Two Keys to Happy Website Visitors

As a website owner you want to make sure your website visitors are happy. Happy visitors stay on your website longer, come back for repeat visits, and of course buy from your website. When it comes to a website’s structure, there are two elements that can make or break your user experience.

1. Quick load times

There is nothing that squashes a visitor’s happiness faster than not being able to load a website page. If the page doesn’t come up quickly, your visitor is gone. We’ve grown accustomed to instant gratification online, so if your web page takes longer than a few seconds to load, you may miss out on valuable prospects and visitors.

So what can you do to ensure quick load times?

  • Reduce and minimize your graphics. Make sure a graphic takes up no more than 10k on any given page.
  • Don’t use flash. Many website designers still turn to flash to add interest, but it takes too long to load. If you do use it, make sure you give your visitors the opportunity to click through and skip the show.
  • Use plug-ins sparingly. There are a number of really useful plug-ins, however, they’re bulky and can slow down your load time. Also, they can distract from your web page’s purpose and make it look cluttered. If you’re going to use a plug-in, make sure it supports your goals for that page and enhances the visitor experience.

2. Easy navigation

Another factor that makes happy website visitors is that they can easily navigate. Straightforward and intuitive website navigation can be difficult to accomplish, but the following tips can help you get the job done.

  • Eliminate clutter – Many times a web page has so much going on that the visitor isn’t sure what the purpose of the page is. Are they supposed to look at ads? Fill out a form? Read an article? Make sure your web pages have a PURPOSE. Then, make sure that page is designed to support that purpose with its formatting and add-ons.
  • Intuitive buttons – The buttons on your page are there to guide your reader deeper into your website. Therefore, they must make sense to the visitor. One of the best ways to ensure your buttons are easy to understand is to make them keywords. Keywords are likely what drew your visitor to your website in the first place. They’re what the person is using to search for and find information. Create categories and subcategories with your keywords that allow users to easily find the information they’re looking for.

When your visitors are able to navigate your website with ease, they’ll stay longer. If they’re able to find the information they’re looking for without struggle and frustration, they’ll return again and again.

When you combine a straightforward layout with quick loading times, you’re well on your way to giving visitors a very pleasant experience. We all know that happy visitors turn into happy customers, so take a look at your website today and ask yourself, “Does it make my visitors happy?”

 

 

 

Designing To Support Your Website Goals

What are your website goals? Do you have any? We can assume that you will want to make money, but how? Does each page on your site have a goal? If so, does the goal of the page also support your ultimate website goal?

Your website goals might include:

  • selling a product
  • selling a service
  • motivating an opt-in
  • inspiring a visitor to click on an affiliate advertisement
  • providing information and receive ad exposure and PPC income

Any single website page may also have these same goals. They may also be designed to help you achieve other independent goals. For example, one web page may be designed to promote your opt-in offer. In addition to your call to action, there are other things you can do.

Taking a look at your website goals and independent page goals, consider these three points.

#1 Who are your visitors? What content and tools will you need to help or convince them to accomplish your goals? For example, you want them to sign up for your opt-in form. What content and tools are you using to motivate that action? Are you providing them with a sample of the offer? Do you make it easy to opt-in or do they have to jump through hoops?

#2 How does your visitor travel on your site? When someone visits your landing page, where do they go next? Is it where you want them to go? Does it support your goal? Use your website goals to help you create content and determine the path your visitor takes. Each piece of content on your site should influence an action that ultimately leads to your goal. Again, imagine you want to motivate an opt-in.

Each piece of content, form and promotion on your site should lead to that goal. Take a look at your flow of information and the path your visitors take when they’re at your site. Does their path support your goal? When adding or removing something on your site conflicts with your goals, don’t do it.

#3 Include a call to action with each website page. Articles, videos, forms – everything needs to have a goal that supports your end goal. They need to have a call to action that supports your goal and purpose. Don’t expect your users to know what they’re supposed to do next. Tell them.

Finally, make sure to respect your user’s time. Dragging them through an endless process to achieve your goal isn’t going to win you any friends. If you want them to sign up for your opt-in list, make it as easy as possible. If you want them to buy a product, make it as easy.

Analyze each web page, new and old, and determine if it supports your goals or detracts from them. Help your visitors. Make it easy for them to achieve your website goals.

I Hate New Year’s Resolutions – Do This Instead!

I really do hate making a resolution on December 31 each year – and so I don’t do it. However, I do believe that every business owner would benefit from doing what I talk about in this video. Happy New Year!!

Podcast Episode 005: Holiday Marketing Strategies

The holiday’s can be a tough time to market your business, because people are busy and because some types of businesses don’t see it as relevant to their model – especially service industries. In this episode of the Good Onya Marketing Podcast, we talk about 5 ways to integrate some “holiday spirit” into your marketing efforts.

Here are a few of the things I talked about on the episode:

Digital Marketer’s Black Friday Bootcamp site

Here’s the JibJab video I made last year!

8 Things Email Analytics Can Tell You About Your Business

email analyticsUsing email analytics to learn about your own business is a great way to not only learn a lot, but also to put into action strategies to make your business even better. When you can determine why things are happening, you can stop it, repeat it, or improve upon it. Here are eight things that email analytics can tell you.

 

Email Analytics Can Tell You:

1. Who Reads the Emails – If you check to see who opens your emails and even move the people who most open them to their own segment, you can improve conversions exponentially. Conversely, you can move those who don’t open as much to another list where you can test different methods.

2. What Information Your Subscribers Like – By noticing what they read and engage with, you’ll know what they like more. That way you can do more of what they like, which will improve conversions.

3. What Technology Your Audience Uses – You can find out what technology they use to read your website and interact with you. If a lot of your audience is using mobile, you can then know that marketing on mobile is an imperative for you.

4. What You Can Improve – If you have a sales funnel (and you should), you can use Google Analytics along with your email analytics to learn how to improve your funnels. By improving your sales funnel, you can improve your business.

5. What Channels Are Working – Using analytics, you can figure out which social media channels are working best to send traffic to your website that you can convert to leads. If, for example, you’re not getting any traffic from a particular channel, you can either work harder on that or drop it to save yourself the work.

6. What Type of Content Is Working – Analytics can tell you whether or not the content you’re publishing is working. If you have content that gets a lot of clicks and comments, plus action such as buying or signing up for newsletters, then you should make more of that type of content.

7. How Well Your Branding Is Working – If you’re running branding-focused advertising, messages, or information, you can use analytics to find out if it’s working. If you’re getting more sign-ups and conversions, it is a sign it’s working.

8. How Good You Are at Converting Leads – This is an obvious one because you can not only see how many subscribers you get but using analytics right, but you can also tell exactly what sent them to you, what they did before they subscribed, and more.

You may think that you know everything about your own business, but you really don’t if you don’t set up your analytics correctly, then actually dig deep into them. You can boost your business more than you  ever thought possible if you use analytics to learn more about it.

Finding Your Perfect Price Point

price pointOne of the first things you’ll need to do when you create a product or service is determine the appropriate price point for it. There are a lot of thoughts about pricing and none of them are right or wrong. How you price is up to you, but think about using a method that considers value and not just how much it will cost you. This is one of the best ways to come up with the perfect price point.

Tips for Selecting the Perfect Price Point

Know Your Audience – You have to know everything you can about your audience, including how much money they have to spend on extra items in their budget each month. When you understand your audience, you’ll not only know what type of products they need, but also how much they’re going to be willing to pay for them.

Identify Your Direct Costs – You must always cover your costs in any pricing method, because if you don’t you’ll lose money. So a great place to start is figuring out the direct cost of your product. But, if your product is digital, it’s going to be somewhat relative. For example, it might cost you 500 dollars to have the product created but you’ll not have individual per item costs to consider in your pricing.

Identify Your Indirect Costs – Sometimes there are costs such as marketing, advertising and other indirect costs that you should consider adding. For example, if you’re teaching a course that you had to get a Master’s Degree to understand, then you can add in something for your education.

Identify Your Competitors’ Prices – Take a look at your best competition’s prices. It’s more than likely that this price is something you should consider being around, because if your competitor is successful, it’s a price point that’s working. However, you never want to get into a situation where you’re competing on price. Instead, you want to compete on value.

Consider the Market – The market plays a huge role in pricing for pretty much every product. If you have a digital product, this is especially great for you because you don’t have incremental costs like you do with a physical product.

Understand the Value of Your Offering – Outside of direct and indirect costs there is also value. The value of your item is something that is perceived by your audience. For example, if you have an offering that will help anyone who follows it boost their income to six figures from zero, what is the value of that?

Ensure It’s Worth Your While – If the price you come up with feels too low, then raise it. You want the work that you do to be pleasurable for you, too. If you under-price your offerings, you’re going to end up resentful instead of happy.

Test Different Prices – When you come up with a price point, try testing different prices. You can do this by having different sales pages, or you can do it by offering different levels of service on one page with the various pricing levels.

When you come up with your perfect price point, you’ll be able to work less and make more money. The reason is that your buyers will be focused on the value of your offering, and you don’t have to concern yourself with selling high volumes…if the price is right.

Is Your Post/Tweet/Pin Interesting Enough? How to Get More Shares

get more sharesIf you’re putting out information that no one is reading or sharing, then what’s the point? To get more shares, you have to be intentional. If each post, tweet, pin, video, and share that you work on doesn’t produce at least ten likes, then it’s possible that what you’re putting out is not valuable and has no real purpose. To change that, start looking at content marketing differently by only putting out valuable information that has a point and a reason for being.

6 Easy Ways to Get More Shares

Benefits over Features

This applies to the content you create as well as the products you make and how you sell them. Ensure that by just looking at the title or headline, anyone who sees it will know exactly what they are going to learn in the content you’ve shared with them.

Stick to the Tried and True

You may want to be creative but sometimes that doesn’t work to actually get more shares. People love lists, how-to’s, and that type of thing – whether it’s an article, a blog post, or a video. You may think that it’s boring and old but these are the things that get watched, read, and shared more than anything else.

Back Up Your Opinions

Everyone can have an opinion, but there is only one set of facts to back it up. Use facts to back up anything you say that’s your opinion, and you’ll soon become a very well respected go-to person for advice on your topic. Plus, people are more likely to share factual information than mere rants without backup.

Create for Your Audience

It’s easy to get tied up in worrying about search engines but the truth is, algorithms change constantly. It’s simply too hard to keep up. But, it’s not hard to keep up if you are creating content that is valuable for your audience. Put your audience above any other factor when creating content for them, and you will get more shares.

Make It Simple

People are naturally lazy. If you can pique this desire to be lazy in your headlines and in your solutions, by making everything easy and telling them it’s easy, you’ll be more likely to get other people to share and like your content. Think about the cooking videos that condense down the work it takes to make something to less than one minute. People share them like crazy. They may never make that recipe, because, of course, it’s harder than it looks. But they love believing it’s that simple.

Use Emotions

If you can pull at people’s emotions – whether it’s the fear of loss or the feeling of empowerment, you can get them to act faster, and, chances are, you’ll get more shares. In this case, it helps to know your audience very well so that you can develop content that speaks to their emotions in a way that resonates and stirs the desire to act.

If you can combine these tips, you’ll create posts that are a lot more likable and sharable. Just remember that you need to put your audience first, appeal to their emotions, and make them curious enough to keep looking. Then you can inspire them to take action.

Marketing with Social Media – How Social Media Can Turn Into Leads

marketing with social mediaSocial media has become one of the most popular tools for marketing today. Marketing with social media can be difficult if you don’t know the right strategies.  Social media is great for building a community and getting to know people. But, it isn’t as easy as using social media for personal use.  In order to make it useful for business you have to move people from prospects to leads by getting them onto your email list, getting them to buy a product, or getting them to use a service to also get them on a list. It’s easier than you think.  Here are a few easy tips you can use to leverage social media to turn your prospects into leads.

Tips for Marketing with Social Media

Identify Where Social Media Fits in with Your Marketing Funnel – Sometimes people join your social media due to having visited your website. They may have liked what you said, but didn’t yet want to sign up for an email list. Sometimes they find your social media in other ways, without ever having visited your website. When marketing with social media, look at your marketing funnel and your product funnel to see where social media fits in, and act accordingly.  It will vastly improve your conversion rates.

Make It Easy for Prospects to Convert – You can have multiple ways for your social media followers to join your email lists. For example, you can have a sign-up page on Facebook as well as on your website. It’s actually good to have those two separate lists, depending on where they sign up.

Give Away Something Valuable – It always helps to have a lead magnet that is valuable to them and solves at least one problem they have quickly. You don’t want it to be a long, drawn-out process that they have to go through for weeks for the lead magnet to work well. It should be a quick solution to a problem that keeps them up at night, but is easy to solve.  They have to want your solution enough to be willing to sign up to your mailing list in exchange for receiving it.

Build Relationships with Your Followers – Take the time to actually interact with your social media followers so that they want to know more about you. Social media marketing doesn’t just mean pushing stuff out there without also listening.  Answer their questions, help them, and be a resource to them. The more you can show that side of your personality, prove your expertise,  and engage with the followers, the more likely they are to want to sign up for your offerings.

Create a Special Email Campaign for Social Media Prospects – Remember that you don’t want to send the same email marketing campaign to everyone. You should have a different one based on where they sign up, which freebie they download, and other ways of segmenting your audience. Each leads to the same thing, but is done differently based on where the audience member is in your marketing and product funnel.

Test, Measure and Adjust – Always set goals that are specific so that you have a way to measure your results. If you’re not meeting your goals, figure out where you can adjust something to make it work just a little bit better. That’s what’s awesome about marketing with social media; it’s adjustable on the fly.

Host a Contest – Ensure that you follow the rules of the social network in order to host a contest, using the right third party or native service to do the contest correctly. A contest can help get email sign-ups fast.  Think of something that’s valuable to your audience as a reward or prize, and kick it off!

Run an Ad Campaign – This is especially great for Facebook because you can target your ad so closely, even down to marketing only to your own groups if you want to. Running ads is a sure-fire way to get people to move from prospects to leads fast.

Most social media followers are just learning about you and want to see how you do things. They’re going to observe for a while, get to know you, and then eventually jump on board. For the best results, use different some of these tips to get them on your email list and then market to them specifically using the tips found here.  Your results will amaze you.

Want to know more about how to market using social media effectively without taking a course or spending a lot of time and money on a marketing consultant or team for your business?  Join me at TheMarketingKit.com and receive usefule, efficient video lessons immediately followed with coordinating downloads you can actually use right away.  Better yet, each month I will focus on a different HOT MARKETING TOPIC to center my lessons and materials around.  As we kick off this membership, August 1, our first monthly topic will be…you guessed it! SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING – what REALLY counts.  Click the link below to check out this affordable and efficient way to stay on top of your marketing needs.

Click here:marketing with social media

Creative Ways to Get Public Speaking Gigs

public speakingIf you have a desire to be a public speaker, and you have a talk that you can give about a popular topic about which you have useful knowledge, then all you really need to do now is find the public speaking gigs that you want. There are many ways to do it, including paying to be listed on speaker’s lists, reaching out to trade associations, and much more. The best thing to do is just get out there and do it But where do you start?

Here are a few creative ways to get public speaking gigs fast:

Clubs and Associations – Not only should you approach clubs, organizations, and associations that you have joined to offer your speaking skills, but you should also reach out to different organizations by sending them a packet about your offerings, including your fees and how to contact you.  Remember to include any testimonials or video clips from successful public speaking engagements you have already done.

Universities and Colleges – You don’t have to be part of the alumni association to speak at colleges and universities. Contact the right department heads with your information about the talks you can give and the audience you’d like to speak t, and it may still be a great fit. Again, always include your fees and how to reach you.

Business Networking Groups – This is especially useful if your topic happens to be related to a particular type of business – marketing, motivation, or any other topics of interest across different business audiences. Send your speaker’s information to each group that you think may want to hear your talk. Send a sample of your work, and all the contact information as well.

Your Current Clients – You never know if your current clients need speakers for their businesses or organizations if you don’t ask. There may be opportunities right under your nose if you haven’t offered. Send out an information packet to each of your clients so that they know what you offer.

Other Speakers You Know – If you know other speakers, ask them how they find speaking gigs and if they think you’d fit in anywhere they’ve given speeches. There often can be opportunities for co-speaking gigs, and you could team up. If they know who to contact or will make introductions, that would also help you to get your foot in the door.

Online Opportunities – Believe it or not, today you can actually get speaking gigs right from the comfort of your own home (or wherever you use your computer) thanks to the advent of online technology like Google Hangouts Live, YouTube Live, Facebook Live and Blab.me – not to mention all the webinar technologies that exist like GoToWebinar and Adobe Connect.

Industry Magazines – Subscribe to as many industry magazines as you can, because they will often list events that are happening with calls for speakers to apply. They’ll provide full directions for what to send when you apply to speak. Many events pay well, while some just give you free accommodations and other perks.  Either way, the exposure to speaking gigs can lead to more exposure and, therefore, more jobs!

Google It – Do a Google Search for “speakers needed” or “call for speakers” within your industry. This is a great way to find public speaking events for which you can apply. Be sure to set up a Google Alert if you get a good search result so that you’ll stay ahead of the events.

Big Businesses – Large businesses, corporations, and organizations often need speakers for various types of events including motivational, training, and other types of events. Make sure you send your information to the right departments to get the best results.

Your Website – Create a speaker’s portion of your website, including a media kit and a one-page flyer that says what you speak about, your background, and how to reach you. It won’t hurt to also include a video of the talks you’ve given so far as well as testimonials from people who have attended your speaking events. If you don’t have that, include an introductory video so that people can see your style.  If you have a unique accent or idiosyncrasy or catch phrase, capitalize on it. People will get to know you for it and choose to listen to you because it’s more fun than someone without something unique about the way they speak.

 

If public speaking is your passion and your gift, using these tips can help you land more gigs doing what you love to do.  The great part about that is that the more exposure you have through the gigs you accumulate, the more referrals and future gigs you can generate!

The Ever-Changing Face of Marketing: Keeping Up with Marketing Trends

marketing trendMarketing trends come and go, and, now more than ever, it’s important to understand what marketing strategies have a lasting impact on your business. Technology has been a huge influence on how people have marketed their goods and services ever since people have had goods and services to sell. Whether it was the printing press, the radio, television, or the proliferation of trains and cars that made traveling easier, something new has always come along to change how marketing is done. But nothing has ever been as noteworthy or as influential as the internet.  The internet seems to be the hub of any changes or trends in how marketing is done, so it’s important to see the effects that has in the business world, and in your world, today.

What YOU Can Learn From Marketing Trends

Consumers Are Smarter Than Ever

Because of the internet, consumers now have more information at their fingertips than they have ever had before in the history of the world. They can look up information about you, and whether it’s right or wrong, they’ll learn something about you and your products before buying. It’s up to you to make sure the right information is out there for them to find.

Social Media Is EVERYWHERE

Before the internet, stores had to host huge events that were quite costly in order to stir up conversation and social interaction. Today, they simply need to start an active Instagram account or Facebook group or page in order to create a buzz about them. Perhaps the most influential marketing trend out there today is that of social media.  Everyone uses some form of social media today to gather information and learn about your business and offerings. In fact, more than 80 percent of the US population uses social media. It is imperative that businesses know exactly how to use social media in a positive and effective way for their marketing.

Your Audience Is Starving for Content

It’s important to put content in every place your audience likes to be. If they like Facebook, you need to be on Facebook. If they like blog posts, you need to supply them with plenty of blog posts. If they like getting information through email, then you need to accommodate them. It can be difficult to keep up at times, but with help you can work smartly and efficiently by re-purposing content as needed.  Nearly anyone who pays attention to marketing trends today has heard the phrase, “Content is king,” but do you really know how to best use your content?  It’s important that you use it in the right way or it can be a waste of your time.

SEO Is Here to Stay, BUT It’s Changing, Too

Due to the advent of the net, pulling your audience to your information requires knowledge of search engine optimization (SEO). This can include on- and off-page optimization of a website and blog, but also of article titles, social media posts and more. It’s all about attracting the right audience to your information, and the best way to optimize is an ever-changing topic.  Make sure you stay on top of the best way to optimize your content.

The Customer of One Is Now Key

Due to the ability to now automate and personalize using technology, business owners can make their customers feel special and unique more than ever before. Personalization is a marketing trend that really makes the difference when customers want to feel appreciated.  Even though customers are smart and likely know a lot of it is automation, they still do appreciate the personal touch, and it shows in their purchasing habits.

Inbound Marketing Has Taken Over

Inbound marketing – attracting customers because you offer them something of value that they are already interested in or seeking out – is a marketing trend that works because it makes sense.  Bringing your customers to you is now how marketing works best, as opposed to outbound marketing, which was how marketing started. It was posters, magazine ads, commercials – all things that interrupted the consumer to give them your message. Inbound marketing is less intrusive and is a much more natural way of customers finding you.

E-commerce Generates over 1.2 Million Dollars Every 30 Seconds

It seems like eCommerce has been around forever. In reality it has been around in a smaller way since the 60s, but it really came into being as it is today in the 90s when the first book was sold on Amazon in 1995. Nothing has ever been the same since, and it just continues to grow. Online shopping is even bringing back grocery delivery!

 

It’s imperative that you keep up with marketing trends in terms of the tools that are used and the ways that strategies are implemented. In many ways, the principles don’t change much. You have to find a way to educate your audience, inform them, engage them, and build relationships with them, so that they trust you enough to spend their money on your products or services.  How you get there is what is constantly changing