Landing page

Four Major Mistakes You Don’t Want To Make With Product Landing Pages

Landing page mistakes, avoid errors on wordpress,

Product landing page mistakes to avoid

Designing a landing page is no easy task. There are many moving parts to consider, including copywriting, design, social media, and CTA placement. And with so many decisions to make (both big and small), it’s no wonder that mistakes can easily occur. In many cases, business owners fail to take the proper precautions to ensure their landing page is up to par, both in terms of design and functionality. Sometimes, they even let simple mistakes slide.

However, because humans have shorter attention spans than goldfish, you need to be able to capture their interest almost instantaneously. Within just a few seconds, a potential customer will move on to the next best thing because of an error you may have thought was trivial. Here are five mistakes you don’t want to make with product landing pages:

Choosing The Wrong Platform

There are many platforms available, and choosing the right one is crucial. WordPress is touted as one of the best lead-generating landing page platforms because it’s simple to set up, and creative freedom is nearly endless. You can choose from thousands of free and premium themes, and even install plugins like Elementor to build your product landing page with drag-and-drop functionality.

Then, there are other platforms designed to help you launch simple product landing pages, like LeadPages (which offers WordPress integration), Unbounce, and Instapage. These may offer a quicker set-up but are typically very limited in terms of design.

Think about your site goals before you choose a platform. For example, if you want to be able to incorporate certain features, like immersive photo galleries, you will need a platform that supports it. Or, if you think you’ll be using an independent designer or developer in the future, go with a platform that allows you to scale in that direction. Budget is another thing to keep in mind. If you’re just starting out or still growing your customer base, you might want to start with a cheaper option, like WordPress, which you can get for as low as $10 per month. Other lead-capturing landing pages cost anywhere from $30 to $200 per month, and even as high as $2,400 for platforms like HubSpot.

Stock Photography

Believe it or not, in most cases, people don’t like to see stock photography on product landing pages. It might be okay for your blog posts, but it requires special consideration for your landing page. A study conducted by MDG Advertising found that 67% of online shoppers consider quality images to be an integral part of their decision-making when it comes to purchases. The more vivid and authentic a photo is, the more likely they were to perceive ownership.

For software, beautiful screenshots are the way to go, and it would be fine to juxtapose humans with your software imagery. Sometimes, stock photography is the easiest way to mesh the two, but you might also want to add a high-res photo of someone actually using the software to add that extra touch of authenticity.

If you do use humans in your photography (whether stock photos or you your own), bear in mind that studies have shown that site visitors tend to look in the direction of the eyes that belong to the person in the photo. Therefore, you’d ideally want to have the person looking in the direction of your text.

No Clear CTA

Before you start working on your landing page, ask yourself, “What’s my main goal here?” One of the biggest mistakes people make with landing pages is cluttering it with too many options for the visitor. For example, it can be overwhelming to visit a landing page that wants you to read articles, sign up for a newsletter, purchase your newest product, watch a video, AND request a quote.

This doesn’t mean that you can’t have multiple points-of-purchase or ways to appeal to your potential customers. Instead, you should have a core goal that stands out above the rest, rather than blends in. Think about the singular action you want your visitor to take: this is called the call-to-action (CTA). Your call to action should be decently-sized, stand out, and be placed in the right area to attract the most attention. Use split testing software to help you choose between different types of CTA. This will help you choose the option that converts best.

Too Much Copy

Having too much copy on your landing page can be fatal. As previously mentioned, most people don’t have a very long attention span, and every small decision about your copy–from size to typography to color and word count–plays an important role. Too many words create information overload and dilutes the message you’re trying to get across.

Keep your sentences and paragraphs short and concise. Try to avoid using one of the pages to dominate the text. It’s best not to align left or right when you’re working on landing pages. Instead, you want to spread bite-sized bits of copy across the page evenly. You want your copy to be as scannable as possible, and clunky paragraphs make it very difficult to achieve this. For optimal results, try breaking up the text by using well-designed icons, mini-paragraphs, bullet points, color-coordinated sub-sections.

 

Heat Mapping Tools

Quick and Easy Guide to Designing a High-Converting Website

(Image Source) Pixabay with permission

Nowadays, countless guides on the internet try to persuade you how easy it is to build a successful website from scratch.

While it’s true that anyone can get a decent-looking site live with the right tools, it’s still not easy for the online community to separate good web designers.

Remember, an experienced web developer knows to have a user-oriented approach when designing websites.

It’s not just about fancy visual effects, animations, and so on — it’s about creating an experience that compels users to take a specific action.

In this post, we’ll drill down into the tools which are the bedrock fundamentals for creating a high-converting website and how to utilise them yourself. (Image Source)

Let’s get started.

1. Start with the Right Platform

When it comes to developing websites, first you must choose a platform that can help you attain your goals.

Content management systems, e-commerce platforms, DIY site builders — each type of software has something unique to offer. And when commissioning a web developer, you can’t take this decision for granted.  It’s important you know and understand the differences and positives & negatives of each option.

Here is a brief explanation of each tool and their strengths:

Content Management Systems:

A flexible platform designed to help you edit, manage, and publish online content.

Wordpress plugins

WordPress plugins

CMS also give developers complete control over the website’s appearance — typically providing pre-made themes to work with.

WordPress is, by a clear mile, the most popular CMS ever. On top of the easy-to-use interface and countless themes to choose from, it also includes a massive plugin library for expandability and functionality – from newsletter subscription forms s to SEO.

E-Commerce Platforms

Shopify ecommerce

Shopify ecommerce

If your main goal is to sell product, you need to check out e-commerce platforms that consolidate everything you’ll need in one place.

For example, Shopify is becoming the go-to e-commerce platform that has all-in-one service including web hosting, online store themes, and integrations with services — from payment gateways to social sharing buttons. It also supports drop shipping apps like Oberlo and BigBuy, which enables shops to launch with a low overhead – but they do charge monthly fees.

Squarespace templates

Squarespace templates

DIY Site Builder Tools

It’s sometimes difficult to understand the difference between a content management system and a DIY site builder. The fact that both also support e-commerce functionalities don’t help, either.

What you need to remember is that site builders like Squarespace and Wix have limited customisability and capabilities, especially if you want modifications in your website’s source code. They do, however, make up for it with the wide selection of themes that hit the spot between pleasant appearance and user-friendliness.

 

2. Optimise Your Website’s Performance

Going back to being user-oriented, your website’s loading speed is one of the user experience factors that can single-handedly kill your search, traffic and conversions.

According to Google, 53% of users abandon a mobile website if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load. This number is reduced to only 40% for desktop sites, but you’ll still be missing out on a huge visitor stream.

This begs the question, how can you make your website load as fast as possible?

The answer, of course, varies. What you can do is to run an analysis through Google PageSpeed Insights to identify the exact issues that affect your website’s loading speed.

PageSpeed Insights work by providing optimisation suggestions that are specifically tailored to your website’s needs. It is a highly effective tool if you want to optimise your website’s loading times and maximise conversions by retaining more traffic.

To give you an idea of what to expect, below are some of the typical suggestions for your website’s loading speed:

  • Use Lossless Image Compression
    If you have a lot of visual content on your site, use a lossless compression tool like Compressor.io or Smush to reduce their size without compromising quality.
  • Consider a Content Delivery Network
    A surefire way to see significant performance gains on your website is to use a Content Delivery Network or CDN. Basically, it’s a network of servers that are strategically distributed across multiple locations to keep loading times consistent for all users — regardless of where they are in the world.
  • Minimise Your Code
    A handy tool like MinifyCode.com can further increase your website’s performance by removing excess characters, such as white spaces, line breaks, and comments, from codes. This can result in noticeable improvements, especially if you offer a lot of dynamic content and interactive elements on your website.

3. KISS (keeping it simple)

Remember, web pages are instruments that help users achieve a specific goal.  By being aligned with what the audience wants to do, web developers can accurately determine which page elements should be included or removed.

Do you need a prominent call to action? Are you sure banner ads aren’t pulling traffic away from your site?

Accomplished marketers like Neil Patel understand this fully, which is why you can observe the KISS principle at play in their websites.

 

 

 

 

 

(Image Source: Neil Patel)

It’s not rocket science: the fewer distractions presented to your audience, the faster they’ll buy into your value propositions. Apart from branding elements and navigation menus, try to avoid adding anything that contributes little to the user’s journey towards your desired action or goal.  That’s why landing pages often have menus removed.

4. Keep Fine-Tuning

Even veteran web developers find it hard to unlock the maximum conversion

Google Analytics traffic Funnel

Google Analytics traffic Funnel

potential of any given site instantly — let alone do it on their first try.

Heat Mapping Tools

Heat Mapping Tools

Your best bet is to launch your website, boot up some performance monitoring software, and let the numbers show you the way forward for refinements.

The usual route is to integrate Google Analytics to start monitoring key performance metrics, such as web traffic, bounce rate, session duration, and e-commerce transactions. It can also help you identify your best content as well as pinpoint the “drop-off” points where you lose most of your audience.

If you want, you can also slice through the number-crunching and visually monitor how most users interact with your site. You can do this with the help of a heat mapping tool, like Crazy Egg, Sumo or Hotjar.

 

Conclusion

Conversion rate optimisation is a learning experience that requires your direct involvement and regular updates.

The tips above should be more than enough to put you on a more profitable pathway.

Care to share a couple more tips on how to develop conversion-ready websites? Feel free to leave a comment below!

Creative Marketing: How To Get Your Company Noticed In 2018

Trends are indicative of what is popular and selling well. If you want to transform your business, regardless of size or industry, you need to be aware of these trends and then implement them as effectively as you can. Creative marketing encompasses both the creative and the marketing world, and often to great effect. Exciting and attractive marketing is powerful and effective, and strong visuals play a significant role in how well a product is recognized and consumed. Creative marketing is the genius behind getting a product noticed and sold, so using it well only stands to benefit you. Clever and sophisticated creative marketing could give way to the exponential business enhancement and increased revenue you’ve been dreaming of. Below we explore the various marketing avenues available in today’s modern world.

VR Advertising 

Virtual reality has made it into the mainstream after being something only seen in science fiction films. Now, it is becoming increasingly popular and accessible. This style of advertising is appealing across the board and not only because it intrigues the most inquisitive of individuals seeking a view into something otherworldly. The digital age is well and truly upon us, and using digital advances to create powerful visuals is, of course, going to help you transform your business. Virtual reality is truly taking off, and harnessing its power correctly could transform your business into an up-and-coming company recognized for using trendy technological advances.

TOMS

Toms Shoes use VR

Example: TOMS is one brand who used virtual reality extremely well within their campaign. They took users to a remote village in Peru, and each user experienced immersive storytelling, which was both incredibly emotional and moving. This VR advertising experience managed to convey to the audience the impact TOMS charitable donation policy has for children around the world. The founder of TOMS, Blake Mycoskie, has, in fact, said that virtual reality would be, going forward, a key part of their communications strategy.

Be Ready For Growth

If you want your business to grow and get noticed, then you need to begin implementing new designs. If you’re able to use trends such as VR advertising to the best of its capabilities, then expect growth and increased success and conversion. Before you get here, however, you will need to ensure your business is prepared for this expansion. Think about getting technology in place to account for this boost. Consider employing the assistance of a good HR management, a strong customer relationship management (CRM) suite, and creating an effective email service you can rely on.

Activision

Activision

Example: Activision, the leading publisher in the video game market in America, uses the clever CRM marketing platform Marketing Cloud to monitor social media conversations which are relevant to their own products. By doing so, the brand can interact and engage with consumers at a fraction of the expense. It is estimated that using social media as your customer service method saves on average 25% from the expenses you’d use for customer service operators. For a business beginning to their mark, this is valuable resources available to put into other marketing strategies.

Visual Merchandising

Visual marketing involves strategy, and the ability to make informed decisions about what an audience wants to see and feel. Visual content needs to be polished, slick and sleek. Visual merchandising is a powerful tool to harness to communicate your brand or business, using attractive signals to draw in potential customers. Visual merchandising displays its content simply and boldly and maintains the attention of the viewer. It’s a method of trying to get people to buy through means of seeing how a product can make their life easier and more enjoyable. Persuasion is by no means an easy feat, however creative marketing’s job is to persuade an audience that the product they see advertised is beneficial to them and will serve them in some advantageous way.

Kate Spade Valentines

Kate Spade Valentines

Example: Kate Spade’s beautiful blooming flowers theme for their Valentine’s Day merchandising theme made a statement within their store for all the right reasons. Flowers have a calming, relaxing effect, which undoubtedly retailers want to emulate in their stores to promote happy shopping. In addition to the sense of calm, the fresh, inviting scent will welcome customers to the store and add a touch of luxury to make every single visitor feel special and want to spend time inside the shop. Happily, this can work to retain loyal customers.

Personalise Everything

 Marketers and brand managers alike will be well aware of the use of personalization within marketing campaigns. Perhaps the emails to your customers already feature their names in the subject line. However, this trend ensures that every single customer feels valued and listened to, each time they receive notification from your company. Personalization is now referring to the experience each customer (and potential customer) has when they land on your website. If done right, it’s the ideal tool for building upsell opportunities and boosting revenue with the handy use of data compiled through analytics.

Coca Cola personalisation

Coca-Cola personalisation

Example: One of the most famous examples of personalisation being used within a marketing campaign is undoubtedly Coca-Cola’s 2012 ‘Share A Coke’ campaign. Launched in Australia, this clever strategy involved the ever-popular drinks featuring consumer names on the logo, ranging from Rebecca and Ben to Elvis and Mandeep. It sparked a social media frenzy where customers eagerly tried to find their names on bottles and the campaign itself encouraged people to share the drink with their friends. Coca-Cola’s campaign taught marketers that personalised campaigns work extremely well when they are engaging and fun.

Mobile-Friendly Content

For any brand to attract as many viewers as possible, content should be accessible across different platforms from different devices. Many people use their mobile or small tablet device to roam the web, so content needs to be mobile friendly otherwise many users are simply not being reached. Vital revenue is being missed if a site cannot be successfully accessed. It’s glaringly obvious when a site isn’t compatible with mobile phones, as it’s cumbersome to use and half of the content is scrawled awkwardly across the screen. This is merely an inconvenience, and at worst, the content is downright impossible to decipher.

Lancôme

Lancôme

Example: Luxury cosmetics company, Lancôme, is one such example of a brand using mobile ads to their advantage. When they launched their new product, Advanced Genifque, they also launched a mobile ad campaign which targeted their key consumers – women. Users who clicked on the ad would then be directed to an animated, interactive video which showed them what the product was about and how they use it. A case study determined the success of this campaign was due to the time slots when the apps displayed the ad, the mobile devices used to access the ads and the apps chosen to host it.

As the world evolves and adapts to ever-changing technology, so must the marketing world. The increase in mobile technology means consumers are expecting more from their favorite brands, and they want to be simply wowed by everything a company brings to the table. Therefore, to truly make your mark and get noticed in 2018, take note of the above suggestions and how globally renown brands get themselves noticed, for all the right reasons.

Is it a Smart Idea to Buy More Than One Domain Name?

If you are planning to go into business for yourself, you need to be on the web. Just as the company you worked for until recently has their site on the web, you need to establish your own. By doing so, you will put yourself in a position to reach a potential audience that numbers in the hundreds of millions. The sooner you do so, the sooner you can begin to tap into this enormous wellspring of potential profit.

Why Do You Need to Buy a Domain Name for Your Business?

The reason you need to buy a domain name for your business is to give yourself a home on the web. This is the name that visitors will punch into their search bar in order to find your site. It’s the name you will do business under.

Should You Buy More Than One Domain Name for Your Business?

Now that you know why you need to buy a domain name for your business, a new question arises. Is there a reason why you may need to consider buying more than one? This is an interesting question that raises a number of points. For example, are you going to be operating in a crowded arena where many businesses are competing in a cutthroat manner? If this is the case, there’s a reason you may need more than one domain name.

A rival business may attempt to crowd you off the web by buying a number of domain names that are similar to your own business. They may try to make use of these names by causing them to redirect to their own websites. Another way they may try to hurt you is by buying up several “independent” sites that are set up for the sole purpose of mocking and maligning your business.

The way to short circuit these attempts is to outwit your competitors in both areas.

  1. You can buy up a number of names that are similar to the name of your own domain such as common mis-spellings, different domain extensions and have them redirect to your main website.
  2. You can also buy up a number of ” X business stinks” and “Z business offers lousy service” domains to keep your rivals from using them to cause you grief. [Note this tactic could backfire and make you look foolish and so it’s not advised by ethical digital marketers.]
  3. The high quality, preferred solution to “outwitting competitors” is to put top quality content and advice on your blog, use content marketing and provide excellent customer service supported by testimonials and social proof, just like we do on this website!

Where Can You Go to Buy a Domain Name for Your New Business?

There are a number of reputable and professional domain hosting service providers that you can turn to when it comes time to buy domain names for your new business. The more you are able to buy, the better able you will be to shore up support for your new business while heading off any attempts by your competitors to harm you.

Simple Ways To Save Time And Money When Running Your Website

Running a website can be costly, regarding both time and money. That’s why it pays to use every avenue available to make the process easier. We have some simple ways to help keep costs down and make sure that running a website does take over your life (unless you want it to).

Get A $5 Logo

If you’re just beginning your website, then you are going to need a logo. What’s great is that you can have one done for as little as $5. If you take a look at fiverr.com, you will see many professional designers offering their services.

It’s recommended that you select around three different designers whose work you like. Send them all the same brief, and you can then choose the design that you like the most. This could costs you as little as $15. However, designers often offer upgrades and other deals that may cost more. If you want your logo’s source file (so that you can edit it yourself), then you will likely have to pay a bit more. Regardless, you will still be getting a bargain.

Outsource Work

Outsourcing work can help save you a lot of time, and it can also be very cost effective. If you need site upgrades, blog articles, videos, or anything else, you will find that there are freelancers to meet your needs. The major platforms to hire from include Upwork.com and Freelancer.com.

Imagine you need an article written on a topic that you know nothing about. You could struggle away for hours doing research and trying to write it yourself. However, you need to consider what your time’s worth. It may be more worthwhile to pay someone who knows the topic to write it for you.

Aim For Quality Over Quantity

If you’re trying to pump out a new post every day, then you may be overdoing it. To save time while not focus on quality over quantity. One high-quality post each week is better than seven sub-par posts.

Streamline Your Email Processes

You don’t want to be bogged down dealing with emails. Make sure you have strong spam filters on your account to get rid of the junk. You may also want to consider using Hostgator Webmail because of its effectiveness.

Consider The Time Commitment For Learning New Skills

If you want to make major modifications to your site and are considering learning HTML and PHP, then you may want to consider the time commitment. You may have to spend many hours to develop basic knowledge. It’s important to consider how much your time is really worth. You might find that it’s much more cost-effective and time-effective to hire someone to do the work for you.

Final Thoughts

Hopefully, your website starts to (or continues to) be successful. Just remember, you want to make it as efficient as possible. Streaming processes, outsourcing work, and even taking some nifty shortcuts will allow you to maximize results while minimizing your time and financial commitment.

3 Technologies That Will Transform Your Business Marketing by 2020

The year 2020 was once the ideal setting for futuristic sci-fi movies, but now it’s just around the corner. As the world gets closer to a new era, people have to brace themselves for the changes technology is going to effect on the business world. In fact, your customers will often drive technology you adopt in your business.

Technology is the vehicle businesses use to understand customer pain points and expectations in a bid to create meaningful relationships that build customer loyalty. If your company can genuinely nail customer experience, you’ll realize that your younger consumers are more brand loyal than all other generations. All this requires your IT department to power these top three technologies for next-generation customer experience.

  1. Cloud Computing

Advanced security capabilities today at application, network, and infrastructure levels make cloud infrastructure more secure than your on-premises apps. In fact, 80% of IT budgets are committed to cloud solutions. Cloud computing offers you more visibility into what your users are doing.

Regarding marketing, cloud computing helps improve customer service across different channels. Additionally, cloud computing also provides an easy way of collecting business analytics, so marketing teams understand the purchasing decision-making process.

  1. Artificial Intelligence (AI) 

AI is now in just about everything you do. You check the weather reports via Google Home, start your car, and the Waze app predicts the fastest route to the office, and you shop on Amazon relying on product recommendations based on your past purchases. At the end of the day, Netflix suggests what you should be watching next.

AI is becoming a standard in customer expectations, in place of just offering a convenience, which is why IT leaders are making it a top priority. Debates like Bamboo vs TeamCity are driving AI use cases all over the business world. In fact, prepare yourself for an era where AI will automatically recommend products to your customers based on preferences.

Fortunately, you can use AI-powered content curation technology to engage your web visitors by showing content that’s relevant to them. Also, a business that nails voice search in future SEO strategies will gain lots of organic traffic. This is thanks to increased search traffic driven by major players like Apple, Amazon, and Google.

  1. Customer-Centric Mobile Technology

The business world today can be explained by a single phrase “mobile first.” This is why you will rarely find a customer’s first interaction with a business taking place outside of the mobile or the web. In fact, more than 50% of consumers are more than ready to switch from brands that do not provide easy to use mobile experiences.

Plus, mobile phones have become productivity tools. You can run your business via a telephone. Moreover, both your employees and customers have higher expectations from their mobile experiences in regards to user experience, performance, and accessibility to real-time data.

Your customers and employees want to see the hottest leads in real time, get real-time notifications, and gain the ability to work on docs and submit approvals without opening a computer. These are not just initial questions; they are expectations! Even more reason why your business should offer fully functional apps that are focused on the user and delivering a truly engaging experience.

Start Now

It’s up to businesses and IT to offer end users powerful cloud computing, AI, and customer-centered technology. To deliver, you need to prioritize your resources and offload some of the burden by shifting to a low-code, cloud-based platform. This will make your work easier while serving your employees and customers with a more predictive and personalized experience that meets heightened expectations.

3 Ways to Sell More Products Through Your Website

Every business hoping to seriously compete in the modern world needs a website. For some businesses, the website is merely a hub, a way that customers can find out vital information and get in contact should they need to. For other businesses, their website is a vital component of the way that they operate. In many cases, their website is generating most or all of their revenue.

In order to effectively sell products through your website, you need to be able to do more than just generate traffic. You will need to also entice visitors to your online shop and then convince them to part with their money. Selling products effectively through your own website is also not a problem that can easily be solved by spending more money on marketing.

Instead, selling products on your website requires a more considered and multi-faceted approach. In this article, we look at some of the most effective techniques for boosting sales from your website.

Product Reviews

Whenever a potential customer sees a product for sale on a website, one of the first things they will look for is customer reviews. These will give them an indication of what other users and customers think of a product, and research suggests that reviews from other customers are often trusted more than reviews from specialist industry publications. In order to generate as many customer reviews as you can, you should make the process as simple and quick as possible. You should also offer customers an incentive for leaving a review, if you offer any kind of loyalty or rewards scheme, then consider offering some bonus points or discounts.

Streamline Your Website Layout

A well laid out and easy to use website will find it much easier to generate traffic and to convert those visitors into customers. If your website is difficult to navigate and sluggish to respond, then anyone who visits will soon become frustrated and leave again. Not every visitor to your website will have the same idea of what constitutes a streamlined website, so it is a good idea to allow users to customize the layout to some degree.

A good example of a customizable layout would be this page from Woodbury Outfitters which sells, among other things, browning hunting rifles. This page allows the user to arrange items as either a grid or a list; it also makes it easy to see the kind of rating they have been given from other customers.

Don’t Underestimate SEO

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a crucial weapon for any modern website that wants to be noticed. Any fully rounded marketing strategy has to include some kind of SEO component. Put simply, it is a website’s SEO score that determines how prominently it is listed in results for relevant search terms.

A website is an excellent platform for selling your products, but to do so effectively isn’t as easy or straightforward as many people think. You need to consider exactly how you can make your website as simple and inviting as possible for customers to use. If you build your website carefully and pay attention to your user base, then you can quickly make a lot of money from your business website.

Use Content Marketing to Build Your Brand

 

Every business wants more customers, correct? However, not all businesses have the financial resources to pay for advertising or other costly marketing strategies to get people to their websites.

What are the options if you have budgetary constraints? You can use content creation and marketing to help build your business.

Develop and use a content brand strategy to help spread the word about your business offerings. Building brand awareness takes time, but it will play a critical role in your business success.

Sometimes, you can actually re-purpose content that has already produced results. Why not use the keywords and already proven successful content and focus your energies on promoting that content more aggressively?

Develop a Strategy

You have to develop a plan, follow it, and make modifications where necessary while you work. If you don’t know where you are going, you won’t get there.

Start with determining your “why”. Why are you creating content? Who are you trying to help and how can you help them better than others? Define your goals and make sure your content aligns with those goals.

Be Authentic

Trying to pretend you are someone you not usually doesn’t work out well. People are not stupid, they will eventually figure it out. It is important to develop trust with your readers and potential customers.

If you are not genuine and are being fake, you will lose business.

Build Your Reputation

Reputation is everything. Trust is built with those who have good reputations. Prove your value to potential customers by writing helpful, relevant, and authentic content.

Tell Your Story

People don’t like to be bombarded with sales advertisements or pushy sales content. It is a turn-off to most, so you will want to avoid being too promotional in your content marketing.

Instead, be sure your content is used as a means of communicating with your potential customers without selling.

Writing helpful and valuable content will help you build awareness of your brand by attracting and nurturing. You will be able to acquire new customers and retain current ones.

Your brand is actually your business story so make sure you tell it in interesting, relevant, unique, and useful ways. Share your expertise with your target market to position yourself as an industry expert.  

Know Your Target Market

If you don’t know who your target market is, how can you write content for them? Remember, you are not writing content for yourself, you are writing it to your potential customers.

You need to make sure your content is interesting, helpful, and relevant to those will are likely to make a purchase from your company. If you sell musical equipment, it would not be helpful to write a post about knitting. Stay on topic and be sure you are speaking to your desired audience.

Add Value

You want to differentiate yourself from your competition by providing value to your potential customers in creative ways. How about using humor to get your message across? It can be a solution to a problem or anything else that fits into your business model and provides help for your target.

Valuable, helpful, creative, and memorable content will increase the likelihood that people will make a purchase from your company.

Track Your Results

Keep track of your progress. See which content yields the best results, whether those results are views, shares, opt-ins, or sales.

If you don’t pay attention to what is working and what is not working, you will waste valuable time and not get the best results of your content marketing.

Promote Your Content

You can have the best content on the Internet but if no one sees it, what difference does it make? Social media is a powerful platform to share your content.

Use Twitter to share important tips. Post a summary of your post with a link to it on LinkedIn, Google+, and Facebook.

The more unique, interesting, valuable, and humorous posts are generally more popular on social media and are more likely to be shared.

There is nothing wrong with asking others to share your content. If you know influencers in your niche, having them share your content with their social media audience can exponentially increase your views.

The bottom line is you should pay attention to the quality of your content marketing to build your brand, connect with your customers, build trust, and eventually make more sales.

 

What to Expect from SEO in 2018?

The landscape for social media, the use of images and most of all search engine optimisation (SEO) is likely to continue changing and morphing as new developments occur in real-time. For businesses that need to understand what they should be focusing on with their online marketing efforts and to protect their digital assets in 2018, it’s worth looking at what’s working with SEO today and why it’s a good idea to still use it.

Below are our thoughts about the future of SEO and how things may change in 2018.

Prospecting in the Digital Age

Using SEO outreach to contact a collection of people who may be interested in a guest post or partnering up with a new venture is a strategy that’s been working for several years and continues to do well. Finding the correct email address for every contact on your list isn’t easy, so we’d suggest using a service like theemailfinder.co to make that part of it a bit simpler and less time-consuming.

With a more personalised contact, you’re likely to get a significantly higher response rate. Making contact first and building up an initial relationship on Facebook or on their website through blog commenting often gets you noticed.

Focusing More on Visual Assets

Large blocks of unbroken text with few images, infographics, videos or slideshows fails to capture the reader’s attention. People using the web don’t so much read as they do scan down the page for interesting snippets to read. Because of this, many people don’t read whole articles, but select sections of interest and only consume those parts. By adding better-quality photographs – that are relevant to the topic – visitors stay engaged for longer.

Google also likes seeing rich media mixed in with textual content and tends to favour it in search results too. The likes of Instagram and Pinterest should have also made it clear by now that searchers have a voracious appetite for images because they’re instantly consumable.

Structured Content

Google likes to use structured content information to fill out their search engine results pages (SERPs). When using structured mark-up to clarify important aspects of a product, such as its customer rating, price and other useful information, the search engine can selectively use these in the search results when it determines that it adds value.

Companies have got nothing to lose by taking the time to add proper schematic mark-up to every page and post because they may get featured in a rich snippet or as part of a Knowledge Graph that Google uses to present information clearer.

Voice Searching

With smartphones now able to be always connected to the internet while on the go, consumers are using digital assistants to ask questions vocally. Whether it’s Google or Apple or Microsoft or another company receiving the query, millions of questions are being asked every day hoping for an intelligible answer to be received.

Companies would do well to consider the implication of this when structuring their content and titling their pages. For local searches, people are often appending “near me” to the end of searches to pull results for a location that’s based on their current GPS coordinates or their home base. Working these types of search terms into a Q&A page can capture these fast-moving souls who need answers quickly.

Loading Time Matters More Than It Used To

With faster internet access being more widely available, it may surprise you to learn that web page loading time matters more than ever. You can call it a knock-on effect that home users enjoy fast broadband and don’t suffer slow web sites gladly; they usually hit the back button within a couple of seconds if a page is stalling out. Many people don’t attempt to reload a page to get around a stuck web server process either; they just bail.

Google also uses loading time as factor in ranking a site, with especially slow-loading sites suffering a drop in their rankings if the problem isn’t fixed. Consider getting the web hosting upgraded to a virtual private server, cloud server or a dedicated server with a mid-tier host like Siteground or a top-tier host like WPEngine to resolve bottlenecks. Alternatively, if your budget doesn’t stretch that far, optimise the site to load faster even on slower hosting and connections.

Don’t Forget Mobile

For many sites, they find that up to 50 percent of their visitors use a mobile device like a tablet or a smartphone. The viewing and interactive experience varies tremendously depending on the device used. Certainly, sites must be responsive, which means they adjust the design based on the screen size of the device accessing their site. However, site designers must do more to make sites accessible to people using smaller screens.

One fundamental difference for sites is that the right-hand sidebar is often shoved down to the bottom of the page on smaller screen devices, making the page effectively a single-column one. Depending on how the website was originally designed, navigational elements, search boxes and other important features disappear for most mobile users who don’t scroll down far enough to spot them at the bottom of the page. For this reason, companies need to reconsider their original designs.

Google and Facebook with Mobile-optimisation Strategies

Both Google and Facebook are leading the way with initiatives that suggest how to create separate or adjusted websites that load up to 90 percent faster. Google’s AMP initiative is less than two years old but is continuing to gain steam; their own search results show far less on a smartphone than they do on a tablet or desktop.

It’s not possible to predict everything that will happen with SEO in 2018. The best we can do is carry over strategies that have been working in the closing months of 2017 and adapt quickly to changes as they happen. However, avoiding cutting-edge ideas that look or sound sketchy is a sensible policy because those kinds of ideas never stick and can result in a penalty action from Google. It’s always best to play it safe with your digital assets.