Online Marketing Tips

Online Marketing Tips

The industry world is transitioning from door-to-door business practices to a hybrid of in-person and online marketing. There are advantages and disadvantages to promoting your business online. On one hand, it’s easier to manage your clientele and schedule. On the other hand, you tend to lose the trust foundation that is normally built on meeting face-to-face. However, being able to research a company is a marketing game changer. Now that it’s easier to compare businesses side-by-side, it’s harder to convince a potential customer to choose you. Online marketing comes in many different forms. Check out these tips on how to refine your online business tactics to sharpen your professional image.

Top notch website

First impressions matter. Creative advertising will attract customers to your page. A good website will keep your audience. Make sure your website is easy to navigate and look at. Such as, a menu with appropriate categories and your page being free of clutter. Keep it running quickly and efficiently: no one wants to wait more than 5 seconds for a page to load. As we mentioned earlier, trust between the business and the client tends to not be as strong when you can’t meet in person. Thankfully, you can counter that by providing a history of your business and a brief biography about yourself and your team. This will help build a professional relationship with your customers when they know the names and faces behind the works. Blogs and photos will also help you individualize your image and add a more personal feel to your page.

Advertising

Ah yes, ads. As much as people find them to be annoying, it’s because they don’t want to admit that advertisements can be helpful. If someone sees an ad with something they need, they will click on the ad. Advertising has really ramped up ever since social media platforms Instagram and Facebook started displaying advertisements. Use that to your advantage! Sharing your page on social media is the new word of mouth. A great marketing strategy is to offer a discount or a sweet deal for signing up for the e-mail newsletter. Now with cookies, it’s easier for the general public to control the ads they see. Read more about advertising tips here.

Market according to your goals and audience

The most professional businesses are consistent. They have sturdy, specific goals that attract their audience, and stick to it. Or, as the cool kids call it- staying in your lane. Some businesses lose quality as they get comfortable. Don’t let this happen to you. Interact with your audience too. Send out biweekly or monthly newsletters to let them know what’s going on. Allow them to reach out to you and listen to their suggestions. You can’t market to your audience if you don’t know what they expect!

Interested in further marketing assistance? Contact Redwood Creative today!

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How Online Advertisements Works

Online advertisements can produce conflicted reactions. Most find them to be bothersome, but they can be helpful. Either way, they’re essential to the Internet and to businesses. As we progress from traditional billboards, online ads can get really creative. There are at least 10 types of ads: pop-up, sidebar, mobile, e-mail, and many more. So, why do we see them everywhere, and how do they seem to know what you like?

The biggest and most obvious reason is that companies pay to advertise outside of their own website. They will usually advertise on related sites and on pages that their audience frequently visits using SEO and third-party vendors. The advertiser will pay an ad creator and the website that they wish to advertise on. The more they pay, the longer the ad will stay up.

Types of online ads

There are several purposes to an advertisement. They’re all meant to raise awareness, but in different ways. Aside from promoting their website, some ads are meant raise awareness on an issue, such as the presidential race or global warming. These types of ads often show up on social media sites, where it can be widely circulated. Awareness ads can also be found in e-mails, such as political campaigns.

Other common online advertisements are trying to recruit people to sign up for their newsletter. These often appear in the form of a pop-up ad, enticing the reader to join the newsletter by offering them a deal. By signing up for the newsletter, companies can keep up with their customer database and promote sales. That’s why when you first go to a site, the first thing you see is a pop-up ad. They want to keep you coming back!

If you’ve always wondered why you see the same ads of a specific item you like, it’s because your smart device pays attention to your browsing history. It keeps track of how long you spend looking at something, if you scroll back, what you click on. Knowing that you are definitely interested in this certain item or service, it will keep re-appearing either until you give in or ignore it long enough. Using this algorithm, websites then use this information to tempt you with tailor-made ads. Fact- every 4th post on Facebook is an advertisement. These are also most common on social media sites, but they can be found anywhere in the sidebar.

E-mail ads are quite common as well. They go into more detail on what they’re advertising and why. They tend to focus on promoting a deal, bringing news about the company, or campaigning for a cause. They’re also more personal, such as addressing you by name and using keyphrases to entice a reaction out of you.

In conclusion

Be careful with online ads, though. As we mentioned in our previous blog, some ads pop up to harm your computer or mobile device with viruses. Be cautious of ads claiming you’ve won a free valuable item or those that ask for personal information, like your credit card number. These are also commonly pop-up ads, making it impossible to avoid. Other than that, advertisements are simply meant to promote an agenda, sell product/service, or just to recruit more subscribers.

 

Need help with advertising? Contact Redwood Creative today!

Ecommerce Web Design

Important Elements of E-commerce Websites

E-Commerce websites, such as Amazon and RedBubble, are all the rage. Especially during times like now when people are browsing/shopping online for any items they may need. So, make it easier for your client to browse your site and make a purchase with these tips in mind. First, there are different types of e-commerce websites: business-to-business, business-to-consumer, and vice versa. Format your website according to the demographic that you are appealing to. Have a domain name that’s easy to pronounce and remember!

Clearly indicated prices

The biggest advantage to e-commerce websites is easy product research and price comparison. When displaying a product, provide a layout that will aid the customer in comparing prices.  If applicable, have a page on the website dedicated to products/packages and a chart of price variations.

A detailed description of the product

Some feel uneasy about online purchases, concerned that the product is not the quality that it appears to be online. Reassure them with a clear, technical description and how the product works. Provide a picture for every item and color. Also, guarantee returns for online purchases. Thus, the same applies for services, policies, and contact information as well. If a product has multiple colors/designs, feature a photo of every design that the consumer can click on and enlarge. Include any other handy information, like size charts. Also, offer suggestions for similar products.

Consistent theme and organization

Having a unified look all throughout the page will look more appealing and enticing. In order to stand out against competitors, the website should be uniquely designed. Stick with the same colors and text font. Make sure your website is updated. Have a consistent theme on both website and social media sites.

Other important notes

Fast connection! If it takes more than 2 or 3 seconds to load, then visitors lose interest. Have a clean-looking page, free of ads and clutter. Most websites have entire-page pop-up ads that interfere with scrolling. Instead, have a small pop-up ad inviting readers to join the mailing list for a sweet deal. Keep mobile device formatting in mind. Also, have optimal SEO (search engine optimization).  To learn how Redwood Creative can help you get more of your products online, found, and sold contact us today!

Interested in marketing tips? Redwood Creative is here to help!

 

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5 Ways to Drive Traffic to Your Website

Now that you have a shiny new website, how do you to get potential customers to visit it? Or, if you already have a website, but it’s very lonely, how can you improve the amount of people visiting it? To do this you need to improve your website’s online visibility. Online visibility simply means how visible your website is on the Internet. There are several ways to improve online visibility…

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Where do most people go when looking for products or services? It used to be cinder block-sized books of business listings like the Yellow Pages. Now, of course, everyone goes straight to a search engine like (primarily) Google or Bing. Search Engine Optimization, or SEO for short, is how you “tell” these search engines what your site is about by making your site and its pages highly relevant to what you sell so that when people go searching for your products or services search engines know that your website might be a good suggestion for them. This requires both “on-site SEO” – SEO work done directly on your site – and “off-site SEO” – work done off of your site by getting legitimate* links and recommendations from other sites on the web. However, it’s not as cut-and-dry as that. With hundreds, or even thousands, of competing websites selling the same things, well-strategized and executed SEO is required to ensure search engines rank your site over theirs.

Local SEO

Similar to general SEO, which works across the web globally, if you service a local market it’s important to make sure the SEO work done on your site is relevant to the specific regions you service. This will help Google and Bing understand that when a user is searching for something you sell in a specific area you service, your site would be a good suggestion for them. In addition to this, both Google and Bing offer dedicated business pages that can also be optimized with relevant information.

Pay-Per-Click Marketing (PPC)

Pay-Per-Click, or PPC, is another way of making sure your website appears in search engines when people search for the products and services you sell. Unlike, SEO however, it’s not reliant purely on making your site’s pages relevant and hoping Google and Bing rank you well, PPC allows you to simply pay for visibility in search results. You do this by creating short advertisements, targeting specific keywords, and then bidding in a marketplace of competing websites for visibility in search results for those key words. For example, if you’re a plumber based in Huntsville, Texas you can choose to bid on keywords such as “huntsville tx plumbers” or “plumbers in huntsville”. You only pay when someone clicks your advertisement. Hence the name Pay-Per-Click.

Social Media

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube. Most people – including your potential customers – use at least one of these social media platforms, often times several of them…A LOT. Given the high usage of these platforms by people it’s important that your site has a presence on those social media sites that make sense for your business. These offer a way for you to get your brand’s messages directly into the public sphere by engaging with people. Also, all of these platforms offer paid marketing options with highly specific targeting so you can guarantee your advertising will be seen by a demographic specific to your desired client base.

Real World Visibility

Despite how the Internet has come to dominate our world, there’s still no point in ignoring real world options for spreading word about your website, especially if you serve a specific geographic region. Business cards, vehicle decals, and ads in local newspapers are all very good ways to ensure people in your area are aware of your business.


*This is a very important distinction that we will go into greater detail on in a future post, but the long and the short of it is you should always avoid getting involved in link schemes! Links from your site should come because you create great content that other sites want to link to such as…oh, I don’t know…a post about 5 Ways to Drive Traffic to Your Website…not because you paid some shady SEO character in a dank Internet back alley for them in bulk.

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5 Ways to Get More Leads from Your Website

What good is a website if it just sits there on the Internet like some sort of digital squatter? You want your website to get off its rear and do some work for you! You were nice enough to give it a beautiful design after all! Here’s a few ways you can put your website to work getting more leads for you.

Visible Contact Info

This seems like a no brainer, but it’s not as clear cut as you might thing. Naturally you want your contact info on your website where people can see it. The key is to put it on your site so that people see it without having to look for it. Make sure your contact info is “above-the-fold” on every page of your website design. Don’t expect to have a “Contact Us” page only that people can visit. Contact info should be one of the first things people see when landing on your website without having to scroll.

To-the-Point Forms

Make sure the forms you have on your website that allow people to contact you are short and to-the-point. Ask for only the absolutely essential information you need to get the ball rolling. You don’t want to present your site visitors with long, elaborate contact forms full of questions and options. They didn’t come to your site to take the SATs. They came to your site to find out if you can help them. Give them a simple form to get in touch. You can gather more information from the later.

Popups

Popups are a great way to remind people that you are eager to work them, but don’t over do it. If used improperly popups can be a huge deterrent. Keep popups simple and as un-intrusive as possible. Don’t throw a popup at your visitors on every page they visit or every few minutes they’re on the site.

Exit Popups

Another type of popup you can employ are exit popups. These are triggered when a user attempts to leave your site. A script will detect if the user’s mouse pointer veers off the page (toward the browser back button or URL bar, for instance) and popup a “Wait! Before you go!” giving the visitor one last chance to get in touch. As with other popups, don’t let this get annoying. You don’t want to trigger an exit popup every time the mouse pointer moves off the page – only the first time – because they may be clicking that back button to get to a previous page on your site, not to leave.

Incentives

Give someone a reason to contact you right now by offering an immediate incentive once they’ve submitted their information. What could an immediate incentive be? One common offer is a downloadable product. Some examples are:

  • Relevant case studies or reports about their industry.
  • A discount code for your services.
  • A discount code for another relevant but non-competing service.