The Best Ways to Generate More Sales for Your Business

The way to help your company survive and become a success is through sales. Generating as many of these as you can is the best way of ensuring business success. So, you need to do what you can to secure as many sales for the business as possible. Here are some of the best ways you can achieve that.

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Market Well

The key to a successful business is to make sure you have excellent marketing. This is an area so many businesses fall down on. It’s imperative to make sure you promote your company well because that is what generates interest and draws people to you. So it’s important to have an array of different marketing techniques to choose from. This helps you inject some diversity into your marketing and ensure it will be more effective.

Special Offers

In order to secure sales, you need to attract people to the business. You have to generate a lead and then turn that lead into a sale. And the way to generate a lead is to dangle the carrot for the customer. You can do this in the form of special offers and promotions. These will do a lot to ensure that the business presents a positive image. You want people to take note of your company and have a reason to visit your business. And the best way of doing this is to make sure you have regular promotions and special offers you can use.

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Faster Transactions

The key to generating more sales is faster transactions. It’s not difficult to work out – faster transactions mean more transactions. People hate to be kept waiting, and if you can serve them quickly you will keep them satisfied, and you won’t miss out on sales. The way to do this is to embrace and utilise mobile technology. Make sure all your staff are trained in handling EMV technology in the business. That way you can secure multiple sales and get anyone to complete numerous transactions at any point in the working day. It’s the best way of ensuring that the business gets through as many transactions as possible.

Online Shop

You need to think about how to maximise the sales for the company. Now, a great approach would be to create an online shop. You can attach this to your website, and run it in conjunction with your regular store. The benefit of having an online store is that it makes transactions instantaneous. People can visit your website and make purchases with just the click of a button. This increases the likelihood of repeat business and makes the whole process much quicker.

Your goal when running a business should be trying to generate as many sales as you can. This is done with a combination of new business and repeat custom. So you need to come up with ideas that help you satisfy your existing customers, and attract new clients to the brand. Hopefully, you will find the ideas listed on this post useful in helping you to achieve that.

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Exponential Change

I work for a company called Clickstop…and we’ve worked very hard to grow a lot.  We’ve averaged a 30+% growth path over the last 5 years.  That is when many companies were experiencing flatness and downturns.  And the growth we’ve experienced – its good.  But its not great.  Not like exponential growth.

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Exponential Change

It takes think VERY differently.  Because, if it didn’t – the you would have experienced wild growth in the things you are already doing.   So when I read information which talk about how companies are doing things different…it catches my attention.  And when the “things” are exponentially better than a BIG player – it REALLY catches my attention.  This is the case with Maple.

As fastcompany.com pointed out…Chipolte is the “current’ gold standard when it comes to getting more customers through lunch with a very fast 300 meals per hour or one transaction every 12 seconds.  Impressive.

Turns out, in February, they were pushing out 1100 meals – cooked and delivered in one hour.  Where can you do and see this wonderful feat…you can’t.  They have no retail.  Correct – there is not a store front, food truck or hot dog cart to visit.  The only way to get the goods is to go online.

The technology does stop there – they have a fully geeked out kitchen with advanced routing for its bicycle delivery troop which replies on highly efficient maps.

This is great – but you don’t have a food business.

Good point – how can you think like one?  What could you do differently that gets 10x more product out the door?  This is what Maple did.  And they save money doing it – because they don’t need high priced real estate to drive costs up.

If you think about it – this type of growth is all around us.  Look a the number of roads we have in the United States today vs what we had in 1955.  There are way more square feet of roads than ever before.  It’s very true with computers and Moore’s law.

How do yo do it?

If we had that answer – wouldn’t we be rich?  The fact is – it is hard.  You need to change people’s mindset and change the comfort zone.  This kind of change is not easy.

Entrepreneur as a cheat sheet and I added some of my own for good measure:

  1. Trim the fat – take into account the business process.
  2. Automate – especially if you are in a services business.  The rates will never go down – only up.
  3. Know your business – its a tight rope, you don’t want to be so close you can’t see the necessary change…but you need to change to live.
  4. Enable and Empower – you have to put the power in the people’s hands who see it every day.  They need to run the daily work and know they are trusted.
  5. Share – you must find others like yourself and share information and tricks.  This is a serious fast-forward.

Good luck in your endevours and let us know if you get food from Maple – for now we will just have to dream.

3 Key Things Your Company Website Needs

If you’re looking for business tips, then there’s one thing experts will always recommend. They’ll tell you to ensure that you have a quality company website. But, what makes a good company website? Written below are three things you need to think about regarding your site:

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Responsive Web Design

A lot of people will go on and on about web design being key for company websites. And, while this is true, there’s more to it than that. What people should be saying, is that responsive web design is needed. Don’t worry if this doesn’t make any sense to you; I’ll talk you through it. Responsive web design refers to your website’s design across multiple platforms. We’re talking desktop, mobile, and tablet websites. Your site needs to be designed to fit all three of these different formats. So, when someone views your site on a mobile device, it will fit the screen and respond perfectly to all the touch screen actions. Similarly, it should do the same on a tablet device.

This is something that many businesses forget when they’re creating a website. They make one that’s only suited to a desktop format. So, when viewed on a different device, the website looks strange and is unresponsive. If someone is on a mobile device and your site doesn’t have responsive web design, they’ll leave right away. It’s easy to get done, and most web design companies will be able to do it for you. There’s no excuse for not having responsive web design.

A Secure Host

All websites will need to find a host server somewhere. If you don’t know what a host server is, then it’s the server in which your website will be based. All websites are hosted on some type of server. Usually, the choice is between an open one of a Virtual Private Server (VPS). Now, there are some differences between these two choices, and one may suit you more than the other. With an open server, it’s usually cheaper, and you’re helped out a lot by the host provider. They can deal with getting your site up and running and making sure everything goes smoothly. However, the downside to this is that you lose a little bit of freedom. They may prevent you from doing certain things or running scripts on your website.

So, the second option of a VPS will counter this issue. A private server gives you full control of your website and lets you do things as you please. It also means you don’t have to deal with other websites being hosted on the same server. The only downside is that you have to do everything yourself, you don’t get any help if the server goes down, etc. I suggest you look at some guides to help you find the best VPS service possible. If you do this, you can host your website in a secure way without any worries. Or, if you want an open server, do your research on that front too. Either way, it’s crucial you find a reliable hosting service.

A Search Engine

Most people will think of Google or Yahoo when they hear the term ‘search engine’. It’s something that allows people to type in some words and search the web. However, with regards to your site, you won’t be conducting a web search. Instead, you want a search engine that will search your website. This is a tool that’s seen on the majority of website around the web. In my eyes, if your company website is missing this, then it will be a fail. It’s essential as it lets people look for things on your site.

Consumers like things to be made easy for them, they don’t like hard work. If they have to spend a few minutes clicking through menus to find something, they’ll be annoyed and frustrated. Especially when they could’ve found it in seconds by searching for it in a little search bar. It’s such a simple thing that every website needs, there’s no excuse! When creating your site, you should have the option to put a search engine on the page. Make sure you do this, as it makes you seem professional and not behind the times.

If you want the best company website there is, then you need all three of these things. Make sure that your site works across multiple platforms and the design is responsive. And, ensure that you have a secure server in which to host the site. Finally, regarding stuff on your website, it’s vital you have an internal search engine.

How to build a niche site – Part 3

In the third and last post of this niche site series, we’ll talk about link building and monetization.

Link building

To many, it has almost become a 5-letter word now, but backlinks still matter, a lot, what changed is the way you should get them. After the Penguin update, there are two things you need to pay extreme attention to: anchor text and relevancy. When building links, keep exact match anchor texts to the minimum, let’s say 10-15%, and vary the rest as much as possible. Use synonyms of the main keyword, long phrases, your naked URL, your own name, and maybe even a few “click here.” Also, get links from sites that talk about the same topic, as this is another authenticity signal in Google’s eyes.

How much link building will you need? In general, the more time you spent on keyword research, the more patient you were in digging up keywords with good potential, the less link building you will need to make those terms rank. When you start doing it however, take it easy during the first month, and be a bit more active afterwards, but don’t go too fast anyway. Here are a couple of tips for a basic link building strategy:

Guest posting

Its popularity as link building technique has soared a lot in the last year. Maybe you won’t be able to get attention from the top sites in your niche, but you can still find a good and relevant blog that will accept your article

Commenting on blogs

It’s still a good way to get a backlink, but make sure you use your name as anchor text, and please leave comments that can add something to the discussion

Ezine and Goarticles

These two are especially good at the beginning, to let Google know you exist and to have your site indexed more quickly

Other web directories

Go for the good ones, stay away from bad neighborhoods. A good list can be found here at SEObook.

Slideshare and Docstoc

If you can make a slideshow or a pdf out of your content, these two sites are gaining more popularity as link building resources

Press releases

One or two press releases won’t hurt the link building process, and will help spread the popularity of your site a little

If you don’t see any meaningful result in rankings after one-two months, there is a more advanced method that you can try, which involves buying an expired domain with PR 2 or 3. With a little bit of research you can find one that is not too expensive, and then populate it with content related to your niche. When this satellite site is indexed again, then you can use it to link to your main site directly or, if you want to be more sophisticated, you can reach out to a webmaster in your niche, with a good authority site, and offer a three-way linking: you will link to his site and he will link to yours.

Making money

Let’s finish where it all begun: the money. Once you’re getting traffic, you will need to experiment a little to find out the best way to monetize your site. In general however, you can follow these two principles:

What are you selling?

Programs like Adsense work better for purely informational sites, whereas if you dealing with products that you can physically buy, then Amazon, Ebay, or affiliate programs in general might be a better choice

Differentiate

Adsense is the best online advertising program in its category, but not the only one. Try with different sources of income: you might find better alternatives, and you will get familiar with different programs.

If you like the process of discovering of new keywords and the challenge of learning about a topic you don’t know yet, niche sites can be a nice source of passive income. This is all you need to know to get started.

How to build a niche site – Part 2

In the first post of this niche site series, we explained what a good keyword is, and how to find inspiration for you research.

Now that you have brainstormed any keyword you can possibly imagine, run it through your tool of choice and shortlisted the terms with the right attributes, you’re in for a (not so) surprising discovery: you have competition, meaning that other people have built pages around that keyword before. However, not all competitors are the same: some are less strong than others, and in this post we will teach you how to spot them.

Paste your candidate keyword in Google search and take note of the top ten results. A value that is normally used to evaluate the competitiveness of a keyword is the total number of pages in the SERPS (the lower the number, the better), but that really doesn’t matter: the first page is all you need to care about, because that’s where you want to be eventually.

Now that you have your list of competitors, this is what you need to check, to know how strong they are:

Title tag

Are they using the exact keyword within the title of their page? If they aren’t, that’s a good sign, as it means that, all other things being equal, you have more chances to outrank them by including the full keyword in the title

Page Authority

It’s an SEOmoz metric, which aggregates different values to indicate how likely the page will rank in Google. It can easily be checked with the MOZbar Firefox extension. A sign of weak PA would be a score of 30 or less

Backlinks

Another SEOmoz metric called Juice Page Links will be useful here. It gives the page a score based on the quality and quantity of backlinks. Again, a maximum score of 30 or – better – 20 would be a good indicator that the page can be easily outranked

Page Rank

It’s the dear old Google metric, which assigns value to a given page. It is less popular than before, but you might still want to check if any of the pages has a zero PR, as that’s a good sign too.

 

All the data above can be easily checked with tools like Market Samurai or Long Tail Pro (the latter pulls data specifically from SEOmoz), but with more time available, it can be done manually and for free.

Of course, not all the pages in the top ten will have all those weakness signals at the same time, but if you find at least two of them that are weak enough, that means the keyword is worth exploring.

Content creation

Congratulations, your search is over, now it’s time to get your hands dirty (so to speak) with the creation of the niche site. Indeed, the process of keyword selection up to this point hasn’t changed much over the years. The moment you start creating your website however, is when we need to care about quality more than before.

The code word now is: be useful. It’s very likely that the niche you found is something you know little or nothing about, but that’s no longer an excuse to pollute the internet with mediocre content. The first thing you should do is check your competition: what type of info do they offer? What do you like and what could be done better? After you have an idea of what you should offer in your own site, you need content, and here are a couple of good ways to get it:

Research

Even if you don’t know much about the topic, with little research you might still be able to produce good insightful content. If the internet is not enough, you can still try with your local library

Outsource

Places like Elance.com can offer good writers in your niche. The money you pay for the articles will be a one-time investment and will save you time

 

Aggregate information in a new, useful way. Maybe there is already a ton of information available on the topic, but it’s all scattered across different sources. Why not aggregate it and create a sort of hub for your visitors?

Also, bear in mind that the 5-post blog is gone forever. Once the site starts ranking and getting some traffic, then you can choose to leave it there and move on to the next one, but before doing that, make sure you publish at least 50 articles over time. That will also allow you to take advantage of the long(er) tail variations of the main term you’re targeting. Also, don’t forget to add pictures, a decent template, and an About page that is more than just blabbering.