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3 of the Most Essential Characteristics of a Small Business Website
When it comes to running a small business, few things are more important than maintaining a high-quality website. Whether your business is an e-commerce store, a brick-and-mortar establishment, or both, your website serves as your online headquarters. Not only will all of your marketing content lead consumers to your website, but more and more people are using the web to find local businesses and order products and services. For these reasons, among many others, investing in professional web design from an agency like VanHaaren Designs can benefit your business much more than throwing together a free template site.
If you don’t have the cash on hand to create a new website or upgrade your current one, you may need to research your funding options. From government assistance like SBA express bridge loans and the Main Street Business Lending Program to non-government loans and grants, there are likely some options out there that can provide you with the funds necessary.
Now, let’s discuss three characteristics that every effective small business website possesses, along with some secrets as to how you can accomplish them.
The way your website looks is the first characteristic that visitors will notice. If your site looks unprofessional, it will turn people away and harm your conversion rate. Choose one or two (no more than that) easy-to-read fonts, and separate your written content with headers and subheaders.
Also, be sure not to clutter your web pages with content. There should be plenty of white space on each page, meaning there are gaps between the page’s individual content and elements. And rather than using stock photos, which countless other companies will be using, hire a professional photographer to take top-notch photos for your site. This will help bring quality to your site while also making it unique.
Ease of Use
Simplicity is critical for web design. When someone visits your site, they need to know exactly how to get where they need to go or do what they need to do. For instance, they shouldn’t have to look for longer than a few seconds to find your blog, product page, or contact page. In fact, you might consider treating every page as a landing page, meaning that you include essential contact information and calls-to-action (CTAs) somewhere visible on the page.
Another thing to consider is that many small businesses hide their navigation links behind a single burger icon, usually in one of the top corners. However, this strategy isn’t ideal if you run a product-heavy business, such as an e-commerce store.
If you look at most of the best-designed websites, you’ll notice that they have a blog where regular written content is posted. Keeping a blog page with quality content benefits your business in a number of ways, including:
It provides your customers with pertinent information and advice on various industry-related topics.
It keeps your customers informed of news concerning your company.
You can share your blog posts on social media pages, which will lead to more traffic on your website.
It will improve your company’s SEO results.
It’s worth mentioning that videos are another type of content that can benefit your business. As with photography, hire a professional videographer to make promotional, how-to, company culture, and customer testimonial videos for your website.
If you are starting or running a small business, creating a stellar website must be a priority. Making your site visually appealing and simple to use, as well as providing helpful and unique content, will result in exceptional user experience. Of course, there are other factors involved in
great web design, so keep learning about how you can take your site to the next level.
Article written by Lindsey Weiss
Business Pop-An article written about how small businesses can benefit from professional help with website designing
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Grow Your Small Business by Hiring Help with These 3 Web-Based Projects
While a strong online presence was essential to small business success before COVID-19 hit, it’s even more crucial now that we’re in the face of a global pandemic. To stay relevant and keep up with changing customer demands, for instance, it’s important to boost your online presence by building a website and mobile app for your small business and regularly sharing blog content with your online community. To learn more about the importance of completing these three web-based projects — and for some tips on hiring the help you need — read on!
1. Build a User-Friendly WebsiteAccording to the USA TODAY Classifieds Blog, small businesses need a website for five main reasons: Credibility, brand development, marketing, competition, and control. A strong web presence helps you to grow your small business, keep up with the competition, and show customers that you’re credible and worthy of their business. To meet customer expectations, most business websites should have about and contact pages, an updated blog, a testimonials page, and pages that include descriptions of their different products and services.
2. Develop a Mobile AppLike a good website, mobile apps can help to grow your small business, enhance the user experience, and boost sales, customer engagement, and consumer retention — especially if you reward users for returning to your app time and again. Different types of mobile apps include the following, depending on your business needs and goals:
Keep in mind that mobile apps are more complicated to build on your own if you don’t have the skills, experience, or an in-house development team. As such, you’ll typically need to hire an app developer to create, market, and maintain your new mobile application.
3. Create Regular Blog ContentIn addition to creating a website and mobile app, you’ll increase online traffic and grow your small business if you incorporate blogging into your marketing strategy. Blogging can help to improve your website’s search engine optimization (SEO) ranking, respond to the needs of your customers and clients, connect with your followers, and share important business updates with your online community. Plus, you can share blog content to your social media pages — which will drive traffic back to your business website.
Freelance Services to ConsiderNow that you’re familiar with the different types of web-based projects you may need help with in order to grow your small business, it’s time to decide whether you’ll hire freelancers to assist you — or part- or- full-time employees. Freelancers are an excellent option for small business owners, especially if the workload could be unsteady, you can’t afford to hire new employees, and/or you’re unable to offer on-the-job training. Plus, freelancers offer a variety of services from web content writing and editing to web development and graphic design.
Here are some freelancers to consider for your future web-based projects:
As you can see, many different types of freelancers are available to assist you in building a website, developing a mobile app, and creating content for your blog. You already have a lot on your plate as a small business owner, and a freelancer can help you to complete the web-based projects you need to grow your business and keep up with the competition — even if you don’t have the skills, knowledge, and background to tackle them yourself.
Article written by Chelsea Lamb @ Business Pop
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One way major way I save on shopping is couponing. In the digital world it is much easier to have access to digital coupons versus paper coupons. Certain stores are also very strict on coupons and sometimes if you visit websites to print out coupons they may or may not accept them. Always check your store coupon policy before shopping. Most stores will have an app you can download and you can access the digital coupons.
I will post a video below of a couple stores I like to shop at and use their digital app. If you sign up as a member at the store you like to shop at, you can also get coupons in the mail for monthly savings. Sometimes you can stack your in the mail paper coupon with your digital coupons. You can also choose to get your coupons from the store sent to your email. You get your promo codes. If you do a lot of online shopping, sign up for their discounts and use your favorite internet browser and search for the store name and then add promo code. For example, if I were to shop CVS Pharmacy, I would open up google search and type into the search bar "CVS pharmacy+promo code".
I will demonstrate one store I shop at with digital coupons and this is for Dollar General:
Everyone likes to save money where they can, especially for the bigger families, single families or anyone that wants to have a little extra money every month. I have always lived on a budget from the time I became a first time mom. Shopping for clothes, groceries and paying bills can amount to more money going out then coming in. I will highlight a basic list on how to start saving and how to start the process for saving money when shopping.
1.) Budget, Budget, Budget. To know what you have each month, sit down and take a look at each bill you have coming in. You have basic bills such as utilities: electric, gas. You have your mortgage/rent, phone bill, car and health insurance. Credit cards, loans. Sometimes even medical bills. Then you have to take a look at what you spend each month on groceries, gas, clothing, eating out. When you can add up all of the bills you have for each month, write it down it helps to give a visual at the amount each month. Then tally up how much you make after every pay check and see what you have coming out.
So take what you make after taxes (not gross), and minus what your bills are. This will give you a bigger picture of what you are spending. A lot of times I have been guilty of this, I have more money going out then coming in. One big thing that can happen if you do not pay attention, certain companies will raise your rates if you do not pay attention to the bill if it is being auto deducted monthly.
2.) Do not be afraid to switch to a new plan at the beginning of the year for your internet or phone. I found through my phone company I can get discount on my plan if I call and discuss what I am currently paying and will ask if they have any specials going. My internet company will raise my rates and the beginning of the year I will call and renew under a cheaper plan with a one year contract. I also receive a discount through my job, so check with your employer and see if you can get a discount on your phone or internet.
3). Clearance and a new year. If you want to save money on clothing, the beginning of the year and with each season, a lot of stores want to get rid of their stock. For example, when spring starts up, stores will start stocking spring and summer clothing and items. The winter items will be priced on discount or for very cheap, this is the time to stock up. I always check out clothing stores when a new season begins and buy up the discounted items for my children. During the holidays there is also discounts and savings.
I am a mom of two boys and I live on a budget. I have a love for shopping but not spending a ton of money for full priced items. I will share my weekly finds and how I coupon and discount on shopping from house hold items to clothes and food.