Hits, Hits, & More Hits! But, What's Wrong?Written by Steve Parke
You can get all hits you want, but if it doesn't translate into customers and sales, then you have hits and that's it! The average surfer spends about 26 seconds on your web page. So, how do you turn those hits into customers and sales? 1,2,3,4,Score!
1) First, take a look at your web site. Get a professional opinions. Put function, professionalism, and speed, ahead of flashy slow loading animated, audio, video designs. Sure some are great. Make sure all of your links work, and you don't have any of those red x's. Granted, not everyone's browser is going to be working right all of time, but you should try to have your site compatible with multiple browsers. At least Netscape and Internet Explorer. All flash, and fancy styled designs does not mean customer will stick around and buy. Make sure you have a product or service that is in demand, with good quality, and value. Do research, find out what your demographics for your site are, and ask yourself, if this is something you would buy. Compile stats into useful marketing knowledge.
2) Next qualify your customers and target your traffic. After you have done your research, homework, compiled all your stats, and information, then start advertising your site geared toward these prospects. People that need and want your product and services. Use directories, search engines, ezines, newsletters, banners, classified ads, press releases, and partnerships wisely to reach your target audience. Make sure your meta tags, and title pages are setup properly. Many sites, like bcentral.com allow you to target your demographics, like age groups, locations, gender, certain groups, sub groups, directories, sub directories, financial groups, etc. You will soon see your average site session times increase dramatically.
Overcoming Isolation in Your Home BusinessWritten by Elena Fawkner
Like most people, when you think about what it would be like to work from home, you probably think of obvious benefits such as working your own hours, not having to face a stressful, tedious commute every day, actually seeing what your garden looks like in daylight hours, not having to answer to a boss, being home when your children are, working in a comfortable environment and so on. These are, of course, some of only many wonderful benefits of working from home.
Before long, though, you may begin to think back to your previous life and realize you actually miss those umpteen visitors who were constantly interrupting you when you were trying to work, walk in park at lunchtime with your best work-friend, drinks on Friday night after work, and being able to run an idea past a colleague for instant, valuable feedback.
Now, everything is just, well, quiet. And there's no-one down hall to go visit who's over age four. You find yourself checking your email constantly, wanting to connect to someone. You find yourself wishing phone would ring. You! The person who, when you worked in a job, cursed constant telephone interruptions and thought voice- and e-mail was greatest invention since sliced bread. Welcome to another reality of home-based business ... home alone.
Here are some ways to avoid isolation trap when running a business out of your home:
ESTABLISH A STRUCTURE
Nothing is surer to reinforce feelings of isolation as time that stretches as far as eye can see like a straight, one lane highway through a flat, barren landscape. Don't start each day without a plan of what you intend to do. You need to structure your time so that it is not some endlessly vast terrain you must traverse alone. So write a to-do list, preferably at end of day before, so that when your work day starts you get productive straight away, before isolation blues have a chance to take hold.
When writing your to-do list, make sure you include at least two things every day that require you to interact with another person. Networking is a vital skill, whether you work for someone else or for yourself. So make contacts with people who can add value to your business, as well as connecting you with outside world.
Joining a professional group or club, attending seminars and trade shows relevant to your business are all great ways to meet new people who have similar interests and challenges. Participate in activities organized by these groups and take a good supply of business cards with you.
ESTABLISH JOINT VENTURES
Another way to keep isolation blues at bay is to joint venture with other home-based business owners. Team up with other businesses that offer complementary services to your business. Not only will you send additional business each other's way in form of referrals, you are establishing professional relationships with your joint venture partners.