When you first start your business, there is a laundry list of things to do…and most of these cost money. A lot of money, in some cases. Register your business name with the local government = money. Business cards = money. More minutes on your phone = money. Heck, a new tie, a decent desk chair, office supplies = money. You’re starting your business to make money, but you’re going to see a lot of red at first (and not Mackenzie King red $50 bills, for our Canadian readers). By the way, you’re going to need a website. It’s 2019. Your website is likely going to be your single most important branding asset and source of leads, so treat it well and treasure it. With a limited budget, you have to make a lot of tough decisions. What areas are worth spending on, and where can you save money by doing it yourself? In some instances you don’t have a choice – you’re going to have to pay your taxes, you can’t opt out! But there … [Read more...] about DIY Websites for Small Businesses: Are They Worth it?
Completely free website builder
Wix, Weebly, Squarespace, Shopify, Gutensite, iPage – all of these have one major thing in common. They’re website builders, designed to make it easy to “build a website without hiring a developer”. “Build a website in 5 minutes,” one proclaims. On top of that, almost every hosting provider offers a website builder of some sort. GoDaddy, HostGator, BlueHost, BraveNet – they all promise that, with the click of a button, you’ll be able to create a traffic generating machine. Just point, drag, click and publish into publishing heaven. They offer these services for free or for a very attractive low price. But is it really that easy? Are you getting the best bang for your buck? Do any of the above really deliver on their promises? As you can tell from the title, we don’t think so. The Pros of Website Builders It’d be wrong to just dismiss website builders right out of the box. After all, they do provide a service for a select group … [Read more...] about The Case Against Website Builders (Why We Build WordPress)
Have a small business in need of a website, but no budget for professional design services? Yahoo, Google and Microsoft all offer free small business site creation tools that can help you develop a professional online presence. Keep reading for an in-depth review of what Office Live Basics, Google Page Creator and Yahoo SiteBuilder include and how they work. Additionally, we’ll consider ease of use, positives and negatives, and recommended uses for each tool. No knowledge of HTML is required to create sites using any of these services. Experienced webmasters who want direct access to the code or want high-end business applications will need to look beyond these products. The goal of these products is to provide the tools needed to develop a simple, but functional web presence. The Winner: Microsoft Office Live Basics One of the more intriguing features of the Office Live Basics program is the free domain name that comes as part of the package. The registration—through … [Read more...] about Free Page Creator Tools From The Big Three: Trash or Treasure?
Quick: which social network is bringing in the most traffic to your website right now? It’s OK if you don’t know off the top of your head. (I don’t memorize that sort of stuff, either!) But wouldn’t it be great if you could pull up the answer in just a few seconds whenever your boss asks? What about revenue broken down by social network? What about the percentage of traffic generated by social versus email? You can track it all, and you can track it for free: all you need are Google Analytics and a little bit of UTM link codes. Not sure what that means? I’d love to share with you how it’s done. A Quick-and-Simple Overview of UTM Codes What are UTM Codes, and Why are They so Important? “UTM” stands for “Urchin tracking module.” Urchin Software Corporation was acquired by Google in 2005, and their software laid the groundwork for what we now know as Google Analytics. UTM codes are bits of text you can add to a link that tell … [Read more...] about The Complete Guide to UTM Codes
Your influencer campaign is so close to the official kickoff. You’ve built your strategy and, thanks to some influencer research, your targets have been acquired. Get ready, because it’s finally time to make your move. Time to send some outreach emails! This is where it starts to get really fun. This is where planning comes to a close and you’re getting ready to launch. It’s time to start reaching out to the people on your target list. It seems simple, but you quickly realize it’s not. At least one target will have an email address you can’t find anywhere. Another will respond immediately, super excited to get started – never to be heard from again. Things can get hectic really quickly. That’s why it’s so important to have a great arsenal of tools to turn to. Some will do heavy lifting for you, while others just keep you organized. And others will be crazy simple, yet save you hours of time. Have I sufficiently hyped these tools … [Read more...] about 11 Awesome Tools for Hassle-Free Influencer Outreach