the next prospect once someone has bought. Don’t do it! It cost you a lot of effort and money to get that sale. So now you will want to nurture your new customer and reinforce your relationship.
You may ask them what they think of their purchase. Get some ideas of how you can make it and the sales process better. If people buy in to the company in this way and feel involved then you will have a customer for life.
As we used to say at CR4L; Customers are for Life, not just for Christmas.
The Second Cup: There is a wonderful little book by Mark Joiner called The Irresistible Offer. In that he talks about how to build an irresistible offer; an offer so good that people will just have to buy. You get your offer before a thirsty crowd and they will buy, then you sell them the second cup. The Second Cup is where the profit is. This is the ongoing relationship and where a business makes most of its profit.
Getting customers is expensive, keep them and keep selling them more great value.
8. Do more of what works – Turn it up!
You will have seen by now that I preach a system of marketing that uses multiple systems of marketing all working in concert to maximum effect: PR, PPC, SEO, article marketing, blogs, data catchment, social media, video and many more.
You can start with a few key systems and trying a few others such as social media and video. Test and do analytics and monitor closely what results you get. Then drop what is not working and do more of what is. It’s that simple. Don’t keep on putting money in to systems that don’t work; too many people do.
You can see the benefits of continually trying new ideas out. A lot of them will not work so stop them immediately as soon as you see that. If you find one that does work then do more of that.
You probably know that most start-up companies lack marketing skills in their team. As someone once said; having a great product but bad marketing is like making love in the dark: you know what you are doing but no one else does.
So you now have the key 7 Marketing Essentials For Startup Business. You will have seen how important testing is. You know that value first is the best way to build relationships. And you also know that is how I work. So if you need more exposure and clients, call or email me for help and advice; you know that I love giving value to people and if you like what I do for your business maybe you will become my customer for life.
PS. October sees the launch of my Irresistible offer – see what it is at http://www.cr4l.com/special-offer.html
Newspaper Advert or Magazine Advert – which is better for your business?
The question that many of our clients have been asking us is whether a magazine advert or a newspaper advert is better for their business?
Well in most cases we say neither.
Local businesses traditionally advertised in local papers and magazines - a lot still do. Perhaps for some tradesmen this still reaps rewards. But for most it is a waste of money.
Magazines are expensive and what do you get? Newspapers are not much better. And do you know what people say when we ask why they advertise there?
Top 2 answers:
Because we always have done
Because our competitors do
Are they rational reasons for spending good money?
Next we ask what returns these adverts provide.
We don't know
At best it’s hard to track results and at worst they are not even trying to see what their return on investment is. They have a budget and they spend it on what they always have done and hope for the best. Again this is not good business practice.
I am sure this is not how you run your marketing but I know from personal experience that when a paper rings up and makes an offer, discounted naturally, it is hard to say no; you decide to just give it a go. I used to until I discovered the systems and techniques that lead me to build Results Marketing.
I started my first business in 1988. Since then I have learnt a lot. The biggest contributing factor to the success of a business is the marketing. That may be location in the high street, or it may be a clever advertising. More increasingly it is a complex strategy involving many different streams of marketing.
These multiple streams all work together to create a continuous flow of new customers to your business. This is what Results Marketing is based on; a system of marketing systems all working together.
I wrote an article in 2009 on the 7 streams of marketing. I said that modern businesses needed to have multiple streams all running at the same time in order to be effective. The Results Marketing Workbook now has around 25 different systems for generating business. Now not all of these will be effective for every business but I recommend choosing a few and starting there.
One of the problems with traditional advertising is that the results and returns can be hard to track. That is why working with these systems is so effective. You get clear results and can see what is working and what is not. You do more of what works and stop the unproductive; replacing it with a different system.
In the past an advert would bring unqualified prospects to your door. Modern marketing techniques and systems qualify the prospect and pre-sell them. That means you don’t waste time selling to people who don’t want to buy, but instead you can spend your time taking orders.
Now more than ever people search online for what they want when they want it. That means that you need to have your business highly visible all the time. 40,000 people may read your newspaper advert but how many are ready to buy now?
When people search online they are ready to buy now. So it is far better to be visible to them than to the newspaper readers and hope that one or two may be in need at that particular moment.
So before you spend hundreds on an advert, try implementing some of the systems and techniques we use to get results. They are tried, tested and trackable. They include social media, local SEO, blogs and content marketing, PPC and many others.
For a sneak preview of the system workbook visit http://www.cr4l.com/self-marketing-download.html
If you want to get a steady stream of new clients and business, that is predisposed to buy from you, then you need Results Marketing.
Home Local SEO – How to get up the listings for free
SEO – or Search Engine Optimisation, is key to the visibility of your website on the internet. Without it you will rank low in the searches and may never be found by potential customers.
I have written a free report on local SEO and how to get your website up the rankings. The material is taken from the Results Marketing Workbook which I have developed with CR4L. This report is short and to the point. If you follow the steps in here you will boost your visibility to the public and search engines. People search online ahead of a purchase. Often people will find a product at one business and then search online to see if they can get a better deal or offer.
At that point of searching the prospect is ready to buy; the perfect time to attract them to your offer. If you are not on the front page of Google searches it is unlikely that you will be found and considered.
The front page of Google may seem a lofty target given the number of businesses out there but for any local independent business there is hope.
Results Marketing is a system of marketing systems that is guaranteed to work and get results. This report is about one part of one of those systems: Local SEO. This is a powerful tool on its own so we suggest implementing right away…
Read this report; take the steps that are suggested to move up the rankings. If you want guaranteed success in marketing get CR4L’s Results Marketing System for your business – see http://www.cr4l.com for details of how to get it on a free trial.
How to Get Ahead of the Competition Independent businesses in general can play a smart game of marketing against big brands. No more so than local companies catering to a local audience. SEO for big business is expensive, time consuming, difficult to track results and can take a long time to have an effect. Most SEO companies will tell clients that they have to work for 6 months before any discernible results will appear. For a small business this is not a viable option.
However there are ways to get fantastic results with little investment or time. AND you will see the effects in a lot less time. In 2010 Microsoft did a study that showed smartphone users are much more likely to convert from searches. This year a Nielsen study shows that 64% of Smartphone searches for restaurants converted inside of one hour. That is an amazing statistic.
In the 80’s we had no mobile phones. Now there are 4 billion smartphones in the world and current estimates say that by 2016 there will be 8 billion smartphones in use globally. If we have a question we ask our smartphone. Everything from a pub quiz conundrum to where to stay, eat, shop or buy industrial cabling.
How do you get your business to the top of the list in your area? Well one thing to consider is that chains mostly market the brand nationally and not so much the individual locations. So be sure and make your business known as the place to go in your town and your street.
For example: people looking for Italian restaurants may get Jamie’s as top of the list. However if they search for Italian Restaurants in Bristol (or BS1) you have a great chance to beat Jamie’s to the top (if you are in Bristol).
So be sure and use your location in your website. Post your address in the top margin and make sure it is easily found in the text of the site. Next make sure that your Meta Tags in each page have some location information… “Widgets in Birmingham” or “discount widgets in south Birmingham”
Be Specific If you are in a niche market be sure and play that ace card. If you are in a large market then look for a niche that you can fit and market to that. It is far easier to market an Italian Restaurant than a Restaurant of no particular description.
Pick 2 search terms that you want to lead to you. DO NOT go for more than 2 because that will dilute your efforts: Far better to be front page for 2 searches than on page 2 of 10.
Once you pick them use them in the website SEO, in the body of text and the Meta Tags. If you don’t know how to do that ask us at CR4L, we will often help people via live Skype chats with live screen shots to help walk you through the process.
If you have a webmaster that does all the web changes for you share this document with them. Get them to change the Meta Tags to include your 2 main targeted search terms.
Do the first 2 steps in the report and considerably boost you website’s visibility. Use these together to move up the rankings and get your business seen by hot prospects. Add in bonus steps 3 and 4 to get way up the rankings.
Note: You can pay for listings on these sites and the sites listed below. This will mean you will get back links to your website and thus boost your rating more then a standard link. However for most businesses this may not be a good idea. It costs around £20 a month per site and is not well targeted.
When deciding if you should pay look at the traffic you are likely to get and monitor to make sure you get the results sites promise. I just paid to be on Yahoo and City.Visitor with premium listings (top of the page featured) in 2 geographical areas at a cost of £20 a month for both.
If I get 100 clicks from each listing I will be paying 10p per visitor to my website. Anymore than 10p a click and I think I can do better elsewhere. However it does have the bonus of live links on very powerful websites so that makes it worthwhile.
Step 1… Get Free Listings Citation sites play a huge part in your search engine visibility. To get a list of the top 11 free sites to get your business listed follow the link below and download a complete free report on Local SEO for small business. This is the first step. These 11 are not in order of importance so be sure and get a listing on all of the 11.
It is easy to do but before you start use a Word document to write out your chosen search terms (2 only), some key words, a short description of your business and a longer description of your business.
When you come to each site you will have to fill in similar forms to complete your listing. Just copy and paste from your prepared document and you will speed the process up considerably.
In addition to the list of the top 11 free sites to get listed on, the free report also has a list of the top 50 citation sites in the UK. And it shows how to use these and other techniques to move your website and business up the search listings.
If you want new customers you need to be seen when people are searching for an offer like yours. To be seen you need great visability. The first step is to get this free report and get your 11 free listings.
Go to the home page of this website and fill in the form to get your Local SEO report with a list of free s
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