Web Marketing

Getting your business ready for the January sales

Posted on November 22, 2019 at 9:34 am

With Christmas well on the way you should already be thinking about January and if and how you are going to do January sales. More and more businesses are getting on board with January sales and most companies have some sort of deal on during this time.

If you are in the ecommerce business then you will probably have already completed most of your Christmas sales, but soon after the big day Boxing Day / January sales start and you need to be quick to have a chance at competing against the other players in the market.

When you list items for sale on your website, they will often get indexed by the search engines such as Google within a few weeks, but you may find that this is too late to start to attract any customers and you may miss out on a huge opportunity. It is worth spending some time and get your products listed on Google Shopping, then when the prices change you can submit the list to them for them to quickly update.

Another way to get your pages picked up is to do paid for pay per click advertising to show that you have a sale on and perhaps to promote some of your top selling products.

Posted in Web Marketing

Careful attention is needed when it comes to the images on your website

Posted on October 19, 2019 at 9:12 am

We have all heard the saying that a picture paints a thousand words and it is fact that having images on your website can help sell your products or service, but there are some rules you need to follow when it comes to adding images to your site to ensure they have a positive not negative effect.

Images are usually used to showcase a product, to show the advantages of using a product or service, to show staff members to show what it is your business does or simply to break up the text on a page to make it look less wordy.

People like to be able to visualise things rather than just reading about them, but you shouldn’t just use any old image on your website, you need to think carefully about it.

Using bad quality images can represent your company in the wrong way making it look unprofessional and dated. It is better not to use any image rather than upload one of poor quality.

The best way to get decent high-quality images is to hire a photographer. This will allow you to get quality images in the correct size and format you need for online and offline use (if needed).

Posted in Web Design

Changing your website part way through programming

Posted on September 6, 2019 at 9:20 am

If you are a business owner then you may decide that you need a website or you may already have one but want to make some big changes to it. Most web design companies will start off by taking a brief from you. From this they can usually provide a cost for the design and build of the site. If this cost is agreed, usually the next stage is to crate visuals. These are usually flat graphics that can either be printed or displayed on a computer which will show the layout of the site. You may be able to chose from a selection of designs or adapt one to ensure it fits with what you want. Only once this visual has been agreed should programming commence.

Once programming has begun, it is not a good idea to keep making changes. Small changes such as text changes or colours may be ok, but if you want to start changing the structure of the site then you may incur additional costs. This is because much of the programming work that has already been completed may have to be scrapped or drastically changed which will take time. Programmers charge out their time so the longer it takes, the more it will cost. If you are not happy with something in your design point it out prior to programming and if you do need to change it, be prepared to pay.

Posted in Development

Designing a mobile-friendly website

Posted on August 23, 2019 at 10:39 am

Having a website is a high priority for many businesses now and it not just for the big players. More and more companies are realising that to compete in the world of online retail (which is growing year upon year) they need to have a good solid presence online.

Having a mobile friendly website is not just vital to ensure your viewers can easily navigate round you site but can also help boost rankings. Just over three years ago now, Google announced that they were rolling out an update to their algorithm. This update was going to check if a website was mobile friendly or not. This would be used as part of the method of ranking websites on the search engine and choosing which site appears above another. With more and more people using mobile devices to browse websites and make purchases, it makes sense that companies that offer a good user experience on these platforms rank well on the search engines such as Google.

Google offer a web site checker which will determine if your website is mobile friendly and if not, will tell you what you need to do to correct it.

Posted in Web Design

Who owns your website design?

Posted on July 19, 2019 at 1:11 pm

You may automatically assume that you own the rights to your website design and therefore if someone else was to copy it or part of it, it would be your right to claim against them.

The law states that the person that did the design owns the copyright, so this would mean it is the designer, but if you are a client paying for a bespoke design, then morally the design copyright should belong to the client. Most designers will agree that once all money has been paid to them, you own the right to the design of your site. Some elements cannot be protected by copyright laws but the content and images (if taken by the client) will be. If you buy images from places such as Istock then you are buying the license to use them but not the copyright, meaning other companies can purchase them and use them on their site too.

. It is vital to confirm where you stand with the copyright of a project such as a website or logo upfront and ideally in writing as there have been a few cases of designers suing clients for use of their graphics without consent.

If the design is a template then this cannot be copyrighted as it is not an original bespoke design.   

Posted in Web Design

Building a one page website

Posted on June 20, 2019 at 12:30 pm

If you haven’t got a website for your business then you may wonder how large it needs to be and exactly what you need to have on it. If you are selling products directly through a site you will often need more pages than a brochure type website. If you are a small business and simply want a website address to put on your business cards then a one page site may be enough. It will be very hard to get your website ranked on Google and other search engines but for some businesses this is not important.

You need to carefully consider what content you are going to have on your site as you will have limited space in which to explain to your audience exactly what it is you do and what products or services you offer.

You should have an easy way for your viewers to contact you, ideally though a contact form, phone number and possibly a social media page too.

Remember to keep all the information on your site up to date especially contact details so if someone want to get in touch they can do so easily.

Posted in Web Design

Is your mobile website up to scratch?

Posted on May 19, 2019 at 10:44 am

A mobile version of your website is definitely something you need to consider carefully. You need to ensure that your site displays and works correctly on all mobile devices and that doesn’t limit the functionality too much.

People only ever used to use a PC or laptop to view websites but with many of us having smartphones that can access the internet, the need for a mobile-friendly website has never been greater.

You can have just one version of your site that automatically converts to a mobile version when viewed on devices with a smaller screen. This is a mobile-friendly website. If you want to go an extra step you may consider having an App for your customers to download which can be more streamlined to offer a better browsing and buying experience on mobile devices.

If you have video on your site then you should consider if they will enlarge when played or whether they are clicked to link through to Youtube for example.

It is important to keep an eye on your website traffic through to your mobile site. If you notice that there are certain pages which have a high bounce rate or that are not compelling people to take the action that you want them to, it may be because your mobile website is not working as it should.

Posted in Development

Restricting your budget too much when it comes to building a website

Posted on April 14, 2019 at 11:20 am

It is vital that when having a website built you keep in mind what the main aim of the site is. It may be that you want to sell products or services online through an ecommerce website or it may be that you want to give people information about your products and services to try and gain enquiries either in person, through enquiry forms or over the phone.
Many business owners get carried away with installing gadgets and moving banners etc., forgetting what the main purpose of the website is.
You may worry about costs and want to try and build a site as cheaply as possible and therefore end up cutting the budget down so much that you end up with a site that is not really functional or that cannot be found on the search engines.
Make a list of all the things you want your site to offer to your visitors. Go through and prioritise the It may be such things as live chat options would be nice to have but not an essential part of the site. You can speak to the programmer who is building your site and get an idea of how much these will cost. This will then allow you to see if they fit within your budget without having to compromise on something else that is important.

Posted in Development

Do you need a marketing strategy?

Posted on March 24, 2019 at 2:51 pm

A marketing strategy is very important to any business. It can be easy to get carried away with investing in multiple marketing avenues and you need a way of being able to track how successful they are and how much money you spending compared with the return you get on the investment. Some forms of marketing are done not to directly get sales but to boost awareness of a brand or to get customer feedback but these can all help have a positive effect on other marketing you do.  If you are using multiple companies for your marketing then you may also find that they overlap their services meaning that you are paying twice for the same thing, or even missing out a significant areas that you should be investing in. 

You may want to have your own in-house marketing team or person who are responsible for your setting up and analysing all your marketing campaigns. You may decide that it is more beneficial to outsource the marketing to a third party agency if you do not have the knowledge and experience in-house. This will often cost more but you may get a better return.  

It is important to create short term and long term goals when it comes to marketing and be realistic with your expectations.

Posted in Web Marketing

Be careful of letting Google set your preferences

Posted on February 25, 2019 at 1:16 pm

Google Adwords can be a very powerful marketing tool if used correctly. It can bring in visitors to your site almost instantly and help you to get to the top of the search engine results with little effort.

It is relatively easy to set up a Pay Per Click campaign, and many people do it without really understanding exactly how it all works and what they need to do in order to get the most for their money. There are so many settings within Google Adwords (PPC) that it can be hard to know which ones you should use.

Google often set many of the settings by default but this is not always the best setting for you and your business. You need to be able to tailor the settings to suit your needs and get the most out of your campaigns. When you set a campaign up be sure choose the “all features” option rather than a standard campaign this will allow you to tweak each setting individually and give you full control over the ads and keywords. 

Another option that you may want to check is regarding the budget. You can allow Google to optimise your budget to obtain clicks, but again this leaves you little control to be able to set your own budgets per keyword etc. If you are not confident with Adwords then it is recommended that you use a specialist company to at least set the initial campaigns up for you.

Posted in Web Marketing

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