Tag Archives: products

5 Best Infographics & Illustrations to Try on Your Small Business Website

The post 5 Best Infographics & Illustrations to Try on Your Small Business Website appeared first on HostGator Blog . Visual content plays an integral role in your small business website. It can either grasp your visitors’ attention or repel them in the opposite direction. To spice up your site, you can add infographics and illustrations to your site. These visuals help tell your brand story and convey key information to your audience.  But everything shouldn’t be transformed into a visual. Here are 5 of the best opportunities to use infographics and illustrations on your site.  1. Display Statistics  Visual content attracts visitors to your site. According to Demand Gen Report , infographics can increase web traffic by 12%. Use this opportunity to highlight your brand and to engage with consumers.  Statistics are an effective way to persuade your audience. People like interpreting complex details into simple numbers. However, stats alone can easily bore your site visitors. You can refresh your data with a dynamic infographic. You can add charts, graphs, and symbols to tell the full story of your statistics. It will quickly draw people’s eyes to specific sections and encourage them to learn more. Jobvite focuses on stats related to the United States employment. The infographic below uses line and bar graphs plus a map to paint a vivid picture of the economy. Avoid overcrowding your infographics with a bunch of stats. It will confuse the visitor and deter them from the visual experience. Instead, only pick the stats that will bolster the purpose of your infographic. If the stat doesn’t support the overall topic, you can leave it out. 2. Explain a Process It’s better to show, rather than tell. This principle holds true when you want to explain a convoluted process.  Illustrations work as a guide for your audience. If they don’t understand something, the graphic can add context. James Brockbank , an experienced SEO and content marketer, agrees: “Data has a bad name for being boring…however, when you visualize it, it can take a new form and attract those who likely wouldn’t read it when presented in another format.” Think of an infographic as a visual journey. Your goal is to lead visitors through a complete story, from the introduction to the conclusion. This approach will hold people’s attention, and they will engage with the entire infographic. Fix takes its readers through the process of avoiding (and curing) a hangover. Each section of the infographic matches data with an appealing illustration.  A pro tip is to map out your infographic before talking with your designer. That way, you know exactly what graphics and copy you want included in the visual. 3. Showcase Products & Services Before consumers buy anything, they want to see what you’re selling. So, it’s your responsibility to showcase your products. Take accurate photos of your products. Give your audience the chance to experience every angle as if they were purchasing it in the store. If your small business sells services on your website, you still want to invest in an illustration. It should represent the outcome of the service. For instance, hair salons may post a happy woman with a gorgeous haircut. Some brands take the easy route and post various stock photos on their websites. Yet, this shortcut isn’t always receptive to your audience. When asked about the best performing visuals, 41.5% of marketers said that original graphics, such as infographics and illustrations, performed best. So, you’ll want to engage your consumers with one-of-a-kind graphics. You’ll also want to create a consistent brand style with your infographics and illustrations. Check out the example below from Learn Joomla Fast . The company uses bright colors and expressive icons to match its tone and style. Be bold in your design when spotlighting your products. It attracts consumers and keeps them coming back for more. 4. Make Comparisons Apples or oranges. Cars or trucks. Beyonce or Rihanna. Today’s culture likes comparing things. It’s easier for people to understand. Plus, it can build a competitive nature of picking sides.  Comparisons can show similarities between two concepts as well as emphasize their differences. A side-by-side visual makes it useful for your visitors to retain the information.  With this type of illustration, you can tell a compelling narrative. Jack Knopfler , lead content editor at Mammoth Infographics, explains: “Without a powerful narrative, you will end up with a bunch of disconnected data points and a confused audience. A narrative enables your readers to go on a journey through the infographic and leave feeling enhanced.” University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital makes a comparison with the simple illustration below. The graphic designer created sugar cubes and silhouettes of popular brand bottles. With one glance, someone can understand the meaning of the image. From a design perspective, use white space to make your infographic easily scannable. Too much clutter can distract your visitors and move their attention away from your visual. 5. Present a Sequence of Events Timelines work beautifully to display a sequence of events. It adds order to what could be chaos if you just listed a bunch of activities.  If you want to give the history of a topic, a timeline is one of the best options. Your audience can clearly see the progression from one time period to the next. So, make sure your dates are accurate. Rather than displaying the month, day, and year, you can keep it simple by only using the year.  Also, consider the layout of your timeline infographic. A vertical design is practical if you have lots of text and images. A horizontal design is well-suited for timelines with a few dates. Coca-Cola takes its audience down memory lane with a timeline infographic. You learn about the background of the beverage through text and images of the actual bottles. Don’t forget to share your infographic, too. You can add it to your blog content and post it on social media. Get people talking about your work! Get Creative With Visual Content on Your Small Business Website Infographics and illustrations serve as a bridge to connect your audience with your brand. Use these visuals to display statistics, explain a process, or showcase products. Ready to create a professional website? Check out HostGator’s Web Design Services .   Find the post on the HostGator Blog Continue reading

Posted in HostGator, Hosting, VodaHost | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on 5 Best Infographics & Illustrations to Try on Your Small Business Website

On-Site vs. Off-Site SEO: What’s the Difference?

The post On-Site vs. Off-Site SEO: What’s the Difference? appeared first on HostGator Blog . Search engine optimization (SEO) comes in many shapes and sizes. It’s not limited to one technique or a single tool. If you’re just getting started with SEO , you will want to know the difference between on-site and off-site SEO. Each type offers benefits to help your business acquire more website visitors. While some strategies take a few hours to execute, other tactics will involve extra time to plan. Take this opportunity to attract people to your site. Learn the difference below. On-Site SEO Strategies On-site SEO focuses on optimizing individual pages to earn organic search traffic. By implementing these techniques, it’s easier for search engines to categorize your content.   1. Keyword Research All businesses desire more website traffic. To gain those visitors, it starts with understanding keyword research. Consumers enter keywords in search engines to find specific information. They search for everything from holiday gift ideas to cute puppy videos. Knowing your potential customers’ search intent will help you craft content with targeted keywords. That way, you receive qualified visitors, not just every curious person online. Keyword Planner and Moz’s Keyword Explorer are effective platforms for conducting keyword research and keeping track of trends. Garnering this insight gives you an edge over your competition. Stay away from broad terms. For example, if you sell women’s clothing, stick to distinct, longer-tail keywords that describe your products. Aim for “high-end winter plaid skirts,” rather than “women’s skirts.”   2. Internal Linking When an individual lands on a web page, it’s quite likely that she will want to learn more about the specific information mentioned. Internal linking gives you the chance to act as a tour guide, sending the visitor to another appropriate page. Linking boosts your SEO performance. Serial entrepreneur Neil Patel outlines the advantages: “One of the corollary benefits of internal linking is that it improves user engagement on your site. When a user sees an informative link that truly matches the context of the content, they are likely to click on that link. It can be an external link, as long as it’s something that the reader will be interested in.” Internal linking helps search engines crawl your site. So, direct visitors to another relevant page on your site.    3. Page Speed A few years back, search engines announced that a site’s page speed would impact its ranking. This guideline still influences SEO today. As a result, you should monitor your pages’ load time. According to Google , it takes on average 22 seconds for a mobile landing page to load.  However, “53% of mobile site visitors leave a page that takes longer than three seconds to load.” Their free PageSpeed Insights  tool analyzes the content of your web page and generates suggestions to make your page faster. It’s user-friendly and only takes a few seconds to receive your speed score. Large image files can negatively impact page speeds. You can solve this problem by using a tool like TinyPNG to reduce the file size and following image SEO best practices . Consider the number of widgets connected to your site, too. Excessive social buttons, comment areas, and pop-up ads can slow down page speed.   Off-Site SEO Strategies Off-site SEO is the process of improving your search rankings through referral traffic. These techniques include driving brand awareness and creating remarkable content.   1. Public Relations The perception of your business informs customers’ decisions. Public relations coupled with SEO serves the purpose of increasing your inbound links and brand recognition. Earning coverage in online publications and news outlets starts with developing an enticing story around your business. Jeremy Knauff , founder of Spartan Media, explains: “[Public relations] focuses on getting real humans who work at legitimate, authoritative publications genuinely interested in and talking about your story. It’s about truly adding value, which in turn tends to generate inbound links, as opposed to simply producing garbage links on websites that no one visits.” To catch an eye of a journalist, you’ll want to highlight a newsworthy activity. Maybe you’re partnering with a charity to donate funds, or you’re releasing groundbreaking research that supports your brand. You can generate buzz by writing a press release and initiating a social media campaign with a unique hashtag.   2. Guest Blogging Content writing is another way to obtain backlinks for your website. Through guest blogging, you can become a thought leader in your industry as well as maximize your SEO potential. Guest blogging involves crafting content for non-competitive sites with similar audiences. You’ll gain powerful relationships and site traffic. When guest blogging, it’s key for you to follow the rules described by the specific website. Below is an example from Mention , a social media monitoring tool. You’ll also want to choose a topic that will resonate with readers. If possible, tell a narrative about a recent experience, spotlight a customer story with humor, or even grab people’s attention with stunning statistics. Guest blogging is a perfect time to add your expertise to a larger conversation. You should aim to satisfy the publication and its readers.   3. Influencer Outreach You’re only as good as the community around you. To upgrade your circle and earn inbound links, influencer outreach offers a step in the right direction. Influencers are individuals who shape consumer buying habits. They can persuade people to visit websites, try products, and join social communities. For businesses, this engagement transforms into a huge benefit. Michael Quoc , founder and CEO of Dealspotr, gives his insight: “When your business engages with a new social audience, it unlocks the potential for more followers and engagement. This can lead to more site traffic, backlinks, and other factors that improve SEO.” Do your research when selecting influencers. It’s important that their values match your brand and their audience possess some interest in your products. Influencer partnerships will build your brand reputation faster. Plus, it gives bloggers another reason to link back to your website.   Focus on SEO Knowing when and how to apply on-site and off-site SEO strategies matters. Each type holds a different solution for your website to attract more visitors. Find the post on the HostGator Blog Continue reading

Posted in HostGator, Hosting, VodaHost | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on On-Site vs. Off-Site SEO: What’s the Difference?

How To Convert Organic Traffic Into Loyal Customers

The post How To Convert Organic Traffic Into Loyal Customers appeared first on HostGator Blog . You’re getting quality traffic to your e-commerce store. Now what? As a small business owner, you’re tasked with turning those visitors into customers. It’s up to you to woo consumers into purchasing your latest products. While it may sound difficult, don’t panic. Matt Ackerson , founder of AutoGrow, offers sage advice: “Once you understand that traffic is just like energy or water and you just need to create pathways to direct it where you want it to go, the rest is easy. Don’t make the mistake of over complicating it though. So many business people think success has to be complicated when it doesn’t.” Let’s make the process simple for you and the consumer. Here are five ways to convert your traffic into loyal customers. 1. Write Creative Product Descriptions When it comes to selling products online , storytelling really does matter. It only takes one click for a consumer to exit your site and visit a competitor. You can keep your customers’ attention and sell more items by crafting creative product descriptions. Descriptive text is an opportunity to highlight your products and showcase your brand’s personality. You want the product description to breathe life into the item. To achieve this objective, set the scene for the buyer. You want the shopper to imagine themselves using the product. It’s also helpful to skip the corporate jargon. Aim to use the everyday language of the typical consumer. Online women’s clothing retailer ModCloth uses expressive words to persuade its consumers into purchasing their inventory. Each product description digs into the emotional state of the shopper’s mind. Not only do you learn about the product’s physical dimensions, but you also understand how it will make you feel. When writing product descriptions, focus on turning features into benefits. How will the item improve consumers’ lives? What will the product help them achieve? Dig deep and touch their pain points. Stand out from the competition with unique product descriptions. You’ll appeal to your audience’s imagination and increase their desire for your products.   2. Create a Sense of Urgency With a jam-packed schedule of work assignments and family responsibilities, it’s easy for your consumers to delay buying products at this very moment. That’s why your team must nudge them to the checkout cart sooner than later. Creating a sense of urgency isn’t about causing a state of panic for your audience. Instead, you want to help them make a speedy decision about the products they already want. “Urgency can be blocked by your customers’ minds if you don’t give them specific instructions on how to solve the problem. Rather than giving vague instructions, tell people exactly what to do when the time comes and don’t be afraid to drive them toward specific actions,” says Gregory Ciotti , former senior content marketing manager at Help Scout. A few urgency tactics include adding a countdown clock to your sales page, showing the limited number of items in stock, and offering discounts on abandoned cart items.   You may want to spotlight product demand, too. For instance, you can show how many people have already purchased a particular item— using FOMO as a marketing strategy . A small dose of urgency is helpful for getting your customers across the purchasing threshold. Product value mixed with persistence means more sales for your business.   3. Offer Top-Notch Customer Support Research shows that “on average happy customers tell nine people about their experiences with a company.” If you’re delivering superb customer support, that’s an opportunity to generate more revenue for your e-commerce store. While online support varies from the traditional in-person experience, some of the same principles apply. Your purpose is to offer immediate, accurate help with a touch of kindness ( live chat is excellent for this). When speaking with your support reps, consumers should feel special. Begin with a warm-hearted, concerned tone when talking to customers. Your team will want to approach each conversation as if the consumer is talking to a friend, not stranger. Also, it’s important to train your support reps to solve customers’ concerns as quickly as possible. Shoppers respect business efficiency because it doesn’t waste their precious time. BaubleBar values its shoppers and makes offering customer service a priority. The accessories retailer allows customers to email and call their staff members. Plus, the company posts their availability along with the normal response time. And don’t be afraid to apologize to your customers. If you make a mistake, acknowledge your error and continue to provide high-caliber service. Quality service is the key to ensuring casual shoppers turn into loyal customers . Give your audience different support channels to connect with your team.   4. Build an Exclusive Community The desire to belong is part of your consumer’s humanity. In one way or another, we’re all seeking a chance to be part of a specific group, team, or club. Your e-commerce store can satisfy that consumer need by establishing a brand community. “We have an inherent need to be a part of a social community and to feel connected to others. It not only makes us feel secure and comfortable, it inspires us to take action to achieve our desired results as well,” writes entrepreneur Akshay Nanavati . Brand communities take many shapes and forms. There’s the VIP rewards programs with die-hard fans seeking exclusive perks. Or you can develop an advisory panel where consumers can give you insight on their interests and tastes. Fostering a community requires time and patience. You’ll want to create rules and expectations for your consumers. That way, you’re building trust early in the relationship. Go beyond the usual benefits of a community. Ask your brand advocates for their honest feedback in exchange for unique product discounts. And be mindful not to bog down your loyal members with excessive emails and push notifications. Communities ensure regular contact between your business and buyers. Elevate your e-commerce store with brand advocates championing your mission.   5. Present an Irresistible Exit Pop-Up Offer Believe it or not, your consumers aren’t excited to buy your products every time they land on your site. They may visit your store to just do price comparisons, or they might have a few minutes to spare during lunch and occupy their time by browsing your website. While consumer intent may concentrate on another purpose, your goal is to reel shoppers in and persuade them to purchase. And one of the best ways to do so is with exit pop-up offers. An exit popup is a message that appears when a visitor tries to leave your site. It helps your team refocus the consumer’s attention back to your store. This popup is a prime location for you to give visitors a special deal, offer an instant promotion, or add them to a particular email newsletter. Behappy.me knows how to capture the attention of visitors attempting to leave its site. The store offers first-time buyers an extra 10% discount to influence their buying decision. There’s always one last chance to entice your consumers. With exit pop-up offers, you can grab hesitant shoppers who need extra motivation to buy your products.   Turning Traffic Into Trust Persuading visitors to become customers isn’t an easy task. However, with a sound strategy and patience, you can get shoppers to the checkout cart. Start with drafting creative product descriptions to get visitors excited about your items. Then, create a sense of urgency with limited-time sales. And always offer five-star customer support to show consumers you truly care. Build trust to convert your traffic into loyal customers. Find the post on the HostGator Blog Continue reading

Posted in HostGator, Hosting, VodaHost | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on How To Convert Organic Traffic Into Loyal Customers

How to Create a Membership Site with WordPress (Step by Step)

The post How to Create a Membership Site with WordPress (Step by Step) appeared first on HostGator Blog . Are you considering creating a membership site for your courses, products, or services? If so, it can be a great way to cater to your target market and increase your business’ revenue among many other benefits. A membership allows you to build a list of loyal members, create an active email list , and position yourself as a leader in your industry if it gains enough traction. But what exactly is a membership site? Put simply, it’s gated content that’s only accessible to members and subscribers. Most of the time there is a fee or recurring payment involved, but sometimes it can be as simple as signing up for an email list. Why Create a Membership Site? A membership site means you can sell practically anything: online courses, ebooks, coaching, you name it. What makes it exciting is its exclusivity and the perks that come with an engaged subscription. Premium services tend to offer subscribers more value to the point where paying a monthly or yearly fee is worth their money. If you’re able to rack up a solid list of subscribers, your revenue will increase drastically. It’s also a great way to build a list of loyal subscribers who genuinely enjoy your content to the point that they’re willing to pay for it. Think of Youtube Premium or Spotify Premium. Sure, with their free options you get to enjoy their content, but you’re bombarded with ads and can’t enjoy the full, uninterrupted experience. What makes these services powerful is that they deliver an optimized UX and, therefore, have a customer base that consists of happier customers. Gating your content allows you to offer your target audience the products and services they want while your business expands its subscriber list and grows monetarily. Before getting started, you need the following: A domain name. This is your website’s URL and it’s crucial that it matches your brand and the products and services you’re selling. WordPress web hosting. HostGator provides quick and easy set up so that even beginners can create their own website. You can also register your domain name here at HostGator. A membership plugin. MemberPress is simple to install and requires no coding knowledge to set up a membership site you’re proud to call your own. What to Look for in a Membership Plugin There are many options to choose from when it comes to membership plugins , but what it really comes down to is what best suits your business and its customers. It’s essential to keep them in mind when creating your membership site. Here are a few questions to consider when choosing a plugin: What is your budget? What are your measurable goals? How well do you know how to code? How many membership levels will you need? What payment gateways do you want customers to be able to use? Are there extra features you want to be included, such as add-ons and integrations? If you want to create a fully functional, easy-to-use membership site with WordPress, here’s how to get started. Install and Set Up MemberPress The very first step to creating a membership site is to use a plugin. This is what’s going to turn your regular WordPress site into a members-only website. MemberPress allows you to sell physical and digital goods, downloads, subscriptions, and more. It’s easy to set up payment gateways, restrict access based on different subscriptions, and design beautiful pricing pages so you can create the look you want. First, you need to create an account with WordPress. Then, purchase a subscription with MemberPress that suits your budget, goals, and business needs. Consider what features are most important to you when choosing your pricing plan. Sometimes it’s worth it to pay a little extra to give your customers exactly what they want. Plus, your membership fee could end up giving back to your business with an increased ROI . Once you choose the plan that’s right for you, go to MemberPress and download the .zip file. From your WordPress dashboard, click on Plugins > Add New > Upload. Select the file and click Install Now. Then click Activate Plugin and your MemberPress plugin will be activated. You should now be able to see a MemberPress menu option in the sidebar on your dashboard. From the menu, click Options where you can configure the plugin’s settings to your liking. Your plugin is now fully installed and ready to be optimized for your business! Getting Started with MemberPress Creating a membership site is a way to target a specific audience and cater to their specific needs. It makes selling products and services easy and builds a list of happy customers who enjoy content that matches exactly what they’re looking for. MemberPress is a fully functional plugin that makes creating a membership site on WordPress an easy and pleasant experience. Find the post on the HostGator Blog Continue reading

Posted in HostGator, Hosting, VodaHost | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on How to Create a Membership Site with WordPress (Step by Step)

4 Ways to Make Money With Your Small Business Website

The post 4 Ways to Make Money With Your Small Business Website appeared first on HostGator Blog . You’ve finally got a website for your business , because you know it’s the key to getting found by new customers who start most of their searches online. But your website can do more than raise your visibility in search results. It can also provide another revenue stream for your business. Whether you sell physical goods in a brick-and-mortar location, provide in-person services to a local market, run a restaurant, or offer your freelance expertise online, there are ways you can make your website work harder for you. One or more of these options may be just right for your small business site. 1. Build an Online Store If you have a brick-and-mortar retail shop, selling your products online is an obvious choice to expand your market, but other businesses can benefit from having an online store, too. Own a coffee shop or bakery? You can offer your branded merch (t-shirts, mugs) online along with special coffee blends or cakes and gift baskets. And any type of business can offer gift certificates online. No physical products? No problem. If what you sell is expertise, consider putting some of it into e-books on topics that matter to your clientele, and sell them in your online shop. (We’ll talk more about expertise in a moment.) Setting up an online store is easier than you may think. Gator Website Builder’s eCommerce plan gives you the templates and drag-and-drop tools you need to set up shop online fast. The eCommerce plan supports HD video and audio so you can create compelling product videos, and you get tools to manage your inventory, calculate shipping and sales tax, and offer coupons to your customers. 2. Let Customers Book Appointments Online Worldwide access to global knowledge is great, but I think the real benefit of the internet is being able to book appointments without a phone conversation between two harried people who toss out days and times until one works. Setting up appointments online is easier for everyone—your receptionist can focus on other tasks, and your customers don’t get stuck on hold. Online booking also lets customers reserve a spot whenever they’re ready, instead of having to wait for office hours to make a call. When you make people wait, they sometimes forget—or find a competitor who lets them book online, so you lose out. You can add booking capability to your WordPress website with a plugin. One of the most popular is Booking Calendar , which lets you customize the fields customers will fill in, notifies you of new booking requests, and stores all your booking information in a single database so you don’t have to toggle back and forth to manage your client list and appointments. 3. Share Your Knowledge Online Once you’ve been running your business successfully for a while, you’ll probably have insights other people will pay to learn. Writing, design, and coaching businesses are a natural fit for online one-on-one entrepreneur mentorship programs and group courses aimed people in the same field who want to learn more about some aspect of the business. Other businesses can use this approach, too. Maybe you grew your landscaping business from zero to six figures in under two years. Other new landscapers will want your advice on marketing and customer retention. Does your HVAC repair company have the lowest employee-turnover rate and the best customer reviews in town? Other contractors will want to know how you retain top talent. There’s one big difference between selling this type of expertise online and setting up an online store or booking tool: You’ll need to reach a different audience from your regular customer base. That requires some research to see if there’s a demand for your knowledge, and to find out where your potential customers hang out online so you can start connecting with them. You’ll also need to establish yourself as an expert, with a blog, podcast, or videos that gives away some of your knowledge for free. You can set up a blog fast with the Gator Website Builder and its blogging templates. You’ll want to make sure your business website’s hosting plan can handle more traffic and load audio and video content fast. It may be time to upgrade to cloud hosting if you expect spikes in traffic when you open new course registrations, or if you need faster load times for your instructional videos and podcasts. Building up this type of revenue stream takes some time, but it can be lucrative if there’s enough demand and you put in the marketing work. And if your main line of business is seasonal, like landscaping or air-conditioner repair, an online sideline can help smooth out income peaks and valleys. 4. Add Ads and Affiliate Links to Your Small Business Website With a decent amount of traffic, your site can also generate revenue through affiliate links and ads. Affiliate marketing is big business, and just about anyone with a website can take part. Simply defined, affiliate marketing lets you earn commissions on sales of other people’s products that you promote on your site. Let’s say you own a cupcake shop, and your shop’s website has a popular blog that features tips on decorating cupcakes. You might sign up for the affiliate program offered by your favorite decorating tools company, include links to their products in your posts (along with an FTC-required disclosure that they’re affiliate links), and earn a commission on each sale that comes from your links. You can also run ads on your website. Google AdSense is the most popular option, because it’s easy to integrate with your site, it gives you control over which ads appear, and it tailors ads to your content and audience. It can take a while for your AdSense ads to bear fruit—you need to reach a $100 threshold before you receive your first payment. But as far as revenue streams go, it’s a low-effort, low-maintenance way to start monetizing your site. Want more ideas for making the most of your small business website? There’s always something new and useful on the HostGator blog . Find the post on the HostGator Blog Continue reading

Posted in HostGator, Hosting, VodaHost | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on 4 Ways to Make Money With Your Small Business Website