How Can a Brochure Help Your Business

The company brochure has a rich history. It’s been an affordable way for businesses to share information about their products and services for decades. Since the days when it first became possible to run off a few hundred brochures with pictures and a few well-chosen words to inspire prospective customers to part with their money, there’s been a use for this classic sales tool.

Let’s look a little deeper at how different kinds of brochures can help market your business, event or activity better than it’s done today.

The Promotional Brochure

The most basic use of a brochure is as a promotional tool to introduce a new prospective customer to the brand or company. In many cases, they’ve never heard of your company, but something has peaked their interest. Rather than look around your showroom not knowing what to consider first, being able to hand them a ready-made brochure is an excellent way to direct their initial interest in a productive way.

Staff can flip through the pages to highlight areas of interest for them based on asking a couple of initial questions to see what their needs are. With a brochure that’s organised into logical sections covering activities, history, product lines or another way that divides up the information so it makes sense, the staff can help move prospective customers forward in their decision-making process.

The Product Brochure

A product brochure features either a selection of your best-selling or latest releases. In some cases, a full catalogue is created which covers your entire product line, but this is less common now. When walking into a UK showroom, being able to find a brochure with some of the products available is a fast-track way to see what the business offers. As long as the sales staff know their products well, they can then greet the customer and augment whatever information is already provided in the product brochure once they know which item the customer is most interested in.

With cheap brochure printing, it’s even possible to come out with a monthly brochure printed as a limited run to provide information on the latest releases which is the reason many customers visit a retail shop in the first place. Print brochures take some of the initial workload off the sales staff too which allows them to direct their energies more effectively to close a sale more often.

If you’re planning on producing a monthly magazine style brochure, you’re likely going to need a lot of copies to distribute. This means that you’re going to have to research a brochure printing company who can handle high-quantity orders. One company known for this is print24 who can print in batches of up to 50,000. If this is something you know you’ll need, you can read more about the service on their brochure printing page.

The Trade Show Brochure

For businesses that go to the expense of renting a booth at an industry trade show, it’s critical that they have both informational and promotional products for attendees to take away. The list of possible items runs the gamut from branded t-shirts to coffee mugs to several brochures covering the various brands and product lines.

Grabbing the attention of people at a trade show isn’t easy. It requires great design to get the most out of the latest brochure printing to deliver an eye-catching handout that will get the person returning to the booth to follow up later. For businesses in the beauty market, having several print magazines covering beauty tips and a few of your select products added for good measure is a good way to go. Also, don’t skimp on the trade booth design which gets people into the booth in the first place.

Brochure vs. Magazine

It depends on what you wish to share with customers whether you should use magazine printing or get a brochure printed up. Magazines tend to include more glossy photos and a greater number of pages. The binding tends to be fixed with a magazine, whereas a brochure has a variety of available bindings that all work well.

When the material is going to be browsed together, then a spiral binding makes it easier to open it up at a page and keep it there for a longer look. A salesperson wanting to point out the benefits of a product or service is aided when the page stays open where they need it so they can focus on the customer.

Getting the Ordering Right

It’s important to consider the shelf life of the brochure before ordering. Will it be used to promote this month’s special offers, contain information relevant for the current quarter or provide some historical perspective to extend its relevance? You want to order enough copies so that you don’t run out, but not so many that an extremely topical brochure no longer has much relevance. Therefore, a balance must be struck between the size of the print run, how many brochures are expected to be required, and the shelf life or usefulness of the information contained therein. Doing so maximises the value that the business receives from each batch of printed brochures.

Brochures are very useful to a business. Any company that meets customers face-to-face or has a need to send out product or company information in the mail will certainly find a brochure helpful.

How to Help Employees Communicate by Email More Effectively

Email is are still considered the primary communication tool in the business world. Today’s business landscape may have shifted further towards video conferences and short messaging platforms, but the majority of formal business communications are still conducted via email. There is no sign of emails being replaced by other means of communication either.

Despite the common use of emails, not all professionals know how to use them properly. This is exactly why we still see mistakes such as incorrectly using CC instead of BCC happening in the real world. As an employer, you can play a more active role in helping employees communicate by email more effectively.

Email-Related Training

Despite the importance of emails, most email etiquette and skills are learned through experience and real-world practice. Sure, there are a lot of resources and websites that specifically share email-related knowledge and tips. That said, very little formal training is provided in school or corporate training programs.You can reduce the number of mistakes your employees make when communicating via email by providing them with such training programs. They are easy to find and will even help employees fine-tune their email content for effective business communication.

It is also a good idea to provide employees with training on the tools available to them. In Outlook, for example, you can sort emails automatically, forward emails with certain marks to other recipients, and even automate everyday email tasks (i.e. adding a calendar entry for meetings and invitations).

The Right Tools for the Job

There are also additional tools designed to really boost email productivity and effectiveness. Customer Relationship Management or CRM platforms, for example, are capable of handling, logging, and documenting email communication. These comprehensive databases enable sales officers to keep track of their conversations with clients without ever missing a beat.

The same can be said for research tools. Let’s say you want your sales team to connect with new potential clients. Provide them with a tools such as The Email Finder to be able to research and verify email addresses. Click here to learn more about email verification can really boost your employees’ email productivity.

Monitoring

Monitoring is always a tricky subject to discuss. Is it ethical to monitor business emails sent from @yourcompany.com email addresses? Ethics debates aside, email monitoring is a proven way of boosting the effectiveness of business emails nonetheless.

As previously mentioned, CMS platforms can now keep track of email communications between sales officers and clients. That simple tracking feature is very valuable when it comes to developing strong relationships with clients since it allows your employees to personalize the tone of the conversation based on past emails.

Tracking also gives you, the employer, a clear picture of how emails are helping the business thrive. This, along with the previous tips we covered in this article, will help you assist employees in using their email addresses more effectively.

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3 Major Benefits of Effective Web Design

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Web design is about so much more than creating a pretty looking store space. Of course, every brand needs an aesthetically pleasing web page. But there are several key aspects of web design that can make the difference between your online business excelling and prospering or it falling flat on its face in the first year of operation. Remember, the success of any E-commerce company relies heavily on the brand’s visual presentation: this forms the majority of what potential consumers know about you. So make it effective. Here are five benefits of well-managed web design.

Creation of a Consistent Brand Identity

Brand identity is essential to create the impression of a consistent, reliable company. Most people are prone to mulling over the appearance of one aspect of their business at a time. First a logo. Then perhaps a font. Then a color scheme. This is likely to form a rather mish mash aesthetic when all of the different aspects are put together. Professional web designers such as Ignite Digital, however, look at the bigger picture from the start of their projects. They will have an idea of how absolutely every part of your business is going to fit into their design scheme, whether it’s web pages, affiliated blogs, business cards or advertising. Always bear in mind that one, stable and reliable image is bound to make a much more positive and lasting impression in consumers’ minds than five different images that appear as though they could appear to five different companies.

Drawn Out Pageviews

Yes, you want to bring plenty of traffic to your site, so clicks are important. But you don’t make any profit from individuals who click your homepage and leave straight away. You need to keep people on your page, browsing different areas and perusing different collections and products to see your traffic convert into sales and profit. In a world saturated with web pages and web vendors, it will take something pretty impressive to encourage an audience to stay on your page for longer than a few seconds. So collaborate with experienced designers to create an eye catching and engaging homepage.

Content Form and Structure

You need to ensure that your products and collections are presented to internet users in their best light. You want your customer to feel confident enough in the product to invest their hard earned cash in it. Effective web design can help with this. Options such as zoom or rotation on product images, links to sizing information, delivery options and terms and conditions and well-placed product descriptions in an easy to read font all go down a storm with consumers. You also want products displayed on individual pages, allowing customers to focus on the item they’ve clicked separately to all of your other stock. The key to a successful site is simple navigation and minimalism.

These are just three of the benefits that effective web design can bring to your brand. Needless to say, there are plenty more. So get started on creating a brilliant business web page.

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Freelancers, Here’s How To Put Your Website To The Test

Being a freelancer means relying on your website to bring in customers – it’s your main source of income. For any business, big or small, a website is a vital marketing tool. However, for freelancers it’s more than that – as a freelancer, your website is the heart of your business, which is why it’s so vital to ensure that it’s as effective as possible. The question is, of course, how can you do that – how can you determine how successful your business website is? Use our guide below to determine if your website is as effective and as successful as you think it is…

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Photo courtesy of Pixabay

Utilize objective feedback

A simple way to determine whether your website is as effective as it could be is to utilize objective feedback. There are many options for getting this feedback, with one of the best ones being AB testing – this is where an objective group of people are shown multiple versions of a website or page and choose the one that they like the best. There are several benefits of AB testing, including being able to get a better idea of what you could consider changing and what you should ensure stays the same. The fact is that when it comes to ensuring that your website is as well-designed as possible, objective feedback is key.

Monitor your site’s traffic

The number of visitors that your website gets is a good indication of how effective your website is as a marketing resource. Think of your website like a shop window for your products and services – for your business to be a success, your website needs to be as appealing as possible and get plenty of traffic. Monitor your overall traffic using Google Analytics or another similar tool and take note of when there are dips and spikes in your page views and cross reference them to days, times, and anything else that may be relevant.

Track new vs. returning users

Using monitoring software like Google Analytics, you can track your new vs. returning visitors. Usually, websites tend to have more new visitors than returning ones, which is perfectly fine. However, if your site has predominantly more new users than returning ones, this could indicate that your site isn’t quite right and needs some changes making to it.

Note down conversion rates

A vital part of working as a freelancer is determining the conversion rate of your website. If you allow for your services to be ordered online, you can track how many users made purchases and how many abandoned their shopping carts mid-purchase. This kind of data demonstrates how user-friendly your site is, and whether you need to focus on improving usability. If your site isn’t easy to use and navigate, the fact is that your customers will go elsewhere – it’s as simple as that.

Determining how successful your website is, is no easy task, as there are lots of factors to take into account. Hopefully, however, the advice above will help to make the process of measuring your website’s effectiveness a little easier for you.

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Ways to Improve Your Website’s Navigation

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Photo courtesy of Pixabay

There’s no point taking the time to create a website for your business if you don’t also take the time to ensure that the site is easy for your visitors to find their way around.

Good web design answers the important questions about your business and what it’s about, and that means that your website’s navigation needs to be spot on if you’re going to convince visitors to become customers. Unfortunately, so many businesses, of all shapes and sizes, get it wrong.

Here are some simple things you can do to improve the navigation of your website and make it a whole lot easier for visitors to access the information they require, make purchases, and get in touch:

Plan, Plan, Plan

Before you even think about working on your company website, sit down and plan its content and navigation. Create a flowchart that shows the direction you want visitors to take through your website and the main areas that you’d like to draw their attention to. Pay particular attention to your website’s main navigation and the categories you want to include.

Check Out the Competition

It makes sense to see what the competition is doing if you want to get your website’s navigation right. Make a list of the 20 biggest competitors you have and make a point of going through their website like a customer. This should give you some valuable insights into good and bad navigation, which h you can then use to make your website one of the best in your niche.

Pare it Down

Ideally, if you want to make your website as simple and informative as possible, paring down the number of navigation options on offer is a good idea. The fewer options there are, the less cluttered the site will feel and the easier it will be for visitors to find exactly what they want.

Keep it Clean

Keeping your website as free of animations, auto playing videos, and sizeable images will ensure that your website loads more quickly. It will also keep distractions to a minimum so that the focus of your customers is on your content, products and services. There is nothing worse than a slow loading website to make things difficult and send potential customers away, so avoid temptation and leave those unnecessary elements out.

Make it Static

Your website’s navigation menu should stay in the same place from page to page. It shouldn’t be at the top of the homepage and the side on the about me section.

Text-Based Links

You might think that image-based links look more interesting, but they’re also more difficult for some users to find, and they don’t work as well when it comes to search engine optimization and boosting your website’s position on Google.

Use Basic Language

A lot of companies are tempted to use flowery technical language because they think it makes them look more professional, and this might well be the case, but it also makes it more confusing for their users. So, at least when it comes to menu headings and page titles keep things short and simple.

Be Very Specific

Instead of making your navigation labels general, like saying ‘services’ make them more specific like ‘divorce’ and ‘criminal law’ This will ensure your visitors find exactly what they want quickly and give you another handy SEO boost.

Avoid Drop Down Menus

If you really want to include drop down menus on your website, go ahead and do so, but be aware that a lot of users find them annoying because they can start to move around, and thus cause people to click the wrong link, and get in the way. They’re also a lot more difficult for the likes of Google to crawl, which means your website might not be as easy to find in the first place.

Include a Search Box

Including a search box right at the top of your website is a great way to help your visitors out. If despite your best efforts, they still find your website tougher to navigate than they would like, they can simply type that they’re looking for into the box and a list of options will appear.

Excellent website navigation, which enables visitors to move through your website quickly and without issue is a proven way of increasing conversion rate and boosting your website’s performance. It is vital that you take the above steps, and any others that you can think of to ensure that this is a reality for your website.

Good Luck!