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Friday, 28 May 2010

WHY ON EARTH DO I NEED A WEBSITE ?

First impressions are VERY IMPORTANT.

Here are 9 VERY good reasons for having a website.

The way that you communicate with your customers and potential customers is VERY IMPORTANT, whether that communication is on brochures, letters, advertising or any other media conversation.

These days a website is often the first point of contact your potential customers will want to use, and where your existing customers will expect to be able come back for more.

It’s important to know that there are Web Design companies out there that will provide a great professional product, but it’s even more important to engage a Web Designer that actually understands MARKETING. They are few and far between, and you should be careful not to end up with a Web design company that uses all the design tricks in the book, without actually understanding how to MARKET your product.

What does a good website mean for you? Why do you need one ?

Here are 9 good reasons why you should get your business online with a web site no matter who you are or what you do

1.    24/7
Your customers are busy. Sometimes the only time they get to do things is at odd hours, in a brief 10 minutes. Your website is open 24 hours of every single day of the year. Being on the web means your business is open 24/7, and it’s easy and convenient for everyone.


2.    Professional Image
Whether you are a mobile mechanic working out of a 10 year old van or a Chartered Surveyor working out of city centre offices, a website can project the image you want to convey. It’s not trickery, it’s not dishonest, it’s all about positioning. A good professional website instills confidence. It shows you care about and respect your customers. It also shows confidence in your own ability to provide what they need. Nowadays, new customers will assume that you already have a website, and what if your competitors already have one? If they do, you can keep up with them cheaply and even find ways to make your site better.


3.    Online Brochure
ave you ever paid for printed brochures or leaflets and a month later realised you wish you’d said something else? A website is your easy, cheap way to provide the most up to date information all year long. All you have to do is make sure people visit your website. This will save you a lot of money on printing and distribution costs. Your designer will maintain the content on your website for a small monthly fee.
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4.    Sell
With even a small e-commerce site, you can sell your products and supplement your usual business. A website with secure online ordering is very affordable for even the smallest business.

5.    Collect Information
You can collect information from your customers and potential customers with forms and surveys. Providing feedback and question forms can even alert you to things that your customers want that you never even thought of. Above all, you can collect contact information to enable you to contact your customer base regularly


6.    It’s INSTANT
I don’t know about you, but I don’t like to wait for information. I like to see sites that offer all the information I want, especially with downloads. Give the visitor what they want. Allow them to download price lists, brochures, audio, video and then even while you sleep, your site will be working for you.


7.    Global
Once you have a web presence, you aren’t that little local business anymore. You have millions of potential sales or customers. What about that guy fixing cars out of his 10 year old van? He has global potential. He can write articles on basic car maintenance and sell them on his site for a quid each, all while he sleeps!


8.    Customer Service
You can pitch your product and answer questions by providing good website copy. By allowing your visitors to contact you through the website, they can ask specific questions, request quotes, reserve tables, hotel rooms; all 24/7 at their convenience. It allows you to show your commitment and brand personality by replying to those queries in an appropriate timely fashion. You can also make big overhead savings by allowing visitors to download documents directly from your website rather than mailing printed materials.

9.    Summary
Having said all of the above, a site is not going to do you any good if it projects the wrong image. A bad site is no good to you, and you should always ensure that the website provider you choose has your interests in mind.


Good professionally designed sites really can cost as little as a few hundred or even a hundred pounds or less. If you see prices quoted by a provider, talk to them and see if they can’t help you out if your budget is really small. You should always remember that the provider will be able to use you as a reference for other work, so may be only too happy to help you out.

BUT… make sure that he KNOWS MARKETING.

We are a Chichester Web Design Company that understands your customer
www.hwmarketing.co.uk

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Your customer is tuned in to Radio WII FM

As a small business it's easy to lose sight of what you are trying to sell. You don't always look at it from your customer's standpoint. When a prospect looks at your web site or literature, they are tuned firmly into radio WII FM. That's Radio "What's In It For Me ?".


It's all too easy for you to reel of a string of features about your products, or the fact that you have the most talented team in the business, but your prospect really doesn't care (yet), because they can't see the immediate benefit for them; they want to know what you are going to do for them.


If you don't tell them straight away, they'll move on and find someone else who will.


One way of deciding if you've landed on a benefit is to start of with a feature of your company and ask your self "Why does that matter to me?". If you can keep drilling down and asking "Why does that matter to me ?", you haven't yet reached the benefit of that feature. 


Interrogate yourself:

1. Name a feature.

2. Then ask yourself, "What's important about that?" Then,

3. "Which means that I get____"

4. "Which means that I no longer have to______"

5. "This means that now I get to______."
Demonstrate to your prospect how your product or service delivers the benefit. Here's an example;


“We sell yoga clothes made from organic materials” (So why should organic materials matter to me?)

“Because the clothes are made of natural, breathable fibres” (So why do natural, breathable fibres matter to me?)

“Because you can move more freely and comfortably in the clothes” (So why does that matter to me?)

“You can get more health benefits from your yoga practice if you have comfortable clothes that enable you to move more easily.” There's the benefit.


Chichester Web Design Company of choice for Small or Startup Businesses in the area. Easily understandable pricing packages start at £200.www.hwmarketing.co.uk

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Keep advertising to a minimum on your website

Amazingly, I see some sites that are almost nothing but ads. We know that no one would turn on the telly if it were just adverts, or buy a magazine if it were just ads and no articles. By the same token, a website also has to have more than ads if it's to be successful. If you are running ads on your website, then you should ensure that the ratio to editorial is no more than 25% to 75%.

Your visitors came to your site to see what YOU had to offer.

If you have affiliations and partnerships that are relevant to your site, then by all means include them. Don't do what I saw recently on a website for a large fabric retailer where the web designer had put her friend's Aromatherapy Massage practice in as a link. It's not professional, makes you look amateur, and Google will mark it down. relevancy is the key.

HW Marketing UK are the Chichester Web Design Company of choice for Small or Startup Businesses in the area. Easily understandable pricing packages start at £200. www.hwmarketing.co.uk/how-much

Monday, 24 May 2010

Your Website Home Page

The Home Page is probably the most important page of your website if it is used as the usual landing page.
It's the first page your visitors will see, so you need to make a good impression. Research has shown that you have between 8 and 10 seconds to get your visitors attention.

On this page, you should communicate what problem you are able to solve for the visitor.

You want to make sure that your message is clear and not lost in many long paragraphs. Try to divide your text into sections that you can mark with headers in a larger font or using bold text. Don't underline text as this can make it look like a link.

One of the most important aspects of the text on your home page (or ANY page) is the "Call to Action".

The "Call to Action" is the text on the page that TELLS your visitors what you want them to do next. Do you want them to call and schedule a consultation, visit your shop, or just browse the other pages in your website? Make this command prominent by changing its color or increasing the font size.

Also consider uploading an image or two onto your Home Page. A colorful image will help to captivate your visitors and they will be more likely to continue browsing your site, but especially so if you have told them that you can solve the problem they came to your site to solve.

Make sure your text is big on benefits and not so much on features. Most visitors to your site are tuned into radio WIIFM (What's in it for me). They don't care about your impressive technical specs or the fact that you have 20 worldwide offices, not yet at least, because that doesn't tell them what you can do FOR THEM.

They will very quickly move on to a competitor who WILL tell them what's in it for them.

Friday, 21 May 2010

Choosing a New Domain Name

A domain name is the web address of your website (i.e. www.bizhelp24.com). All websites must have a domain name before they can go live on the Internet.

If you have an advertising budget to promote your business, then it is beneficial to choose a domain name that is the same as your business or gives people an idea of what you sell. 



Alternatively, if you do not have a large budget, it may be more beneficial to use a domain name that includes a 'keyword' so that when people search for something specific your site has a better chance of being found.

For example if your site is about relieving back pain, a domain such as 'www.backpainrelief.xxx' will be more likely to show up in searches.

Either way, you need to use a name that benefits your long-term business aims, and not something that is restrictive. E.g. 'wellheeled123.com', might be a clever name for a business that sells exclusive shoes. But if that business then diversifies into other products, the website name is no use anymore.



HW Marketing UK are the Chichester Web Design Company of choice for Small or Startup Businesses in the area. Easily understandable pricing packages start at £200. The Company was established in 2009 by Neil Holley-Williams who worked for 25 years as a Freelance Consultant for IBM, Skandia Life, Invesco Perpetual and Carnival UK.


www.hwmarketing.co.uk

Thursday, 20 May 2010

3 BIG reasons to outsource your web design

If you’ve just started a business or developed a product that you want to tell the world about, you will already know that one of the best ways to do this of course is to develop a website as your 24/7 online brochure.




Now how hard can that be ?



Find a free website generator, little bit of typing, slap on a few photos, a sprinkling of widgets that the tools allow you, something like a contact form, image carousel and there you go.



Easy.



Well yes, on the face of it…. and the temptation to start out like this on a limited budget is very strong. The thing is, if you are really serious about creating a really impressive web site, you just have to call in a professional. There are several reasons for this



1. You aren’t a designer

Web Designers know their profession. Your website has to make a good first impression to the people that you want to communicate with, in less than 8 seconds. If you haven’t grabbed them in 8 seconds, they could be gone forever. Do you know how to accomplish that ? If your site looks like a free site or doesn’t make the visitor immediately feel ‘comfortable’, they will be gone, perhaps for ever.

A good designer will ask you questions about who the site is aimed at and will work at how to make those people feel ‘comfortable’ when they arrive on your site, so that they stay. Designing your own website will only take you down the ‘I think that looks ok’ or ‘that’ll do’ route. Quite often it doean’t and it won’t. Your site is not aimed at YOU, and it does have a very important job to do.



2. You don’t know SEO

A professionally designed site will utilise the most up to date SEO (Search Engine optimisation) techniques. This means that the site will have well thought out internal design that will make it easy for search engines to find you and to index your pages on the worldwide web. It is difficult to achieve this optimisation with some DIY website builders, and even if they allowed you to, would you know how to go about optimising correctly ?

A good designer will have researched the most effective keywords for your site, and will have researched how they compare with your competitors sites or similar sites before optimising them into your site and then analyzing the likely results. This is particularly important and effective for local businesses .A good web design company will then support you in making the popularity of your site grow so that search engines ‘choose’ it above others to deliver a great search result experience for their customers.



3. You’ll take longer and waste time

You have a business to run, and the last thing you want to be doing is to spend time on a learning curve building a site that may or may not achieve your aims. If you outsource, you can have a quality site in less than 2 weeks.





Outsourcing your Web Design is not an unnecessary expense when you consider what’s involved; and a quality website need not cost thousands. Prices can start under £400.



Don’t just ‘Build it’ and expect ‘they will come’. Visitors won’t find your site by accident. In outsourcing, you are paying for expertise, including very important SEO to help make your site successful. Furthermore, you have to create a good impression of quality and professionalism. Just being there on the web isn’t enough.



You wouldn’t take on all your own plumbing, fleet maintenance, shop-fitting, printing, electrical wiring, supplies manufacture and accounts auditing in house would you? So why would you even think about doing your own web design ?

http://www.hwmarketing.co.uk/