Quality Web Design: Why Your Business Needs It

A quality website is essential for any business with an online presence. You want to make sure that the major search engines know who you are, and what your site is about. You also want to ensure that your users are able to migrate your site with ease and comfort. All of this ties into professional quality web design, which will help your site be attractive to both Google and the user.

Quality Web Design – Making a Good First Impression

When a user stumbles upon your site, it is essential that you make a good first impression. You want to make sure that your visitor stays on your site as long as possible, and hopefully convert at some point into a paying customer. Webpages that look messy, cluttered, overly flashy, disorganized and confused will immediately turn a visitor off, resulting in them quickly hitting the back button. A site that looks clean, crisp, organized and not overly stuffed will more likely keep the visitor hanging around for a much longer period of time.

Avoid the temptation to use flashy graphics and images, and too many contrasting colors. Doing so will distract the visitor from the content they came to your site for. In addition, make sure your site is simple to navigate – any confusion on this end will be reason enough for a visitor to leave your site as quickly as they came.

You want your website to be a reflection of how professional and helpful your business is. A poorly designed website can create the wrong impression of what your business is really all about. A quality web design will better promote the image of your business, and will improve your chances of generating a loyal customer base.

Crucial Components to Quality Web Design

There are a few crucial components to designing a top quality website. Here is a list of four of the most important components that need to be carefully addressed when designing a website:

1) Solid Structure and Layout
2) Good Typography
3) Effective Color Scheme
4) Effective Design Elements

Solid Structure and Layout

A good solid layout is essential to good web design. The layout is essentially the foundation of the web design. Without a solid layout, all your content and navigational elements with be dishevelled and unorganized. It is essential that a sense of hierarchy is established with your site’s content and navigational elements in order to provide prominence to the most important elements.

Starting off with a grid or a wireframe will provide you with some bare bones upon which you will add your elements. This wireframe will give you an idea of how each element will appear on the webpages. Keeping things simple is the key to a clean and pleasant looking webpage.

Whitespace is also very important on a webpage. This is essentially the space between each of the elements present on your webpage. Having just enough whitespace prevents the page from looking over-stuffed and crowded, which takes away from the sophistication of the webpage. Keeping proper amounts of whitespace can help to let the elements on the webpage breathe.

Good Typography

Your user’s experience on your website is largely determined by how you use typography throughout your site. It is crucial that the content within a webpage is easy to read, while keeping the necessary hierarchy among the text and content. Avoid using too many types of font within your webpages and throughout your website. Keeping things consistent will make the user experience much more pleasant.

For example, try to stick with only one or two fonts, and keep things a little interesting by playing around with the font. For example, use a weighted font for headers, a different color for links, and so forth. You really only need one or two types of font on your site, using only variations of that font for various content, such as different weights, size, color and so on.

Effective Color Scheme

Decide on a color scheme that goes with what your potential audience will be expecting or wanting to see. Whatever color scheme you choose, make sure it is simple and consistent throughout your entire website. Seeing a different color scheme from one webpage to the next can be quite confusing and unattractive from a user’s standpoint.

Don’t go over-board with the use of color. Ideally, your background should be neutral in hue, with one main bold color that you use to accent and highlight certain aspects of your webpage. You may even choose to use two or three different shades of that bold color to keep things varied somewhat without overwhelming the webpage with an over-abundance of different colors.

Effective Design Elements

Set the mood of your web design with appropriate use of design elements like texture, patterns, icons, and so forth. It’s important to keep these design elements consistent with the previously mentioned items, as well as what the goal of the website is. Keep things clean, simple and consistent, and your web design will be high in quality and pleasing to the user.

Conclusion

Good quality web design is essential for a pleasant user experience, and for higher conversion rates when your visitor lands on your webpage. Keeping the design simple, clean and easy to navigate will increase your chances of visitors lingering around for a longer amount of time, and possibly converting into a paying customer. Sticking to a few essential element designs will help make your web design top quality and highly effective.

The Importance of Social Media Marketing For Your Business

Internet marketing encompasses a variety of methods of getting your business known throughout the market. As the internet continues to grow, and users of the internet continue to climb, it’s is essential to employ a variety of techniques for internet marketing. One of the most innovative and fastest growing methods of internet marketing is social media marketing, which takes advantage of wildly popular social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to reach the masses.

What is Social Media Marketing?

Social media marketing is one of the latest methods that companies worldwide have employed to market their business. This type of internet marketing uses social media and networking sites as a tool to effectively market and advertise a product or service. By sharing information and connecting with potential consumers through a social media base, businesses can boost their brand exposure and reach more consumers.

One crucial factor involved with social media marketing involves Social Media Optimization, or SMO. The goal for SMO is to bring in as many new and unique visitors and traffic to your website as possible, much like the goal of SEO, or Search Engine Optimization. SMO can be done effectively using two methods:

1) Adding social media feeds and links to your website, such as RSS feeds;
2) Regularly updating posts, statuses or tweets on social media sites.

Businesses are given a unique opportunity to connect directly with current and potential customers to get a sense of what they need, and what they are looking for. Social media interaction between a company and a consumer allows the business to present itself in a personable way, giving the consumer the satisfaction of knowing they are being heard.

Some of the most popular and effective social media websites include:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • MySpace
  • YouTube

The popularity of these sites made social media marketing very common among businesses, who are capitalizing on the attention they can get from sites that already have a huge following. Taking advantage of these platforms to connect with consumers provides businesses with a unique and effective way to personally reach out to their customers, and gain added customers in the future.

Why Social Media Marketing is Important For Your Business

Out of all internet marketing strategies, social media marketing is quickly becoming the most popular method, and for good reason. Here are just some of the benefits you can expect social media marketing to do for your business:

Increase Brand Awareness – This is one of the main benefits of partaking in a social media marketing campaign. Building trust among your current and future customers is one of the best ways to increase business and profits. Consumers are much more likely to buy from someone who they have come to trust and “know” in some sense. Using the social media channel to communicate with your customers will allow you to listen to their concerns, and follow up on these concerns. Doing so will show your customers that you care about their needs, and improve your credibility. This will ultimately result in positive and increased brand awareness which is crucial to a business’ success.

Engage Your Customers – Engaging with your consumers is made easy and flexible with the use of social media. Engaging with the customer is also an incredibly important benefit from social media marketing. Not only will this build loyalty among your current customer base, but it will also help to build on that list with new customers.

Increase Your Search Engine Ranking – Businesses who take part in internet marketing obviously want to drive massive amounts of traffic to their websites in order to increase sales and revenue. Social media sites are fantastic at driving traffic to out-linking websites. By finding relevant communities within the social media channels, you can easily use these to your advantage to help drive targeted traffic to your business’ website.

Monitor and Analyze the Success of Your Marketing Campaign – Monitoring and analyzing the success of your internet marketing campaign is done partly by looking at your customer’s feedback. Any complaints or praises need to be taken into account in order to either continue with what’s working, and tweaking what’s not working as well. Listening to your customer’s feedback can help you improve your business’ products or services. Social media sites offer you insight into what your customers have to say.

Cost Effective Marketing – Social media marketing is one of the cheapest means of marketing your business. Dollar for dollar, it is tough to match the effectiveness of social media marketing in relation to the amount it costs to execute such a marketing campaign.

Conclusion

There is nothing like social media marketing when it comes to communicating personally with your customers. Developing this relationship among present and future customers is one of the most effective means of building profits and revenue, and gaining insight into what your consumers want. Social media marketing is a strategy that most businesses should employ.

Why Video Marketing is so Powerful For Your Business

The internet is constantly evolving, calling for new and innovative methods of marketing and advertising. There are always new ways of reaching new audiences. Video marketing is one of the many ways to market your business or website and increase your online presence. It is a very powerful way to market your business and gain massive amounts of traffic to your website and improve your page rank with major search engines like Google. Video marketing has established itself as an effective means of advertising products and services to your target audience.

What is Video Marketing?

After a good quality video has been made to market and promote a particular product or service, it then needs to be effectively distributed over the internet in order for users to be able to find the video and view it. Video marketing is the practice of distributing this video and making it viral in order for as many people as possible to find it and see what it has to promote.

Videos can be marketed on your own website so that your regular following can view it, creating a high level of engagement between you and your regular visitors to your site. In order to gain additional visitors and drive massive amounts of traffic to your website, video marketing by placing your video on popular social media websites such as YouTube and DailyMotion can prove to be highly advantageous. Putting your video on these types of sites that already have a huge number of visitors can get your video looked at by a large number of fresh eyes.

The video that you put out on a variety of social media sites needs to be targeted to a particular audience. The product or service that you are promoting on the video needs to be presented in a way that is engaging and interesting to your user so that they will be prompted to visit your site. This can help not only increase targeted visitors to your site, but also create brand awareness among your audience.

Why is Video Marketing so Useful and Effective?

There is one very important reason why video marketing is becoming an increasingly popular and effective means of advertising a product or service. This type of marketing provides a more effective way to communicate with your audience. Often users would much rather view a video about a certain topic instead of read about it in an article. This makes it much easier for the viewer to find out more about your product or service. This is especially useful for certain products or services that require quite a bit of detailed explanation, that can be easier to explain in a demonstration. Within a few short minutes, you can effectively and completely communicate your product or service, and help the viewer retain this information for longer periods of time.

Why Should You Engage in Video Marketing?

If done properly, video marketing can have many benefits to businesses who use this platform. The idea is to have a quality video seen by as many viewers as possible in order to reap many benefits. There are several reasons why you should consider using video marketing as part of your marketing campaign for your business:

  • Promote your brand and increase your brand’s awareness
  • Create inbound links
  • Engage with social media sites
  • Effectively communicate with your audience
  • Improve your online presence
  • Increase visitors and traffic to your site
  • Generate more leads
  • Understand what your customers want
  • Improve SEO rankings
  • Develop a customer base
  • Build a niche channel
  • Encourage customer feedback
  • Produce socially relevant advertising content
  • Increase conversions and sales

One of the major advantages to video marketing is that it is highly cost effective. You can essentially produce more and better results through the production and distribution of a video about your product and service for a fraction of the cost of other means of marketing and advertising.

Video Marketing – A Staple in Advertising

These days, consumers have become so accustomed to the presence of videos as a way of advertising a particular product or service that it has almost become expected for a website or business to have some sort of video presenting their material and promotions. Businesses that fail to have a video to market their product may actually be cutting out a large portion of their audience and potential customers. It is essential to stick with the flow of the competition, and stay relevant with video marketing strategies.

Conclusion

Video marketing can be a cost-effective means of communicating with your audience. It is a great way to effectively describe your product or service to your viewers, making them more prone to retain that information, and possibly become a paying customer. Engaging in all the new and innovative marketing techniques, such as video marketing, is essential in staying relevant and keeping your business ever-present on the web.

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Understanding the Essential Components of an Effective Landing Page

What is a Landing Page?

A landing page is a webpage that a visitor to your site lands on after clicking on a link or advertisement. Generally these landing pages are targeted to a specific market or traffic stream, making the potential for a user to click on the link you have provided much more likely.

A reference landing page is one that gives the visitor useful information that he or she is looking for. This can be in the forms of images, text, links, or other types of elements that meet the publisher’s objectives. A transactional landing page is one where you are able to gather a visitor’s information through some type of lead form. Considering the fact that the traffic has been targeted to a specific group of consumers, the likelihood of the visitor providing this information from the transactional landing page is much higher than if the traffic was completely random. This gives the publisher the opportunity to follow up with these visitors, and turn them into paying customers, therefore improving your marketing return on investment.

Why Landing Pages are So Important

When you are advertising throughout the internet, one of the most important factors is how relevant your business is. The more relevant your keywords are that you are targeting to a particular audience, the more likely your advertisements and links will be clicked on by internet users who are essentially looking for your products or services via the web.

Your landing page is critical, in that it is the first thing a user will see when they visit your site. This is the entry point for your user into your website, which provides you with a huge opportunity to convince the visitor to engage in the call-to-action that you want them to participate in. If the landing page is of poor quality, you will lose potential customers.

After spending time, effort and capital on advertisements, only to lead your visitors to an irrelevant landing page is completely futile. The same amount of effort needs to be spent on perfecting your landing page in order to drastically improve your market ROI. Quality landing pages are one of the crucial parts of your overall marketing strategy. Since the main goal of a landing page is to convert visitors into customers, it needs to be designed to do just that.

Essential Components to an Effective Landing Page

What exactly makes a good landing page? You want it to be able to do what it is meant to do – that is, get your visitor to perform the call-to-action that will turn them into potential customers. After all the effort you have spent on SEO, SEM, and other forms of increasing traffic and advertising, the landing page is the last step to your advertising efforts, and the first impression and experience of your visitor to your site.

In addition to increasing conversions, a good quality landing page will improve your page’s Quality Score, which is one of the Google variables that affects your AdWords ad in terms of where it will show up after a user types in a targeted keyword and how much you will pay per click. You want your ad to appear as high on Google’s page as possible, without having paying too much per click. The better your Quality Score (according to Google), the better position your ad will be in and the less you will pay each time a user clicks on your ad.

Here are some of the crucial elements to make your landing page a success:

Easy Navigation

After your visitor has arrived on your landing page, navigation needs to be effortless. Whatever the call-to-action is that you want them to perform, it should be able to be executed with minimal effort. The visitor has arrived on your landing page for a reason – they should not have to work hard looking for whatever it is that they are looking for. You don’t want your visitor to get frustrated if they struggle to find what they are looking for. Put the focus on the call-to-action so that it is clear and concise, and easy for your visitor to follow.

Originality

Original content is always a plus. You want to be able to set yourself apart from your competition – having unique and original content on your landing page is one way to do that. By offering something unique to your visitor, you will be able to effectively increase conversion rates in your favor. In addition to pleasing your visitor, you also want to please the Google spiders who enjoy crawling and ranking unique pages, as opposed to the same regurgitated information that might be found across a variety of landing pages.

Transparency

Building trust with your visitors is essential to building a business relationship with them. People like to buy from people they trust. By being transparent about exactly what your business is about and the purpose of your website, this will build feelings of trust, safety and security among your visitors, therefore increasing the chances of them becoming paying customers.

Provide Value

Providing something of value to your visitors will increase the chances of them giving up their contact information in exchange for that particular product or service. Your offer should be compelling enough for your visitor to want it, and your landing page should be able to reflect that value.

Keep it Short and Sweet

You don’t want to overwhelm your visitor once they arrive on your landing page. Provide the necessary information in as clear and concise a format as possible. In addition, make the information form as easy and quick as possible to fill out. Anything that appears lengthy and cumbersome may just be avoided altogether.

Conclusion

When creating a landing page, or tweaking your current landing page, try to incorporate the above elements into it in order to maximize your visitor’s experience and increase the chances of them completing your call-to-action. Dramatically improve your market ROI with a top quality landing page on your website.

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E-Commerce Solutions: Increasing Your Business’ Sales

What is E-Commerce?

E-commerce – or “electronic commerce” – involves a commercial transaction that takes place on the internet where the necessary information required to complete the transaction is transferred via the web. Many types of businesses are involved in e-commerce, including retail, auctions, and services exchanges. E-commerce is an important aspect for a business to get involved in to boost revenue.

The Increasing Popularity of E-Commerce

The exchanging of goods and services over the internet is becoming wildly popular and used a great deal with consumers. In fact, there are many consumers who depend on the internet to shop. E-commerce gives consumers the opportunity to shop online without any distance or time barriers, allows then to make transactions without having to leave their computer. Whether the goods or services that they purchase are from down the street or half-way across the world is irrelevant, as the internet has brought the product or service right to them. More and more companies are opening operations in e-commerce in order to capitalize on its popularity and gain an additional method of making a profit.

Electronic transactions also takes place between businesses, in addition to transactions between businesses and consumers. Business to business – or B2B – e-commerce is advantageous for these companies considering the fact that it is often faster, more convenient and less expensive than conventional methods of bartering and trading.

Why E-Commerce is an Important Aspect to Your Business

E-commerce is here to stay. With consumers increasingly relying on the internet to find and buy products or services, e-commerce is definitely a potential way to drastically increase sales. Setting up an e-commerce sector to your business can prove to be hugely beneficial, especially for those in the retail sector.

The following are some of the benefits of e-commerce on both a business’ and consumer’s perspective:

  • Eliminate barriers of time and distance for a consumer to complete a transaction;
  • Lower direct cost-of-sale over the internet in comparison to a conventional cost-of-sale with paper-based human interaction;
  • Increased feasibility of selling niche products;
  • Reduced cost of doing business;
  • Decreased amount of time spent in resolving any discrepancies in orders or invoices;
  • Reduced time and manpower needed to complete processes;
  • Reduced pressure on certain resources.

The Necessity for a Solid E-Commerce Strategy

Considering the fact that more and more businesses are getting on board with e-commerce and are opening e-commerce operations within their companies, it’s important to have a logical business strategy when it comes to e-commerce. One of the most important things to know when it comes to launching a successful e-commerce site is who your customers are, how to reach them and why they are looking to buy. Those businesses who are successfully operating an e-commerce site know the answers to these questions, as well as their own value propositions.

A business model is crucial when it comes to any sort of business strategy, whether it’s for a large corporation or a small business. This model is essentially the blueprint to your business’ success. Developing a business model and a strategy can be a bit complex and time-consuming, but it is essential to the success of any venture you undertake with your business, including e-commerce.

A few years ago, setting up an e-commerce site may have been a lot easier than it is today. Setting up an e-commerce site nowadays can be complex, considering the fact that there are countless other e-commerce sites that are well laid out and make the transaction easy and convenient for the shopper. There are all sorts of products available, and there is always a substitute for a particular product. The competition in your particular market can be quite high. This is why you need to have a well thought-out strategic plan for your e-commerce sector of your business.

Essential Components to a Successful E-Commerce Site

There are services available to any business who wishes to venture into the world of e-commerce. These professionals will provide you with the tools necessary to integrate conventional business practices with your internet business. Here are some of the tools necessary to have a successful online business:

  • Esthetically pleasing layout of products;
  • Convenient and easily accessible shopping cart;
  • Management of consumer market data;
  • Tracking of logistics, such as payments, customer support, shipping, order tracking and inventory management;
  • An easily updated system;
  • Data and reports on consumer behavior.

E-commerce solutions can help you launch an e-commerce site properly, based on an effectively executed strategic plan and business model. Tapping into internet sales and transactions can have a significant impact on your business’ revenue if implemented properly.

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