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Archive for April, 2009

When writing content for your website keep in mind that most people scan text, they’re impatient, and they’re skeptical if they haven’t done business with you before. These three reasons ultimately lead to less sales and income for most online businesses. So what can you do to address these issues and increase your sales? Start with the page copy of your website, especially on your pages that sell a product or service.

Keep the following copywriting tips in mind when writing content for your website.

  1. Write headlines that are directly meaningful to what you’re selling. The more factual and direct the better.
  2. Order your content starting with your most important selling point and work your way down the list. Make sure your most important selling point is right at the beginning of your content – front and center!
  3. Keep your paragraphs short and only focus on one idea per paragraph.
  4. Use bulleted lists and bold text where appropriate to highlight your key selling features and benefits.
  5. Use simple language that anyone can understand and go easy on your industry jargon. If they don’t understand what you’re offering, they won’t buy.
  6. Keep your choice of words objective. Avoid exaggerated claims or heavily promotional language. The more factual your content is written, the more people will believe it’s factual.

Selling online is like any other form of sales communications; you need to be direct, clear, and easily understandable. The easier you make it for your potential customers to understand what you’re offering and what’s in it for them, the more likely they will convert into paying customers.

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Many websites, especially those that only sell online, are not maximizing the potential that local search optimization offers. It isn’t uncommon for pure play online businesses to think that their geographical location is of little importance since they sell on a nationwide or worldwide basis. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth.

In today’s online world where the web has become hyper-competitive, local search is a must for any online business that wants to maximize their sales opportunities. More and more, people are no longer simply searching by product or service related keyword phrases. They’re searching for product and service phrases followed by geo-targeted terms including their city or state.

So why would someone care about where you’re located if you only sell online anyway? Think of it this way, clearly stating who you are and where you’re located adds more credibility and trust to the decision of doing business with you. Also, the number of people looking to buy online from local companies is increasing due to various reasons such as supporting local businesses and a greater sense of security this provides in case service is needed after the sale.

Clearly stating your address throughout your website also benefits your customers on the other side of the country or even the other side of the world. For example, someone from New York sees that your business address is in Seattle, which immediately takes away the mystery of who they’re dealing with to a large degree, since you have established your business as being a real business with a real address, opposed to simply a mysterious website in cyberspace.

Your physical address followed by your phone number should be on a minimum of your home page and contact page. Although the best option is to have this information clearly posted on the bottom of every page of your site.

Keep in mind that simply having your address on every page of your site isn’t going to optimize your site for local search, since this may not provide enough keyword weight to raise your site in the search engine rankings. Therefore, your site must be specifically optimized for key local search terms along with your product or service offerings.

In addition to optimizing your website for local search, you should submit your site to local search services such as the following.

Every day, millions of people are searching for products and services online using geo-targeted search terms such as their neighborhood, city, state and even country. If you’re not actively optimizing your site for local search, you’re business is leaving a lot of money on the table for those that are. Is your site fully optimized for local search?

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Being successful in the world of ecommerce is dependent upon many disciplines such as merchandising, marketing and design. This being the case, often basic areas of improving conversions for an ecommerce website aren’t fully thought through or applied. The following ecommerce tips will help you to increase your conversion rates for greater sales success and make your customers more likely to return to your site.

  1. Keep things simple. Review your site to ensure that your navigation structures and link descriptions are easy to use and understand. The more your visitors have to try to figure things out, the more likely they are to leave and never come back. Also, make sure that important information such as pricing, return policies and your contact information are all clearly visible. The more obvious you make it that you’re there for your customer before and after the sale, the more likely it is that they will trust in buying from you.
  2. Think like your potential customers. If a product can fit within multiple categories, place it wherever appropriate. Simply choosing one rigid category placement and expecting your potential customer to work to find the item doesn’t work. They aren’t going to do it. For each product you have on your site, ask yourself where else it would make sense to feature the item. Also, make sure you are maximizing up sell and cross sell opportunities. For example, if you have a page selling shoes offer a link to your belt category as well. You should always be thinking of ways to make it as easy as possible for your visitors to buy more!
  3. Consider the impact of your images. Are all of the images on your site clean, crisp and professional looking? If not, you’re losing credibility with your visitors and losing sales. Review all of your images. Do they make the best impression possible? Would you buy a product shown on your site based on the image? Also, add additional images to show multiple product views and options. Take the time to make sure every image on your site is as good as it can be. Nothing can blow an online sale quicker than a poor image.
  4. Actively promote your site every day. It isn’t uncommon for many small online businesses to build their website and wait for people to come. This may have worked 15 years ago, but those days are long gone. Now that the web has grown it takes greater thought and effort to drive visitor traffic to your site. Always be on the lookout for quality ways to promote your site. Basics you should be applying include search engine optimization (SEO), social media marketing (SMM), pay-per-click advertising (PPC) and email marketing. The bottom line is that you need to actively work at driving traffic to your site every day.

Now take an honest look at your site and bring in others opinions. Review your site to make sure it’s easy to understand and use and that potential customers can easily find related products. Look at every single image and change any that aren’t making the best possible impression and add additional product images as needed. While doing these things (and everything else you have to do every day) make sure you are constantly promoting your site. It doesn’t matter how well you implement the first three steps above if you aren’t driving potential customers to your site to buy.

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Reach Higher Rankings with EPORIA SEO Training
High rankings in major search engines such as Google, Yahoo! and MSN /Live can help generate significant revenue for your business. Getting to the top of the search engines and staying there requires a strong understanding of SEO and a well-planned strategy executed over time. In the EPORIA SEO Training Essentials Workshop you will learn invaluable SEO techniques and tactics that will help you build a stronger online presence to take your business to the next level.

Why attend this SEO training class?
Learn how to maximize your SEO opportunities and take your company’s website to the next level. Whether you’re a business owner or marketing manager looking to grow your online channel, this class will provide you with SEO skills you can immediately implement to gain maximum exposure. 

SEO Essentials Class Outline

  • How search engines work
  • Web site relevancy factors
  • Submitting your site to search engines and directories
  • Steps to creating top ranking pages
  • Conducting keyword research
  • Creating effective page titles
  • Using Meta tags to your advantage
  • Optimizing web page copy
  • Link building (quality vs. quantity) and Google PageRank
  • Using social media as part of SEO strategy
  • Site architecture, site maps and improved indexing
  • Avoiding common barriers to ranking
  • Search engine guidelines
  • Search engine spam
  • Design hindrances
  • Measuring ROI and improving conversion
  • Using web analytics as an SEO tool
  • Developing your long-term SEO strategy
  • Specific recommendations to improve your individual website

Learn how to get your website in front of more customers and outrank your competition! Value added presentations, demonstrations, and Q&A, are personalized further by reviewing attendee sites.

Find out what to do and how! Incorporate and implement organic SEO changes within your website for higher search engine rankings.

EPORIA helps you make it happen! Learn how to improve your rankings on major search engines including Google, Yahoo! and MSN/Live. Customers are searching for you. Don’t let opportunities land somewhere else. Signup today!

EPORIA SEO Essentials Training

When: Friday, June 26, 2009 from 8:30 am – 4:30 pm
Where: Redmond, WA (just 14 miles east of Seattle)
Cost: $495 per attendee

Sign up today or call
425.284.3444    877.276.2402

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