Month: October 2017

How to Build an E-commerce Site

Some experts forecast that e-commerce will surpass $2 trillion in earnings within the next few years. It is the fastest growing and one of the most valuable industries. 

As soon as it is possible to shop online, easy checkout, and then conveniently have your favourite pair of jeans, a nice new watch, or even a customized computer shipped directly to your doorstep, you don’t think about the process isn’t that complicated.  

Below are tips and tricks that will not only ensure you choose the quickest and most professional path to get your website up and running, it will also place your advertising and SEO up for future success, which will increase your bottom line. 

If you have never begun an e-commerce site from scratch, then it is impossible to know how time-consuming and detailed the process is. When buying on an e-commerce site, you never think about the fact that someone had to craft articles, independently load each and every product, and have most often than not create a custom web design. Not only that, you also need to negotiate with each manufacturer to be able to record their products online, before the real listing process even begins. 

Besides all of the work required to really build the site, I understood how frustrating it could be to have this working site and business model that you’ve worked so hard on, but maybe not create organic traffic.  

Below is a list of all the steps we took to Begin and successfully build our e-commerce website: 

Purchase a domain name.

You will need a domain name which will perfectly identify your own brand. Don’t overthink the procedure. 

Locate a web programmer.

This is an important component in launching your e-commerce site. If you want to launch your site in a relatively short time period and in a professional manner, make certain that you do your vetting when it comes to hiring a programmer. Get references from other e-commerce sites the programmer has built. Get a deadline for how long they anticipate it will take to start the website. Be certain they have a graphic design background so they can crop images which can align with your website. Make sure to ask whether the programmer has experience building sites on the e-commerce platform you choose with the added ability of designing logos for websites 

Too often, people proceed with a developer without undertaking adequate research. Do not let this happen to you, as it could put a block on your website before you really even begin. If you want to find out more about how long your e-commerce site should take to start, feel free to contact a web design pro. 

Receive all of the paperwork that you need to get a valid business.

Register your business, get a vendor’s Permit and start looking into valid business problems. You should contact a local attorney to help in the introduction of your company. Although it’s an upfront cost, it will likely save you a considerable headache and cost later on. 

You will need to register the appropriate content of incorporation or business with your state’s Secretary of State if you are starting a company, nonprofit, limited liability company or professional organization. Additionally, if you will be making taxable earnings, then you’ll have to obtain a Seller’s Permit or Vendor’s License with the appropriate state agency. Many vendors will require that you have this too before they agree to work with you. 

If you are beginning a nonprofit, consult the state Attorney General’s office to find out what charitable licenses and vaccinations are all required. Last, you’ll require the proper organizational files. Speak to your attorney to learn more, but this is not a step to be skipped or overlooked. 

Select an e-commerce and site hosting platform.

To save time and cash, select a favorite e-commerce platform. Most programmers are familiar with these, making it easy to integrate plugins, payment processing, etc.

Find a theme that matches your e-commerce site.

To save time, there are platforms on which you can buy a motif to match a design that resembles the appearance and feel you desire from an e-commerce perspective. You can also use a craft website to personally customise your theme and site.  

As opposed to building your website from scratch, you can download a template from these websites. We learned from experience that the customization process can be an extremely timely and irritating one. If you’re able to find a theme you like, you will probably save yourself quite a headache. 

Make your site live

As soon as you devote to starting your business, make your site live, even before listing any of your merchandise. It doesn’t need to be beautiful or created by website designers but using a working site will be helpful for many reasons: 

To begin with, it is going to allow you to set up validity when negotiating deals with sellers. You will have more than just an idea. Secondly, when reaching out to colleagues and bloggers, they can see that you have a site and are credible. Third, it is going to offer you a place for every one of these resources to connect back to your website, and that’s, of course, crucial for constructing SEO. 

Help A Reporter Out (HARO) is among the greatest tools for PR and SEO any company owner or digital marketer can make use of. It’s totally free, it generates amazing exposure (if executed properly) and it may really be a game changer (again, if implemented properly).

HARO provides journalists with a robust database of resources for upcoming stories and daily opportunities for sources to procure valuable media policy. Subscribe and use this source as much as you can to build credibility and set media relationships for your site. 

If a reporter submits a query, they can receive hundreds of pitches in response. Each question has a deadline as well, so making sure you respond immediately, in the morning, afternoon and evening is essential for both reasons. 

The second key component is finding a genuine industry professional with simple of accessibility. Fortunately, we had a dermatologist in our disposal in any respect times for DermWarehouse. This provided us with an advantage over the thousands of pitches which deal with entrepreneurship (that we still responded to also, but had a lower conversion rate). 

If you spend the time and send back two pitches every day for a one-year time-span, you will get tremendous exposure on a few of the most well-known websites on the web. This won’t only help increase your brand exposure, but it will greatly help your SEO as well.  

Personalized outreach.

If you have successfully implemented a search engine optimization strategy, you certainly understand the value of relationships that are personalized. 

Make certain that you pitch the website something of value. It’s important to perform research on reporters and editors so when you pitch them a story idea the email doesn’t get buried in their inbox or deleted unread. 

Share your expertise through articles teaching readers and cooking aficionados about your most delicious recipes. Send an editor a sample of your pasta sauce to help explain to them why your pesto stands out among the competition. 

If you are just selling your own homemade pasta sauce, then you won’t be addressing seller relationships but if you are selling different brands and goods you’ll be working closely with these sellers. 

The Growth of Online Quoting Websites

I have been working a small business in the carpet cleaning business for over 20 decades. I recall a time before the internet. Back then, marketing your laminated architectural timbers company or freelance graphic designer business was much easier. The YellowPages was a small business owners best friend. A very small ad for your service was sufficient to bring a flow of steady clients for the whole year and beyond. All on a budget of a couple hundred dollars. But as the famous Bob Dylan song goes… oh how the times are changing. In reality, the times have already changed and they will never be the same again.

The proliferation of the net brought with it new advertising channels and new opportunities. For a while things got even better as customers flocked online before many small business owners needed time to adapt. The internet version of YellowPages and Google Adwords gave us first movers a flood of new clients for pennies on the dollar. But over the years profits eroded, competition caught up and things have become much tougher. In the spirit of authentic Aussie innovation new technology platforms are created to help resolve the issue. Lately the most common of them has been online quoting websites used by slab crane hire companies and other local businesses.

These sites allow customers searching for tradies to get free quotes from multiple sources. A customer simply must logon, fill out their occupation information and wait. The platform sends off those details to a couple of tradies that are prepared to pay top dollar for the right to estimate the customer. Of all of these platforms, the most popular ones are OneFlare, Service Seeking and HiPages. These websites are great for customers because it saves them time in obtaining quotes from various companies, whose services vary from gas installations and fixing burst pipes to only solar-powered electricity services. For small business owners such as myself they are also amazing. They supply a marketing channel that we can use to further grow our companies.

But it’s not as easy as it seems… Receiving the clients details is just the first stage in the struggle to obtain more business. You see, at precisely the exact same time as you have obtained the lead, these details also have gone to at least two other companies. They are just as hungry as you are for the excess revenue that a client can bring. How can you stick out from the crowd and make sure you beat the competition? During the past few years my staff and I have become experts at this. We have developed a few methods that will let you take complete advantage of quoting sites. Ensuring you can nab more clients and grow your business.

Find below my seven tips to closing more leads through quoting sites:

  1. Make Contact With The Client ASAP

This one seems so obvious that it is almost silly to mention. I’m amazed how many times a customer tells me I am the only company to call back once they’ve submitted their details. You should call the client once you get the lead. Like, immediately! These sites act fast and whenever the customer hits ‘Send’, their system will broadcast the details to companies. That means when you receive the BEEP in your phone there is a good chance that the customer is sitting at their computer considering a low loader hire from your business! Or they’re sitting there contemplating buying your paint job and interior design services! Catching the customer within this mindset means you will have a high likelihood of them remembering you and winning the quotation. Additionally, it shows you’re efficient and eager for the small business. Those two things go a long way.

  1. Call Them, Do Not Email Them

I get it! In the modern technological world an email is the simple answer. However, it is also the lazy mans way of doing business. A telephone call is a far better way to market. It creates an emotional connection with the customer and shows you’re seriously interested in their job. The one exception might be if they have specifically asked you to email rather than call. Then and only then would I say an email is OK.

  1. Follow Up The Next Day

If you have contacted the client quickly and through telephone then you’re already halfway to winning the job. By this stage you should have already given them a cost verbally or delivered them a quotation via email. The hard work is already done. It is time to give the client a small push. Give them a call the very next day to follow up. Ask them if they need any clarification regarding your quotation (such as what kind of products like engineered timber you use or what it even is in the first place) or additional assistance. I also like to ask a leading question such as, ‘So when can we come around and find those rugs cleaned for you?’ Provided that it is lively and not pushy they will have difficulty saying no. Nobody likes to disappoint a friendly individual.

  1. Keep Your Website Up To Date

This is one I learnt the hard way. 1 day, after finishing all the above measures a customer made a remark; ‘I thought you could have been from business, your website has not been updated in over a year’. She was speaking about my commercial plumbing services company blog and she was dead right. The latest article was over 12 months old! That conversation taught me a valuable lesson. When you have made your initial impression on the phone, many clients will do additional research. Ensure that your site looks professional, is well designed and current.

  1. Invite Reviews For Existing Clients

Now more than ever clients are using online reviews to help in their buying decisions. As with your site they may conduct independent research around your business to be certain that you are on the up and up. That is why it’s important to maintain your online reviews appearing squeaky clean, particularly on Google and Facebook. If your testimonials are sub-par (under 4 stars) or you do not have any reviews at all then it is time to get cracking.

Get in touch with some happy customers and ask them if they would mind leaving a review. If you have hand picked them this will not be difficult. In exchange you may offer them a discount coupon or promotional offer. I make certain you tell them to be entirely honest. Again, if you have hand picked them and picked the proper clients a flood of 5 star reviews should come your way.

The Key to Good Business Copywriting

Words have incredible power when advertising and marketing to your key audience online. If you are trying to inform or persuade an audience for your online business, excellent copywriting skills are crucial to be heard. Not all marketing managers, or individuals are organic wordsmiths, but there are a couple of tips and tricks I have learned since running my own service that will help boost your writing skills so that you can create effective copywriting on your business website. Here are a few hints that will assist you to stick out from the bunch, which will ultimately help your online business website.

– Change the viewer’s perspective

When writing content for websites, being heard and breaking down a viewer’s expectations of any websites content, is an indication of a good copywriter. When a reader does not expect to see something, they are more inclined to take notice and click on the website that intrigues them. The next time you go to write something, stop and consider whether there is a distinct way you could introduce it to stand out from the crowd.

– Identify the reader’s difficulty

This is a timeless copywriting suggestion. It is crucial to identify your audience’s issue and convince them that it is possible to solve it. Concentrate on how you will benefit the reader as opposed to making your copy all about you and your brand. Think about what the audience would be interested in terms of your brand and what you offer. When writers are trying hard to convey a company message on their website, they tend to fall back to jargon. The trick to good copywriting is talking to the reader in the right way. It is still possible to talk about industry-relevant things, but do it with language that is accessible and understandable to everyone. There are particular catchphrases, which are increasingly common in business, but often a lot of them are useless and bothersome. If you are tempted to use phrases like ‘think outside the box’ or ‘proactive approach’, bear in mind this is going to have the opposite effect to what you planned, as they are overused, and are not unique.

-Here are a few suggested alternatives to common clichés:

Thinking outside the box — original

Bring to the table — provide

Leverage — utilize

Strategic — useful

Moving forward — in future

Deliverables — achievable results

Touch foundation — talk/communicate

– Know your goal

Be clear on your goal before you begin writing on your own business website. This can allow you to get right to the point without rambling or incorporating in unnecessary details. Words are powerful, and the more you stick to the stage the more likely it is that your reader will listen.

– Produce a clickable headline

A compelling headline is one that makes the reader want to click on your website and learn more. If it does not make readers want to read on, it is a lost cause from the start, so it is worth taking the time to craft it. Statistics and humor are amazing ways to get your headline clickable. Additionally, it is important to keep it brief and to not give too much away, which means that your reader is forced to click on it to discover more.

Words are powerful, and in understanding how to use them will get you better results as a marketer, for sales copywriting, and ultimately for your online business. The next time you sit down to write a piece of copy for your online business website, consider using these tips from this article and see if they make a difference.

Why your Business Needs a Website

If you operate a broker business and you do not have a mortgage broker website yet, you really ought to look at building one. Why should you build a business website? Your business website can help you create more customers throughout all elements of the customer purchase cycle, like when a prospective customer:

  • Performs a broad online search for what kind of companies can help with solving his/her problems — and finds you.
  • Wants to learn more information about particular businesses to determine if he/she should inquire for more information.
  • Retrieves your contact information to reach out to you either via email or the telephone.

The situations on how it is possible to benefit from having built a company website are endless. Let’s face it, you probably use the world wide web to discover more information about different businesses also, right? Gone are the times when you may only rely on getting your company listed in the Yellow Pages or word-of-mouth. While these “old school” methods continue to be effective to a certain degree, developing a company site is complementary to other techniques of attracting new clients. If you are wondering how to construct a business site, just know that it’s not as difficult as you think, and there are website templates for mortgage brokers. You probably have a million items on your own to-do list, and adding a site to your long list could be overwhelming. This is why we create the ultimate guide, to demonstrate how you can quickly and easily build a professional business website all on your own.

Anyone who has ever used the internet knows you will need to insert a web site address for to any site. While it’s very common for businesses to have domain names, which are exactly the same as their company names, you can select a domain name to add any text phrase you want as long as it isn’t already taken. There are two costs associated with getting your own domain name:

  1. Price to buy a domain name; and
  2. Price to maintain your domain name registered annually.

A domain name typically costs around $10 to $12 to buy, and the identical price range that you keep it registered in your name each year. If someone already owns the domain name you want, you will need to decide on a different domain name or it’s likely to reach the owner to purchase it. This is one of the most important steps when you build custom built websites for your company. This is because if you decide on the ideal site builder software based on your requirements, building a company website can be as relaxing as a walk in the park versus scaling Mount Everest. There are a lot of website builders out there and they all have their own sets of advantages and disadvantages. We have pretty much used most if not all of the web site builders to create all kinds of different sites, so we would like to discuss our recommendations with you.

Never select a professional web design company that is too intricate and offers all kinds of features that you don’t need. It so easy to get enticed with the bells and whistles and make the mistake of falling for company website builders offering the most tools. After all, our brains are naturally wired to feel that more is better. Features are fantastic only if you really use them. Bear in mind, the more features a site builder has, the more complicated and difficult it might be to use. Try to keep things easy and it’ll make your life somewhat easier. When picking the right website builder, ensure to consider your design and technical skill levels, and what complicated features you realistically need for your site.

There is no such thing as a perfect site builder for everybody. Some company website builders will work better for some people. Provided that you do not get side-tracked by fancy tools that you may potentially use 5 years later on, you will be fine. A website template is a pre-made website design that you can increase your site to instantly create a professional looking site without the requirement of hiring a website designer. Think of templates as distinct variations or styles of clothing for sites.

It’s the easiest, design-dummy evidence, and economical way of possessing a well-designed site and you do not need to hire a professional designer to help you do so.

Most business owners believe that their only alternative is to hire a designer to create a custom design for their company site. Well, I’m here to bust this myth. A fantastic website designer has plenty of value to add. If you’ve got a few thousand bucks lying around, and you do not need to bother about creating the site yourself, then hiring a website designer could be the thing to do. But if you have a limited budget or desire to be smart about developing a functional site that’s still professional searching, I’d propose to hold off on hiring a website designer if you have never built a company website before.

You need real data to create a user-friendly site, which caters to your unique customers. As this may be your first site (and possibly a new company), you will most likely not have any ideas on how your customers really experience your brand, what they’re considering, and how they interact with your site. Without this crucial advice, splurging on a custom layout without completely understanding what your customers are actually searching for and how they interact with your site can be a financial catastrophe. We have firsthand encounters with building a custom site too early and that’s the reason we recommend that you begin with an inexpensive, pre-made site template to begin and understand what you really need for your site design. This gives you an opportunity to better understand your site visitors, what they’re searching for, and what’s important to them.

After gathering and knowing this data, you may then think about investing in a customized website design that’s made upon real data of what works best for your company. Remember that you can always invest in custom-built design later as soon as you determine what you really need, not what you believe you need. It is never too late for that.

5 Large Insurance Risks to Wine Companies

In the USA and the world, wine is big business. There were 11,496 Bonded wineries in the nation this past year, up seven per cent, or 760, from 2015, as stated by the U.S. Trade & Tax Bureau and Wine Institute.

All of this wine includes significant risk. Wineries face specific exposures and need the ideal insurance coverages to safeguard them. Listed here are five big loss exposures confronting the business.

 

Exposure 1: Damage or destruction of stock because of perils such as fire or earthquake

On Aug. 24, 2014, a magnitude-6.0 earthquake shook California’s Napa Valley. The quake did major damage to the regions many wineries. According to investigators at the University of California Agricultural Issues Center, at a presentation made to the Alfred E. Alquist Seismic Safety Commission, the wine sector endured $70 million to $100 million in damage due to the earthquake. Infrastructure has been damaged; irrigation methods broke and 330,000 gallons of wine discharged.

The damage could have been even worse if the quake had happened after harvest, once the barrels and tanks could have been complete, or during company hours, when employees and traffic would have been current.

Earthquakes and other catastrophes like fires, are a threat regardless of the region with wineries in the yarra valley Australia often being under threat from bush fire. The ideal coverage can offer security, but it is important to inspect the facts of the coverage

Here are some important questions to ask before a reduction, from the International Risk Management Institute:

What’s your agency’s definition of wine inventory? Does it include Raw materials or finished products?

What’s Going to be covered in case your stock is ruined by earthquake or Fire?

Does your policy cover inventory just in your care, custody and control? Imagine if stock is saved elsewhere?

Imagine if the loss occurs while your stock is in transit?

What’s your insurer’s way of valuation for missing wine inventory? Can they pay the cost that the wine might have been marketed for, or will they cover the market cost of renewable mass wine of like type and quality?

Exposure 2: Wine leakage

The 2014 Napa Valley earthquake caused countless thousands of Gallons of wine to flow, however, smaller wine escapes can happen for many different reasons. Old or improperly maintained equipment can break. A worker could harm a tank or barrel. Other injuries could happen.

Whatever the reason, every fall discharged equals a reduction in product and profits. According to the International Risk Management Institute, a stripped wing nut may result in a leakage costing as large as $240,000.

To make sure that your claims will be completely compensated, analyze your insurance Coverage carefully.

Everything you Want to understand:

What’s your insurance plan’s definition of wine leakage? Does it Include losses due to inadvertent injury, boat failure or human error?

What’s the highest value payable each gallon lost?

Exposure 3: Wine inventory contamination

Wines can be polluted in many ways. In 2016, Moms Around America published signs of glyphosate, a component in pesticides, in wines in California, such as wines which were assumed to be natural and also chemical-free. Other chemicals, from arsenic to fungus, may also affect wine and it is for this reason many high-end buyers seek out wines from yarra valley vineyards and other established regions.

Contamination can reduce the value of your inventory. To be sure you’re Insured, check your own policy.

Everything you Want to understand:

What’s your policy’s definition of contamination?

Does the policy include contamination by human damage and cleaning agents?

Exposure 4: Business disruption

When a disaster like the 2014 Napa Valley earthquake strikes, return to business as normal can take a little while. Buildings might be dangerous for jobs, equipment might have to be mended, and a combo of leaked delayed wine harvests may result in there being less merchandise to market.

To make sure that your winery is protected against company disturbance, review your coverage.

Everything you Want to understand:

What occurs if you have to disrupt business operations because of fire, earthquake or other catastrophe? Which reductions are covered?

How can your coverage react to losses Caused by off-premises power failure?

Exposure 5: Duty

When alcohol is involved, the liability risk is elevated.

Wineries who have dining rooms face the Identical liability problems as bars and other licenced venues such as fresh food stores. If workers violate laws regarding service to minors or inebriated people, legal actions may follow, particularly if a collision happens because of this.

Wineries may also be held liable for accidents that occur on the premises or for harm that arises from this item. As an instance, in 2015, a suit was filed against several California wineries within allegations of elevated arsenic levels. Ensure that your winery has complete liability policy.

Everything you Want to understand:

Which exactly are your commercial general liability coverage limits?

Have you got an umbrella policy?

Have you got liquor liability policy?

Are there some policy exclusions for off-road actions or Special occasions, like weddings and concerts?