Increase your sales online
I am the type that always needed to learn the hard way and of course with my business I did the same. I started out on Facebook, looking for businesses that needed branding and i would create logo designs to grab their attention and afterwards try to sell it to make a bit of profit for my time. I would spend hours at this computer creating about 12 logos a day to only sell about two. Eventually after doing this for some time my portfolio started to grow and clients that had purchased logos from me were giving my company referrals to new clients. Which in return expanded my business. Eventually I had made enough money that I started to expand my business into doing much more then just logo design. I started doing bigger graphics such as flyers, brochures, business cards, and banners. Then website design came along and all the perks to go with it such as hosting, emails and Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
That is enough about my story though. The point I am trying to get across is that hard work does pay off. Along with this story I want to share some tips I have learned along my journey of the digital world and how it works.
SEO and marketing isn’t as complicated as some make it to be. In fact its quite easy if you just look at the bigger picture of things. In my story I mentioned that I spent lots of hours doing things on Facebook, and the internet in general. I am all self taught so I had to do alot of research on my own and learning about the ins and outs of marketing and how to successfully brand a company. In doing all this, I was posting to comments on websites and social media. Each time I did this I would leave a link to my website on my comments or something associated to my business. Little did I know I was doing what you call back linking, Back Linking is my first tip, so let me explain what it is and how to do it.
- Back Linking
Backing linking is a term in SEO services that refers to a hyperlink that links from a Web page, back to your own Web page. You can achieve back links by leaving them on comments and also by getting placed on a persons website. So for example if a friend of yours has a website, lets say they are a blogger and your business is a spa. Your friend aka blogger decides to write about some fabulous spa outings, and mention your spa in their blog. When they mention your business they link it to your spa website. This is considered a back link or Inbound Link (IBL). As a business it is very important to get as many of these back links as possible. Reason for it is because the more times you are mentioned on the internet the more probability you have of getting your website pulled up on the front pages of search engines. So a good habit to make is when your doing any form of research, or even if its just a comment you make on a website leave a link to your website always. It’s just like high-school all over again trying to win the popularity contest.
2. Your presence online matters.
This is the easiest one to do yet the most neglected SEO tactic that can really help your business. It’s simple, just be online and address your presence being there. As I stated earlier back linking is important, but in order to back link you need to be online, if you are constantly posting on your social media platforms, leaving back links, blogging on your website. Your business will get better rankings simply because there is more information about you then there is of your inactive competition. Instead of focusing on back links here though. I want to take a moment to mention social media and blogging. Social media is important to your SEO and the more you make yourself present with it and the more social media platforms you have the better your SEO will be. Pixelnerd recommends a few social media platforms to all our clients due to there popularity and SEO factoring. Those platforms being twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Google+. We aim at Google+ the most, although research says LinkedIn has a huge percentage in social marketing. Here is why. Google is the largest search engine available to this date used by millions everyday and billions of search terms going through it on a daily bases. Now lets step back a second and ask yourself. Who’s product are you going to promote first for your company? The answer is your going to promote your products first above anything else. Well Google does the same, Google+, Youtube, and Google maps are all Googles products and they are more then likely to be pulled up in the search engine above other social platforms. Point here is to post lots on your social media platforms. It can be as simple as copy and pasting someones website and talking about how good of a read it is (This is a back link and also as a courtesy the person being back linked may post your website for you in return). Now that I covered social media I want to talk a bit about blogging. Blogging really helps your SEO, because for one it increases the amount of “seekable” information on your website. If you blog about things that generally involves the type of work you do this will help search engines find more on the terms potential clients/customers are looking for. Therefore, the search engine will pull you up. Also this is a direct link to your website. When using social media the easiest way for a customer to find your website is to first go through the social platform. If they click on your blog title, it is automatically taking them to your website. In return for that you have the potential to sell a product or service. This is the main reason for blogging, but another great reason for blogging, is its a great way to talk about and share the things you like most.
3. Now for the “where do i spend money advertising part”
All the tips I have stated above are all free services that you can do yourself to help increase your marketing efforts and drive traffic to your website. The real question here is can you do it all free. The answer is yes but its definitely time consuming and takes much more time to do. Lets talk a bit about paid advertising online and where to do it and how to approach it. There are alot of great places to advertise where you can be noticed. Social media platforms such as twitter and and Facebook offer ads, and the great thing about this is you can localize. What is Localization you ask? The simple answer, is when you advertise a product you want to target the most potential customer base as possible and in doing so you want to slim down your competition list so that it increases your chances of being picked. The internet has the awesome power of reaching out to the world, but really do you want to compete against the whole world? Probably not, especially if your a company just starting out. So we localize your business. That way only people in your city or surrounding areas see it. This takes 1000 competitors around the world and slims it down to 100, and now you are only 101 and have a much higher chance of being chosen. Have you ever noticed those little yellow AD tags beside companies on the top of a google page when you search something? Those are Google ads and we pay Google in a biding system and PPC (Pay Per Click) to post those ads. A great ad needs to be very detailed in a small amount of words. Alot of mistakes made are “I want to get people to my website” and that’s all the goal is. That is a good way to bring traffic to a website. But is it really the best way to bring potential clients/customers to your website? The answer is… “I want to get the right people to my website”. When an ad is created you want to pay as little as possible and have a high return. To achieve this you want to focus all your energy in targeting as many potential customers as you can, simply by being extremely direct with your details. For example Pixelnerd is a website design company. I want to run an ad on google. The bids are at $19.63 per click for my keyword choices. That is not cheap, in fact that could make or break a company. So a bad example for an ad would be to say “offering cheap website designs for everyone”. That is too broad and a general statement, and yes it may receive alot of clicks to our website, but the client is expecting to see cheap websites for sale. Cheap being $100.00 to $300.00 websites. Yet we start our websites at $1000.00 so that’s not what alot of potential clients clicking on our ad would expect and then abandon our website. Leaving us with the cost for the click on the google ad and no sale generated. We officially just lost $19.63 because I simply didn’t specify on what exactly is cheap. The more approachable way for me to run an ad would be to say “we offer affordable websites starting at $1000.00”. By doing this I eliminate the customers that don’t want a 1k website and will only bring in the clients that expect to be paying that much for the service. So case and point make sure when you run ads that you target the exact customers you are trying to receive purchases from, and also localize to dull down your competition.
4. Where Graphic Design comes into play
Graphic design is a huge part of your marketing efforts. If your branding is in rough shape and not updated from time to time, your sales from online may take a hit. Why you ask? Simple put yourself in a customers shoes are you going to click on the company that has 1990’s branding or are you going to click on the the company that has beautiful modern , professional designs? Of course you are going to click on the more professional looking company, there is no doubt about it. This is where the saying first impressions go a long ways fits into place, and it really does. Keep on top of your branding and stick with one design company. If they are generating you sales there is no need to change “don’t try to fix something that is not broken” as I say. I had a friend of mine and another great designer Alyssa Gavinski you can check her work out at alyssajgavinski.com. She recently did a video blog about trusting your designer. The general point was to not doubt your designer that you hire. You have chosen that designer for a reason. Probably because they are good at what they do. Let them do your designing for you, that is their job, and a good designer will always consult the client on their grand vision for your company.
All in all the main point to all of this is to make your presence online known by simply posting and interacting lots. Post lots of back Links as you do all this and have great graphic designs for your company. I could sit here day in and day out just writing about this topic but the tips I shared today are some great things to consider and act on. Not only will this naturally increase website traffic and sales, it will help you understand your own customer base better.
PixelNerd is located in Edmonton, Alberta. We have been creating engaging online experiences that draw on our experience in Graphic Design, SEO, and Website Design.