Most businesses now have a web site however there are still some people holding out, unsure if they actually require one so we have put together four things to think about if you are still undecided.
Just like having a postal address and telephone number dedicated to your business, a web site shows your customers that you are a 'real' business and are taking things seriously. It can even make you look bigger than you are. You may be a one man band, working from the shed in the back garden but your web site can make you look much bigger and prestigious.
SEO, just like web site design, is a difficult market to navigate. Anyone and everyone with a laptop can set up a business and proclaim that they are an search engine optimisation expert however just like most other service businesses, there are ways to evaluate whether they are any good before you hand over any money.
It is important to do your research because it is very easy to harm a web site's ranking and make the situation even worse meaning that even fewer people will find your business online.
There's certainly no shortage of SEO tips available on the internet but they are generic. What you need is someone who understands SEO but who also understands your business, what you are selling and the technicalities of your web site. You may find someone who is great at SEO but if they have only worked on Joomla web sites and yours is a WordPress site, things may not go as smoothly as you would like.
If you have just had a new web site designed or you are in the process of marketing your old one, Google Adwords is a great way to get new customers to your web site. Although we recommend search engine optimisation as a longer term, cheaper way of getting customers to your web site, Adwords does have some benefits.
If you have ever set up Adwords yourself, you could be forgiven for being confused with the vast array of terminology used and settings that are available, and it is often the case that people end up spending a lot more on their Adwords that needed. Google provide a lot of settings that allow you to perfectly tweak your ads so that you get the most value for your money.
Search engine optimisation can be a frustrating beast. As Google and the other search engines have advanced over the years, optimising your web site to climb the rankings has become more difficult and takes longer.
Added to that your situation is different to everyone else’s - you have a different business, different location and different web site - so there is no manual that will give you a step-by-step guide on how to make sure your web site ranks higher than your competitors. There's too many X factors - too many unknowns for a guide to be useful or accurate.
SEO is part art and part science - somethings will work in every situation, others need to be tried and tested.
How do you deal with the spam messages that you receive in your e-mail inbox every day?
Do you find yourself logging in early, perhaps even getting to work early, to sort through what are good e-mails - e-mails from customers - and those that are junk, just to clear your inbox before work starts properly?
Spam e-mails have been around for so long now that many people have just given up and accept it as part of the modern world but it does not need to be like this. If you are receiving lots of spam e-mails there are things that you can do to cut down on them.
Good hosting with spam protection
Why not change your web / e-mail hosting to a new provider which offers spam protection as part of the service? Many hosting providers, including us, offer a filter system which will catch most of the spam messages from reaching your inbox. They use algorithms to identify messages that are spam and take care of them before you know about it.
Contact form captchas
A lot of businesses receive spam messages directly through their own web site's through contact or enquiry forms. You can easily add a 'captcha' button to your form which will stop all but legitimate contact from actual customers getting through. These do not need to be the awful forms where people have to type in a confusing or hard to read phrase either. A simple tick box can be implemented and this will stop the spammers from contacting you through your site. See our contact page to see one in action.
Although simple and very easy to set up, these two steps can dramatically and immediately cut down on the number of junk messages that get through to you saving your time and frustration.