Category

Internet marketing

WordPress plugins – how many can you have?

By Internet marketing, Websites, WordPress No Comments

There is not a clear cut answer to this question.

However, in general terms, the answer is: ‘the fewer, the better’.

The Marketing Compass recommends that you don’t have more than 20 plugins (there is a WordPress Group there). Even this number feels quite high.

At the time of writing, there are some 50,000 WordPress plugins available.

Popular plugins include Akismet (anti-spam); forms (numerous plugins offer form creation capabilities); Google Analytics (so that you can get analytics working throughout your site): Jetpack (site performance and many helpful features); MailChimp (email marketing); Yoast (which helps with SEO); and WooCommerce (ecommerce).

There are 7 plugins in the above list and it is easy to keep adding new ones. This happens when you think of something that you would like to do within your website. I know, as I have nine WordPress websites.

The challenges of having too many plugins start with website loading speed.

This is a Google SEO ranking factor.

If your website takes longer than 3 seconds to load you have a problem.

Many website visitors will not hang around waiting for your site to appear.

What is more, plugin conflict can occur: i.e. one WordPress plugin can upset another plugin. If this happens to you, it is a good idea to backup your website before you start working on it.

Nigel Temple is a digital marketing consultant.

Increasing conversion rates

By Internet marketing, SEO, Success, Websites No Comments

Digital marketing definition of conversion rate

The percentage of website visitors that reach a given goal, i.e. reaching a specific web page; filling in a contact form; making an e-commerce purchase; registering as a user; subscribing to your newsletter; downloading a free trial; or asking you for more information.

The big question is: do you know what your conversion rate is for specific areas of your digital marketing process?

To increase conversion rates:

  • Increase the amount of website traffic that you receive by using more of the 300 promotional techniques that are available to you
  • Have a website that loads as quickly as possible
  • Write in the language of benefits, not the language of features
  • Pay more attention to your headlines; if they don’t like the headline the rest of the content is a waste of time
  • Pay more attention to the structure of your webcopy; I have spent 30 years studying this and I offer webcopywriting training – how much experience does your website writer (or writers) have?
  • Include social proof i.e testimonial statements, case studies etc
  • Include a guarantee that you will deliver whatever is promised
  • Consider the design of your page: does it work in relation to the conversion that you are trying to achieve? For example, is there too much clutter and too many distractions?
  • Ensure that optin boxes, forms etc are highly visible; ideally they should be visible when the screen loads; if this is not possible include signposting
  • Include more calls to action and make them stronger
  • Minimise the number of fields within enquiry forms
  • Did you know that green is the most effective colour for Buy Now buttons?
  • Test different approaches and variants
  • Continually measure what is working and what isn’t and adjust accordingly
  • You can measure sales, sales enquiries, contact forms filled in, registered users, number of downloads, number of unique visitors, number of pages read and many other things.

If you need help with conversation by all means get in touch – click here.

Promotional mix categories

By Internet marketing, Marketing strategy, Promotional techniques No Comments

36 Promotional categories
There are 300 ways to promote your business. They are divided into promotional mix categories. An example of a promotional category is Advertising which includes adverts in newspapers, magazines and online, i.e. via Google AdWords.

Choose your promotional mix carefully, as it is a good idea to stick with it (stop / start marketing doesn’t really work).

Many of the techniques available to you are free, some are low cost and others require a budget.

Here is a list of the 36 categories (which we discuss within The Marketing Compass community: www.marketingcompass.co.uk):

  1. Advertising
  2. Alliance Marketing Partners AMP
  3. Articles
  4. Audio recording
  5. Authorship
  6. Celebrity endorsements
  7. Channel marketing
  8. Corporate clothing
  9. Corporate identity
  10. Corporate hospitality
  11. Customers
  12. Direct mail
  13. Email marketing
  14. Events
  15. Internet marketing
  16. Location marketing
  17. Media relations
  18. Mobile marketing
  19. Networking
  20. Packaging
  21. Point of sale
  22. Printed matter
  23. Professional selling
  24. Promotional gifts
  25. Referrals
  26. Retail
  27. Sales promotion
  28. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
  29. Social media
  30. Sponsorship
  31. Telemarketing
  32. Vehicle livery
  33. Videos
  34. Website
  35. Word of mouth
  36. Writing

With regards to the last category, copywriting used to be a specific skill, used within the advertising industry. With the advent of internet marketing, the ability to write clearly, combined with an explosion in innovative software means that writing is a promotional device in its own right.

Written by marketing consultant, trainer, speaker and author Nigel Temple.

Internal website links are important

By Internet marketing, SEO No Comments

Links (sometimes called backlinks) coming into your website are still a good idea. However, from an SEO perspective, they are not as important as they used to be.

On the other hand, links within your own website are definitely important.

Anchor text should be part of your SEO link building strategy.

Anchor text is the text contained within a hyperlink. The search engines analyse this. For example www.marketingcompass.co.uk …or… The Marketing Compass impartial marketing advice.

Search engines examine anchor text in order to figure out what the destination web page is about.

They are doing their best to help the searcher. Think of it this way, Google would like to know as much as possible about the subject of the page to which the link points.

Therefore, inserting keywords into anchor text helps search engines such as Google, Bing and Yahoo to do a better job.

Have you noticed how Wikipedia uses anchor text? One topic leads to another and yet another. It is tempting to keep clicking there, isn’t it?

Wikipedia is at the top of page 1 for millions of items and I have no doubt that its extensive use of anchor text has helped it to get there.

If you are interested in SEO, here are 12 SEO tips. I use these tips regularly.

Here is a tip for you: having written a web page or a blog, go back through it and think about other relevant pages or blogs within your own site that you could link to.

If you have an easy-to-use CMS (Content Management System), such as WordPress, you will be able to do this without getting involved in the HTML code.

This blog is based on an entry within The Marketing Compass Encyclopedia.

What is inbound marketing?

By Internet marketing, Marketing professional services, Marketing strategy, Psychology No Comments

The vast majority of your market is not looking to buy your product or service today.

Or tomorrow, for that matter.

A small percentage is actively looking.

Inbound marketing brings these people to you.

The result is more sales enquires and sales.

Inbound marketers share information with prospective customers via digital marketing, in creative, interesting ways.

The information needs to be helpful and informative.

The problem is that many enterprises do not wish to share their knowledge.

“We have never done this before!” they exclaim.

“Why should we give away what we know for free?” they ask.

The counter-argument is that their competitors are already out there doing it.

Sharing knowledge sure beats asking strangers if they would like to buy from you (I know, as I used to do this for Rank Xerox when I was a young salesperson).

Besides, I have found that the more I share, the more I have to learn.

Here is an entry within The Marketing Compass Encyclopedia regarding inbound marketing.

Here is a blog regarding Push versus Pull marketing.

How to structure your knowledge

By Internet marketing, Marketing strategy, SEO, Writing No Comments

If you are a subject expert, you may have written a single book, several books or a series of blogs. You may have slide decks, course handouts or articles that you have written. You have probably answered questions via email and during meetings.

The information surrounding any given subject is continually expanding and you may have considered creating a knowledgebase, wiki or encyclopedia.

For some time, I have been in this position and I have looked at a number of ways of achieving this. Finally, I opted for a premium WordPress plugin called Enclyopedia Pro.

Here is the project so far:  The Marketing Compass Encyclopedia

There is a long way to go, as I have several thousand entries to add.

I am finding that this project is making me think about my subject area (marketing) in new ways and how everything fits together.

There is an SEO benefit from publishing your knowledge.

Personally, I do not have any problems with sharing my knowledge. I wonder whether you feel the same?

Stepping out of the shadows

By Customers, Internet marketing, Social media No Comments

If you want to generate better results on social media, engage with people. You can do this via Likes, Comments, Shares and Messages.

When you do this…

Be interesting. Be positive. Be inquisitive. Be yourself.

I have noticed that many enterprises don’t engage, they only broadcast. For example by continually sharing their blog posts.

Think of it this way. Do you prefer to be shouted at or to have conversations with interesting people?

Many people don’t want to draw attention to themselves.

I quite understand this, however, when it comes to promotion you have to step out of the shadows and start interacting with customers.

Website link building: 10 ideas

By Internet marketing, SEO No Comments

Google sees inbound links – AKA backlinks – to your website as votes of confidence. In general, the more inbound links you have, the better as long as they are of good quality.

An inbound link = a hyperlink which is pointing at your website.

Website link building should form part of your ongoing SEO strategy.

1. Gradually build inbound links to your website. Google doesn’t like sudden spikes.

2. Work manually i.e. don’t use bots / software programs / suspicious services from people you don’t know.

3. Include keywords within the anchor text*, where appropriate.

4. The links should come from relevant websites.

5. The links should come from sites with high authority i.e. credible websites.

6. Don’t use paid links.

7. Don’t use email spam to request links.

8. Don’t use link farms.

9. Do keep a meticulous record of your in-bound links.

10. Do check from time to time that the links still work.

*Anchor text: The text within a hyperlink,
i.e: www.nigeltemple.com or Digital marketing consultant

SEO Course – click here

How to write a Description tag

By Internet marketing, Promotional techniques, SEO No Comments

Within The Marketing Compass 2019 SEO Course (which NavigatorPlus members can access for free within the Resource Centre), we discuss Description tags. They provide a concise description of a web page, within a Search Engine Results Page (SERP). If a description tag is not there, the SERP result may show random wording, drawn from the web page.

On the one hand, since 2009, Description tags have not counted as Google ranking factors. However, because of the way in which they can make your search engine listing look better, they are important and well worth paying attention to. To put it another way, well-written Description tags will help you to get more visitors to your website.

Here is a screenshot of a Google search result. Notice that the Title tag (MailChimp training – Learn how to…) reads like a headline and that I have included a phone number. The Description tag text begins: ‘The training can be….’ These two elements in combination have always struck me as looking like an advert.

SERP page 1 for MailChimp training
You can have up to 300 characters including spaces within a Description tag.

Write about the benefits that are to be found within the web page. For example, as opposed to writing: ‘Here is our widgets page. It lists all of the widgets that we sell.’

You could write this: ‘Find the right widget for your requirements. You can specify your widgets by size, material, colour and price. We’re the leading widget supplier and we are here to help. Our vast warehouse ensures that we’re always in stock. Order online or apply for an account. Questions? Call: 01234 56789.’

(292 characters including spaces between words; it is quite a lot of text, isn’t it?)

Use the words ‘you’ and ‘your’ within your Description tags, as this will feel more personal for the reader.

It is better to write in an upbeat, positive way.

Use short sentences and short words.

Where you are marketing a product or service, include a call to action.

If you are a WordPress user, Yoast is helpful.

You will find more detail and ideas within the SEO course – click here.

Nigel offers Google SEO training.

PS This article first appeared in my marketing tips email which you can subscribe to here.

Too many browser windows open?

By Internet marketing, Learning, Software, Success, Technology, Writing One Comment

Do you find that that, as your working day progresses, you end up with dozens of browser windows?  I used to have so many that I would have several different web browsers on the go.

Station can be downloaded for use on your computer. It is free to use and it enables you to work with several hundred apps such as email, accounting, online storage, MailChimp, social media accounts (i.e. LinkedIn, Twitter), Skype and many others (about 300 in total).

The result is that your website browser is much less cluttered. In addition, you can search across multiple apps within Station and move from one app to another in a variety of ways.

Station groups all your pages by app, automatically.  You can turn notifications off, when you need to concentrate.

No more getting lost in 50 open tabs. Decision making speaker and NavigatorPlus member and decision making speaker David Knowles-Leak kindly brought this to my attention.

Visit Station’s website here to find out more and download the app.

This story first appeared in my marketing tips and ideas newsletter. You can subscribe here.  “Your newsletter is the most useful I have ever subscribed to!” Steve Munden https://ibizify.net