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Webmaster Blog — Feb 2014

  • February
    28

    Doing Right By Customers

    Social media has changed our lives, no question. As a consumer, today you have more power than ever. The Internet brought a massive expansion in choice of where we shop, and increased access to lower prices via that competition. Social media, however, is an equalizer. It’s a conversation medium like none that’s existed before. Enabling a customer in Florida to talk directly to a manufacturer in Oregon in real time (timing permitting, of course) to get direct answers form the source. Outlets like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and more enable people to speak directly to retailers, sharing the good, the bad and the ugly. Those same outlets have become havens for businesses seeking to engage customers, be they fanboys and girls or haters. And while it’s nice to interact with those who love you, it’s probably even more important to interact with those who are disappointed with you. It’s from them that you will learn how best to improve products, services and processes. Amazon hit a wall once upon a time. They’d cracked the nut on ranking, began to dominate ecommerce and took hold of a large portion of online sales for many people. But then people... Read More Social media has changed our lives, no question. As a consumer, today you have more power than ever. The Internet brought a massive expansion in choice of where we shop, and increased access to lower prices via that competition. Social media, however, is an equalizer. It’s a conversation medium like none that’s existed before. Enabling a customer in Florida to talk directly to a manufacturer in Oregon in real time (timing permitting, of course) to get direct answers form the source. Outlets like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and more enable people to speak directly to retailers, sharing the good, the bad and the ugly. Those same outlets have become havens for businesses seeking to engage customers, be they fanboys and girls or haters. And while it’s nice to interact with those who love you, it’s probably even more important to interact with those who are disappointed with you. It’s from them that you will learn how best to improve products, services and processes. Amazon hit a wall once upon a time. They’d cracked the nut on ranking, began to dominate ecommerce and took hold of a large portion of online sales for many people. But then people... Read More
  • February
    20

    Quality: Do You Have It, or Just Think...

    Most websites feel they produce quality content. Some even have internal processes in place to review, rate, edit and revise content prior to publication. This does, admittedly, usually take more people, so it costs more and so can be a bit daunting for many smaller businesses to enable. But what is clear, is that everyone strives for quality. Who wouldn’t? We all know quality is a sought after trait. Be it in an automobile, a hand bag, a pair of hiking shoes, a donut or even in the content posted to your blog or site. Even large publishers with established editorial processes in place have instances when things happen that erode the quality of content, however. Simple things, usually, like grammatical errors, spelling errors, but also sometimes bigger stuff like mistakes around facts, or the wrong image in an article. Mistakes happen and in the end, it’s still humans editing things, so it’s completely plausible that the odd typo gets through. So in the real world of a publisher, such things can slip past all too easily – even with multiple eyes watching. We’ve all experienced that moment where we see something go live and are stunned by the glaring... Read More Most websites feel they produce quality content. Some even have internal processes in place to review, rate, edit and revise content prior to publication. This does, admittedly, usually take more people, so it costs more and so can be a bit daunting for many smaller businesses to enable. But what is clear, is that everyone strives for quality. Who wouldn’t? We all know quality is a sought after trait. Be it in an automobile, a hand bag, a pair of hiking shoes, a donut or even in the content posted to your blog or site. Even large publishers with established editorial processes in place have instances when things happen that erode the quality of content, however. Simple things, usually, like grammatical errors, spelling errors, but also sometimes bigger stuff like mistakes around facts, or the wrong image in an article. Mistakes happen and in the end, it’s still humans editing things, so it’s completely plausible that the odd typo gets through. So in the real world of a publisher, such things can slip past all too easily – even with multiple eyes watching. We’ve all experienced that moment where we see something go live and are stunned by the glaring... Read More
  • February
    14

    What’s In A Name?

    An age old question that carries a fair amount of import online. Domains are, essentially, real estate. And like actual real estate, you encounter a wide array of people trying to accomplish a wide array of goals. Some seek to develop, wanting only a domain applicable to their needs, willing to look a bit to either side and focus on building their site. Some seek a broad collection, acreage, if you like. Owning as many as possible, while staying focused on domains that, they hope, will prove a reasonable return down the road. In some cases, this could be the hopes of millions upon sale, but by far the vast majority come in as final sales much, much lower than that. But buying a domain for $8 and selling it for a couple thousand a few years later is still a healthy profit. Most sellers are willing to wait to ensure they get a reasonable value for their “realestate”. And often, buyers have a more pressing need for a domain: you’re ready to launch a new site, and THAT is the “perfect” domain, and you’ve just got to have it. In those conditions, be ready to pay. And maybe you should. You’re launching a business after all. If you’re... Read More An age old question that carries a fair amount of import online. Domains are, essentially, real estate. And like actual real estate, you encounter a wide array of people trying to accomplish a wide array of goals. Some seek to develop, wanting only a domain applicable to their needs, willing to look a bit to either side and focus on building their site. Some seek a broad collection, acreage, if you like. Owning as many as possible, while staying focused on domains that, they hope, will prove a reasonable return down the road. In some cases, this could be the hopes of millions upon sale, but by far the vast majority come in as final sales much, much lower than that. But buying a domain for $8 and selling it for a couple thousand a few years later is still a healthy profit. Most sellers are willing to wait to ensure they get a reasonable value for their “realestate”. And often, buyers have a more pressing need for a domain: you’re ready to launch a new site, and THAT is the “perfect” domain, and you’ve just got to have it. In those conditions, be ready to pay. And maybe you should. You’re launching a business after all. If you’re... Read More
  • February
    07

    9 Marketing Tactics to Employ For Your...

    There is always a lot of focus on specific topics. Search engine optimization and social media management spring to mind. And for good reason. Both can deliver more returns than the cost to activate. But are you looking across a broad spectrum of tactics? Do you have a plan for multiple areas that can be activated to help propel your business higher? Let’s take a look at the most common areas businesses should be thinking of. These are in no particular order, as what matters most will vary between businesses. Paid Search Long the darling of ecommerce, any site that has a conversion can use paid search (PPC) to its advantage. Understanding how to write good, compelling ad copy is important, and managing each ecosystem to affect click and conversion rates takes time and dedication, but is often worth it. Display Advertising Banner ads! People love to hate them, but if you’re after brand awareness, it’s tough to beat a display ad takeover on a popular website to plant your message and brand in front of the masses. Typically seen as a low performer in terms of click through rates (CTRs), this is highly dependent on things like your imagery, call... Read More There is always a lot of focus on specific topics. Search engine optimization and social media management spring to mind. And for good reason. Both can deliver more returns than the cost to activate. But are you looking across a broad spectrum of tactics? Do you have a plan for multiple areas that can be activated to help propel your business higher? Let’s take a look at the most common areas businesses should be thinking of. These are in no particular order, as what matters most will vary between businesses. Paid Search Long the darling of ecommerce, any site that has a conversion can use paid search (PPC) to its advantage. Understanding how to write good, compelling ad copy is important, and managing each ecosystem to affect click and conversion rates takes time and dedication, but is often worth it. Display Advertising Banner ads! People love to hate them, but if you’re after brand awareness, it’s tough to beat a display ad takeover on a popular website to plant your message and brand in front of the masses. Typically seen as a low performer in terms of click through rates (CTRs), this is highly dependent on things like your imagery, call... Read More