10 Design Tips for Small Business Websites

Almighty has woven the gigantic human wisdom and thoughts in few pounds of flesh “The Brain”. This is man’s build in nature to discover the hidden facts, play with colors in order to boost his self-esteem through his aptitude to innovate and create. Designers of all kind manifest these basic human traits in order to win laurels. Breathing in the social networking regime of information technology is the basic turnover in past few decades for commerce i.e. shifts from brick and mortar to click form of business. This evolution in the pattern of trade has motivated the buyers and sellers of different races and creed to shake their hands for prosperity regardless of boundaries.

Big businesses have large amount of dollars in their pockets to spend on their different mediums of communication but the actual problem exists for the miniature set up of trade where there is scarcity of resources (land, labor and capital). The real challenge for the germinating businesses is to craft an organically search optimized website in order to get maximum traffic in a cost-effective manner. This is the way in which website flourishes in the innate manner and get the maximum viewership. Website should be magnetic or alluring in nature so that people just love to visit it on regular basis in order to seek information about the product and service and also to purchase them. The key ingredients for such websites are summarized here in order to help the entrepreneurs to make & nurture their business’s website properly.

1. Nature of the Business

Wholesaling of merchandise is entirely poles apart from retailing of goods and services as their customers are different; this is what the designer of website should embrace while designing the website i.e. the deep understanding of the nature of the business. In this way the viewers will get the right and useful information from the website about the business.

2. Interactive yet Simple

Simplicity supplemented with interactivity is another way to keep people engaged with website. This is what the designers of the web should use as a competitive tool in the hypercompetitive environment. As website is an emerging way marketing products and services to the potential & existing customer that’s why it should be impressive.

3. Properly Encrypted

The website should be properly encrypted in order to prevent others to imitate the contents, graphics and text and copying codes and PayPal links. For this purpose organizations have to obtain the host or site certificate. If the certificate is valid it shows that authority has verified that website belongs to that organization.

4. Aesthetically Eye-Catching

Small businesses should use beautification as a tool to keep acquired and attract new customers. This can be done by uploading colorful images of the products and services on the regular basis. In this way surprise element will be added, every time customers will visit website they will experience new things.

5. Payment Methods

While crafting a website for small business the 2 to 3 payment methods should be provided to the customers because the people in the developing countries don’t trust paying through credit cards as the American used to do few years back. So the alternative methods like PayPal, wire transfer and etc should be provided.

6. Catalogs

The proper catalogs for the products and services should be complied for convince of the buyers. In addition to this if printed catalogs are also published it should be integrated with the digital one in order to provide symmetrical information to all the people.

7. Shopping Carts

Designer should design the proper shopping carts for selling the products in order to maintain the privacy of the customers in digital arena. Higher the people will trust the business higher will be the sales volume.

8. Social Responsibility

Website should also include the social responsibility aspect of the organization in order to convey strong message to the customers that we care for them more than anything else.

9. Feedback Button/ Section

The website should have properly designed feedback or complain section in order to improve the quality of their existing offerings as well as to get helpful information for new product development.

10. Contact Information

The proper postal and email address should be the part of the website. Now days Google maps can also be used to spot your store location on the face of the world. This will not only increases the customer trust in you but also results in fruitful revenue outcomes.

By taking into consideration the above mentioned tips the designer can come up with a master piece which can facilitate in increasing the customer satisfaction and in return help in reaping profits for the small businesses. This is the medium through which small business are now turned into big guns in the world of business like eBay and Amazon.

Small Business Ideas: Video Marketing Tips To Increase Website Traffic

One of the best small business ideas to increase website traffic is video marketing. Video marketing does not cost much money because do-it-yourself videos can be created with cell phones or low-budget video cameras.

Small business owners may not have an idea how to get started, but there are 5 video marketing tips that can solve that problem for you so you can increase traffic to your website.

Tip Number One is to write an outline for your message. This starts with meta-data. Don’t worry. This is just a fancy term for your title, description and keywords you plan on using.

If you do a great job with your meta-data, you will get your videos ranked on page one of Google and YouTube with effective YouTube marketing. This will drive traffic to your website very quickly.

Tip Number Two has to do with your message. You don’t need a slick, high-end commercial type video. People respond to authenticity. Take the opportunity to talk to the camera like you are talking to a customer in your business.

Tip Number Three is to talk about the concerns and problems your customers have. Provide solutions to these problems and you will grow your customer base.

You may be wondering how you do this? It’s simple. You can break up videos into frequently asked questions (FAQs) and should ask questions (SAQs).

Frequently asked questions are the typical questions you get everyday from your customers. For each of your videos, you should only answer one question at a time.

Should ask questions are the more important questions to answer because these are the questions that will solve the problem someone is having.

Here’s a typical FAQ someone may ask you. “How much does it cost to replace a leaky pipe?” The real question should be, “What will happen if I don’t replace that leaky pipe?”

Can you see how easy it would be to create a video on FAQs and SAQs. There’s no secret formula here. Your goal is to create videos that solve your customers’ problems.

Tip Number Four is take advantage of free advertising on Google Local – Google+. Google is moving all Google Places listings to Google Local – Google+. Here you can really enhance you listing with great videos about your business.

You can do some very creative listings on Google local and it’s free. It’s pretty hard to find a better way to list your business and get the exposure you get here.

Tip Number Five is about asking for a call to action. It is your job in the call to action to point out what will happen if the customer does not take action.

There are many small business ideas you can implement to drive traffic to your website. Video marketing is a cost-effective way to solve problems your customers have. And you can have fun with it too!

Tips and Strategies of Small Business Branding!

When you want to create a strong brand strategy for a newly start business then you have to consider a lot of factors for it. You must think of the main points that can make a big difference for your brand and company. Thus, the very first thing which you need to do for your small business branding is to develop a logo design for your brand that will make your customers remember your brand, secondly you must create a strong and catchy tagline that will best describe your business; lastly, you have to create a positive image of your business in the marketplace so that your potential audience will find your brand professional and appealing when you present your business in a most convincing and attractive way to the public.

Below are some tips and strategies that will help you making your small business branding successful.

If you are small business owner then you must create strong branding techniques for your small business and make it memorable for the audience. If you have a memorable business logo, catchy tagline and professional company name, you can appropriately represent your business to the target audience. Although if you have a small business and you have already decided a name for it then it should be definitely your next step to create a strong brand strategy that is effective and credible for your small business success. So keep it in mind that your corporate logo is not only a graphical image, however, it is the visual representation of a company as it is also helpful for the instant recognition for the public. If you haven’t created a logo for your small business then below are some tips that will assist you creating a small business logo design.

All in all, you will require selecting appropriate and relevant elements for your custom logo design that will ensure that your business logo should have a powerful impact with the uncluttered, clean and clear elements. So for the reason of making your brand well-known and recognized in the marketplace, you must create a logo in a most simplest and distinct way and it has the ability to capture your viewers attention with a quick glance. Moreover for being a sincere business owner, you have to evaluate each and every element of your logo so that your creative logo design looks appropriate for your brand. Your business logo should clearly convey the specialty of your business.

Once you are done creating a small business logo with all appropriate elements, then your next steps would be creating a tagline and strong brand strategy. So have you decided what branding tips you are going to use in your tag line development? If you haven’t decided yet then try to make it short and simple which should be best describe in 3 to 7 words. So do not hurry when you create your brand tag line and your business logo. A great tag line is what make your brand you standout from your competitors.

Ultimately for brand management that is the need of every brand strategy, you just need to make your customers satisfied by providing them high quality products and services at affordable rates. So do every possible effort for your customers which can keep them happy!

Hot Tips for Starting A Small Business, Part II

There are thousands of new small businesses created each year in the United States; some are successful, some are not. There is one element that greatly influences whether a new small business will have a successful outcome. The factor is a solid business plan.

The business plan should cover the business basics from goals to management, from marketing to operations. A business plan is a map for success, so don’t go lightly on the details. A good business plan should include the executive summary, a definition of operations, an outline of the marketing strategy, and how the small business will be financially managed.

The Executive Summary

The executive summary should give a overview of the business and should include the following areas:

* A detailed description of the business and its goals

* Identification of the business ownership and the legal structure.

* Discussion of skills and experience the potential owner and partners (if applicable) bring to the business.

* Identification of advantages the business will have over its competitors.

The Business Operation

The business operation section should cover the daily happenings of the potential small business and should include:

* An explanation of how the business will be managed on a day-to-day basis.

* Discussion of hiring and personnel procedures.

* Discussion of insurance, lease or rent agreements, and issues pertinent to the business.

* What equipment will be necessary to produce the products or services.

* An Outline of the production and delivery of products and services.

The Marketing Plan

The correct marketing strategy is important for any small business. Getting the word out and building a customer base is necessary and essential. Therefore, the marketing plan should include:

* A description of the product or service of the business specializes in.

* Identification of the customer demand for products or services.

* Identification of the market, including its size, location and demographics.

* An explanation of how the product or service will be advertised and marketed.

* An explanation of the pricing strategy.

Financial Management

Effective financial management will also help determine how successful a potential small business will be. Therefore, important elements of this to include in the business plan are:

*Explanation of the source and amount of initial equity capital.

* Estimated start-up costs.

* Projected operating expenses.

* Development of a monthly operating budget for the first year.

* Development of an expected return on investment and monthly cash flow for the first year.

* Projected income statements and balance sheets for a two-year period.

* Discussion of a break-even point.

* Explanation the business owner’s personal balance sheet and method of compensation.

* Discussion of who will maintain the accounting records and how the records will be kept.

* A provision of a “what if” statements that address alternative approaches to problems that may develop.

In addition to all of the essential elements of a business plan as outlined above, other important areas to consider when starting a small business are legal requirements as well as registration and accounting requirements.

Legal Requirements

All small businesses must comply with federal, state and local laws and regulations. Small business owners need to know the legal requirements affecting their business. Talking with an attorney can also be very helpful.

Registration Requirements

One can’t just start a business without approval from their state; in other words, practicing without a license can result in all kinds of legal problems and can leave one vulnerable to law suits. It is always important to obtain a license or work certificate, a sales tax number, and to open a separate business account. Once the business grows to the point where employees are needed, then the small business owner is responsible for withholding income and social security taxes as well with complying with state laws covering employee health, safety, and minimum wage.

The U.S. Business Advisor has a site that assists small business owners in meeting the necessary requirements for their particular state.

Lastly, don’t forget about zoning! Be aware of local towns and cities zoning requirements. If they are not followed, a small business can easily be shut down.

Careful planning by way of a business plan and ensuring that all legal requirements are met are important processes for any potential new small business owner. If done correctly, these essential elements can greatly impact the success of a new small business.

Copyright 2005 Monique Hawkins