Whether you have a new online business or an existing one you’ll want to review my tips on domain name management.
Periodically review the domain names you own. If you don’t need one or are not pursuing that aspect of your business, save money and don’t renew a domain name you won’t need in the future.
When you start your business, secure domain name variations of your company name to protect your brand. Consider buying the .us variation in addition to the .com if you are a U.S. based business and other country extensions if you have a presence there.
You don’t need to buy hosting for every domain name you own. You can use domain forwarding to point domains you own to your main desired domain where your website resides.
New or old, periodically it makes sense to review the domain names you do own. For those you are using for your website and online presence, set your renewal in five year increments. For those you may let go in the future consider one year or two year renewals.
One, if you have a relatively low ad budget and want to test if pay per click might be a good option to grow your business, Facebook pay per click advertising is a good match.
Two, if you have customer demographics that fit with the older Facebook user, Facebook advertising may be a good fit for your needs. If your audience is in their 20’s and 30’s consider Instagram instead of Facebook.
I have had clients have success advertising products and services on Facebook. Here are some additional considerations if you decide that you would like to try it out.
One, make sure you are monitoring comments. Readers will post comments to your ads and if you are not watching competitors may even post their own links in the comments. You can delete any comments you find offensive or not business enhancing. It is not uncommon for trolls to post negative things on your ads, so it is crucial that you be monitoring ad comments.
Two, I do not typically encourage driving Facebook pay per click traffic to your Facebook page but rather to your website so your message is shaped to put you in the best light.
Occasionally we have a client who is using a low-end web host or who is self-hosting and does not have a cgi-bin or scripting enabled in order for us to install a contact form processing script. Sometimes this has lead to expensive programming charges. We do not offer programming and so we have to contract out this portion of a project adding to expenses.
We have found a service that will process the script for you on their servers and so far it looks like a clean and elegant solution to a thorny problem for some clients. You will want to click our post title to review the site MyContactForm.com. With a premium account for $24.99 per year, now any client can have a professional seamless contact form installed on their site without complex programming initiatives. I think that it is a very smart solution.
Of course you’ve listed your business on Google, but have you grabbed your Bing Places account? With Windows 10 and more Bing integration with this new platform, I am finding my own self on Bing more. So don’t forget you want your own business to be found easier and faster on Bing too as they get more traffic.
Grab Your Listing
First make sure you have a Microsoft ID for your business, then visit Bing Places online at https://www.bingplaces.com/ then go to the site and login and enter in your business phone number. Bing will auto populate a form with what it knows about your business. You can then either claim the listing or create a new one.
If your old address shows, go ahead and claim it as you have to claim and verify by phone before you can change to your new address.
Update Your Listing
Then work your way through the five or so screens to add information about your business. You’ll be asked to choose one of Bing’s categories for your business. This is not the time to get creative, you’ve got to choose one of theirs. Add pictures to your listing, but they have to be bigger than 468 pixels wide by 360 pixels tall.
Verify Your Listing by Snail Mail
To assure Bing that you are who you say you are, you will for the first time need to verify your listing by snail mail. Bing will regular mail you a postcard with a PIN. It will typically arrive in less than one week.
There’s No Optimization
Really there is nothing more you can do for your listing. Don’t get fooled into buying any optimization services. There is simply nothing else that can be added to your listing to boost performance.
Do I think it is important to claim your listing – absolutely! Better to provide the “right” information as the business owner than for Bing to guess about your business hours and possibly even use the wrong phone number.
Back to the website… Remember Google Ads gets the horse to the water, so to speak, but it is your website content that gets the horse to drink – getting your initial micro conversion or lead from a Google Ads click.
So, the key is to have a robust and transparent website. Focus on an absolute minimum of 10 pages with videos, testimonials, and whitepapers. The higher dollar product or service you sell the more content you should have to establish yourself as an expert.
Proper Training of Phone Staff is Paramount
It is key that whoever is answering your phone is knowledgeable. Don’t make a prospect wait, hear ambiguous answers or be unsure of what you are selling. It is okay to have a receptionist, but when a sales person answers a call and says I do not know or is unsure, it can kill a sale.
If you use a receptionist to field calls, be aware of voice and intonation cues. Nothing chases a prospect away faster than a rude response from a receptionist.
Consider using website chat functions to pre-qualify prospects and then match prospects to the right sales staff. Put your top people on high dollar prospects.
Google Ads is an excellent tool for driving traffic and building conversions, but if the experience the prospect has on the phone or website is not fabulous, you may never be able to reach your conversion potential regardless of the budget you spend on Google Ads advertising.
Every client wants more Google Ads conversions. Google Ads can drive conversions but increased targeted traffic is just one component to growing conversions overall for your business.
Using a savvy Google Ads Consultant, like McCord Web Services, to set up your program and manage it is the very first step.
The second step (that is crucial) is to assure that your website is “on-point” and helps to build confidence in your ability to provide the service you are selling. Assuring that you are transparent as to who you are and what you do on your website is crucial.
Steer clear of the following:
No one page websites. You just need to have robust content to reassure Google Ads visitors that you mean business. If your product is expensive (relatively) the higher the price the more quality content you need to explain who you are and what you do.
No minimal contact information and don’t leave out your phone number. Build confidence in who you are by assuring that you have phone numbers, street addresses (not a P.O. Box) and easy ways to reach a real person fast!
No website pages that scroll and scroll and scroll. Break your content into targeted bites for super fast load time and to complete your top level navigation. Assure that you have navigation that easily travels your pages. Get client testimonials, videos of your team explaining your services, offer white papers. Provide value and information to establish yourself as the expert.
Make sure to check back Wednesday for our part two on this important topic.