Offer Amazon Discounts To Your Site VisitorsPosted by: Adriana Post date: May 15th, 2012
Everyone loves a discount! And everyone loves Amazon. And now there’s a great plugin that can be installed and customized in just a few minutes to offer your site visitors a deal of up to 90% off. If you have a site promoting Amazon, you must use this plugin to increase your Amazon commission.
And as you know, Amazon is great at up-selling, so once a visitor searches for somethign with your little weapon, they are “cookied” to you by Amazon.
And for a short time, you get the developer license at the regular price. This WILL change very soon, so don’t procrastinate!
Want to see it in action? Take a look in my sidebar an play with it: you’ll fall in love with it, and so will everyone visiting your site, increasing your Amazon commissions.
5 Tips For New Blog Owners On Social MediaPosted by: Adriana Post date: November 13th, 2011
Whether you started a blog to promote your real estate business, restaurant or flower shop one thing is clear. Social media will be a key ingredient in your overall marketing efforts. As outlined on countless blogs and sites social media plays a big role in “search” and in being found online.
In other words we no longer can do one without the other. They both go hand in hand. As such let’s take a look below at five tips for new blog owners on how best to include and use social media as part of an overall blog marketing arsenal.
1. Integrate From The Beginning – don’t wait till you’ve become established and popular. Add social media to your blog from day one. You never know who will be listening or who might pick up an interest in your site and want to connect with you via Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or Google Plus. So we consider it a smart move on your behalf to include social media on your blog right away from day one.
2. Make Your Content Easy To Share – there are lots of plugins, add-ons and widgets that allow you to place Google Plus, Twitter or Facebook on your blog. However some work better than others and some are more streamlined than others. Find the tool that works best for you and your specific blog design, colors, size and so on. Also it might be best not too add to many buttons and widgets – as a reader might get confused on which one to use. Make it easy, the easier the better. Never underestimate the power of EASY.
3. Use It Yourself – are you an active user of one (or more) of the social networks? We understand that each one is time consuming and therefore you might not be able to contribute regularly to each. In this case, it might be necessary to “cherry pick” and decide which one you prefer and will become an active member of. Whichever one you choose, go for it – at full throttle.
4. Keep Up With Changes – another constant in social media is the myriad of changes that take place. Facebook alone is known for their constant upgrades and changes. This can be hard to manage and or keep up with, however no one wants to be “behind the ball”. So in this case, one thing you can do is to subscribe to the various blogs and sites that keep up with the changes for you. Mashable comes to mind, they usually report on the various changes from the big three in social media.
5. Outsource, If No Time – if you simply do not have the time to incorporate social media for your blog at this time. Then it might be necessary to outsource the task. Look in the various job boards that have job listings in social media such as the Problogger Job Board. This one only charges $50 for a listing that last 30 days. A good deal since this is a job board visited daily by web professionals who are experienced and savvy with social media.
Using a blog today to promote a business has become commonplace and for good reason. It works. When used correctly and strategically it can bring you traffic, sales, clients, prospects, leads, etc. When combined with social media it can bring about untold wonders.
Guest article written by Missy Diaz who works for various clients including a website builder tool on the web.
The Basics of Link Building For SEOPosted by: Adriana Post date: October 30th, 2011
Link building is still one of the best ways to increase your website’s link popularity and page rank. While it sounds simple enough, it can be a mammoth task and you want to make sure that you are being linked to by high quality websites that people respect and trust. You also want to make sure you are building SEO links in positive ways that will not undermine your brand. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
- Quality over quantity. Sometimes the most important principles are also the most obvious, but people still overlook them all the time. While you want your links to be visible and attract the attention of as many people at once, you do not want to flood the internet with irrelevant links. If you are foolish enough to do that, you will dilute your brand, and your links will become synonymous with spam. Instead, be mindful of where your links appear, and make sure if someone clicks them, they lead somewhere relevant and engaging. Remember this is the guiding principle of good SEO practices. You provide quality content that is optimized so people can find you, not junk content that is trying to trick people into landing on your page.
- Embrace social media. It seems every web page you go to these days is asking you to like it on Facebook, Tweet about it on Twitter, or share it over a variety of sites including Digg, delicious, and LinkedIn. If someone does decide to do any or all of those things, you have just received the most valuable word of mouth possible. We all tend to pay more attention to these because people we like and admire are deciding something is noteworthy enough to recommend. Depending on your venture, this can seem silly sometimes, but it is a simple element to integrate into your website which can pay off big time.
- Share your opinion. Both Review and Q&A sites are extensions of social media, but they do deserve their own special category. While tracking what others say about your company and responding in a professional way are both good practices, writing reviews of other products and answering questions are also excellent ways to establish yourself as a resource. Amazon’s review and list sections are great ways to build relationships (and links) with consumers. Make sure that when you do this, your submissions are genuine, relevant to your brand, and truly helpful.
- Expand your website. These days, the most interesting (and SEO link friendly) websites are ones that offer more than just an avenue to whatever you are selling. Resource sections that explain things that relate to your products and provide instructions or ideas on how to use your services can add some quality content to your website. Yes, your website needs to be functional, but it can also be fun and informative. Blogs and forums are two other great ways to expand your website’s reach and foster deeper connections with prospective clients. Just make sure you are offering quality content and not content for content’s sake. If you need to hire a person or an SEO firm to manage that for you, do so. It will be a worthwhile investment.
Focus on what is a good fit for you. Whether you are manufacturing widgets, making rock n’ roll, or offering a service that makes people’s lives easier, your primary focus should be on doing whatever it is you do well. When you provide something of value, link building will happen as enthusiasts spread the word. That does not mean you should not run contests, upload instructional videos to YouTube, or be an active internet presence. It means that balance and authenticity will mean more than throwing everything on the web to see what sticks. Invest your resources wisely and do not hesitate to secure some professional SEO help.
Link building is still one of the best ways to increase your website’s link popularity and page rank. Building SEO links in positive ways makes a significant impact. Ryan Michael Farrell is a professional off site SEO specialist for the search engine marketing firm Wpromote.
What Jobs Can You Outsource?Posted by: Adriana Post date: October 14th, 2011
Outsourcing is the wave of the future. You could pick up the phone in the United States and talk to a customer service representative in India. Alright, that probably won’t happen with your small business but you get the picture. Whenever outsourcing is viable, it will be employed.
Before looking to outsource any of your business work, think about what jobs you can outsource. There are several considerations that are included in that decision. The last thing you want is to compromise the trust of your customers by making a wrong decision.
Whenever you are dealing with a business, there are confidentiality issues. Your clients trust you with their personal and financial information. Anyone working for you must have that same level of commitment to the clients that you have. Outsourcing work that will include this and other sensitive information about your business needs to be placed in the right hands.
Draw up a confidentiality contract. Anyone who wants to work for you must sign this contract stating that they will not reveal any information that they are given to a third party. Also, any work that they do for you is proprietary, meaning it belongs to you and not them. No one wants any breach of confidence but if there is one, you have a legal right to sue for damages with a signed contract.
Working with someone who is in the same time zone has its perks. You can communicate in the same time and that person can answer you back directly when you call, IM or email them. It is like being in the same room.
On the other hand, a person working in another time zone presents a delay in getting some projects finished. You wouldn’t outsource a job with time constraints on deliverables if your contractor was half a world away. Communication would be challenging to say the least if you needed answers right away. Everything depends on your type of business and how you feel comfortable working.
Now, we are down to the nitty-gritty. What jobs will you outsource to others? Here is a short list of possible outsourcing opportunities:
• Website content
• Customer service
• Website design
You’ll notice that some of these jobs don’t involve any sensitive information. The ones that do require it need someone with the utmost of discretion.
Having a website is important for an online business. Your website is where people will find you, get answers to their questions and buy your goods and services. Static pages, old content and faulty buttons are not going to win you any new customers. A website designer can handle the job of fixing website problems and making it search engine friendly. On your own, it takes a while to learn the ins and outs of setting up a website and keeping it up. Outsourcing to someone with these skills is a good idea especially if you know nothing about websites.
Benefits of OutsourcingPosted by: Adriana Post date: October 11th, 2011
Outsourcing involves farming out your work to qualified professionals for the benefit of your business enterprise. Large corporations have been doing it for a few years now with great success to their bottom line. These companies outsource jobs to other countries where they can be done just as efficiently for less cost. People get jobs and the company wins on all fronts.
This concept is not just for the big companies. Small business enterprises can use outsourcing to their benefit as well. Whether you are running a small business out of your home or online, it takes work to keep everything running smoothly. There don’t seem to be enough hours in the day to get all of the work done.
Consider outsourcing as a means of boosting your bottom line and lightening your load a bit. With an online enterprise, usually you are the “everything person.” You function as the bookkeeper, web designer, content writer, Internet marketer, customer service representative and the executive assistant. It could take the better part of a day to respond to all of your business emails or to handle bills at the end of the month.
If you need help, there are affordable choices for small businesses. For you, outsourcing in the virtual world is a great option. People with certain expertise can help your business to grow. The trouble is finding these people and more specifically, the right people to handle your business needs.
Outsourcing works best when you know what jobs you can outsource and which ones are best left in-house. Also, learning the benefits of outsourcing makes you more confident and knowledgeable when looking for an individual or company to contract with.
Once you decide to outsource, you’ll need to know how to find who you are looking for. Creating an application and interview process gives you tools to determine who will be the best fit for the jobs you want to outsource. Virtual assistants are putting a new face on the process of outsourcing and proving themselves to be a great asset.
How would you like to get a press release distributed for only $5? How about a video created for the same amount? An article written? Keyword research done?
REASONS FOR OUTSOURCING
When you first start an online business, free time is non-existent. Either you are setting up a website or marketing your business or answering emails. Each job is important but it leaves no time for anything but work and sleep.
Many parents begin home businesses to spend more time with their families. You may have that opportunity eventually, but in the beginning you’ll work almost as much as you did with your regular job. Outsourcing allows you to get a few of those piles off of your desk and into the hands of someone else. Life becomes a little better because you can now see the light at the end of the tunnel.
With small businesses, if you don’t do it, it won’t get done. This includes the big M – marketing. In order to sell your goods and services, people need to know that you exist. Putting the word out there about you requires a marketing strategy that includes advertising. Just researching the market and establishing an online presence takes a big chunk of time each day.
When you outsource some of the tasks within your business, it leaves more opportunities for you to handle more pressing work of the business that requires your attention. Developing a marketing plan involves trial and error but that won’t bother you as long as you know that all your other bases are covered through outsourced companies or individuals.
Better Customer Service
Anyone who has ever owned a business or patronized one knows how important customer service is. A business, especially a small one or an online enterprise can be made or broken on the strength of their customer service program. Each customer wants to feel special, as if they are the only one that you have.
A good customer service program takes care of their new and returning customers. Questions and emails are answered promptly. Issues with merchandise are rectified rapidly. Outsourcing customer service to a third party frees you from answering business related emails or telephone calls. The customer’s need is met and you only answer emails or calls from anyone who needs your expertise to handle their situation.
You go into business to make money. It is true that you want to be the boss, but without money coming into the business your stint as head honcho will be short lived. Maybe you want to expand your business but don’t see how without some additional help. Outsourcing some of the daily duties allows you to focus on streamlining business functions and finding new markets to explore.
Lower Overhead Costs
If you have more money coming in than going out, you are doing something right. One way to lower your costs is to hire virtual contractors instead of employees. Employers are responsible for their employees’ health care benefits package and unemployment insurance.
Outsourced jobs are done by contractors. Virtual assistants and other companies that you hire to take some of the burden off of you are also business owners. As such, they pay for their own health insurance and any other expenses they might incur. You don’t pay for equipment or lunches or breaks. The actual time spent on your projects is all that you are being billed for.
Many online businesses use contractors instead of regular employees. In the beginning, you usually can’t afford to have any full-time people working for you. Outsourcing allows you to keep that status quo and increase your profits at the same time.
Employing Knowledge and Experience
As we stated before, outsourced work is done by contractors who are also working to build their own businesses. They have built a reputation of reliability and on-time product delivery. It is as important to them as it is to you to do a good job.
Most virtual assistants and other contractors bring a wealth of knowledge and expertise to the table. You might need a person who can answer your emails and perform customer service duties. That same virtual assistant may have extensive experience in website building. They can be of assistance to you further in other ways.
Choosing contractors, who have many talents instead of just the one you need at the time, will save you headache if and when you need more jobs outsourced. A knowledgeable person can troubleshoot problems and answer your questions without the need to consult yet another person.
Around the Clock Service
When you run an online business, you deal with people in many different time zones and countries around the world. While you are sleeping, your clients are just starting their day by bombarding your email and voicemail with messages. That means a lot of busy work to do when you get going in the morning.
One thing to consider when outsourcing your work is the location of the contractor. If they are living in another time zone, this benefits you because while you sleep, they are still working and taking care of clients. It is like a 24 hour convenience store. There is always someone on duty. Handling responsibilities like that requires someone you trust implicitly.