Category Archives for "Business Development"

4 Questions To Ask Before Hiring A Web Design Agency

Developing your website should be approached as a high-priority, ongoing objective for your team. You want your website not just to look good but also to function and perform in the best way possible. You want to offer a seamless, pleasant and meaningful experience for your target visitors and potential customers and all these rely on having good website design.

When you shop around for a team to handle your website design, don’t hesitate to collect information that will sufficiently help you gauge which ones are the right fit for you until you come down to your top selection. To do this, you can start by considering the following questions to ask before hiring a website design agency:

1. Can you tell me more about the team that will handle my website?

It’s important to know the background of the team to determine the years and quality of their experience, their qualifications and credentials, the type of projects they have previously worked on and the number of years they have worked together.

2. What are the systems, platforms and technology that you usually use?

Asking this question helps you gauge whether they are equipped and skilled enough to handle your specific requirements. If your workflow and tools are synced in some way, there is a bigger chance for your collaboration and working relationship to be more convenient and more efficient.

3. How will you price the project?

Having a clear understanding about the rates should always be a priority. Will they bill you for hourly work or will it be on a package rate basis? What are the terms of payment and are there particular fees or charges you should know about? Make sure to get everything written down for clarification and reference in the future.

4. How long will the work take?

The length of time spent on your project will depend on the specifications and features you request for. Some agencies have a set timeframe for every job, while others take a more customised approach. If you have a particular deadline to beat, be clear about it from the beginning to see if they can work with your requirement. Make sure you lay down all your requests before work takes place so the agency will be able to provide you a manageable, realistic timeline. Great artists like to say that you can only determine that a design is good when it succeeds in offering an answer to a problem.

When you get help from a Web design agency, you’re basically partnering with someone who can provide you the best solutions that suit the unique needs, requirements and preferences of your business. Be extra diligent in researching and looking for the right agency to work for. The choice of your agency will have a significant impact on the success of your website – and your business.

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Effective Business Development: Why You Should Invest in Developing Your Business Online

There is no stopping the phenomenal pull of the Web. Virtually everyone on the planet is probably on it, including you. On the Web, you can get your entertainment for free; you can find out valuable information for school, for work, and for just about anything in life; you can communicate with loved ones, meet new people, and reach out to long lost friends without leaving your home — the Web is one powerful tool, isn’t it?

So it only makes sense for you to use it to build and grow your business. If you have an idea, the World Wide Web will allow you to take that idea from the drawing board to reality, and from reality to success. But in addition to the fact that virtually everyone (consumers) is on the Web, why should you invest in online strategies for business development?

Your competitors will be doing the same.

Web marketing has increasingly become big business, primarily because companies and other entities are getting lucrative results, sometimes for a fraction of the cost it usually takes with traditional media. Consider the statistics:

  • Almost 50 percent of companies have some type of content marketing strategy.
  • Some $315 billion will be spent on new digital marketing collateral.
  • Social media marketing budgets will double in the next five years.
  • Internet advertising will eat up 25 percent of whole ad market in the next few years.

You can increase your market share by building your business online.

Whether you own a small local store or have an international business, you will get more customers through effective online marketing strategies. Here are the numbers to prove it:

  • Businesses that increase blogging from three to five times a month to six to eight times every month nearly double their leads.
  • B2B companies that blog generate 67 percent more leads than businesses that do not.
  • In the last year, 52 percent of marketers have found a customer through Facebook, 43 percent found theirs through LinkedIn.
  • The average return on email marketing investment is $44.25 for every dollar you spend.
  • Shoppers who get email marketing spend 83 percent more when they buy; they also order 44 percent larger, and order 28 percent more.

Your brand will get more recall through online marketing.

With so much information and so much imagery being presented to consumers, on any given day, you wonder how your brand will be able to “stick” to your consumers’ minds. With online marketing strategies, you get cost-effective opportunities to use multimedia to deliver your message — and your consumers will retain that information. Here’s why:

  • 65 percent of consumers are visual learners.
  • Visual information, versus text, is processed 60,000 times faster by your brain.
  • Consumers retain 58 percent of what see, only 10 percent of what they read.
  • Videos will keep your consumers on your website two minutes longer.
  • A consumer who watches a video about a product is 144 percent more likely to buy it than a consumer who doesn’t watch a video.

So the question should be, why not invest in developing your business online? Contact us today!

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How to Benefit From the Recent Google Updates!

Over the last few years through all of the search engine updates known collectively as the “Google Zoo” (Pandas, Penguins and so on) most webmasters knew it was just a matter of time before Google would start enforcing the things they were preaching about content. That day is here. With the recent revision of the Google Webmaster Guidelines they have made it very clear that they’re on a mission to terminate duplicate, thin, and otherwise poor content from their search results.

benefiting on google updates

So how does this affect small business?

In its basic form, this means that quality should win out over quantity, at least when it comes to content and links. Google is aware with so many millions of web pages in existence, it’s too much to expect us to not promote our pages, but concurrently we have to be adding to the discussion with new and fresh content, not merely a rehashing or exact duplication of what’s already there. So, for the small business owner attempting to make headway in the search rankings, this means that we should stop trying to game the search results, and embrace natural and meaningful link building and social interaction.

Best practices and what to avoid

  • Create awesome content – Craft content that people are eager to both read and share. Lend your unique voice to the conversation and don’t hesitate to ruffle feathers!
  • Make it shareable – Since Google is now making social signals an element of the search algorithm it’s very important to make sure that people have the capability and want to share your content. It can make a difference in your rankings.
  • Don’t use content automation – Google is getting better and better at finding and exiling automated content. Since most of the time this sort of spun or rehashed text is easily recognizable as such, just determine to avoid it completely.
  • Make your links diverse – Don’t use the exact same keyword text in all of your links. It’s not natural and won’t help you rank for that keyword. Make use of keywords, naked URLs, some “click here’s” as well as other common terms.
  • Don’t employ linking schemes – In the past you could get away with this, and there are many who will tell that it is still so, even so the cost of being identified is high. Do you actually want to build your business on that?

Want these best practices for your business?

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Use These Ten Tips to Pump up Your Marketing Efforts

Everyone is always searching for the easy button, yet when it’s shown to us, we often view it and say, “there has to be more to it that that”. Ignoring ways to make positive changes to our businesses because they’re not sexy or the latest shiny new toy, is practically asking for the “Closed” sign to be put up. Remember the Pareto Principle; 80 percent of your results will come from 20 percent of your efforts. That said, listed here are ten easy yet effective ways to improve your marketing efforts.

use these ten tips to pump up your marketing efforts

  1. Use a company blog – There is no better way to brand yourself or your business than from the consistent use of a company blog. It’s your voice, use it!
  2. Be specific in what you do and offer – Don’t attempt to market all things to all people! Decide what you would like to specialize in and master it.
  3. Highlight benefits, not features – Everyone wants to know what’s in it for them. Don’t bore them with how, let them know why!
  4. Be value driven – Aim to over-deliver on value. You’ll be very glad you did.
  5. Be active in social media – Try to relate with your audience on the social media of your choosing. This is a great approach to build relationships.
  6. Use video – Even if you’re camera-shy, find ways to employ video in your business, as that’s where everybody is at the moment!
  7. Listen to your people – Both your employees along with customers and subscribers.
  8. Use autoresponders – Make your life easier: use autoresponder email sequences to get your newest subscribers up to speed.
  9. Care for your existing customers – It’s several times harder to secure a new customer than to re-sell an existing one. Remember that!
  10. Use calls to action – While this one may be last on the list, it’s very important. Ask for the action! Whether it’s a sale, optin, webinar, or watching a video, make sure you use a call to action, or you may as well not be bothering at all!

Apple all these techniques to your online business. Call us today at 0118 310 0880

Is Marketing Automation Software Right for Your Business?

Many people make the mistake of thinking that marketing automation software is just for for email marketing. Even though it certainly had its birth there, what we’re referring to is a lot more sophisticated application.

Marketing automation software is defined by Wikipedia  “Marketing automation refers to software platforms designed for marketing departments and organizations to automate repetitive tasks. Marketing departments, consultants and part-time marketing employees benefit by specifying criteria and outcomes for tasks and processes that are then interpreted, stored and executed by software, which increases efficiency and reduces human error. Originally focused on email marketing automation, marketing automation refers to a broad range of automation and analytic tools for marketing.”

So how does this benefit your small business?

When it became clear that some 93% of B2B buyers are using the search engines to begin their buying process, it was incumbent for businesses to find a way to streamline the inbound marketing process, and make it easier and less time intensive to look after. Marketing automation software is the tool which makes this happen, allowing marketers to more easily manage every aspect of your lead generation process. Software such as this will not only get traffic to your site, but will also start them on the buying process with offers and relevant emails and other content. It can also segment your leads by source, interests and any other considerations.

The way this works is that the system relies on a complex series of rules to trigger action items; which can be either more content, a special offer, or follow-up email message. This provides the visitor precisely what they are looking for and frees up your staff for other tasks. One particularly crucial thing to note is that if you decide to go for a marketing automation software, there will have to be a obligation keeping the content funnel filled, as this is what it operates on.

If maintaining all the tasks you must do in your business is becoming a challenge, or you are simply looking to scale your small business, then marketing automation software might be right for you. Check into it today!

5 Ways to Use Location Based Marketing in Your Small Business

5 Ways to Use Location  Based Marketing in Your Small Business
There’s no more ignoring the fact that business is heading to where you live. You prove it to yourself daily you go out of the house armed with your smartphone, ready, willing and able to seek out and conduct business and pleasure while out and about. So, since this is where the business is, it makes sense to make sure your business is planted firmly in the path of this wave, and be able to profit from location based marketing.

5 Tips to help you profit with Location Based Marketing

  1. Complete your local listings – According to Yext, businesses are losing at least $10.3 billion dollars a year simply by neglecting to get their business information updated and accessible on their profiles and sites. This is a cardinal sin, and one that ought to be addressed immediately. If your company is not being found, your competitors will be! Make sure you get your listings correct on sites like Google Local, Foursquare, Yelp, Facebook, MapQuest and any others you are using.
  2. Reward reviews! – Rewarding reviews is a straightforward and cost-effective method to create terrific social proof, and make your current customers happy as well! You don’t have to give away the store, and plenty of regular customers are all too happy to do this for free (but give them something anyway)!
  3. Shower your customers with perks – In connection with the above, always make sure it is worth their while to come back repeatedly. There are lots of ways to do this including coupons, a loyalty program, backlinks and more.
  4. Employ coupons and daily deals – Entrepreneur tells us that there are two ways that we can engage through location based marketing. One is by pushing ads out to them, and the other is by allowing your business to be in a position to be “discovered”. Both are essential elements of a winning campaign.
  5. Be responsive to your customers – Nothing speaks care like you talking back to customers or prospects who are asking questions. This shows you give a darn, and this also can mean extremely positive word of mouth! (or mouse) However, if you fail to do this and leave people unanswered, you’ll soon feel their wrath!

Location-based marketing is a marvelous way to develop your presence in your local market. Start using it today!

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