Small Business Owners: Here’s How to Maximize Your Website!

Small Business Owners: Here’s How to Maximize Your Website!

Guest Post by Marcus Lansky

You pay for your website each month, so you should get the most out of it by looking toward technology to help run your business. Here are a few ways to maximize your website to help your small business be more productive.

Money Management

There is a huge difference between working online and dealing with customers face to face. Using an online storefront takes many routine (and tedious) tasks out of your hands. For one, you do not have to physically collect and account for monies transferred between your business and your customers. There are a number of online tools that you can link directly from your site to your bank account that keep track of invoices, taxes, accounts receivable, and accounts payable. This frees you up to focus on more important things, including marketing, which your site can help with, too (more on that in a moment!).

If you take the time to plan ahead, your site can also keep your finances on track by doing much of the legwork for you. Your site, when linked with financial tracking and workflow software, will monitor sales, costs, and even hours spent on a particular project. This makes it possible to plan a detailed budget that includes everything from insurance payments to saving for major upgrades. Having a budget in place means you can more precisely outline your business plan, which the Small Business Administration says is “an essential road map for business success.”

You’ll need to include financial projections as well as a comprehensive market analysis in your business plan.

If you need some guidance setting up an online storefront, an e-commerce specialist can help you conduct financial transactions over the internet. You can find these experts (and many others) though online freelance job platforms. Just review candidates’ skills and experience and client feedback.

Marketing

Your small business website not only promotes your products and services, but proves your legitimacy and professionalism. You can think of it as an online advocate of your physical presence; your site directs people to the right place, answers questions, and offers customers information. An easily navigable site makes your business more efficient by providing preemptive customer service and offering people a glimpse of how you operate.

Your site also collects customer information, allowing you to compile a contact list that can be used for everything from email marketing to creating targeted social media advertisements. One of the best ways to collect email addresses (and get permission to use them) is by offering a valuable virtual product that can only be digitally delivered. This may be a whitepaper, free eBook, or periodic message containing special offers, discounts, or private customer events.

While your website is essential to your marketing efforts, hiring a marketing professional can put your business over the top. April Neill is an experienced digital marketer and strategist who can help your business come up with creative solutions to gain market share and improve brand awareness.

Analytics

Next, look to your site’s analytic abilities. We mentioned previously that a properly written business plan includes a market analysis. That data can be taken directly from your site instead of painstakingly gathered through hands-on activities, such as customer surveys. Prior to the digital age, if a company wanted to know how many people were looking at its products during an event, such as a new commercial or seasonal sale, it had to count those people, make note of demographics, and compile that data using archaic pen-to-paper methods. All that took time away from refining other aspects of the business to further bolster the very sales its management sought to increase.

Today, however, your site can quickly offer you a screenshot of site traffic, sales, and even which promotional codes were used during checkout. Knowing your data gives you a clear picture of what is happening now, what you did in the past that made business better (or worse), and what is likely to spur interest in your business. Aggregated data will help you understand your business, uncover threats, and retain your most valuable asset: your customers.

Make the most of your investment — optimize your website and let it be the most efficient employee you’ve ever had.

Born with a severe spinal condition, Marcus Lansky took the challenge to be able to walk again. With the will and aid of numerous individuals from the medical field and a whole lot of cheerleaders, he was able to take his first steps and take on the world. He then created his site, Abilitator (abilitator.biz), as a way to reach out to those who are disabled and show them that becoming an entrepreneur is a goal they too can achieve.

How to Bring Good Energy to Your Brand.

I recently spent some time doing some spring cleaning, de-cluttering really, and in the process, took a deep dive into the art of feng shui. While it’s widely known you can use feng shui to create a better quality of life, improve your health, attract more harmony and happiness to your relationships, even help build a more satisfying career, did you know that feng shui can also help you build a better brand, better marketing, and better communications for your business?

With all these potential improvements, is it time to Feng Shui your brand?

Feng-Shui-for-Business

“Feng shui is an ancient art and science developed over 3,000 years ago in China. In literal translation feng means “wind” and shui means water. In Chinese culture, wind and water are associated with good health, thus good feng shui came to mean good fortune.”

What I took from the experience of de-cluttering, a basic premise of the philosophy of feng shui is the importance of balance and harmony in your life; also the importance keeping things in your life that bring you joy and possessions that bring value. Along the same lines, I started thinking about the art of branding and how important it is that all your brand elements, platforms, tactics, messaging, etc. bring harmony, balance, and value to your business. Is your tagline in line with the key benefit of your business? Are your logo colors setting the right tone and evoking the right emotions? Do your logo shapes and symbols tell your story? Does your website provide an enjoyable online experience? Does your email marketing bring value to your prospects and customers? Does it bring value to your business in terms of results? Are you crafting the right message to the right audience and sending them to the right landing page? (That’s where the harmony comes in to play!) If you’re not sure, perhaps it’s time for a little digital marketing and branding feng shui.

Importance of Keeping Your Brand Clear and Simple. If by keeping your life simple, free of clutter, serenity will follow, does they same hold true of your brand? If you keep your brand clear and simple will success follow? Ultimately, there’s a lot more that goes into success than creating an awesome brand image, however, in my experience, your brand image represents and communicates the essence of who you are as a brand so if it is indeed clear and simple, brings value to your brand, and communicates the “joy” or key benefit of your service or product, then it goes to follow that applying feng shui principles to your brand can go a long way in helping to set you up for success.

From maximizing your marketing efforts, facilitating creativity, and achieving success, employing the ancient art of feng shui can help you build a better brand.


Stay tuned for our Feng Shui for Business series as we explore how it can be utilized and leveraged for all aspects of your brand and small business. Do you have a question about bringing balance, harmony, and value to your communications strategy and branding? We’d love to hear from you! Leave us a comment and we will try to answer your question in an upcoming post.