Date: November, 2010

7 Reasons Why SMS Marketing Will Work for You

On November 30th, 2010, wrote:

There’s a high-potential marketing platform that’s slowly and surely attracting corporations, small business owners, advertisers, and marketers alike. Observers say that this is a big one – an avenue through which one can reach a good portion of billions of consumers. It’s called SMS. You know: text messaging. No, you’re not reading an article from our 1998 archives. This is 2010 all right, but you know what? In the age of tablet computers, flashy apps, smartphones, and social media, SMS marketing has indeed become one of the most viable and important platforms for businesses today. Here are some numbers: An estimated 3.5 billion text messages are sent and received every day. 57 percent of all cell phone subscribers use SMS on a regular basis. According to the New York Times, 97 percent of text messages are opened, and 83 percent of these are opened in less than an hour. Despite the explosive growth of smartphones and mobile technologies like the – Read the full article

Holiday Shopping Online Offers Unique Advantages Over Local Shopping

On November 29th, 2010, wrote:

According to eMarketer, shoppers are expected to spend 14.2% more shopping online in 2010 than in 2009. Are you part of the trend? Should you care if you aren’t? Shopping online has much more to offer than an expanded selection. You may not have thought about how much gas you spend driving to multiple stores or the impulse buys that creep into your cart. Before you dive in head first, consider these hidden benefits to shopping online versus shopping at bricks and mortar stores. Wish Lists Eliminate Guesswork: Many of us have had it with giving (and, if we’re honest, getting) bad gifts. We’re pretty confident that Uncle Alfred doesn’t want another necktie, but we inevitably buy one for him anyway. Most sites know that we’re frustrated with guessing how to buy for someone and put wish lists directly on their sites. Feel weird about telling people what you want? List Ideas, Kaboodle, and Boxed Up make it a cinch to make your own lists – Read the full article

Tools for Taking your Online Business Mobile

On November 28th, 2010, wrote:

A business today needs to be mobile. Your customers are using their cell phones to access business information. If you aren’t easily accessible on their mobile phones then they’re going to start overlooking you in favor of businesses that are. Here are the tools that you need in order to go mobile with your business: Reinvent your website for the mobile platform. You may have a really amazing Flash website with a lot of interactive features that looks terrific on a desktop computer. However, that’s not going to work correctly on most mobile phones. You need to also have a mobile version of your site. (Lakeshore Branding has a list of really sweet tools here.) Each different mobile platform offers a browser WebKit to help optimize sites for the web. It’s worth it to work with a professional who is knowledgeable about making your website ready for mobile devices. Do local search engine optimization. Doing SEO for your website means taking – Read the full article

7 Best Practices for an Effective Homepage

On November 27th, 2010, wrote:

First impressions last. That’s why, when it comes to marketing yourself through a website, your homepage will have to be love at first sight. And while the other pages of your website deserve equal attention, they aren’t necessarily of equal importance. A homepage, by its very nature, will typically have a unique set of design goals, content objectives, and mood in order to catch and sustain the attention of visitors. Here’s a list of seven best practices for a more effective homepage: Communicate concisely who you are, what you do, and what your site is for. Don’t leave people in the dark – show them the light, and show them the light in the first five seconds upon arrival. Your company’s name is Charlie’s Tees, and you sell funny shirts and vintage shirts, and your online store is the source of sartorial awesomeness. See? Concise and clear. Do that and you’re off to a good start. (Bonus tip: Make sure that these – Read the full article

Top 6 Reasons to NOT Use Twitter For Business

On November 26th, 2010, wrote:

Twitter has become an incredibly popular social media darling, such that every time we talk about it, we can’t help but gush about how the microblogging service/social networking tool/greatest-thing-since-sliced-bread might positively impact our business. (We know; we’ve been guilty of this gushing, too. Look at our Twitter articles.) But what about the other end of the spectrum? The other side of Twitter’s double-edged sword? Or is it even possible that this acclaimed social media tool for business is indeed a double-edged sword? What if Twitter isn’t going to be – shucks! – good for your brand or business? Let’s look at the ways that this can happen. Ladies and gentlemen, your top six reasons NOT to use Twitter. Your targets don’t tweet. Just because everyone else is using Twitter doesn’t mean it’s right for you. Wait: is everyone really using Twitter? Maybe you’re in the industrial vibrators and compaction tables business. Or maybe you’re into diesel calibration or something. In – Read the full article

Internet Marketing Budget: How Much Should You Spend, Exactly?

On November 24th, 2010, wrote:

It used to be that businesses concentrated their marketing efforts exclusively on traditional (offline) media – like print ads, TV commercials, radio, PR campaigns, events, billboards, direct mail, glossy brochures. And then the Internet happened. And then social media changed the Internet. A recent report by GrowBiz Media, a small business market research firm, and online survey company Zoomerang led to key insights on how much money small businesses are allocating for their Internet marketing efforts. Entitled “SMB Marketing Practices: Small to Midsized Business Survey Results, 2010”, the report gathers information from 751 completed surveys across the U.S., by businesses with less than 1,000 employees. Among the key takeaways: More than half of the businesses with less than $1000 marketing budget are adopting social media practices, most notably in social networks Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter (in that order). Around 39 percent of respondents are spending more than 20 percent of their marketing budgets on websites (design, development, content creation, marketing, – Read the full article

Why You Should Create a Sitemap – Now

On November 23rd, 2010, wrote:

If you run and manage your own website or blog, chances are you probably already know what a sitemap is. And what it looks like. But do you know exactly what it’s for? A sitemap is essentially a list of your website’s pages – often organized in hierarchical order, showing how each of these pages are linked or related. It can be in the form of a document, or an actual web page, with a general top-down view of the overall contents of your website – much like, say, a “table of contents” would list and describe the pages of a book. A sitemap will typically also identify the URLs of each web page, and the data under each section, so that arriving at any one of your website’s pages is just a click away. Okay, that’s cool and all, but why do you need to create your own sitemap? How will it affect your website content, if it’s nothing – Read the full article

How to Update the URL Structure on an eCommerce Website

On November 22nd, 2010, wrote:

We have been working with a client who asked us to help him rebuild his e-commerce website that has not seen any major updates in over 15 years. The site has continued to expand with new products over the years, but his content management system was in need of a massive upgrade. Whenever we take on any new web projects, one of the first things we analyze is the SEO of the site. We ask ourselves, how do we keep the current rankings and how do we improve the rankings after the launch. This site defiantly had some unique challenges, today I am going to share how we are approaching the URL redirects for our client’s aged website. We had a few ideas, for this store with thousands of products. Our ideas started with the concept of ripping it off like a bandaid and just 301 everything. Then we thought maybe it would be better to launch the new site – Read the full article