Management,Website Design, Internet Marketing,
Written by Stu Kushner

In Your Customers’ Shoes – 4 Gripes That Are Costing You Conversions

By Sherice Jacob

 Website Design, Internet Marketing,Management

One of the best ways to improve conversion rates is to identify and eliminate major stumbling blocks that are preventing your users from moving forward. Typically these are common issues like “Not Found / Out of Stock” errors, technical glitches, reducing clutter and removing distractions like third-party ads.

But sometimes the gripes are so common and so pervasive that visitors simply tolerate them (albeit with a great deal of frustration and aggravation) rather than go elsewhere.

But you can bet they won’t be back.

Gripe #1: “Just Copy Amazon”

Amazon is one of the web’s largest and most profitable websites, so it stands to reason that they put a considerable amount of time, money and emphasis on making their site as easy to use as possible (even patenting certain methods, like 1-click-shopping). Knowing this, many beginning website owners understandably assume that Amazon must be doing something right with their layout – so they copy it.

Jumia is Nigeria’s Amazon – right down to the layout, categories and color scheme

Amazon has many things going for it that the average new webmaster doesn’t take into account when designing their own site – for example:

  • Everyone is familiar with Amazon – They’ve been around so long that they’ve practically become a one-stop shop for even the greenest internet user. They’ve got brand recognition nailed down to where they’re a household name. People have come to expect a certain experience when shopping on Amazon, just as they expect superb customer service when buying shoes from Zappos. It has been ingrained into who Amazon is and what they stand for.
  • Amazon’s traffic comes from multiple sources – They’ve built up their markets over time, and as a result, their traffic comes from all kinds of places. People generally search for a specific product on …read more    
online marketing, website management,website design
Written by Stu Kushner

Is your website mobile ready?

As you can see from the chart below, mobile searches are increasing and are predicted to be equal to desktop searches in just 18 more months. What this means is that your business website needs to be mobile-compatible. This is also referred to as a responsive website design.

 online marketing, website management,website design

A responsive design enables a website to reconfigure its layout and design to fit different screen sizes and resolutions. So that when your website is viewed on a tablet or on a smartphone, it still looks great and is easy to view and to navigate.

This is a responsive website.

You can see how it will look on a smaller screen by simply dragging the bottom right corner of your browser up and left until the screen is the size of a mobile phone. As you drag, the images and menu automatically resize and the content re-position  to fit down the screen so that the visitor only needs to scroll up and down.

Now go to your business website and try this test. If your site does not adjust for a smaller screen, it means your site is not responsive and it will not be as effective at keeping your visitors engaged . We do mobile website conversions.

So, please contact us for a free quote on making your website responsive.

Written by Stu Kushner

Easy Internet Marketing but with a Catch

U Shape Up Gym

U Shape Up’s website

So, I found a great gym here in Cebu. It’s called U Shape Up. The equipment is modern and the gym is very clean. The staff is very nice and it’s close enough to my house. There are closer gyms but this one is way nicer. So, I went as a guest and that cost me about 120php ($3) per visit. The monthly fee was going to be 800php ($20). So I convinced the owner, Dharryl, to let me do a website for him in exchange for a free membership.

His biggest competitor is the gym I used to go to called Hot Rocks. Hot Rocks is much closer to my house but the equipment is not as good and the facility is kinda dirty. Hot Rocks does not do a very good job of keeping the gym clean. And with people sweating and such all over everything, I just had to go.

So, I designed a website. I did the SEO on it and I added a Google Map. The site was all my own work and I openly admit that my team is way better at this than me. But for this gym, the design is good enough. And for no costs, it’s a great deal for the gym. And since there is only one competitor with an online presence, they immediately (within a few days) started showing up on the first page of Google. They got about 100 visitors in the first month. And now after 4 months, they are getting 140 visits and about 80% of them are new visitors.

It usually is not this easy. But most businesses here can’t afford a website at all and have no budget for this kind of marketing. So, I get the equivalent of $20 a month in free gym time. It’s enough. And for the cost of one free membership to me, U Shape Up is getting lots of new members from the website. Dharryl says people come in, they’ve seen the website, and they don’t need a tour. They just sign up.

I can’t promise you these results! And I can’t afford any more $20 a month clients. But it is was very rewarding to see great results so quickly. Do a search in Google for “Gym in Tabunok Cebu”. They should be there and on the map.

So, what was “the catch” in all of this. Well, it was easy because few small businesses have websites. They simply can’t afford them. So, I end up doing it cheap and as a favor in exchange for a free gym membership. But it is an unsustainable business model for me. But it was fun and rewarding to help them. Overall, a very worthwhile project.

Now go sign up for a Premium Marketing Plan already!

Bilingual Website Design
Written by Stu Kushner

Bilingual Website Design

Website Design, online marketingOn occasion, a business needs to cater to clientele that are bilingual. And, as a bilingual business owner, it is imperative to capitalize on that unique skill because it is very likely that there is a market for it. For example, if you are an attorney in the US that speaks French, it certainly is a good idea to target French-speaking clients. This was the case for Pierre Choné. Mr. Choné is French and his legal practice specializes in assisting in immigration issues for French speaking immigrants in the US.

For Mr. Choné, having a website that is bilingual is very important in properly representing his office so that it appeals to his French speaking clients. So, adding that feature to his site must be achieved in a way that provides the ability for the visitor to switch between languages by simply popping down a menu. And if there are multiple languages, again, switching should be effrtless.

Go to the Mr. Choné’s website to see how we handled that issue for him. And please contact us if you would like us to propose a solution for your website.

website design, website marketing
Written by Stu Kushner

Don’t Host Your Own Website

website design, website marketingMy cousin has a website. His name is M. I won’t say his real name because his website is so bad that I would be embarrassing him to publicize it. It was created in 1990 by his intern. It is horrible. That said, he is very interested in having me design a new website for him and I would love to do that but there is one major issue.

He wants to host the site himself.

For M, I think he feels like he will save money on hosting. We don’t charge very much to do a website design. But we do charge to host, manage and do marketing work on the website. This pricing structure enables us to work on the site and to maintain an ongoing relationship with our clients. So, we would have to charge a lot more to design the site if M insists on hosting it. But, that said, letting M host his own site is a mistake.

Why is it a bad idea?

Hosting a website requires a Server that has very specific software installed on it. He probably does not have a WordPress compatible Server. Also, websites today are nothing like websites designed in 1990. Back then, most sites were in HTML. Today, most sites are built around CMS platforms (like WordPress, Joomla and Drupal) that create a complicated framework around the site. This framework provides amazing new tools for business. It gives the business executive total control of his/her content and great marketing tools too. Hosting his own site is an admirable goal but impractical. Websites are complicated. They can get hacked, viruses and they can crash.

Everything is complicated. I don’t do my own taxes and I don’t fix my car. I leave it up to professionals so that I can concentrate on the things I know how to do best. Don’t host your own website. Leave it to the professionals.

Your comments are welcomed.

website management, design
Written by Stu Kushner

New Security Measures against Hackers and Malware

For our website design clients:

website management, website designAs part of our continuing management service of your website, we are implementing some new security features that will help help keep your website healthy. The new software is called Wordfence and it is designed to keep hackers from gaining access into the site and to send us an alert if it detects unusual activity to the code files in the website. We also have Sucuri installed on all of our websites to scan and repair viral infections.

I know it doesn’t make sense that nice companies could have infected websites, but it can and does happen. A website is a lot like your computer’s desktop system. If you don’t keep your operating system and your applications up-to-date, vulnerabilities can discovered and used by bad people to get into your site and infect it. This can in turn infect some of the visitors to your site. And if your website does not get repaired quickly enough, the search engines will blacklist it. Imagine having visitors calling you to tell you that your website is infecting their computer!

So, we take the security of your website very seriously. That is why we are constantly upgrading the programming platform and the plugins. Sometimes, these upgrades cause us all new problems but we must weight that against the possibility of leaving your site vulnerable to an attack. So, we do the upgrades. And then we test the site.

If you have any questions or concerns, click here to send us a message. Or call us at 202-462-4290. Do you need any new features, forms, surveys or even an eCommerce solution added to your site? Please let us know and we will help you add that feature.

Website Design, Internet Marketing, DC, SEO, Content
Written by Stu Kushner

From Readers to Leads in One Easy Step

 Website Design, Internet Marketing, DC, Attracting and holding onto social media followers and blog readers can be a tricky and time consuming part of your online marketing plan.  You’ve got to provide frequent, but not too frequent, updates and you’ve got to ensure that you are constantly providing high quality and useful information.  Thankfully, once you’ve gotten into the most appropriate rhythm for publishing posts and status updates and have got readers hooked on your content, the most difficult part of the process is out of the way.

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Website Visit ,website design, management
Written by Stu Kushner

Finding Balance in Your Blog Content Part III

Website design, management, If you’ve been following this little mini series of posts on getting your business blog up and running you should already be a bit comfortable with when to publish and how long posts should be.  Today we’re going to talk about something equally as important as what we covered in Parts One and Two – setting up your post properly.

In order for your blog posts to have the biggest impact in terms of marketing they need to actually be visited, read and shared.  In order to give your content the best possible chance for success on these three critical points your posts also need to be easy for readers to digest.

Despite the fact that the vast majority of your readers may be highly intelligent, a good portion of them may not have the time or desire to read exceedingly long posts.  One of the greatest things about the internet is that it is a tool that

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internet marketing, SEO, content writing
Written by Stu Kushner

Stand Out from the Crowd

internet marketing, website designIn order to draw prospects in and ultimately convert them to customers, you’ve got to be able to offer them something different from the competition.  Even if your products offer very similar solutions to the competition in terms of a prospective customer’s problem, you’ve got to find a way to stand out and get noticed.

A great way to give prospects something that they can’t get anywhere else is by offering a bit of your expertise in your unique voice by way of your blog and through social media marketing.  Turn your website into a resource. Your business blog and social media profiles give you a unique opportunity to connect directly with current and prospective customers and give them something your competition couldn’t possibly offer – a piece of yourself.

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Written by Stu Kushner

Preventing Interaction can Prevent Growth

online marketing, website design , PostTaking the time to create a Facebook page for marketing your business is a huge step towards establishing and growing your brand.  In order to make your Facebook page as effective as possible though you’ve got to provide every opportunity for interaction, this means allowing your connections to post freely on your wall.

Some business owners are leery about allowing others post on their wall because of the possibility of negative or potentially offensive comments.  You’ve got to remember though that Facebook is

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