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How to Make Sure You Have a Responsive Website

Why Use Email

Why Use Email for your Business, Charity or School

Despite the introduction of GDPR across the EU and the immediate reduction in emails hitting mailboxes, it is clear why you should use email - it remains a cost-effective way to reach your existing and future customers.

Most people still check their emails on a regular basis, and enjoy receiving content that keeps them informed, shares offers, helps them learn, makes them laugh, think and certainly anything that they think is worth sharing. GDPR means that recipients of emails are more aware of the fact that they can opt out of emails, and that when they opted-in, any emails must meet the definition of what they signed up to receive.

Before we start - a warning on using customer data

Our very first advice is around this permission - please do make sure that you are sending communications that relate to the permissions you have received. If you don't have permission to communicate with someone, just don't do it. If you do, make sure you send them something that relates to what they signed up for - contriving reasons to email on different topics leaves your customers or prospects wanting to leave, doubting your credibility, and aside from potential fines, could turn out to be counter-productive.

So, what are the reasons to use Email?

A Cost Effective Way to deliver Personalised Messages

Depending on the service you use, and the volumes you deliver, email is a cost-effective way to deliver communications. Only SMS messaging is read more than email, yet, emails can offer a rich experience, with images, videos, sound, great words, awesome offers or news, and can be designed in almost any way imaginable.

Better still, emails can be delivered either en masse with some personalisation (which means you can at least put it to Fred or Doris, or Mr or Mrs Smith, and sign off with someone they know), or with some major personalisation using the data you may collect - some examples might be that you know that Joe likes to read news about bicycles and airplanes, whilst Joan likes to read news about boats and cars. Or, you might know that David bought some products recently, and would be interested in similar products, or that Dawn was considering holidays recently, and you'd like to send information about those to help her make an informed decision about her booking.  By building groups (otherwise known as segments), you can deliver interesting emails to the right people in the right way, which in turn might help you convert to business.

Keep in touch and grow your relationships

Email is an excellent way to keep in touch with customers, prospects, suppliers, supporters, fundraisers, donors and so much more.  You can share news about your company, or charity, about ideas that might excite them, changes, products and services of interest, or maybe something that you think would inspire them in their day to day lives.

Finding the message to share is all important, but it is proven that a well crafted message to people can genuinely change how they perceive you, and the more constantly you deliver great communications, the more likely they are to want to work with you, to recommend you, to fund-raise or volunteer for you, to deliver work for you or more.

Build the profile of your business, and showcase your expertise

Much like sharing excellent communications, sending relevant emails that showcase people just what you can do really do raise your profile or let people know that you do more than what they signed up to receive. A great example is a marketing company - so many times, customers join and receive work that meets their needs of that day -it might be a website, a mobile app, some email marketing (well we had to squeeze in that we do awesome email marketing!), or search or social marketing.

Research constantly shows that most people need to see a message several times before it actually registers or sinks in (this is unless they have a new need for something), so if you have a product or service that you really think someone would benefit from, letting them know more than once that you offer this, maybe with some great examples really will help you get that message across.

Equally, it has also been shown that some customers look elsewhere for a product or service without even realising that the company that they do business with (and more likely love dealing with) actually deliver it.

So, if you can share more information about what you offer, and on what you have done for others, you are more likely to build more business.

Generate leads and sales

We guess that this one is more obvious. You can use email to share updates and news, but so many companies or charities send emails with details of offers or specific products or services that they know will more likely be interesting to the recipients.

How many times do you get emails outlining ideas for bank holiday weekends, religious holidays, summer holidays? They might include days out, days in doing DIY, ways you can volunteer or raise money, ways you can part with your hard earned cash. Maybe they include discounts, maybe they include time bound offers, or limited runs, or something they know you have bought before, and are now thinking of buying it again.

Either way, well targeted emails (and we mean the right audience with the right messages) really do offer a very efficient way to drive absolute leads or sales right to your door

Build a profile and measure, measure, measure 

So, we have learned that we can cost-effectively deliver timely messages that can inform, inspire, engage and sell. Already email is great part of a marketing mix for you.

But how about a mega reason? Email can allow you to see whether people open an email, whether they click on and read an article of interest, whether they go and buy a product or service, and if they forward the email to someone. You can also tell how long they read the email, how many times it was read (you would be surprised to learn that many people return to read emails many many times).

This information is invaluable. It can help you be informed about whether people are engaged with you (or not - for example, someone who doesn't read your emails may be thinking of leaving, although they may also just be busy), it can inform about what topics they would be interested in and so much more.

You can also track information about when it is optimal to send emails (although we do have much advice about this if you want to ask and learn more), what terminology or imagery might drive calls to action, and you can even undertake tests (often called split or A/B or multivariant testing) where different mails are sent out so you can see which ones drive better responses.

So, as you can see, the information you can gather from email really does add an extra dimension to all of the normal reasons, and delivered in the right way, email marketing can make a genuine difference to your business.

If you would like All Things Scene to help out with Email Marketing, read about our email marketing services, or just get in touch



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 Prepare and Prevent.  Don't Repair and Repent.

 Prepare and Prevent.  Don’t Repair and Repent.

General Data Protection Regulation "GDPR".  It's Coming Fast!   Prepare and Prevent.  Don't Repair and Repent.

As your Social Media Marketing Agency, we're getting prepared for GDPR but need you to ensure you're prepared too; we would be remiss in not engaging with you to get you GDPR ready!  For example, did you know that you should be informing your customers we have access to your data?  Whilst the regulations are still being finalised, amongst other stipulations coming into force, there are at least three major questions you should be asking yourself and informing your clients of early in 2018:

  • Where is the data held?
  • Who has access to the data?
  • Where else is the data stored, such as a hard copy printed list?

Whilst, we appreciate this may cause loss of client data and, within some businesses and industries, the regulations will differ, being prepared and preventing any issues will ensure you are not repairing and repenting later.

What Else Is New?

Your Business and Social Media is a fruit tree.  One that has should have strong and awesome roots and one that's healthy and adorned with fruit whatever the season!   You've got the website for on-line presence.  You've got some, if not all Social Media Platforms.  We're going to remind you of a few of and what's new.

Facebook: As the largest social media platform, Facebook is continually evolving and it's hard to keep on top of changes. 2017 has seen some fundamental developments, not least the various options now open to business pages such as publishing articles or show casing a video as part of your header image, or even an invisible in-box - do you know you have one of those? We're sure you're not utilising your Facebook to it's full advantage and would love to guide you more!

Twitter:  One of the most significant changes on Twitter in 2017 has been character limit.Twitter's character limit is its hallmark; a stubbornly frustrating feature at times and those who have invested in using the social network have come to accept it.  Recently however, this character limit has now changed to a whopping 280 characters and, alongside that, any user handle ie @allthingsscene, additional link, or image, no longer counts towards those 280 characters!  You've now got the opportunity to express yourself a whole lot more!

LinkedIn Pulse:  If Facebook is the social network for sharing memes, LinkedIn is the social network for businesses and a must have for professionals.  LinkedIn, amongst other uses is strictly for exchanging knowledge and ideas and, now has the advantage to allow professionals such as yourselves to keep your finger on the Pulse.  LinkedIn has always provided the ability to showcase your business and 'advertise' however, you can extend your writing and promotion via the mobile app Pulse.  In short, any business professional with this App interested in blogs or reading articles pertaining to specific subject matter, can now find you and your business 'on the go'; just don't forget the hashtag!

Instagram:  Advertising and marketing your business just got massive!  2017 was the year where Instagram became a more dynamic and engaging platform, with far more creative tools and marketing tools to benefit your business.  It was and still is the fastest growing social media platform to aid promotion of a product or service.  By September of 2017, the mobile photo sharing network reached 800 million active users, up from 600 million in December 2016 and still it grows!  Not only that, you can link your Facebook page to your Instagram audience with greater ease and functionality.  Did you know, making a paid promotion through Facebook with a connection via your Instagram, your audience and impression rate will triple.  'A picture is worth a thousand words'; choose wisely and that image or video will reach ten thousand eyes or more.

Google: And so, finally to Google.  Google consistently changes and amends its algorithms and, obviously, in favour of Google!  However, if you and your business is set up correctly, Google will favour YOU and recognise you as 'trustworthy'; 'it' will be more inclined to rate you higher than others.

Did you know for example that your website should hold SSL certificate as a security measure.  This demonstrates that you are a legitimate site and not one to be ignored! Your site should be responsive and where possible, connected to as many social media streams as possible and/or, YouTube as a great added bonus (and second largest search engine on the Internet), as well as utilising Google Plus for business.


All this and much more, can ensure your Internet Shop Window is transparent to them, recognised  and found with much greater ease by YOUR customers and on TOP!

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Social Media Advantages

How Social media can help your business

Social media puts your business out there.

It allows your company to strengthen it's relations with users and keep a strong social engagement with your customers. Your content is easily visible to your current fans and followers and allows great publicity for your business.

Social media can introduce your company to a whole new and potentially prospective audience as well as allow you to communicate with your existing customer base easily and quickly.

It is easier and faster to keep connected

The internet and Social media are collaborating to make companies connect easier with their audience.  Today, company's have so many different social media applications to keep their connections with customers faster than ever. Businesses can connect to all sorts of applications such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Youtube for example.

These allow customers to reach out and comment on your productivity or service, and this is exactly what you want, to receive instant feedback and opinions from customers so that you can improve your company and please them. These applications are fast and efficient to use and all are mobile friendly.

It helps find new customers and expand your audience.

Publicity is the key to gaining new customers and is exactly what social media does for you. Social media is one of the best ways to promote your company; it's a clear way to tell your audience exactly what you do and how you can help them. When trying to find new customers you need to make sure you consider certain criteria such as the content of your publicity.

This will ensure you are enticing the right audience and gaining customers the right way, which is pivotal for your business. When beginning your social media campaigns you want to attract your targeted audience, so at first make sure you are posting and tweeting the right things, for example, share knowledge, tweet advice, showcase service users with your social media and ensure that stats are viable.

These are the things that attract customers to you and get them to engage with you.

You must decide what platforms to use

You need to make sure that you consider your target audience's needs, but also take into consideration the popularity of social media application. You will find that the more popular ones will gain you the most success. However, there are many smaller, more niche outlets that are populated by people with specific interests and may benefit you more depending on your business. You need to look into the social media communication tools available and make sure that they enable you to interact quickly and efficiently with customers or followers.

This is also another criteria which businesses need to take into account, most people use these social media applications on their smartphones because it is more reliable and are a lot faster to use, so you need to ensure your website is mobile friendly

All Things Scene offer you the opportunity to let us take it into our own hands and bring you the best advantages you will find. We can develop a clear brand identity and materials to support your business, so get profitably seen with All Things Scene.

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Brand Identity

Brand Identity

Your brand must attract and intrigue. It's more than just a logo, it represents the first impression and the continued experience your prospects and customers will have with your company. The vision statement should be aspirational and inspirational toward customers. Make sure that you have consistency, this is crucial as preferably you want the same message to be sent out to all customers around the world. Then you can start looking into the real purpose of the company and how you can dare to be different which will make you stand out and get you noticed.

Which strategy to follow?

Your brand strategy defines your personality and shows what you stand for. It represents the company’s image, the way their employees interact and deal with customers, the message they bring out from their company website, proposals and the campaigns they deliver and finally the customer’s opinion. All these things need to be taken into account when planning your strategy.


What differentiates you is not your logo, tagline, slogan or what your website looks like. Your differentiation is what you offer or do that sets you apart from other companies similar to you.
Branding is layered, sculpted and tested and the more meaningful people find your brand, the more they’ll be willing to pay for it. They will then invest in your brand emotionally and become more motivated to spread the word and this is exactly what you want. This is why you have to stand out from the crowd, be different and find an innovative way to promote yourself.


Brand positioning is the key of a marketing strategy. Having a strong brand positioning is the single feature that sets you apart from your competitors. The positioning is the base for developing and increasing the required knowledge and perception of the customers. It involves identifying the points of similarity and difference to create a proper brand image between you and your competitors.
The positionment can also be helped by a “SWOT” analysis. This is a very useful tool which can help you determine and look into the values of your company. They are put into 4 categories, strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. The strengths are the characteristics of the business or project that give it an advantage over others, the weaknesses relate to the characteristics that place the business or project at a disadvantage relative to others, the opportunities are elements that the project could exploit to its advantage and finally the threats are the competitors that surround you.
After this analysis you can then look into moving forward and adapting your company's plan to these 4 criteria.


Building a credible and actionable strategic platform requires both a rigorous analysis and a creative synthesis. Your strategic platform gives you the essential foundation needed to express your brand in everything you say and do. It will motivate and direct your employees, and give your customers and partners a reason to connect with you.

Publicity for your brand

Make sure your brand is being seen in the right way. This is key to gaining new customers and expanding your name. You need to ensure sure you are using all the latest trends and are adapting to your audience's needs.

All Things Scene

Here at all All Things Scene, we can help you achieve your goals and ambitions that you envision for your business.
We provide all the elements and materials which you need when starting a new company or brand.
So get profitably seen with All Things Scene!

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How to Make Sure You Have a Responsive Website

How to Make Sure You Have a Responsive Website

How to Make Sure You Have a Responsive Website

Technology has come a long way in the last ten to fifteen years. Back in the day, screen size used to be a bit of an issue but not much. Download times were slower than a sleeping tortoise because there were dial up connections and we all had to settle for simple designs and small, quickly downloadable images.

Thankfully things changed quite quickly. Technology improved, we developed new devices and super-fast connections like broadband and Wi-Fi were invented. All this innovation, though, has made it a little trickier for anyone who wants to produce a website that every visitor can see using whichever device they are accessing it on.

Here are our top five things to look out for if you want a fully responsive website.

Resizing for the screen

In other words do you look good whichever device your potential customer is looking at your website on? There are big interactive screens, tablets, pcs, smartphones and, more recently, wristwatches, all of which we can use to connect and visit our favourite sites. What looks good on the big screen doesn’t necessarily translate well to a small one so you need to check, if you haven’t done already, how your existing site looks on different devices.

Fast page downloads

A desktop pc has a bigger operating system and is able to cope with larger files than a smartphone. Whichever device your customer is viewing your site on, the information needs to download quickly. Time and again we find sites that have slower downloads of pages lose customers because people simply hate to wait. Having too much information, large files and over complex design can all drag out the time it takes for a page to appear. And if a site takes a while to come up on a desktop, you can bet your bottom dollar the problem will be exacerbated on something smaller like a mobile.

Clickable links

There’s nothing worse on a smartphone when you have two or three links close together, especially if you have big fingers. Again it comes to what looks good on the big screen can often appear entirely different on a small one. Make sure that your links are spaced well and that there is enough area for people to use their touch screens without having to fiddle about too much. This can be a problem with devices such as tablets where on many sites side menus can take a few presses before you hit the right link or get a response.

Go bigger and simpler for small screens

The smaller the screen the simpler you need to go. Check out a site like Amazon and then have a look at their mobile app and you’ll see what we mean. The essence for smartphone screens and even tablets is that you need to present your information as clearly as possible so that you get the best response for your customer. That may well mean having, for instance, bigger select and buy buttons, more uniform ordering of posts and more intuitive ways of viewing images.

And finally, are you missing something?

The problem with adapting your website so that it is responsive on different devices is that you may well miss something out. This is particularly relevant if you run an e-commerce site where customers need to easily access different services. In your rush to downsize and simplify you may well miss out vital tools or information so it’s a good idea to give everything a test run to make sure that your brand identity and your provision are all catered for properly.

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Can Any Inbound Linking Hurt My Ranking?

Can Any Inbound Linking Hurt My Ranking?

The answer is simple - inbound linking cannot hurt your search ranking. How is this known for certain? Well, for one, if inbound were to hurt your rank, your competitors would continually link to your site from link farms. Such a scenario is beyond your control. For this reason, Google cannot penalise your site for any inbound linking.

On the other hand, you can be penalised for illegitimate external linking. It is highly advised that you not link to any website or group of sites that may be involved in shady or unethical search practices. Doing so could result in being black-listed by Google, ultimately ruining your SEO strategy. Avoid this situation at all costs and ensure that all external links point to trusted and reliable sources.

Having been involved in the internet industry for a large part of my working life, I have spent a lot of time researching and browsing the internet and reading websites, mainly for client design research, but also for occasional personal use. The one thing that I find most disappointing, is the apparent lack of thought going into website creation and it's purpose, which in turn creates a missed opportunity for many e-businesses to become successful.

My personal perspective on e-businesses and their websites, is that if they don't take pride in their websites and show to their customers a passion for what they do, chances are, they won't take pride in their products, and the passion for providing good customer service will also be missing.

What you must remember, is that your web site is a direct reflection of you and your business. The appearance of your site is the most important factor in determining your potential success rate. In short, if your site doesn't look professional or pleasing to the eyes at first glance, the majority of people will assume your products and/or services to be of similar poor standard.

At the other end of the scale, you could fall into the trap of going overboard with the design and over complicate things with incorporating high costing flashy graphics. You may end up with a great looking and highly aesthetic web site, but the danger with this is that your site may prove unreliable and at times may take too long to load. There is nothing worse for a customer than trying to visit a slow loading site, and most will close the browser window in complete frustration. As i'm sure you will be able to work out, this will ultimately cost you business.

The other major consideration (if not the most important) when designing a website is your content. Not just links, but content with passion, relativity, and understanding to the customer. When someone is searching for something in particular and they visit your web site, they're visiting for a reason. Your site has something they want, Whether this be your product, service, and/or information. If they are unable to obtain what they're looking for, they move on to the next site and so on. To be able to get your visitors to stay and look around your website, you must give them a reason to. Providing them with quality content will achieve this goal.

There have been countless other lists and articles on the subject of website designing mistakes, but I have compiled my own list, from a designer's perspective, of some pitfalls to look out for when considering either designing a website or purchasing a template. Remember that the simple, clear, informative and well designed sites are the most successful. If you are a current e-business and your sales aren't what you had hoped, consider the above and take some time to look openly and honestly at your site. Spending money on improving your website is a much better investment than throwing money away on trying to advertise and market a site that just isn't good enough to sell your product or services.

If you are looking for a template or a custom designed website, be aware of the above and be prepared to ask your chosen designer or template provider questions to ensure that your hard earned money doesn't go to waste on an inferior design, which contains any of the above. Asking questions won't cost you a penny, and in doing so could actually save you a lot of money over the long term. Getting your website right first time is vital in terms of saving money and time. The earlier your website is up and running properly, the quicker you will be able to reap the rewards of a successful e-business.

The prime mistake Newbies make is to put their website name into the Anchor Text. Unless your website contains your keywords this is a waste of a perfectly good link. Remember that Google puts a very big importance on those Anchor texts and they should always use your keywords.

The second mistake is trying to put every single keyword into your anchor text and give that to everyone. There are two mistakes with this technique. 1.) Google assigns weight to each word in anchor text so if there are a lot of filler words (common in long sentences), they will "dilute" your target words.

According to two recent surveys, conducted by Forrester Research and Gartner Group, ecommerce sites are losing $1.1 to $1.3 billion in revenue each year due to customers click- away caused by slow loading sites. If a page takes too long to load, your potential customer will not wait. Ultimately costing you business.

Make sure you include proper META tags in the HTML of each page of your web site. META tags are HTML code that enable the search engines to determine what keywords are relevant to a specific site. About 80 percent of all web site traffic originates from the eight major search engines. It would be a good idea to make sure you've done your homework and fully understand how to optimise your web pages prior to designing your site. This will save you a lot of headaches in the long run. For further information on META tags read the tutorial entitled, "Building Your Site."

Be cautious when selecting your background and text colors. Busy backgrounds make text difficult to read and draw the attention away from the text. Always be consistent with your background theme on each page of your site. Your site should be nicely organised and uniform throughout. Keep in mind, colors affect your mood and will have an affect on your visitors as well. Bright colors such as yellow and orange, cause you to become more cheerful or happy, while colors such as blue and purple have a calming effect. Dark colors such as brown and black have a depressing effect. A good rule of thumb would be to use colors based upon the type of effect you're trying to achieve.

Your main page should specifically let your visitors know exactly what you're offering. How many times have you visited a site and never figured out exactly what they were selling? If your potential customer can't find your product or service, they definitely won't waste a lot of time looking for it. They'll go on to the next site and probably never return. They're visiting your site for a specific purpose. They want something your site offers. Whether it is information, a product or service.

Design your site to be easily navigated. Place your navigation links together at the top, bottom, left or right side of the page. Use tables to neatly align your links. If you are planning on using graphic buttons to navigate your site, keep in mind that with each graphic you add to your page, it will take that much longer for your page to load. If you only have a handful of navigational links, using graphic buttons will be fine. If you have over six links, it would be wise to simply use text links to keep your load time down.

If you must use frames, use them sparingly. Frames, if not properly used, can make your site look unprofessional. Avoid making your visitors have to scroll from side to side to view your content. This can be very irritating and cause your visitors to leave. If you must use frames, offer your visitors a choice. Frames verses No Frames. Try to keep the number of clicks required to get from your main page to any other page on your site down to four. Keep in mind, your visitors may enter your site from pages other than your main. Always have good navigational links on every page and place your company logo on each page.

Design a quality e-book to give to your visitors. It's not as difficult as it sounds. If you can create a web page, you can create an e-book. The focus of your e-book should compliment your web site. Simply write about your passion. If your passion is sales, then you could share some of your knowledge and experience by designing your e-book to provide a complete sales training guide. If your passion is home based business, you could write an e-book about how to start your own home based business. If you're writing about your true passion then you shouldn't have any trouble coming up with something to write about. For further information on e-books, read the article entitled, "How to Create an E-book and Drive Massive Traffic to Your Site by Giving It Away."

Having been involved in the internet industry for a large part of my working life, I have spent a lot of time researching and browsing the internet and reading websites, mainly for client design research, but also for occasional personal use. The one thing that I find most disappointing, is the apparent lack of thought going into website creation and it's purpose, which in turn creates a missed opportunity for many e-businesses to become successful.

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Incorporation of Company Branding and SEO

Incorporation of Company Branding and SEO

SEO is not an exact science. This becomes apparent when trying to incorporate both SEO and branding into a strategy. This process is finicky to say the least. On the one side, SEO deals with the placement of keywords and phrases. On the other side, branding deals with company loyalty and culture. Incorporating both sides dilutes the prominence of both. But eliminating one or the other may not meet all strategic and marketing goals.

Once again, it should be emphasised that SEO is a series of guidelines rather than an exact science. Having said that, the following recommendation can be used to satisfy both sides of the equation. In general, keywords and phrases (i.e. SEO) should remain the focus of any early-stage company, while the incorporation of company branding should appear later in the evolution. This is simply a general statement and should not be taken word for word.

The reasoning is pretty straightforward. At first, no-one knows the name of your company, but perhaps they are searching for your products or services. In other words, you want to target keywords and phrases that focus around your offering rather than your company. As you build loyalty and credibility, branding becomes more important. It’s at this point that you may want to incorporate corporate messaging to strengthen the relationship with customers and instill trust in your brand.

One final thought about branding: if a searcher types in the name of your company, they are likely to find your website anyways. This is due mostly to anchor text and back-links. Therefore, optimising for the company name is rather insignificant in most cases.

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Launch Your Business - 6 Tips

Launch Your Business – 6 Tips

6 Things to Think About Before You Launch Your Business

Here at All Things Scene we can help guide and navigate you on how best to help you achieve top results when you launch your business.   From the initial concept and processes of what to consider, the design of your website, how best to approach social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, etc. and, exactly what approach that should be.

6 Things to Think About Before You Launch Your Business

Getting online whether starting from scratch or migrating an existing business on to the digital plane is never an easy feat. But as with most things in life, planning ahead is your best option. Think rationally, decide what you want to achieve and most importantly; never be afraid to ask for help.

These 6 starting points will put you in a better place as you Launch Your Business:

  1. Decide what to sell and through which media platform

A crucial decision, if you are serious about a plan to launch your business, one important point is choosing what to sell online. Once you have decided on your niche product or service it is important that you stick to it and iron out those inevitable wrinkles in the sales plan. Take what you know about the sales track for the product in the shops and apply as much as you can to your online approach.

  1. Where will you sell your products?

Leave the geeky stuff to the professionals. An easy route for any online business is a full-service ecommerce platform. This can help you get started with very little technical effort, and its flexibility will support your business as you grow. If you choose to go it alone and set up a standalone website; the first step is deciding on an available domain name and securing hosting which will support ecommerce, then you can set about developing your site. This is not an easy task for an amateur.

There are of course easier options for selling online through established channels such as EBay, Amazon and Etsy.

  1. Would an online store such as Etsy or EBay be right for you?

Sites such Etsy or EBay may sound easier initially, but you would not have the brand control that having your own website gives you. With your own site you remain in complete control of your product, marketing and pricing so that you can truly scale your business. Many third party sites like Amazon and EBay take a percentage of your cut from the start and this makes it harder to see how profitable your business is.

  1. Funding for an online business

Funding for a start up will always be a challenge, and launching any business is costly. The good news is that setting up online when starting small is a greatly reduced expense from setting up in the high street. You can attempt to gain funding from your bank with a detailed business plan which a business advisor can help you draft or you could go through a more modern approach such as a kick-starter campaign which many big thinkers have had success with in the past but my advice would be to start small and build up. Securing large sums of money to throw into grand ideas at the beginning might prove frivolous as you go on

  1. Get the right look and think about establishing a trustworthy brand

Online shoppers make a snap decision within seconds of loading a website, whether you are selling double-glazed windows or perfume or bespoke stationary, and that all important first few seconds will establish if they follow through with their transaction. Getting them there is half the battle but completing the “checkout” is of course the most important. It is not just about looks though, site functionality must be smooth and easy to navigate otherwise a frustrated customer will simply sign off. This is where having the professional’s design the site pays off.

A trusted brand is an exceptionally powerful tool. People are creatures of habit and will always go back to a site or business they have used before and branding helps create this loyalty. So don’t be afraid to enlist professional designers to help you develop a logo or colour scheme for your site because something as small as a recognisable logo will attract repeat business.

  1. Will you use social media and email marketing for your business?

Once you have decide on your product, your site and business plan you will want to keep momentum going and marketing is invaluable.

Email marketing is highly measurable and highly targeted, this will generate your highest ROI out of any organic channel. Email marketing can also be outsourced to various free apps or marketing agencies can guide you through the pitfalls. With Social Media having such an extensive reach to all manner of folks you would be a fool not to utilise this direct line to potential customers. There is no shame in employing a professional social media writer or marketing company that can grow your online presence and this will free up you valuable time to focus on the running of the business.

Following these as a basis for starting up your ecommerce venture will hopefully keep you on track and motivate you, clear small steps is all it takes to quick gain pace and increase your business into a fully fledge success.

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Is Search Engine Submission Necessary?

Is Search Engine Submission Necessary?

The simple answer is no - search engine submission isn’t necessary. The majority of search engines nowadays (most notably Google) crawl and index pages by following links. Using that logic, a single inbound link from any already-indexed page will identify your page to the engine. Subsequently, if that page links to other pages within your site, they will also be indexed… and so on.

For this reason, inbound linking is very important. In fact, acquiring back-links may be the most important of SEO. In theory though, a website owner shouldn’t have to ’scout’ or ‘hunt’ for links. If the presented content is of interest, useful, and/or important, there is a natural tendency among web users to link to information. This is the basis for the Google PageRank algorithm.

With all due respect, submitting your site to the search engines can’t hurt. Plus, it only entails about 5 minutes of added work assuming you only submit to the big guys. And once is enough… you don’t need to submit your site more than once. It doesn’t help or get your site crawled any quicker or more often.

It should be noted that submitting your site to Google, Yahoo, MSN, and many others doesn’t cost a fee. Many SEO companies assert that you need to pay to be indexed. This isn’t the case and I would stay away from these companies. They are money hungry and aren’t looking out for your best interest.

Would you ever consider going on a vacation across the country without bringing a map? It is hard enough to find your way in some places with a map. How hard would it be if you tried this adventure without one? Yet, this is exactly what people do every single day in the online world. They tried to build their own businesses online without having a roadmap to success. Then, after months or years of just wandering around online, they give up in frustration and quit. They walk away saying that the Internet doesn't work for them. The reason it didn't work is that they didn't pick up a map and follow it!

You don't have to end up lost in the online shuffle. Below I will give you ten steps to help you map out your course and get you started in the right direction. It isn't everything that you need to know by any stretch of the imagination, but it will give you a basic foundation to build upon.

Consider it your beginner's map to Internet marketing profits.

1. Choose a targeted market

The biggest mistake most people make when starting a business is that they choose a product and then try to find people who want to buy it. If that is the direction you are starting from on your journey, then you are going the opposite direction from your destination. Wise businesses operate from a different concept. They pick a market first, and then they pick a product those people are searching for. In other words, instead of trying to find leads to sell their product to, they find targeted leads and then ask them what they are wanting to buy.

Don't even consider starting a business until you know exactly where you are going to get your leads from. Think targeted customers first. Then, you can come up with a product for those individuals. Would you rather have 1,000 hits a day at your site of a general audience OR 10 hits a day of people who are desperate and willing to pay any price to buy your products? If you are smart, you will choose the people who are ready to buy!

2. Develop a Product

Next, you need to develop a product or service for this market. Don't just jump on the bandwagon of affiliate programs when you come to this step. There are three major ways to selling a product online:

a. You create your own exclusive product.

This is the best opportunity you have. If you develop your own product, you can pick it's price, sell reprint rights to others, set up an affiliate program, etc. Don't tell me you can't do this. Tens of thousands of innovative entrepreneurs have used their own information products to get their careers started. You can to.

Throughout your life, I am sure that there is something you have learned that you can share in a How-To product. Maybe you know someone else who has the right knowledge for a How-To product and you could offer to help them create a product if you both shared the rights to it. Don't just jump past this opportunity and say it can't be done.

b. You buy the rights to a product or you JV for an offline product.

You can buy the rights to successful products for $500 - $20,000. If someone else has created a product that you know your targeted market is interested in, offer them a large up-front fee for the rights to it. This way you can get your own product and never have to pay a penny in royalties. You can also search through magazines your targeted market reads and look for products people are selling. Then, give them a call and ask for the exclusive Internet rights to their product for a certain percentage of the profits or an up-front fee.

c. You join an affiliate program.

If you are just starting out online, this can be a good choice. You do have to keep in mind though that it doesn't offer quite the profit potential that creating your own product or obtaining rights to one has.When choosing an affiliate program, make sure that it is something your targeted market cannot be without. They absolutely have to have it. Also pay special attention to the profits you receive from each sale.

If you are only be paid 5% commissions on the sales of $10 books, you will only be making 50 cents per customer. It would take 2,000 customers just to product $1,000 in profits. You cannot make money like this online! Look for higher priced products and higher commissions...especially commissions in the 25% or higher range.

3. Create a USP

Create a Unique Selling Position for your product or service. Too many companies are just trying to be me-too companies online. You cannot be just like the next guy and expect to make a profit in a global economy. Just going to the next guy's web site to order is too easy for your customers.

You have to create a Uniqueness to your product or offer. What can you offer that no one else can? Can you offer better guarantees, better customer service, more technical support, faster shipping, or lower prices. Think of something that will set you apart from all of your online competitors and tell in complete detail what it is.

4. Pick a Domain Name and Hosting Service

The next step is to pick a domain name that describes your company, USP, and offer. Try to keep them as short and descriptive about your business as possible. Avoid using dashes or misspellings of your product. Both of these things will cause people to leave out part of your domain if they type it in. Someone else will be getting free traffic that you worked hard to obtain.

For hosting, I personally choose to use Virtualis since they have the Fastest customer service and technical support in the industry. Test them out. They will respond to you within the hour...anytime 24 hours a day. No other company I have ever been with has even come close!

5. Develop a Customer Friendly Site

The next step in the process is to develop your web site and put it up for the world to see. If you are planning to own a full-time Internet business, I recommend that you learn how to design the site yourself using one of dozens of programs which are readily available at any software store.

You will save so much money if you can do the work yourself on just the editing alone as your site grows. If your main business is offline and you are just adding a secondary income, then you may want to consider having a professional do your site for you.

When designing your site, keep the customer in mind always. Provide order forms for online credit card orders. Make all of the links easy to understand. Try to keep your site simple. Think like a customer, not the business owner.

Your customers are not nearly as interested in your business as you are. Make sure to put the benefits of your site and your USP right on top of the site. More than half of the web surfers never drop down past the first screen full of information. So, you have to give them the information they need as quickly as possible. The rules for any type of business are Benefits, Benefits, and more Benefits.

6. Offer a Freebie

One of the major keys to developing traffic and sales at your site is to always offer some type of freebie as a drawing factor. For example, I offer dozens of free reports, weather reports, news, and more. My greatest drawing factor throughout the past 8 months though has been the two free e-books which we offer on our site to people who subscribe to this newsletter.

You need to come up with a freebie no matter what type of business you are in. Create a free report and give it away. Add in a message board or some other type of CGI program on your site. Give a free demo of your software. Create something that you can give away for free on your site to draw in the visitors.

7. Start Your Own Opt-In List

Almost every full-time Internet marketer I know has developed their own Opt-in email list of some type. For most of them, it is a weekly newsletter they send out by email. For others, it may be a Tip of the Day. Other people might just have a list that they send out important updates to.

No matter what you choose to do, odds will be on your side if you concentrate on building a list of loyal email subscribers. Very rarely do customers purchase from you the first time they visit your site. Most of them will get on your list, hang out for a few weeks or months, and then they buy from you. They have to get to know you before they are willing to spend their money with you.

I have found that the most effective leads come from offline advertising. For example, you could purchase ads in a popular targeted magazine for your business. You could also purchase a postcard in one of the card decks. Start up a co-op and get 10 other people to advertise with you and run your own ads for free. Offline leads which come to your site often turn out to contain a much higher percentage of buyers than any of the online advertising methods.
Once you put our short 10 step outline together you have a basic map to creating your own Internet success story. You wouldn't consider going on a trip without a map. So don't try to go it alone online without a map.
Terry Dean's Brand New Fr-e eBook, "10 Quick and Easy Ways to Increase Profits to ANY Web Site Overnight!" Reveals More Time Tested Proven Internet Marketing Secrets Than 99% of the Paid Products Available...Showing You Step-By-Step How to Increase Your Traffic, Drop Your Expenses, and Drive Your Profits Through the Roof

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Planning to Market Your Business and Basic Marketing Strategies – Tips for Dave!

Planning to Market Your Business and Basic Marketing Strategies – Tips for Dave!

What marketing strategies work for businesses today? What are the best ways to get customers to know about a business, contact them or make a purchase? Finding the right marketing strategies for a small business has always been challenging, but the growing number of marketing channels makes it even more difficult to decide what marketing strategy to use. So, what is the best way of promoting your company? Unfortunately, there is no guaranteed marketing idea that will send a steady stream of customers to your door. No matter what your business does, you must use multiple techniques to attract and keep customers.

Firstly you will need to identify who your target market is. It’s no good planning an amazing marketing strategy with no idea who you want to aim at. What type of person will buy the product or service? How old is the person likely to buy it? How much money will they need? Where are they most likely to look for this product? There is a myriad of profiles that your ideal customer might be. Narrowing down the target audience for specific marketing strategies will help make them more successful at gaining the customer you want.

You have to promote what the customer wants to buy. Most of the time a customer will not want the service you perform; they want a solution to a problem or the benefit that the service provides. For example, with a plumber, the customer doesn’t really care about plumbing; they just want their leaky pipe fixed. If you need help finding out what your customer’s want to buy, ask them. You can use this information to get better results from your marketing by focusing on specific problems your service solves or benefits you provide. Making yourself a trusted resource to your customers and prospects will help when your marketing plan goes live. Customers like to buy from people they know and trust, and don’t like being ‘sold’ a product. Become a trusted source by providing information to help customers make a good choice, rather than forcing a sale of something the customer doesn’t want, they’ll be less likely to trust you or provide you with any more custom. Setting up professional profiles can really help with a marketing strategy.

It’s a well known fact that a huge number of the public use public media. Set yourself or your business up on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and Google+ and include a link to your website on all of these pages. If you meet a potential prospect and they happen to lose your business card, if they type your name into a search engine they will be more likely to find you through social media. You can also use discussion groups to put across useful information or resources, widening the chance of a bigger audience for any marketing campaign.

Now to start with actual marketing techniques, the most basic would be to write articles to post onto your website. Although this may not attract people, it will help once people to come to the business. Well written, expert articles can help the credibility of your business; as long as the articles are related to your products or your services they will have a better impact. Don’t be afraid to include an ‘about the author’ section to give customers a little bit of information about yourself, or whoever wrote the article.

A really simple way to start marketing is with brochures or flyers, you can print off a small amount and hand them out in the local area, attend some membership group meetings and hand them out here if allowed. It might seem like a basic and flawed method for finding customers, but if you start locally, you are onto a winner!

Volunteering to speak at local business groups, which are always in need of interesting speakers to attract members to their meetings, can really help attract other business to you if you’re B2B based. Talk a little about yourself and what your business specialises in, but mostly focus on the audience’s information needs and problems they want solving. Use your social media presence to connect with people. Tweet, mention, comment, like, link to your articles, use others articles. Just staying active on social media can be a really effective way of marketing. Social media can help grow your name and get you speciality seen by the customers you want to see it. As well as social media you can use email to stay in contact with people and grow your name, don’t be afraid to ask for recommendations, get your name out there. Having a fully functioning and attractive website is the perfect way to show you are a legitimate business and using your website to promote your business can also be a very good technique for marketing. As a majority of people will use the internet to find any product or service they need, making sure that your website is running smooth and is great at grabbing attention will be key to marketing well. A poorly organised, slow and boring website will give a very bad opinion to customers about your business.


Finally, never stop marketing. Once business starts coming in, it’s easy to think that you can ease off of marketing or networking yourself, but this would be a massive mistake. In order to keep customers coming in regularly, you need to keep the pressure up on your marketing strategy.

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