The Internet and customer care: aid or anarchy?Written by Rachel Lane
Consumers take customer care into their own hands
It was reported in ‘Marketing’ magazine this month, that Britain is becoming a “disaffected nation”, with each adult apparently making an average of 12 complaints to service providers each year, based on a “Service in Britain” survey by ASR (Andrew Smith Research). In response to rise of ‘assertive consumer’, brands are endeavouring to make sure ‘good customer service’ is a recognisable characteristic in form of testimonials, efficient call centre responses and empowering staff throughout company to resolve problems. Most complaints were about power, utility or postal services at 42%, followed by supermarkets, telephone providers, TV or ISP providers and banks. Insurance companies were also in top 10 with 21% of articulate disaffected nation.
Which? Magazine (http://www.which.co.uk/ ) has been campaigning for consumers’ rights since 1957, though with advent of World Wide Web, other companies have also been capitalising on consumer frustration. Since late 1990s, a new breed of consumer champion websites has emerged, including uSwitch, moneynet ( http://www.moneynet.co.uk/ ), moneyfacts (http://www.moneyfacts.co.uk/ ) and motley fool. These websites offer free subscriptions to financial product information, providing comprehensive and impartial cost comparisons. Consumers can search on a variety of criteria, so they always get best quote for their particular circumstances. In addition to an increased uptake in using search engines to research products and companies, consumers are increasingly utilising these comparison websites to ensure they get best deal. Websites such as Kelkoo ( http://www.kelkoo.co.uk/ ) and Ciao ( http://www.ciao.co.uk/ ) also provide consumer with tools to make a wise purchase decision, incorporating reviews from registered users to encourage trust in site. Amazon and eBay ( http://www.ebay.co.uk/ ) are now household names because they have established online communities of trust and their loyal supporters bring new customers.
How To Start An Internet Business – Content, Content, ContenWritten by Halstatt Pires
If you get nothing else from this series of articles, focus on fact that content is king when it comes to search engine rankings. You simply can’t go wrong with content.
For purpose of this article, content is defined as pages of text on your site. Content is often broken down into two categories, primary pages and information pages. Primary pages are core of a site, to wit, home, FAQ, site map, about us, contact us and service or product pages. Information pages are additional pages that support primary pages, explain your service or product and answer questions. Primary pages convert visitors while information pages generate traffic.
Preparing content for your primary pages must be done carefully. You should have a list of keywords you want to highlight for each page. Using these keywords, content should be written clearly and concisely. Do not sacrifice flow of your text in an effort to maximize placement of keywords. While this common mistake can lead to quicker search engine rankings, it can damage your conversion rates and give visitors wrong impression of your business. Traffic is useless if it can’t be converted to money. Focus on converting visitor into a customer.
Information pages serve a number of functions. First, they explain and support your primary pages. Second, they build credibility by providing evidence of your extensive knowledge and expertise. Unlike primary pages, information pages can be written with more of an eye to keyword manipulation.
Information pages also form a critical platform for promoting your site. The pages should be written in such a way as to be easily converted into articles. The articles should be submitted to directories for publication with a byline including a link to your site. As articles are published, byline will dramatically increase link count of your site. The higher number of links to your site, higher you move in rankings.
Information Page Topics
If information pages are so important, how do you come up with topics? There are three methods.