Creating A Website For Selling

Website design experts offer the ability to have the perfect shop front for your business. It is so important in this day and age for your business to be found online, regardless of your trade.

If you’re new to the trading world and looking to be a success, then Internet shopping is the way forward and you’ll soon find that you will need an ecommerce site. Building an online shop is not easy for the average business person though; so seeking a digital agency will ensure your site is amongst the best and is going to work for you and your business.

In this blog post, we are going to take a look at creating a website for the purpose of selling in further detail. We hope this gives you the assistance and inspiration you need for your own e-store.

StrategyDriven Online Marketing and Website Development Article | Creating A Website For Selling

Some advice and recommendations for new businesses

You have a new business and you have the stock you need, now you just need a multitude of customers. Simple, right? But, where can you find these customers, or more importantly, how can your customers find you? It’s all very well relying on word of mouth, or passers-by if you have a shop front, but why limit yourself when you could reach a worldwide audience? With the use of the Internet, the sky is the limit when it comes to attracting an audience, meaning more potential sales for you, resulting in more revenue. Sounds good? The difficult bit is knowing where to start.

Thankfully, there are professional website design experts who are also eCommerce experts. These experts can build you a bespoke ecommerce site, meaning you can instantly start to benefit from this growing market. If you do it right, ecommerce is the way to go, attracting both men and women of all ages. It’s a great time to be a start-up business in the ecommerce world.

Another advantage of using a website design company to build your ecommerce site is that they are also likely to be professionals in SEO. This means they can ensure that your shop will be found more easily by people searching for your products. They can also maintain your site, ensuring you remain higher on those search engine results. A good SEO agency will have a number of different techniques and tools at their disposal to make your website more visible online. After all, you can have the most amazing website visually, but if no one views it, you’re not going to make any sales, are you?

Have you considered using Shopify?

There are many options for ecommerce sites available, so what makes Shopify the perfect choice? Firstly, the cost. Shopify is one of the more affordable shopping sites to run, with low monthly costs but a reliable website. Businessmen know the key to a successful start-up is keeping outgoings as low as possible, but still keeping the quality high.

Companies specialising in Shopify can ensure this happens. Shopify offers reports on your click-throughs, and even includes features that can improve your SEO. The reporting system can inform you of which search terms have brought the most visitors to your site.

Other tools available on Shopify include discount codes and gift cards, integration of social networking sites, and email marketing options. All of these can improve the success of your site, when used properly. There are more advanced packages available if you are looking for something else specific, such as pop-ups or similar.

Design and imagery can be a big part of a purchase. The layout of Shopify is simple and eye-catching, making it easy for the user to navigate and therefore resulting in a purchase is more likely. Teamed with website designers, your online shop will soon be turning heads. If you’re looking to purely run your business and sell your products, without the hassle of website hosting, payment gateways and software maintenance, then Shopify is for you.

All things considered, there is no denying that there is a lot to think about when you are selling products online. However, we hope that this blog post will help you on your journey by outlining some of the things that you are going to need to do in order to get started.

7 Ways To Save Money On Equipment For Your Business

StrategyDriven Managing Your Finances Article | 7 Ways To Save Money On Equipment For Your Business | business equipment | entrepreneurshipLots of companies can end up overspending on equipment. Whether you’re buying office furniture or industrial machinery, here are seven tips to keep the costs down.

Shop second hand

Used equipment is always cheaper than brand new equipment. You do however need to be wary of the condition. Older equipment that has been well used may be more likely to break. For this reason, you should always inspect such equipment in person before buying.

If you’re buying used equipment online, make sure that a description of the condition and photos are provided. It could also be worth buying from a reputable seller – read reviews to see what other customers have to say.

When it comes to general equipment, it could be worth looking out for company closures in your area. Many companies will be selling equipment for cheap simply to get rid of it – some of it may be in very good condition.

Look out for sales and coupons

Dealers of both new and used commercial equipment may have sales throughout the year. A popular time to hold a sale is in January, whilst the Black Friday weekend is another popular sales period. Also look out for off season sales on seasonal equipment – commercial mowers may be cheaper to buy in winter when there’s less demand for gardening equipment.

You may also be able to grab discounts by using coupons. These can be found on coupon sites or by signing up to commercial equipment retailer mailing lists.

Avoid splurging on gimmicks

It’s important that any equipment you buy is appropriate for your needs. Try to avoid splashing out on equipment that’s more complex than necessary. If you’re only looking to do some basic printing, you don’t need a heavy-duty industrial printer capable of printing 60 sheets of paper per minute – a basic commercial printer will do the job and will save you money. Only high end niche businesses are likely to need the most complex equipment available – if you’re starting a printing company, a heavy duty printer might be more suitable.

Hire single use equipment

A popular mistake made by many companies is buying equipment that will only ever get used once or twice. By hiring this equipment, you could save a lot of money.

Hiring equipment can also be sensible if you don’t have the storage space for such as equipment. For instance, a construction company may hire a crane rather than buying one. This could save money having to create extra warehouse space.

By shopping around, you can find the best equipment hire prices. Make sure that the company has a good online reputation so that you know you’re hiring good quality equipment. A good company will keep all equipment well maintained – although you may still be liable for any damage you cause.

Consider energy efficiency

Energy-efficiency is an important factor to consider when it comes to buying machinery. A machine that consumes a lot of energy will cost you more in energy bills. Older equipment is likely to be less energy efficient than modern equipment, which is something to consider when buying used equipment. You may be able to find information on the energy efficiency online, as is the case with these energy efficient desktop computers.

Know when to repair, when to replace

You can also save costs by knowing when to repair and when to replace equipment.

Choosing to repair equipment could save you money in many instances. You can find all kinds of niche parts online from a wafer ring/frame to a new monitor screen – if you feel up to the challenge, you could do your own repairs. Alternatively, you could hire a repair technician to do repairs for you – this may still be cheaper than replacing with certain equipment.

You may want to consider replacing equipment if it is old or has broken numerous times in the past. It’s possible you may be able to sell old broken machinery for parts – this could help give you some money to put towards a replacement.

Warranties or contents insurance may be able to cover the cost of repairing or replacing machinery in some cases. This is worth looking into before you make any decisions.

Maintain your equipment

You may be able to stop equipment breaking in the first place by keeping it well maintained. Certain maintenance may be able to be carried out by your employees, whilst more complex equipment may need to regularly serviced by a professional technician (such as construction vehicles or medical machinery).

Cleaning is often one of the most important maintenance tasks – this is not just a matter of health and safety but also a way of keeping machinery working properly. Dust build-ups can affect many types of machinery and are a common cause of computers failing. If there’s a lot of dust in the air, you may be able to install an extractor fan or use an air purifier to keep it clean.

You should also be careful of environmental factors like cold and humidity. Certain machinery may break if it is stored somewhere that is too hot or too cold. Agricultural machinery for instance may need to be kept indoors when not in use and covered up to prevent damage from rust.

How To Grow Your Business In A Competitive Industry

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article |Grow Your Business|How To Grow Your Business In A Competitive IndustryThe business world is one which is highly competitive, which means that a company must always be looking for ways to grown order to stay ahead of the competition. Even if you are the most successful brand in your industry, you can be sure that the competition will be looking for innovative ways to grow and knock you off of your perch. This can be stressful as it means that the work never stops yet it is also exciting and a great way to refine your business, earn more money and dominate the industry. Here are a few different ways that even a big company can grow.

Expand

One of the most obvious ways to grow a business is to expand into new areas. This can be particularly effective if you are scaling into areas with less competition as it can be much easier to dominate the local market. This could involve expanding overseas, which is an exciting process but one with many hurdles to overcome.

Diversify Product Range

It is also worth considering your product range and seeing if there are any gaps in the market that you can fill. Your target customer will come to your business because you can provide a product that they want/need so think about what their other wants and needs are to see if you could be providing other products too.

Attract & Retain Top Talent

It is impossible to grow a company without the right people powering the operation. You need to make sure that you are attracting the top talent with competitive wages, bonuses, and a pleasant working environment and retain these top performers with job satisfaction and career development opportunities. When you can attract and retain the top talent, it allows you to delegate and focus your efforts on the big picture.

Create & Share Content

In today’s internet-drive age, it is important that you are creating and sharing content online. This is a way of promoting your brand, showing your expertise, and providing value to your target customer. There are many different types of content to consider, including:

  • Videos
  • Infographics
  • How to guides
  • Interviews
  • Product demonstration videos
  • Case studies

It is important to share this content on social media and to use this platform to directly engage and communicate with your target customer.

Promote Customer Loyalty

It is easier and cheaper to retain customers than to acquire new ones so this needs to be a key area of focus for businesses. In addition to providing a high-quality product/service at good value for money and with excellent customer service, you can keep hold of your customer with the use of a customer loyalty program.

Attracting New Customers

Although easier and cheaper to retain customers, you will also need to attract new ones if your company is to grow significantly. Fortunately, there are many different ways that you can attract new customers to your business with the most effective strategies being promotions and deals that can entice them away from their current provider. Additionally, if you are able to get recommendations from existing customers then this can be highly effective. This is possible through customer referral programs and by seeking customer reviews, which can then be used on social media and on your company website.

Improve Customer Experience

Ultimately, in order to grow you need to provide a good experience for the customer yet this is an area that is often overlooked by businesses. How you improve the customer experience will depend on your operation but it could involve making changes to the buying process, reducing shipping fees, going the extra mile and being friendlier to customers.

Ramp Up Marketing

One of the most effective strategies for growing a business is to increase your marketing efforts as there is always more that could be done.

Digital marketing is important for increasing your visibility online and is particularly important if you are operating in a highly competitive industry. You should always use reputable digital marketing agencies for the best results.

Traditional marketing remains important, especially if you are targeting customers in the local area. This could include TV/radio adverts, print adverts, attending trade events, sponsorship etc.

Form A Strategic Alliance

A strategic alliance is a smart business move which can help a company to access an entirely new market, increase brand awareness and grow while forming important business relationships. The key to a successful strategic alliance is finding the right business – this should be a company that has the same target customer but is not a direct competitor. A florist, for example, could form a strategic alliance with an event planner or wedding dress shop where they can recommend each other to their customers and offer discounts.

Improve Project Management

Successful project management can drive growth and help a business to achieve their goals, yet it is an area that many companies struggle with especially larger ones where the risks can be higher. There are a few effective strategies for improving project management, including using medicated project managers to oversee the operation and utilizing the latest and best technology. Places like Catalyst for Business highlight the value of technology like ringless voicemail where you can deliver pre-recorded messages into a voicemail inbox which can help you to market your customers more effectively.

Stay Current

There are constantly new trends, technology and other innovations coming to light in the world of business and taking advantage of these early can be critical for growth. It can be challenging to stay current but it is possible by reading respected publications, reading blogs, joining online communities etc.

Growth is crucial in the ever-changing business world as companies are constantly in competition with one another to come out on top. Growth can help your company to earn more money, dominate the industry and find greater success and the above are a few effective strategies to use to help your company to take the next level. There will always be risks attached but it can be incredibly rewarding when changes to the operation deliver powerful results.

A Business Blog Should Be 20% Of Your Marketing Strategy

StrategyDriven Online Marketing and Website Development Article | A Business Blog Should Be 20% Of Your Marketing Strategy | Business Blog

If you aren’t interesting as a business you’re not an entity that is going to hold the attention of the masses. They want businesses and business leaders that speak to them, share ideas they feel passionate about too and also, just be fun to be around and interact with. Businesses have got to stop being so rigid and focuses on their corporate images. But how do you do this day in and day out? What is the outlet which can give you this space? Your own business website of course. Your business blog is where your personality has to shine through. In the content you must be able to explain your ideas well but also use it as a platform to build links, create new followers and be able to spread your word around the search engines that people use. Just how big a proportion do blogs take up when it comes to marketing?

Make the news before the news

Social media is like a forest sometimes. It’s so full of content, videos, links and viral adverts that you can be intimidated. However, know that the media companies of the world are dying to hear about you. To become viral you don’t need their own platforms and say so. Your business can make the news before the news even knows. This is why business blogs are so powerful. You can release exclusive information on your blog and watch the media report on it in a heartbeat. But you give your customers and interested potential consumers vital information about an update, a patch, a new product a totally new and improved service etc. The blog is therefore used as a news website for customers to come visit and read what you have to say. It’s a phenomenal tool to communicate with the world in this way.

Almost a quarter

Perhaps the best reason for a business blog to exist is that it’s almost one quarter of the SEO world for businesses. Content and a blog for a business amounts to around 19% of the overall SEO duties and marketing strategy aspects. That is huge. It’s about 1/5 of your overall SEO management requirements. The other aspects are link building, Google plus, social media, on page and off page links, keywords, Google AdWords, YouTube etc. A blog is worth so much to a business because it’s the space where all other marketing aspects can exist together. You can add a YouTube video to your blog, create off page links whereby you use evidence by another media or well respect news company to back up your claims.

Active and fresh

A business that doesn’t publish blogs can seem kind of dormant. Unless someone is actually following your business on social media, they won’t be seeing you anywhere else other than the search engine results page. Your blog can appear in the search results with great SEO techniques employed so you cover that base as well.

Content isn’t just about getting material out there, it’s about sharing your personality as a business with the consumer. It’s also a great way to make news before the news reports on you.

What To Know When Buying A Business

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship Article |Buying a Business|What To Know When Buying A BusinessBuying a business and being your own boss is like living the dream. However, without carefully stepping into the new business and considering every little detail, your dream could easily turn into a financial nightmare. Here are some critical aspects to consider when starting down the path of small business owner.

If it’s profitable

This might seem like a no-brainer, but it’s important to ask the previous business owner the right questions, including:

  • Why are you selling?
  • What condition is the building in and are there any repairs that need to be made as soon as possible?
  • What the sales system looks like and what the target demographic is?
  • What is employee turnover like?
  • Who are your vendors, and what is your relationship with them like?

All of these factors can impact your new business’s bottom line, and you don’t want to enter into an unprofitable business from the start because you overlooked an important question or two in the preliminary stages. Determine the risks before jumping in with both feet, and you’ll thank yourself later.

If it’s in a good location

When you take over an already-established business, you inherit everything that goes with it, including its shortcomings. If your business involves customers coming in person to your brick-and-mortar, you want to make sure the location is good and going to attract the right customers. Also consider other factors against it, like the cost of rent compared to other favorable locations.

If the location you’re inheriting is not ideal and you want to purchase a commercial property and move the business, it’s wise to enlist the help of an experienced real estate lawyer, like Watts Law Firm PA. They can help you navigate the complex process with ease, advise your purchase, and if need be, help solve any legal conflicts.

What kind of branding and marketing already exists

Branding and marketing are crucial in today’s connected world. A business’ social media presence can make or break them, just as one bad piece of PR can. Decide if you want to keep with the established branding or if you want to totally rebrand the business. Keep in mind the pros and cons of rebranding before deciding:

Pros: Established brand awareness, retention, and satisfaction among previous and repeat customers; one less task to think about on your plate.
Cons: Possibly inheriting poor branding; don’t get to personalize your business to your liking.

Either way, it’s good to know what kind of marketing efforts have been made and are currently underway, if any. This way, you can understand what worked and what didn’t for the target demographic, which will give you a jumpstart on your own efforts.

If your financing is secure

Yes, buying a business is a huge expense – it isn’t a secret. You want to ensure you’re coming out of the gate swinging in order for your new company to be a success. Avoid the financial headaches and stress by securing your funding far in advance and having a plan to pay back any loans. You can acquire funds by taking out a bank loan, a loan with a financing company, or using your home as collateral for a home equity loan. It wouldn’t hurt to talk to a financial advisor to set up a savings plan if that is the route you want to take.