DOES YOUR WEBSITE MAKE YOUR REGISTER RING?

31 May

5/31/2012

I recently attended a seminar presented by international web expert Dwayn Fricke of All Seattle Web Design. I found the information so helpful that I asked Dwayn if I could share his presentation notes with you all and he was kind enough to agree. If you have concerns or questions about your business website I think you will find this information very helpful. Dwyan’s contact information has been included for your convenience.

DOES YOUR WEBSITE MAKE YOUR REGISTER RING?
Increase Your Small Business’ Visibility!
A Discover Burien Business Education Seminar

Presentation Outline:
1) Your website design – does it convert into sales and or leads for your business?
a. Looking at website design elements essential for today’s small business.
2) The Why and How for Google
a. Considering these two questions for your website will increase your business’ visibility.
3) Social Media and your Business
a. What is a good fit for your business?
4) Free Online Tools – Everyone likes Free!
a. Resources that will Increase your Small Business’ Visibility.

Your Website Design
– Is your website the Good, Bad or the Ugly to your online visitor?

These examples will show generally older website designs that lack newer styles of course but more importantly lack strong communication of the business’ core message.

• As a business owner your website has on average 5-7 seconds to communicate a clear message.
• Also to brand yourself / business.
• Capture the viewer’s attention so they stay.
• Convey professionalism and instill confidence.
• Present a clear goal for the viewer to achieve like contacting you or buying something.
• Wow, that’s a lot to do in less than 7 seconds.

Some basic problems many websites have in general are:
1- Lack of company branding with logos, tag lines and or colors
2- Lack of communicating what the company / website is about, clear messaging
3- Bland un-interesting, non-professional look and feel and lack of imagery
4- Bad navigation elements / confusing / non-user friendly design elements
5- Lack of a clear goal for the visitor to achieve presented in more than one way

Top 4 Key Elements Every Website Should Have:
1- Clear and consistent website navigation elements in the same location on all pages.
2- Clean and consistent design that flows on every web page using the same or very similar templates.
3- Obvious communication of what the website is about.
4- Give clear calls to action or CTAs – what do you want your visitor to accomplish?

The Why and How for Google
– What makes one website show up in a Google search result over another website?

Relevancy! – That was easy.

Make your website relevant to what your user is searching for and in most cases your website should obtain good search rankings and drive more customers to your website.
Easier said than done!

1) First let’s look at what is going on inside the typical Google search results page (or SERPs). Show the search results for “children’s clothes Burien” and what elements are on the page.
2) Next what are the variables of your search that you may not be aware of?
a. Your location, your search settings, your search history, if you are logged into a service, and of course what you searched for.
3) Now let’s review the result listings.
a. First is the linked title (or title tag), second is the URL (website address), and third is the description blurb (or description tag). Notice how these have bolded words that match your search showing the relevancy of each result.
b. Much of this information is driven by a web page’s Meta tags – Google “Meta tags” for more information. There are rules (see below) for these tags to avoid being a spammer.
4) Now try a search for something that is not regional specific “women’s spring dresses” and see that the SERPs become more of a shopping result driven page showing products.

So do a search for your business or product and try some of the tools Google provides to see how your business or product comes up in different “slices” of Google. Search “Burien farmers market” then click image, videos, news, etc. to see how this changes the results. Better yet try different locations – this can give you a view of what out of Towner’s might see if your restaurant or hotel for example.

Two Very Important Meta Tags:

– The Title Tag –
This is the single most important tag you need on your web pages and it needs to be done right. If your Title Tag says “Home Page” you have a problem. Rule: no more than 55 characters long.

– Description Tag –
Big surprise – the Description Tag is the second most important tag that you should include on every web page to tell Google what you want displayed in the blurb under your link. Rule: no more than 140 characters long.

Other Search Factors to Know for Your Website:

1) Content is king on the web, become an expert in your field and don’t assume your audience knows something, tell them everything. Also don’t think if you give away too much information about your product that they will not contact you. Just the opposite is true.
2) Longevity of a website. Older URLs typically will rank higher and are more popular.
3) How popular is your website? Having other web content link to your website is very important and will build your website’s popularity.
4) Do you have the proper website structure? Is your navigation clear, are all your pages linked to, do you have Meta tags, a sitemap, a privacy policy and do you run a Google account for your business?

Social Media and Your Business
– Is it really worth it to spend all this time on “being social” on the internet?

Yes! Over time it can increase your brand visibility and in most cases if free. As with most things you get out of it what you put into it, but in many cases it’s just a matter of setting up the service.

Some Social Media Ideas:
1) Facebook – Who hasn’t heard of this? The important thing with Facebook is that you need a personal account and then you set up a Business Page. Post as often as makes sense and when you really want to leverage Facebook get a professional to help.
2) Twitter – Do you have something to Tweet about? Many businesses find this a great way to communicate daily events/deals but if you have more of a service business Tweeting may not be the answer.
3) Yelp – As with any feedback there is good and bad, getting control of it is a large task. Making sure you have your Yelp business page owned can help in this battle.
4) InsiderPages – Another good feedback website that allows for a free business page and customer feedback.
5) LinkedIn – This is a great way to have a professional business page and show employees like VPs and higher management, great resource builder.
6) Pintrest – Is a social sharing website great for showing off your interest / products in the form of photos and videos.
7) Article Posting – If you have a blog or write articles about your business / products on your website you might consider Digthis, StumbleUpon, Reddit or Delicious for posting or sharing your articles.

See the relevancy of Social Media and how it develops your business profile on the web when people research your business name – Search for your business and see.

Free Online Tools!
– Most are free some have paid versions or upgrades

Get a Business Google Account:
This is the most important free thing you can do to grow your business. Create the account using a business – NOT personal – email that could be transferable if the business is ever sold.

Google Account Top Free Tools:
1) Google Analytics – with a small piece of code placed into your website you can have free access to your website traffic statistics.
2) Google Places/Maps – with a business page you can highlight and promote your business location in Google Maps search and it allows people to leave feedback.
3) Google Webmaster Tools – this allows a webmaster to submit your website sitemap directly to Google and monitor your website’s site health, plus much more.
4) Other Google Account Tools – Google Plus social page, YouTube to post videos, shopping product feed, AdSense to make money from ads on your website, AdWords pay per click advertising, affiliate network to sell other companies’ products and make money – plus much more.

Many More Free / Close to Free Resources:
http://www.google.com/local/add
http://local.yahoo.com/
https://ssl.bing.com/listings/BusinessSearch.aspx

http://www.yelp.com/
http://www.insiderpages.com/
http://www.youtube.com/
http://www.facebook.com/
http://twitter.com/
http://pinterest.com/
http://www.linkedin.com/
https://foursquare.com/
http://www.opentable.com/
http://www.firststopshops.com/

http://www.addthis.com/
http://wufoo.com/
http://www.constantcontact.com/

All Seattle Web Design
Serving the United States and Canada
Dwayn Fricke, Owner
Phone: 206-931-2411
info@allseattlewebdesign.com
http://www.allseattlewebdesign.com

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