The Most Common Business Blog Mistakes and Their Solutions

common blog mistakes

Blogging is an effective method for business advertising, if it is done right. If you intend to use blogging to promote your business, then you should learn the right way to do it. It is pointless to put a lot of time into maintaining a promotional blog that cannot attract customers to your business. Read on to find out what the most common blogging mistakes are and how to fix them.

The Mistake: Not Connecting to Your Business’ Main Page or Products

For some strange reason, many businesses shoot themselves in the foot by failing to give their blog readers an easy way to find them. Some business bloggers seem to assume that visitors can just Google it, or remove the blog suffix from the address. However, people don’t like extra steps. This simply annoys a lot of your visitors into not bothering.

The Solution:

The purpose this kind of blog is to get potential customers to look at the products or services your business offers. You need this to be easy for them to do. Make sure that the business blog displays a navigation bar prominently. Link to your main page there and make sure that it is labeled clearly. If the blog has your company’s logo at the top, make the logo a link to the business page as well. Additionally, every time the blog mentions one of your company’s products or services, link to the page selling or describing it. Never make your visitors work to find an opportunity to give you money.

The Mistake: Only Posting Product Announcements

Part of the purpose of a business blog is indeed to announce and promote products and services. However, it is a big mistake to focus the blog on these things. This misses out on the true marketing power of the blog.

The Solution:

Write things that your target audience wants to read. Give them a reason to keep coming back to read the blog. Write about topics that interest your target demographic, even if those topics are only tangentially related to what your business does. Give them useful advice, or solutions to problems they face. Talk about things that they like. Do not make everything on the blog just focused on your business. Focus on providing value rather than pushing sales. This will help you greatly increase your readership. It makes your company come across as genuine, even trustworthy. It will help it establish itself as an expert in your field. You want to build a community around your blog, people who follow it, comment on it, and talk to each other. This will make other people want to join the community, and from there they will be reading your ads all the time. Even when you post about a product or promotion, focus on how it can benefit the reader.

The Mistake: Paying too much for web hosting, domains, email, etc

There are many different web hosts out there and it can be tricky to try and find the best one for you. WordPress is a very popular blogging platform and a lot of web hosts will offer specialized WordPress hosting. The thing this, most of these plans are very expensive (starting at around $20/month) and all you need to run WordPress is a basic shared hosting plan which will typically run around $8-10 a month.

Th Solution:

First of all, do your research and don’t pay for extra services you don’t need. Many web hosts offer a ‘web builder’ for an additional monthly fee. Don’t bother, there are so many good open source content management systems and blogging platforms out there that are free. The other thing you can do to avoid over paying is to make sure that you are taking advantage of deals, promotions, and coupons. Coupon Code Hoster is a website that compiles coupons and promotions from many different web hosts, check them out for some awesome savings.

The Mistake: Not Integrating with Social Media

If your promotional blog and your company’s social media are handled as entirely separate operations, you won’t be able to capitalize on their true value. Your company’s social media showcases certain things, and the blog deals with others. You want the readers of each to be able to easily find the content of the other. Additionally, linking to your company’s social media functions as social proof. When potential customers see that your company maintains a following in multiple locations, it makes them to think of your company as being more well established and authoritative.

The Solution:

You should promote your company’s social media presence from its blog. If your company handles its social media well, cross promotion will showcase how well your company interacts with its community of customers. You should also promote your blog posts on your company’s social media. Include widgets on your blog’s sidebar that make it easy for people to like or share a post on their social media. A lot of people let their social media slide as it can be difficult to manage, but there are tools out there to help you such as HootSuite.

The Mistake: Hiding What the Product Actually Is

This is the opposite of the previous mistake. Some promotional blogs go too far with trying to tell a story instead of just posting advertisements. This can lead to their readers getting five minutes into reading a post about a new product and still having no idea what it does.

The Solution:

Place a brief description at the top of the blog post that explains what the product is and does. Never just assume that everyone will know, or will be patient enough to read through hundreds of words of flavor text to find out.

These are not the only mistakes businesses make at promotional blogging. They are, however, the most common, ones. Fixing them will do a lot of good for your company and help you leverage the true potential of your blog.

Adsense Tips and a Renewal Promo Code from GoDaddy

make money with adsense

How to Make Long-term Passive Income with Adsense

Google’s targeted advertising program, Adsense, is one of the easiest and most effective ways to earn money online. You can use it to monetize a pre-existing web property, or build it into your strategy for a new site. Once you set it up, the program is pretty straightforward. But to make the most of the program and avoid being penalized for misuse, there are several things you should know.

make money with adsenseFirst: a Renewal Coupon for You Webmasters

We like to add value as a thank you to our valuable readers. Have a domain name or hosting plan with GoDaddy? Chances are, you do (they’re the world’s largest hosting company and domain registrar). Here’s a quick promo code you can use to save up to 15% off renewals: CJC2OFF30. Thanks to: http://coupongo.org/godaddy-renewal-code/ for the free coupon code. And now back to your regularly scheduled programming….

What is the Google Adsense Advertising Program?

Google Adsense allows you to place strategic advertisements anywhere on your website. You can choose between text-only, image-rich, and video ads. You can choose a variety of different sizes and shapes to fit any suitable space. Google’s algorithms select the products and services advertised based on your content and the recent browsing history of your website’s visitors. 

Depending on your site and traffic, you are paid each time a visitor clicks on an ad (known as CPC, or cost-per-click) or for every thousand impressions (known as CPM, or cost-per-thousand). Because Google’s algorithms serve laser-targeted ads to your site, the click-through rates are competitive compared to other ad programs.

How Do You Set Up a Google Adsense Account?

Check out the simple conditions at Google’s Adsense website. If you satisfy the conditions (most people do) then just fill out the application form and submit it. Approval can take a while, so be patient. Once accepted into the program, you’ll be able to copy and paste a snippet of code into your web property’s HTML. It’s that code which communicates with Google and serves the ads. The only thing you have to do then is populate your site with the highest quality, useful content you can create and wait for the money to come.

How do you Maximize Earnings from Adsense?

Setting up your account and getting ads running on your website is the easy part. How much you earn from the program will depend on how hard and smart you work to develop your content, how much traffic you generate, and your visitors’ interests. There are many webmasters making a tidy living from Adsense alone. But it’s not a quick way to reach a living income.

It can take anywhere from six months to five years before you see significant earnings. Think of it as an investment. However, once you reach you income target, the program continues to deliver passive income for years to come with little added effort on your part.

To make good money with Adsense, you should heed the following advice:

•    Prioritize Quality Content

The first and most important thing to do is to offer high quality, thematic content, and provide it often. That means researching and writing excellent and useful articles on subjects people are searching for, or out-sourcing content creation to expert writers with knowledge of search engine optimization.

•    Be Patient

Google gives more traffic to older websites which have delivered quality content with frequent updates for at least a year. It’s tough to keep going while you’re still proving your worth, but there’s no way to scam the system without getting banned.  You must work hard now for rewards later.

•    Be Passionate

The days when you could populate a website with 100 pages of generic, plagiarized copy and expect to earn money from ads are long gone. Google has gotten smarter and the public more discerning. To keep motivated for the long term, choose topics that fire your passion and you can enjoy writing and engaging with readers about. Your passion will shine through and lead to more traffic, more social shares, and more money. Google rewards honesty.

•    Test and Fine-tune Your Strategy

As it will be a while before Google gives you much visibility in the search results, you’ve got time while you’re building out your content to experiment with ad placement and styles. Every website and its audience is different. It’s a good plan to figure out what works best for you in terms of design in advance so that when all this work pays off, you’re ready to maximize your profits right out of the box.

Adsense offers an excellent long-term strategy for monetizing your interests if you have a passion, be it a business, a hobby, a lifestyle, or anything else you know about, and you love communicating. The key these days is to focus on quality, let your passion shine through, and concentrate on delivering a positive user experience. If you can do that, with time and work, you’ll make an easy and enjoyable passive income from the Google Adsense program.

The 3 Ways to Grow Your Business – With Suggestions for Each

adwords

It is one thing to start a business, but it is something else entirely to actually grow that business. These days – with all of the advantages that technology affords each of us – it is relatively easy to get up and running with your own business idea. Depending on your idea, you may not even need much money to get started. Growing that business, however, is going to take plenty of time and effort.

Three Basic Concepts

In general, you can break down the process of growing your business into three categories. Those categories are as follows –

  • Increasing your number of customers
  • Increasing the average customer purchase
  • Increase frequency of customer purchase

Below, we will highlight each of these three methods of business growth, along with some ideas for how to pursue each channel.

adwordsIncreasing Your Number of Customers

When you think about business growth, this is probably the first thing you think about. After all, if you have more customers, you are going to make more money, right? Well, yes, in most cases. Acquiring more customers is always desirable, although the cost of doing so can be prohibitive in some cases. 

To gain customers for your business, advertising is going to be the channel which is most likely to yield results. By purchasing advertising space in any number of different areas, you can put a marketing message in front of your target audience. One of the easiest and most-controlled ways of delivering an ad message today is through the use of Google AdWords.

AdWords is a marketing channel that allows you to display paid search results on Google when potential customers search for terms related to your business. The advantage of AdWords is the incredible amount of control that you have over targeting your market. As long as you know your market and you know what your potential customers are searching for, you can display ads to that population without wasting money showing ads to those who aren’t interested. Also, you can tightly control your spending on AdWords, so going over budget should not be an issue.

Increasing the Average Customer Purchase

Another way to grow your business is simply to get your current customers to spend more money. This is a desirable path because you don’t have to invest money in acquiring new customers – you can simply work toward extracting more money from those who you have already acquired. A popular, and successful, way to add to your average receipt is through the use of quality shopping cart software on your website.

When a customer goes through the process of making a purchase on your site, you want to make sure they are offered the opportunity to add on to their purchase before checking out. For instance, a quality shopping cart software program will make it possible for you to present buyers with products related to their purchase at the last moment before checkout. You can think of this in the same way as a grocery store putting things like candy bars and gum right up next to the check stand. These last-minute purchases are a great way for grocery stores to earn extra income from existing customers, and you can do the same on your website.

Increase Frequency of Customer Purchases

The last option on our list for business growth is adding to the frequency of your customer purchases. This is another desirable method because, just like with the previous point, you don’t have to track down new customers. Once someone has made a purchase from your business, they are far more likely to do so again in the future – as long as you give them the opportunity. So, to target increased purchase frequency as a method of growth, you are going to need to market to your previous customers.

In today’s world, this kind of marketing usually comes through the use of an email list. If you build a database of email address from your previous customers, you can use that list to send out promotional material on a periodic basis. By reminding your customers that you have plenty of goods available, and that you have great prices and sales, you are likely to improve your purchase frequency. Even without adding a single new customer, you can make your business more profitable simply by selling more often to the same people.

Make no mistake – it is hard to grow a business. However, the fact that it is hard does not mean it is impossible. Think about your current marketing efforts and how they could be used together with the strategies listed above in order to grow sales and profits well into the future. Good luck!

How to Change the Paradigm of an Existing Business

paradigm-shift

When you are starting a business from scratch, it is relatively easy to set the tone for the new company. As the owner, you can establish ground rules right from the beginning, and you can use those rules to establish a culture and framework that will carry the company forward right from day one. The culture of an organization is essential to its success, so getting it right on this point is crucial.

However, what do you do when the paradigm of an existing business needs to change? To be sure, this is a much more-difficult proposition. Changing the way an existing company works – especially when dealing with employees who have been in place for some time – is a significant challenge.

paradigm-shiftStarting Over

In many ways, you will want to take the same approach to changing the paradigm of an existing business as you would take when starting a new business. Basically, you need to start over. Of course, that is easier said than done, but it is the only way that the old business will manage to head in a new direction. If you fail to make a clean break from the past, you are always going to be stuck dealing with yesterday’s problems rather than looking for tomorrow’s opportunities.

Human beings are creatures of habit, and that fact cannot be overlooked with regard to this topic. As you work toward changing the culture and patterns of your business, you need to remember that your employees are used to doing things a certain way. That doesn’t mean they can’t do things in a different way going forward, but they are going to have to be given a reason to make a significant change. It is up to you to give them that reason.

A Big Event

If you truly would like to change the direction of an existing business, you need to stage a big event which is going to grab the attention of everyone in the organization all at once. This is not something that can be done subtly, or gradually. Most of the time, it will be necessary to call a meeting which includes everyone on staff from top to bottom. This is a meeting that they will remember, and it is a meeting which will mark the official beginning of a new direction for the business.

In this meeting, it is important to lay down the ground rules and expectations for how the business will operate going forward. This should not be an adversarial meeting – but it should be an authoritative one. In this case, you aren’t asking for opinions or input. Rather, you are laying out a plan for the future, and you are making it clear that you are in charge of that plan. Again, it should be quite obvious to everyone in the room that this change is going to be significant, and it is going to be for the better. There is no turning back from this point.

Communication is Key

Since your employees are going to have to quickly adjust to a new way of life at work, one of the keys to success throughout this process is going to be communication. Making sure there are open lines of communication in order to work through problems will be important, and there should be clear communication channels outlined from the start. When someone has a suggestion or a question, they should know exactly who to talk to in order to get the ball rolling. Efficient communication is a hallmark of a quality organization, and it is going to be crucial if you are going to move properly in your new direction.

It isn’t easy to change directions in business, but it is possible. The key to success when trying to change the paradigm of an existing business is to do so swiftly, confidently, and authoritatively. Change isn’t going to come about by accident, and it certainly isn’t going to come about without confident leadership from the top. Take the reigns of the organization, give your employees the guidance they need to be successful, and look forward to a bright future.