How Does Content Marketing Work

Content Marketing ResearchI researched for ages before I bought my cordless drill. Buying the wrong drill would not be the end of the world; I can live with a chuck that doesn’t take 13mm bits or a motor with a little less power. Or I can buy a better drill later.

Committing to the wrong brand is another story. Batteries only fit one brand and I’d be stuck with the wrong brand for all my cordless power tools or I’d end up with a mishmash of batteries and tools, each battery compatible with only one tool.

I’m not alone in this. People do lots of research before they buy.

Your future customers (and your current ones) are constantly asking for sound advice on every aspect of your products and services.

They ask you, your competitors, their friends and they ask Google.

Building Your Content Marketing Assets

content marketingContent Marketing is the process of creating that advice, making it easy to find and using it to draw the right kind of customers (i.e. profitable ones) into your business and through your sales funnel.

Articles on your website or blog attract people from search engines who are ready to buy. Articles make it easy for you to email a link to customers who have questions and they make it easy for your customers to spread the word about your business in a positive light.

We start by connecting your content to your keywords. Keyword research tells us what content people want. Instead of guessing a topic for a good article, we choose a keyword that is both relevant to your ideal customers and frequently searched by them, then we write an article that we know they are searching for.

We add the article to your website or blog and optimise it for the chosen keyword. This maximises your ranking in Google for the article.

Each time you publish an article your rankings get a boost for all related keywords. Over time your collection of content grows, along with your search engine rankings and the number of high quality enquiries or sales from your web site.

Google rewards constant improvement. Regularly adding quality articles to your website is a powerful way to build your rankings (and if you already have a collection of articles, optimising and publishing them is an extremely cost effective form of marketing).

Here are some more ideas for content:

  • list of resources or how to guide
  • FAQ or SAQ (should ask question) – what they don’t know they need to know
  • checklist, cheat sheet, workbook or template
  • video yourself presenting training or a seminar
  • case study, white paper or report
  • video of you explaining something
  • ebook (PDF) created from existing book/articles/content

Leveraging Your Content Assets

Too often, people write great articles and don’t get around to promoting them thoroughly. You’ve done the hard work of writing the article; this is where you maximise the return on your asset.

Send the article to your mailing list. Start building a mailing list TODAY if you don’t have one – it’s easier than you think. Your happy customers will eagerly read your advice and look forward to each article.

Create a series of articles if your content is long. A series of articles (even 2 or 3) creates a mini web of high quality cross linked content that Google loves.

Post your article to social media. Use Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram or YouTube for video blogs that Google loves. Use the platforms your customers use and ignore the ones you can’t stomach (did somebody say Twitter?)

Search engines see these links as social proof and it helps your rankings. Especially if people share them and comment on them.

Boost/promote your post on social media to get it read by more people. This can be cost effective when done well.

Run a competition on social media and give something away that’s of high value to your customers and costs you as little as possible. Ensure your competition links to a page on your website so you get the ranking boost.

Mention other people or businesses in your post if you can find a genuine reason to do so and tag them. This earns you more social proof, especially if they like, share or comment on your post.

Content Marketing Plans

Blog vs Article

There’s lot of debate over the difference between articles and blogs. Articles are supposed to be longer, more formal and have perfect grammar. Blogs can include your opinion, your personality and advice or interviews from a 3rd party. A blog is also social; it includes links for sharing in social media and a section for readers to comment at the bottom.

I’m more interested in how your writing can help your business than in formal definitions. If your advice needs to be shorter or longer to hit the spot then that’s that length it should be. If long, formal articles with perfect grammar or voicing your opinion help to establish you as the trusted expert then do it.

Oops, that was an informal opinion. Does that make this a blog? Who cares – as long as you get value from it!

To engage or not to engage? That’s the choice you need to make before you choose your platform. If you think people will comment on your writing then use a blog with a commenting feature.

If you think they won’t comment then it doesn’t matter what platform you use. Leave the comments off. It’s better to not allow comments than for everybody who reads your articles to see that you can’t get anybody to engage.

Close The Deal

Having attracted all these high quality leads who are itching to buy from your website, this would be a good time to sell them something!

Your website is a sales funnel. People typically find your content and pass through your pages in a similar sequence. Understanding that sequence and including a simple call to action at the bottom of each page means you influence where they go next.

Does somebody who has just met you and read your guide need to visit your about us or testimonials page before they are willing to buy? Or are they ready to buy now, after reading your article?

Add links to the bottom of your articles and encourage people to take the next action you think they are ready for:

  • About Us
  • What do our customers say
  • Get a free review of your insurance
  • Browse our range of power tools

When you start to see your content as an asset that improves your search engine rankings, establishes you as the trusted expert and then leads people through your sales funnel and convinces them to pick up the phone/complete your online enquiry form/give you their credit card number, then that’s exactly what it does!

Need help to figure out the content marketing process that will work best for you?
We give good advice.

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Is YOUR website a perfect TEN or a perfect “Belly Flop”?

Image: Analytics Bounce RateIf I asked “What is your Bounce Rate?” no doubt many different thoughts and images would spring to mind and I might get a variety of answers. A golfer would think about his golf ball hitting the green from a perfect high wedge shot. An Olympic highboard diver may shudder about the possibility of a “Belly Flop” from the 10-metre platform (ouch).

In the intriguing world of web design, a Bounce is when a website visitor only views a single page on a website and immediately leaves the site without visiting any other pages. Measuring your website Bounce Rate can be as painful as the highboard diver, in that your home page may just be a great big “Belly Flop”. Its effectiveness to encourage visits to other pages quite often fails miserably because one of many mistakes have been made. Here are a few reasons why visitors “bounce” from your web pages:

A Non-Responsive Design. Your website is not compatible with mobile devices such as smartphones or handheld tablets etc. The pages do not adapt to the device being used to view the site and in frustration, the visitor leaves and moves on to your competitors’ easy to use website.

Non-Professional image photography. The page images are poor quality and project a cheap or amateur display of your products or services. Professional images attract interest and make an emotional connection between the image and the written content.

Easy to read Fonts. Not using a universal website font. An easy to read font and a size no less than 11pt will be more effective on any device rather than the one below, which is your Mum’s favourite and she thinks it looks pretty and will work perfectly.

Image: A Pretty Font Like This

Professional Logo and Brand. Similar to amateur photography, a Logo that is not professionally designed or an unbranded page layout will immediately impact the visitor’s impression of your business and service. Position your Logo within every Page Header and link it back to your Home page for consistent navigation.

Know the Page Fold. Your Call to Action (CTA) is below the Page Fold on all your pages, so people have to scroll down to see it. All the more reason to add your email or phone number within every page header so at least whatever page the visitor is on your contact details are always easy to find.

Too much Clutter. Your pages overwhelm the visitor with too much information and their brains shut down. This has to be balanced against ensuring you have sufficient quality content to maintain your reader’s interest. Short sharp paragraphs with Keyword rich headings are the most effective.

So how big a “Belly Flop” do you think your website makes after reading these simple to fix problems?

And finally, let’s not forget the value of testing various alternatives before settling on the best changes to eliminate your “Belly Flop”.

There is a recognised case study where Microsoft values the selected shade of blue it uses on its search pages and it’s worth an additional $80 million of annual revenue. An earlier version used a lighter shade of blue, however, in testing that colour and hue it was less effective than the selected one now in use.

Microsoft also tested the Verdana font before eventually settling on the model Arial font. So even for Microsoft, simple is better and that’s what Anyware will deliver to you when we work with you to make YOUR website the most effective for your marketing budget.

Contact Us about our website review so you will score a perfect 10 every time a new visitor arrives at your improved website.

Happy Marketing,
The Anyware Team

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What is an 80/20 website evaluation?

Image: Pareto PrincipleIt’s called the Pareto Principle and it applies to a website just the same as it applies to  your sales conversions or your client revenue sources. Stop and think for a moment, which clients produce 80% of your revenue? That’s right, probably only 20% of the total and you make sure that 20% gets most of your attention. If not, this can be an article topic for another time.

Mr Pareto says 20% of effort produces 80% of the results. So applying this to your website it’s logical to assume only 20% of the current content is effectively attracting your most valuable prospects or clients and converting into revenue opportunities. Many web pages are cluttered and full of Information Links, Call to Actions, Social Media buttons, Blog posts, Sidebar links, etc, that are never opened. All these add to the “clutter” that a visitor has to wade through on your web pages to arrive at the actual information that is meaningful to them, assuming of course, they can actually be bothered doing this before electing to go to your competitor’s more user-friendly website.

“That’s all very well for other websites” you might say, “but my website is different. I need all the information on my Home Page so the visitor can see all the services I offer” Once again I ask who is your most valuable target market client (the 20%)? Who provides the 80% of your revenue and how profitable are the remaining 80% who only produce 20% of revenue? When you look at it in this light why clutter up your Home Page with stuff that is attractive to only 20% of your revenue base?

What are the immediate results of being ruthless with your content? Consider this:

  • Your page is clean, lean and mean and is simple in its presentation. The content speaks for itself to the people who matter most to you.
  • Only contains information that your Target Market is interested in.
  • Your pages load faster, the content is high quality and is directed at your most profitable target client.

And the benefits to you are:

  • Better conversion rates off your web pages.
  • Your Content “shines” and your Call to Actions will receive greater attention.
  • More enquiries from your most valuable prospects which equate to higher conversion rates.

Your Content Marketing Plan can include an 80/20 evaluation of your content. We’ll improve your content to attract your best clients and maximise your conversions.

Talk to us about a Content Marketing Plan or an 80/20 evaluation of your home page content. We’ll focus your home page on the 20% that gets you the 80%.

Happy Marketing,
The Anyware Team

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Marketing and Selling Online is Booming. There are now almost 5 billion web pages live on the Interweb. Where does YOUR website rank?

Where does your website rank?How do you ensure YOU stand out from your competition in such a way that YOUR website is the only one your clients will return to? Here are some website marketing tips and strategies worth considering and implementing.

Choose the right online software

There are many different shopping cart options to choose from. Consider who, within your company, will be in charge of updates etc. How skilled is that person on a computer? This should determine which shopping cart you choose. Start with a simple off-the-shelf option – like BigCommerce or Shopify, both will probably do everything you need quickly and easily, but a quick evaluation of your requirements by an expert is well worth while before building your business around this decision. Then you can concentrate on your marketing, getting people to the website to buy.

Responsive website platform for mobile devices

The browsing devices your clients use are many and varied and your website must adapt to all of these so their viewing experience is seamless, no matter which device they use. Is your current website and shopping cart fully responsive to tablets, smartphones and computers? What bounce rate (the number of visitors that leave your website from the home page without browsing any further) does your website experience? If it is high then you need to ask why and address this important aspect. Do you actually know your website bounce rate?

Is your brand trustworthy

When was the last time you purchased from a rundown grubby retail outlet whose staff looked unkempt and the point of sale facility didn’t work? Does your website reflect your brand and the trust you have earned? If not, then you must work hard on establishing the trust of your clients. Customer testimonials and reviews are valuable. You should always overdeliver on service. Ensure all information on your site is accurate and free of spelling and grammatical errors.

Repeat business

The first order and sale is always the hardest, the second and subsequent sales should be second nature for the client to return and purchase again. Repeat purchase strategies are essential to encourage your clients to return (e.g. free delivery on orders over XXX dollar value). Strategies that are high value to the client and low cost to you are the most effective and are a win-win for repeat business.

Keep your website top of the pops on the search engines

Nothing on the Interweb stays the same for very long. Unfortunately “set and forget” is just a whimsical fantasy when it comes to optimising your website. You need to be constantly measuring your performance and tweaking the pages that are not working as well as the others. A good strategy is to improve something every month on your website that enhances your customers experience and increases their trust in your products and services.

Make buying a no-brainer

Here are some examples of testimonials from our clients. See how they build your confidence both in our services and your belief that we will deliver exactly what we promise. The decision to buy becomes so much easier.

Ask a few of your best customers for testimonials, either written or on video. It will come back to you many times over.
(When you commit to an Anyware monthly growth plan, Anyware commits to improving your website every month. We do ALL the work.)

Happy Marketing,
Mike Baker

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When was the last time you received a red hot referral for YOUR Business?

referral_border

Maybe an existing client referred your products or services,  or someone in your wider network thought of you.  They trusted you, called you and said “Call Fred Smith and mention my name, he is in the market for some of your widgets“.  How did that make you feel and how quickly did you pick up the phone and call Fred?

If that referral went as well as it should have then it was probably one of the easiest sales you made that day.  Better still, the cost of bringing that new client on board was very efficient.

Now turn this example around and think about the impact you would make with one of your clients if you were able to give them a similar red hot referral for their business. Would you then figure high up on their target for returning the favour to your business? You bet you would, so immediately you have a referral alliance with that client and probably the repeat business that goes with it.

How hard would it be if you developed a habit to constantly be on the lookout for referrals for all your A Grade clients?  A wise man once said “Give and you shall receive” and this certainly applies in business.

Try this for the next 4 weeks: Set a goal for the number of referrals you will give out each week. Start off small, maybe 1 or 2 for the first month until the process becomes a habit (remember the 21 day rule for developing a Habit). By listening and asking simple questions it’s very easy to pick up the “signals” from your clients.  The areas of need that you can react to with a referral to someone you know and trust who can meet their needs.  For example a conversation may go something like this:

YOU:  How’s business going Fred?  What’s the biggest challenge you are facing these days? (now just listen)

FRED:   Yeah, business is not bad,  could do with a few more clients plus IRD is giving me a hard time and my Accountant is not being too helpful by leaving it all up to me to resolve…. blah,  blah,  blah….

YOU:  (the light bulb goes on and you think about how good your Accountant is treating you)  So the service you get from your Accountant isn’t much to rave about?  When was the last time you thought about changing Accountants Fred?   My Accountant saved me thousands of dollars on my tax bill last year,  would you like their name?

A simple example like this if it solves Fred’s problem and refers a new client to your Accountant will be a win/win for you and guess who will be appreciative of your efforts and will eventually return the  referral favour?     BOOM…….  Probably 2 new referrals for you from one simple conversation with Fred.  Develop the habit, increase it to maybe 4 or 5 client referrals a month, could that then equate to maybe 8 or 10 referrals coming back to you next month?  What impact would that make to next month’s turnover?

Now, still thinking about Fred and his referral back to you, he talks to his mate whom he knows needs some of your widgets, tells them to give you a call, mention his name etc etc….  Possibly the first thing that Prospect might do is Google your Business to research Fred’s referral.  What will the Google Search deliver back to your new prospect?  Will Google actually find your business or will your competition receive a higher ranking than you?

Your web site is quite often the first impression new referrals (and other prospects) have to evaluate you.   Is your Home Page making the best impact on a new prospect or does it need improving so it reflects the vibrancy and efficiency of your current business?

Is the prospect quickly shown they are in the right place and led effortlessly through your story to a persuasive Call to Action at exactly the right moment? Is additional information easy to find, easy to digest and in the order a new prospect would look for it? Is your Contact Us form prominent, inviting and easy to use? Or is it buried somewhere less obvious and obscure that it could be missed altogether?  If this is so then you should consider some improvements to these key pages.

So make your sales funnel (i.e. website) as good as it can be, develop the habit of Giving, then stand back and Receive in return.

Happy networking
Mike

P.S. Who do YOU know who needs help with their website?  Anyware Web Marketing appreciates referrals and rewards everyone who takes the time to refer people that convert into new clients.

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Sales Tips: Position Your Company as Your Industry Leader

It’s a known fact that to be successful in business you not only need to be a good listener but your ability to close a sale has to be even better. In addition you must be a great leader and the expert in your Industry so you build trust and empathy with your Clients. This in turn encourages your clients to come back to you for ongoing repeat business.May 16 sales tip image - Leader

So what is a Leader? Leaders are people who empower others to achieve great outcomes, whether individually or as part of a team. They help people see issues and opportunities, uncover needs and sell the benefits of your products or services that they may not normally see themselves. Most importantly, they instil confidence in decision making that makes them pro-active in business decisions and outcomes.

By demonstrating Leadership qualities to your leads and clients, you are showing them the value you can deliver. They will immediately recognise that you have their best interest at heart and you are not out to just close the deal but you are looking for a win/win outcome that benefits each party. This then instils the confidence they need to do business with you and most importantly come back again and again to establish a life time value for both parties.

We all know that the best new clients come from referrals. It goes without saying that your existing customers will be much more inclined to confidently refer you to their contacts if they trust you and your business. Your leadership skills enhance this trust and saves you time when closing a deal. Conversely if trust has not been established then we all know how much longer it takes to close that sale.

So what tools do you need that helps the “Trust Machine” convert new Leads and existing clients? What is normally the first point of contact new prospects have with your Business? Is it the telephone, maybe an email or possibly your website?

If it’s the telephone then how consistent is that first point of contact? Does every member of your Team answer the phone with exactly the same script? Do you in fact have a telephone answer script? Would that one small improvement make a difference?

How professional are your Email protocols? Does every Team member have a professional email signature, the same format for the whole Business? Does your Business use a preferred Font and Style for all email communications?

How effectively does your Website convey “Leadership”? Does it professionally establish you as the expert in your Industry or has it been built by “the student son of your best friend” who needed the experience for his High School project? Believe it or not there are still many websites out there with this “High School design” that may have got by 10 years ago but just does not cut it in today’s competitive market.

If you rely on your website as your first point of contact with a new Prospect then you need to immediately establish your business as the Expert in your field. If it doesn’t what chance do you think that new lead, maybe worth $100K of lifetime value, will click through to your Contact Page and call you for that first quote or more information?

Anyware Web Marketing has over 18 years’ experience building websites that establish Trust and Leadership with Leads and Clients. Anyware knows what works for Home Pages to encourage visitors to click through your Sales funnel onto your Sales Pages. Strong Call to Actions, irresistible offers that will attract new business, video clips that talk to your visitors all compliment your Leadership image and enhance the sales conversion process.

So if your Business isn’t perceived as the Leader in your Industry then what do you need to do to rectify this? Certainly upgrading your first point of contact via telephone, emails, network meetings, formal written quotes, all these can influence your image. However your Website is probably your main marketing channel. Does it cut the mustard in today’s competitive market? If it doesn’t then Anyware can help you gain that Leadership edge over your competition .

Call us now and we can help with that Leadership outcome to make your repeat sales grow and the lifetime value of the new leads into your business become outstanding.

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Sales Tips: Question Sell, A Sales Pitch Doesn’t…

Sales Objections are something every Business encounters and they come in all shapes and forms. QUESTIONS SELL, A SALES PITCH DOESN’T… When was the last time you stopped talking to your customers and started to really “Listen” to them? Quite often the sales process within your business overtakes everything rather than converting a prospect or client into a sale.Golf Driver
Here’s an example that I experienced a couple of years ago.

I was in the market for a new Golf Driver, one that would help me straighten out an annoying “slice” (a left to right fade of the golf ball after contact with the club) that had crept into my game. I visited a well-known golf retailer and started to look at Drivers when an assistant soon appeared.

“So you want a new Driver eh?” was his first comment and he immediately pulled out the latest, shiny model, best technology, titanium head, best grip, lightest shaft, etc, etc. Never once did he ask WHY I needed a new Driver, how old was my current one, what results was it producing, did I have a brand preference, etc.

His first reaction was to try and sell me his latest model, highest priced (and probably best profit margin), one that would “take my game to the next level”.
Yeah right, tell that to Tiger Woods, not me mate……

If he had taken 5 minutes to just ask me how my game was, what was I looking to improve, WHY did I NEED a new driver, then he would have known what to recommend for me. I was looking to learn from his expertise, rather than to hear his sales pitch on the latest model of Club.

Needless to say he didn’t close that sale and I made a purchase from his competitor. This sales assistant took time to first ask a couple of questions, to establish trust and show me he had the expert knowledge I was looking for.
Result: Sale made and a happy customer who has since returned to that same outlet for repeat purchases. Life time value from that one sale will be significant because they took some time to ask a few initial questions and then they listened to their customer’s needs.

How often do we all experience a retail or trade service like this story? Whether you are selling widgets or service solutions, you need to establish the customers’ NEEDS first, before providing the solutions your products (services) will deliver. The only way to achieve this is by asking better questions and listening to the customer’s requirements.

Online Shopping is fast taking over face-to-face point of sales. How do you ensure this first point of contact via your website will establish the same trust and expert knowledge?

Your Home Page must immediately answer the questions that the visitor has when they land on your page. Good, friendly, vibrant images with strong headlines and paragraph headings are your way to establish trust and empathy with your website visitor. Then, strong Calls to Action (telling the visitor what to do next) will lead them through your Sales Funnel and onto the Order Now or Contact page. Sale closed and Repeat Business a strong probability.

Anyware offers a friendly, in depth website review on your existing website that will highlight any barriers to sale conversions. Contact Anyware now for a no obligation appointment to discuss how you can improve your sales conversions from your website by answering those questions that all new Leads and Prospects have.

What life time sales value are you missing out on because your website doesn’t make a great first impression? Is your website only a Sales Pitch rather than answering a question your prospective customer has when arriving at your Home page? Call us now

Don’t be like the business whose Driver I didn’t buy because the right questions weren’t asked. Make sure your website asks those important first questions, so essential to gaining trust to gain you a life time client.

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Should Your Website Use Long Scrolling Pages?

Anyware Web Design Long Scrolling Page
You’ve probably seen them everywhere; loved some and hated others. Long scrolling websites have evolved from a need to give impatient users on mobiles, tablets, smart TVs (and don’t forget desktops) everything they want and no more, in the shortest possible time and in the most engaging way.

NZ’s most well known example could be Xero. One of my favourite is Spotify.

Well built responsive long scrolling pages tend to be more engaging because a series of concise content pieces are highly visual, easily digested. Each section of content tends to be contained by a single screen regardless of the device/screen size.
Stories unfold in enticing pieces and are easy for users to browse, digest and engage with.

Common features of successful long scrolling pages include:

Blocks of Content

Screen sized blocks of content are often highly visual. Different background colours demark sections.

Accessible Navigation

While primary navigation only requires the viewer to scroll down, it’s good practice to keep some form of menu visible so users stay in control and are less likely to leave your website. This could include:

  • a top menu that is always visible and shrinks when the page scrolls down
  • an icon that makes the menu accessible
  • an indicator to show how many sections there are and which one is currently being viewed

Good Directions

Not everybody knows intuitively to scroll down. A subtle “scroll down for more” prompt or a simple graphic can be the difference between a lost visitor and an engaged user.

Intuitive and Understated

Clean and simple design draws your attention to the story. When scrolling is smooth and navigation effortless, nothing distracts from the story. When everything on the page is exactly where you expect it to be and does exactly what you expect it to do, all you see is the story.
Great design can almost go unnoticed.

Long Scroll vs Infinite Scroll

You may have also heard the term Infinite Scrolling. Infinite scrolling is similar to long scrolling but more content is loaded every time you reach the bottom of the page, like Twitter, Facebook or Yahoo.

Why you might want a long scrolling home page

Impress Your Prospects

Word of mouth is probably your most important form of marketing and converting your prospects can depend on convincing them you lead your industry. Usually the first thing they do after hearing your name is check out your web site. If they like what they see they are more likely to take the next step.

Introduce Your Business

Small, highly visual pieces of information with links to deeper content are easy to skim, digest and dive into. It’s a great way to introduce prospects to your business, tell your story and let them click deeper to fill in what ever gaps they need filled.

Mobile Target Audience

One finger scrolling is the most natural way to navigate a page on a phone. If your customers live on their phones you have a stronger case for long scrolling.

Why you might NOT want a long scrolling home page

It takes a lot of work to make a long scrolling page look amazing and function beautifully on all devices. That work comes at a cost, often two or three times the cost per page.

Do your customers need to be impressed or do they expect you to avoid overspending on marketing?

Home Page or Whole Site?

Are you tempted to build a long and stunning one page website where all information is either on your home page or in a box that pops open from your home page and there are no other pages?
Google may penalise you for this. Google likes web sites to have multiple pages that link to each other. Plenty of businesses find their customers from other sources than Google however, so only do this if you don’t rely on Google rankings.

Be careful of the affect this could have on your conversion/enquiry rate too. People get frustrated when they don’t find navigation intuitive or if they can’t easily find their way back to something they read in a popup box. For many web site visitors, hiding content in popup boxes is counter-intuitive and makes browsing your web site difficult.

A long scrolling website with one single page might be an intuitive way to give your prospects what they need. If not, consider a long scrolling home page with multiple (responsive) supporting pages. The home page gives a great first impression, it’s easy to find more information via supporting pages and supporting pages are simple, easy to navigate and the user feels comfortable and in full control.

Which Platform?

WordPress

If you use WordPress you’ll have access to a massive selection of gorgeous long scrolling themes. There are 2 areas where cost can get away from you:

1. Choosing Themes

It often surprises me how quickly hours vanish once I start browsing themes. I think I’ve found the perfect theme so I spend a few minutes checking it out. Everything is going well, it looks great, it seems to do everything I want and then whammo – the logo doesn’t quite fit or that fabulous looking banner is slightly the wrong aspect ratio for the images we paid a fortune for last month.
3 hours are gone and it’s back to the drawing board.

2. Customising Themes

Even more frustrating is once the theme is chosen, our developer spends 7 hours applying the theme and adding content and then discovers the graphic designer planned a change to the theme that will require an extra 10 hours to implement. It takes a lot of code to make themes look amazing AND be easy to edit the content within them. Sometime altering them can take a lot of work.

Both situations are very common when using WordPress themes. My best advice is to choose a Theme that looks amazing and is very close to what you need and then be happy with it. Change the colours but not the layout. Not even a little bit.

Load Speed

WordPress is an amazing system. It started as a blogging platform and grew into an all-singing-all-dancing wonder. When you need WordPress, there is nothing better.
This means that each time a page loads a LOT of code is processed and when pages are sent to the web browser they can include a lot of code. Depending on the theme and plug-ins you choose, page sizes can be large and load times can be slow.

Hand Coded

A good web developer can work wonders with Foundation or Bootstrap (we use Foundation because we find it easier and faster to learn, use and stay current with). Through clever and efficient use of simple code, pieces of content can be shown in different sizes, positions, with different word wrapping or not shown at all on different devices.

If you can’t live with the layout of a WordPress theme as it comes out of the box, our experience is that it’s more efficient to hand code responsive page layouts with Foundation than it is to use a WordPress theme, figure out how the code works and then customise it.

Anyware Content Manager

Anyware’s Content Manager is a nice middle ground. It allows you to easily edit content when the layout is simple and it doesn’t allow you to break anything you don’t want to break such as page headers, footers and navigation. It uses Foundation to make your pages and content responsive so we have complete and efficient control over every thing on every page.
You can’t easily edit highly visual long scrolling pages that are fully optimised for multiple devices because they require a lot of Foundation code embedded in the content, but most people don’t want to edit that kind of content.

The bottom line?

If you want a nice looking long scrolling page, you love WordPress, you’re happy to stick with a Theme out of the box and you don’t mind your web site loading a little slower then go with WordPress.
If the finer details of page layouts are important to you and you can’t live with slow loading pages, go with hand coding or Anyware’s Content Manager.

If you can’t decide feel free to give us a call. Helping people decide is what we do best.

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Sales Tips: Overcoming Sales Objections

Sales Objections are something every Business encounters and they come in all shapes and forms.
One of the most common is the “all things are terrible at the moment” objection.

The words Overcoming the No on a dartboard with one dart hitting the center bulls-eye to win the game or debate and persuade the other party to agree to your terms

“It’s end of year tax time, money is tight”

“People aren’t buying at the moment, the time just doesn’t seem to be right”

“It’s too close to Christmas / New Year/ Easter / the dog’s birthday, (or insert any other time related event)”

The strange results of these objections are that we sometimes buy into them and even start to offer them ourselves, when it’s our turn to justify diminishing outcomes. We can also get sucked into reacting in the classic way of ending a sales meeting along the lines of: “Well, when things get better then give us a call…” which is the equivalent of waving the white flag, not closing that sale and wallowing in the same misery as your prospect or client.

So how do we overcome Sales Objections? The answer is PREPARE FOR THEM and have a mental script that will kick in immediately you hear those trigger words. If you encounter the “all things are terrible” objection then a response along the lines of:

“Well, for that reason, I’m sure it’s more important than ever for you to (take whatever action you are presenting to that client) and that’s the same reason why some of our other clients are talking with us to see how we can help them with (your product or service). It’s very fortuitous that we have met / talked today, here’s what I recommend we do…” (and proceed to offer your solution with the benefits of your services)

Watch for those signs of agreement from the Client like a gentle nodding of the head or other agreement body language that indicates you have just overcome their objection and then proceed with your sales presentation.

In our Industry of Web Marketing the time is ALWAYS right to invest in your ongoing web presence, even if it is your Dog’s Birthday. If you aren’t investing in your online marketing then you can bet your competitors are and their Google Search rankings may be improving while yours are slipping back to page 3 or 4. Before you know it the phone stops ringing and sales have stopped.

Anyware offers a monthly Content Marketing Plan that can be tailored to your budget. This Plan ignores the “all things are terrible” syndrome and just gets on with improvements to your Web Platform. You will sleep soundly at night knowing your business is moving ahead while your Competitors are suffering from the doom and gloom of “everything terrible”.

Call us today, we can set up a meeting to discuss a tailored plan for your web marketing to keep your phone ringing with new client enquiries.

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Sales Tips: Promoting Your Price

How do you promote your price to your clients?

Every day we are bombarded with price offers for the goods we are looking to purchase.

Competition is fierce in retail and online purchasing (and services) so final buying decisions are quite often made on the last piece of information considered in the buying equation – the price.

How does your store (physical or online) display your price? Is it just an unqualified visual dollar price or do you assist your client in this final decision by giving them one final incentive?

Let’s go back a couple of steps in the buying process. Everyone loves a bargain. Everyone wants to be assured that after their purchase there is no buyers remorse or anxiety. The purchase was the best one that could have been made. Most major purchases involve some sort of research about product quality, after sales service, availability, delivery, features and benefits plus finally, price comparisons between suppliers.

The experts tell us price is usually the 3rd or 4th most important factor after service, branding, supplier, etc. so when all the rest are equal it will come down to the advertised price.

When a prospect has 2 or 3 prices to choose from what additional information can you give the prospect in the way your price is advertised?
Look at these two examples:

$15.95 each

or

$15.95 each

List Price $22.95

You Save $7.00

You Save 30.5%

Same item, same price, same savings for the buyer, however, spelt out. The buyer is being sold the price and the benefits of that price by way of the information supplied on the sales ticket.

Testing this price method has proven it attracts the bargain hunter. It takes the guess work away from the mental arithmetic of what savings are being enjoyed, it increases conversion rates and assists the shopper to like shopping on your web site or in your store. Trust is one key factor in attracting repeat business from clients, so make it easy for clients to choose your price over a similar one from a competitor. It makes sense to help them choose your price by way of consistent information in your price displays.

Set-up your online shopping cart with informative pricing. Modify your marketing material with consistent pricing layout and structure. Ensure your price offers attract your most valuable target market and if these include the “bargain hunters” then all the better.

Anyware can assist you with setting up your online shopping cart, your categories and product items for maximum impact and show you how to set up Pricing Strategies that impact your conversion rates.

Call us for an obligation free chat about your web needs and we will start you on the road to better conversions and happier customers.

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