You have a Brand New Website….What Next?

You have a Brand New Website....What Next?

When it comes to the Internet, visitor traffic is the lifeblood that powers lead generation and this, in turn, fuels sales and ultimately, impacts your bottom line.

The beauty of the Internet is its ease of access for everyone, however, people must be able to find your website on the Internet before they will become visitors! Remember, your website is your main source of leads and credibility…and it is one of about 600 million on the Internet. That is over half-a-billion websites.

For your brand new website to be found, it has to be visible in search engine results. And on social channels. And on mobile devices. And it needs regularly updated content.

So what can you do to get your brand new website in front of the right visitors?

Optimize it for Search Engines

Search Engine Optimization is a set of targeted activities that increases the popularity of a website on the Internet and increases its rank so that it can be found when people look for you. Your site must appear in the top 10 search results to be noticed – chances are slim that visitors will look at page 2, or beyond. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) focuses in strategically increasing inbound links (ones that point to your website) using carefully crafted tactics. How often do you go to page 2 to find what you are looking for? 

Be Social!

Don’t be Uncomfortable with Social Media. Social Marketing makes your website visible on all major social channels such as Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and more, depending on the type of business and the target audience. Today, adults of all demographics are using social networks to connect with friends, share photos with family members, and – yes – recommend products to the people they care about. The latest statistics from Pew Internet indicate that 67% of all adults use social networking sites. Out of the demographic most likely to share content about brands online (moms, for the curious), 50% make brand recommendations through social networking on a daily or weekly basis, and 93% say they’re influenced by others’ recommendations. So in its most basic application, social media marketing is a must for businesses that want customers to recommend their product or service! Once you understand what Social Media is all about, how it works and how you can leverage Social Media, it will become a breeze! When it comes to marketing, Social Media no longer optional. It is an absolute necessity.

Here is a chart that depicts the rise of Social Media in the United States over the last 7 years:

You will find more statistics at Statista

As you can see, there has been a tremendous increase across all age groups.

Continaully Add & Update Content!

You invested money, time and effort into building your website. Don’t let it languish by the wayside. Your website is your main identity on the Internet. It represents you, your brand, your organization, your services and probably much more. Give it the time, the attention and importance it deserves. Keep the content up to date. If you have a blog, establish a blogging schedule and blog regularly and consistently. You can use your blog for almost anything that you want to share about your organization – latest updates, news, projects, reviews – all within reason, of course. If you have social presence, post regular updates! Keep in touch with your visitors and customers. 

Be Visual

Yes, we are a visual society and a picture is still worth a thousand words! Polls show that people would much rather watch a 2-3 minute video than read a page or two of text. Similarly, Infographics can take seemingly complex types of information and disseminate it is such a manner that it becomes easily understood. So play creative director and add relevant visual elements to you website, your blog, Remember, Images, Graphics, Infographics and Videos speak for themselves! 

Get a Mobile Website

If you don’t have a mobile website, you are losing potential customers! Mobile users today account for over 20% of the total searches conducted on the Internet and this trend is growing rapidly as more and more people gravitate towards mobile devices and if you don’t have a mobile-friendly (also known as responsive) website, make this a serious priority. Mobile devices include smartphones and tablet devices of all varieties and flavors. In fact, there are many people that rely solely on their mobile devices to stay connected!

Check out this graph – look at the tremendous rise of smartphone users over the last few years:

You will find more statistics at Statista 

Become Friends with Website Analytics Systems

Discover who comes to your website and what they do when they get there! There are many robust tools available so you can track your website visitors. You can slice and dice that information as you desire. It is important to track these metrics because this will reveal stuff that you probably are not even aware of. One of the best tools that is available for free is Google Analytics. Here is a snapshot of a Google Analytics Dashboard.

image

Once you start to measure and monitor, you will see how weekends, seasonal variations, holidays and other items impact visitor traffic.

So, what have you done to promote your brand new website?

7 Ways to Get the Most from Your Website

7 Ways to get the most from your website

If you rely on inbound marketing, then your website is probably one of your main sources of leads and credibility for your business. And therefore, the right kind and amount of visitor traffic is essential for quality leads.

In this article, I will show you how to get the most from your website.

There are over 1.1 billion (and counting) websites on the Internet and for your website to be found, it has to appear in search engine results. And on relevant social channels. And mobile search. Oh, it also needs to mobile device friendly.

So what can you do to get your website in front of the right visitors?

Make it Mobile Device Friendly

First and foremost, it is more important than ever to have a mobile-friendly website. To the point that Google published an official blog post about this where say that they will start to boost the rank of mobile-friendly websites in mobile search and at the same time, they may start to penalize websites that are not

You can make your website responsive (one that adapts to the display of the device that is accessing it automatically) or you can create a dedicated mobile website. A dedicated mobile makes sense in some cases; however the majority of people are going with responsive websites for ease of maintenance.

Mobile users today account for about 50% of the total searches conducted on the Internet and this trend is growing as mobile device usage increases. So, if you don’t have a mobile-friendly website, you are more than likely losing potential customers!

The following chart shows the tremendous rise of smartphone users from 2010 to 2015 and shows the forecasted number in 2020.

Statistic: Number of mobile users worldwide between 2010 and 2020 (in millions) | Statista

You will find more statistics at Statista

Optimize it for Search Engines

Search Engine Optimization is a set of targeted tactics and strategies  that work to increase the popularity of your website on the Internet and improves its rank so that it can be found when people look for you in search. Your site must appear in the top 10 search results to be really noticed – statistics show that visitors seldom look at page 2 or beyond.

How often do you go to page 2 to find what you are looking for?

Search Engine Optimization has evolved from what was link building and similar tactics to a much broader and deeper area of expertise that focuses on almost every single aspect of your website: construction & layout, speed, quality & relevance of content, mobile-friendliness, regular and ongoing content updates and much more.

Learn more about our approach to SEO.

In a nutshell, your website needs to regularly updated and continuously promoted so it can remain relevant in search.

Pay for Immediate Visibility

Paid search engine and social advertising enable you to get in front of your potential visitor almost immediately. With paid search and social advertising, you can start to drive visitor traffic to your website almost immediately while you continue organic marketing activities. Paid advertising is available on major search engines and on major social channels such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and others. Paid advertising is flexible

Arnima - Social Media - Header

Be Social!

Don’t be uncomfortable with social media. Social sharing will gradually make your website visible on all major social channels such as Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and more, depending on your business and target audience.

Today, adults of all demographics are using social networks to connect with friends, share photos with family members, and – yes – recommend products and services to the people they care about.

The latest statistics from Pew Internet indicate that 67% of all adults use social networking sites. Out of the demographic most likely to share content about brands online (moms, for the curious), 50% make brand recommendations through social networking on a daily or weekly basis, and 93% say they’re influenced by others’ recommendations.

So in its most basic application, social media marketing is a must for businesses that want customers to recommend their product or service! Once you understand what Social Media is all about, how it works and how you can leverage Social Media, it will actually become a breeze! Remember, when it comes to marketing, Social Media no longer optional. It is an absolute necessity.

Add & Update Content Regularly!

Update-Update-Update

You invested money, time and effort into building your website. Don’t let it sit idle! Maintain it. Update content regularly. Make sure there nothing is “broken”. Upgrade technology regularly. Keep it secure from hackers and exploiters.

Your website is your main identity on the Internet. It represents you, your brand, your organization, your services and much more. Give it the time, the attention and importance it deserves. Keep the content up to date. If you have a blog, establish a blogging schedule and blog regularly and consistently. You can use your blog for almost anything that you want to share about your organization – latest updates, news, projects, reviews – all within reason, of course. If you have social presence, post regular updates! Keep in touch with your visitors and customers.

On a side note – we allowed our website to stagnate for 3+ years. Here is an article that highlights 11 Lessons Learned When We Did Not Update Our Website for 3 Years

Be Visual

A picture is still worth a thousand words! Polls show that people would rather watch a short video than read a page or two of text.

Similarly, Infographics can take seemingly complex types of information and disseminate it is such a manner that it becomes easily understood. So play creative director and add relevant visual elements to you website, your blog and web pages. Remember, images, graphics, infographics, and videos speak for themselves!

Become Friends with Website Analytics

Discover who comes to your website and what they do when they get there! There are many robust tools available so you can track your website visitors. You can slice and dice that information as you desire. It is important to track these metrics because this will reveal stuff that you probably are not even aware of. One of the best tools available for free is Google Analytics. Here is a snapshot of a Google Analytics Dashboard that show a basic graph of traffic for the first 6 months of this year.

Arnima Google Analytics Traffic Snapshot

Once you start to measure and monitor, you will see how weekends, seasonal variations, holidays and other items impact visitor traffic.

What have you done to promote your website?

Leveraging Your Expertise Through Social Media

Leverage Your Expertise through Social Media

While many people use social media for their own personal endeavors, whether to communicate with friends, share their favorite articles and stories, or connect with their next potential employer, an increasing amount of users are also looking to these social platforms to do business. Here’s how you can leverage your expertise through social media.

Business owners want to know the different between the 4 major social platforms (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+) and how to leverage each site for their business.

In response to this question, Zintro, a business network that connects clients with experts in a large variety of business areas, has produced this infographic, “Leveraging Social Media To Showcase Your Expertise”, which explains and highlights the key features of the four big social media platforms of today.

How is your business using social media to connect with clients? Which social media platforms is your business using and how did you decide which ones to use?

Small Businesses That Get It Right On Pinterest

Arnima-Small-Businesses-That-Get-It-Right-On-Pinterest

I’m sure by now you’ve at least heard of Pinterest. If not, feel free to zip on over to the site and I’ll see you in a few days after you’re done creating your holiday dinner menu for the next 5 years and completed redecorated your home 3 times over.

Pinterest Is a virtual bulletin board of all your favorite ideas and finds. Yes, it’s great for finding recipes, DIY projects, and the latest fashion trends, but companies are now jumping on to the Pinterest bandwagon. It’s a great way to showcase your company culture, products, research customer segments and increase brand recognition.

For small businesses, this can be especially difficult. In order to utilize Pinterest effectively, marketers must focus on the concepts of people’s lifestyles, encourage users to share their interests and find like-minded individuals. Take a look at some of these small businesses that get it right on Pinterest:

Mr. Rooter

 MrRooter

Waco, Texas plumbing franchise

Mr. Rooter uses Pinterest as a retention tool to help keep the company top-of-mind when a customer needs plumbing work. With Where in the World is Waldo boards to fix a leak and plumbing trick boards, Mr. Rooter understands and pins to their customers’ needs.

Project coordinator, Rachel Florence says, “We just want to keep out name on their minds so when they need a plumber, we’re the first thing they think of.” It’s really all about name recognition.

Tamara

Suttle Castle Rock, Colorado, Licensed Professional Counselor

What Mrs. Suttle does right is pin often and pin right. Her boards are for her followers and she is a great resource to her community. She has boards offering advice in every facet of counseling as well as Connect To Me board, allowing her followers to easily connect to her if they want to learn more about her services.

Yala Designs

Ashland, Oregon Bamboo and silk bedding and apparel

YalaDesigns

Yala Designs uses Pinterest for customer research. Their “Your Yala Apparel Ideas” board allows followers to post images of products from other companies they want Yala Designs to make.

This board alone has over 1100 followers and 200 pins. Social media manager Lauren Sarget notes, “We never know for sure how well they will be received until tradeshow season. Pinterest is the perfect venue for us to get ideas from the public rather than guessing at what we think they will like.” User boards are not only great for customer research, but they’re also great for engaging and building relationships with users, which is key to your social marketing efforts.

Easy Lunchboxes

Tarzana, California Environmentally friendly lunchboxes for all

The California-based company’s main goal was to increase sales without looking desperate.

EasyLunchboxes
To avoid over-promoting, CEO Kelly Lester created a user board for others to show they use her lunch boxes. The “Easy Lunch Box Lunches” user board lets other users promote the product. So what you’re saying is you do half the work for twice the results…Genius! Lester even said, “Google analytics is showing me that 56% of the visits to my site generate from my Pinterest boards.”

Pinterest: Where The Big Spenders Shop

Pinterest: Where The Big Spenders ShopI’ll never forget my first pair of Tory Burch boots. One, because they’re my favorite pair of shoes in my closet, and two, I paid for them all on my own. Now, $350 for a pair of boots may not seem like a lot to some of you, but for a poor college student who had been saving up for months, it seemed the equivalent to a down payment on a house.

Every retail site knows that social media is their friend. Social media sites drive traffic based on sheer user numbers, but also from a trust factor. When it comes to clothing, I’m probably going to trust a friend’s recommendation or pin over an ad on the side of my newsfeed.

But not all social media sites are created equal when it comes to driving retail traffic. A recent study from RichRelevance, looked at over 700 million shopping sessions and found that while Facebook still drives the most traffic, Pinterest has one notable plus high-end retailers should pay close attention to.

According to the study, Facebook drives 85.8% of online shopping sessions, Pinterest with 11.3% and Twitter with 2.9%. That being said, the average order from Pinterest referrals was $168.83 compared to Facebook referred orders at $94.7 and Twitter at $70.84.

Another study, by Tamba, reports that Pinterest will account for 40% of social media driven purchases by the end of this year. The study also found that Pinterest buyers are 10% more likely to purchase something and spend 10% more than visitors from other social networks.

Diane Kegley, CMO of RichRelevance said, “Every social network promises a new way of connecting consumers with retailers and brands. However, the big take-away from our research is that not all channels in the social space are created equal.”

That being said, which social platforms are driving your traffic?

– Sarah