Build a bigger store front with .sale

For today’s consumers, shopping starts online. Whether they’re just researching products or making a purchase, people consult the internet first before they buy. With .SALE, there’s a domain name that’s specifically targeted toward online shoppers.

  • eCommerce is particularly popular for books, computer and computer hardware, software, and apparel. If you your business is in one of those categories, a .SALE domain is a great way to secure a domain name that may be been unavailable previously, and to add “sale” branding to your online presence.
  • You could use .SALE to create a specific landing page for your current sales and promotions, even if you already have a website for your business. Register businessname.sale, and then forward the domain to your existing site or sales page.
  • The simple domain name makes it easy for people to remember specific pages on your site.
    .SALE could also apply to specific sales opportunities, like Black Friday.
  • If you’re selling items on Craigslist or eBay, register a .SALE domain name and use URL forwarding to make the listing easy to share.

Read More About .Sale

Cleanliness

Keep the design of the website as clutter-free as possible. There are probably many elements that you would like to put on every page of the website, but think about what are most necessary to convince the customer to make a purchase. List all of your elements and decide which ones are vital to making a sale. Also prioritize what information is most important to least important. For example, on a product page, the image of the product, its title, description, availability, prices, etc. are obviously important. Keep this in mind throughout all pages of the website and avoid overwhelming visitors with too much information within a small area.

Visible Shopping Cart

Design a shopping cart that remains visible throughout the stay so that users are re-assured of what exactly they have in their cart and how much it costs. This also makes it easy for them to quickly checkout.

Clear Navigation Paths

Give users a clear idea of where they are within your website structure. Breadcrumb links are one good way as well as having dropdown menus which demonstrate the structure of the website.

Strong Calls-to-Action

Each page where an action is required of a user, such as a product detail page, should have a strong call-to-action, which incites the user to take the next step toward accomplishing the goal of the page. This may be “Add to Cart”, “Checkout”, or most importantly, “Submit Payment”. Be sure to not have more than one prominent call-to-action – call it your primary call-to-action – per page. Secondary calls-to-action are good to have as a another choice when a user is not quite ready to commit to the primary call-to-action. For example, they may be willing to view your software demo, but not ready to purchase your software. Rather than lose that visitor, keep them on your website for a few more minutes by offering them secondary options.

Intuitiveness

In any website design, it should be crystal clear to your customers what is going to happen when they click on something and how it is they are going to go about accomplishing their objectives on the website. Use on-hover techniques to keep your design clean, yet explicative of what is going to happen when they click. Label links in a way that helps understand what the user should expect on that page of your website. Give your customers an experience that is pleasant, without surprises. Look at major ecommerce websites, and borrow techniques that seem consistent across many of them. This will most often be a safe bet to take. Major website companies test their designs over and over again to find what generates the best results. Some of their techniques can be borrowed for your website.

Consistency

Whether it’s your colors, your layout, or style guidelines, keep a consistent image across your website so as to avoid confusing your visitors.If you have a variety of colors being used for the same type of button, it may cause a drop-off in sales simply due to the uncertainty brought on by the inconsistency of your design.

Easy Checkout

Create a checkout process that is as simple as can be. Fields should be easy to fill-out, not too close to each other. Pages should be clearly labeled and free of clutter. Look at some of the world’s most popular websites for ideas on what a good checkout process might look like.

Features of a Successful eCommerce Website

Featured Promotions

Highlight certain promotions, usually seasonal, which can push traffic to specific parts of your website. For example, our client, Anthony.com features their Father’s Day gift bags on their homepage the weeks leading up to Father’s Day. This helps the Anthony team increase sales of these items, which are high in demand.

Search and Auto-Complete

Give users the flexibility of searching for products that they are interested in. If the search bar suggests results, that will help you sell more by sending traffic to those specific products or categories rather than displaying a general search results page.

Sorting, Filtering, and Viewing All

Allow your customers to customize their ecommerce experience. Give them the ability to arrange your category pages as they please; to sort using various criteria like prices, popularity, a-z, etc. Also provide filters where necessary. Many customers do not enjoy clicking through pages of products and having a “View All” option is a good idea.

Quick Preview

For fear of having to wait for another page to load, many customers may not want to click through to view your product pages. Instead, using a quick preview on category pages will provide them with the information they need to decide if they want the product without having to click through to the product page. Just like having secondary calls-to-action, a quick preview option gives users a secondary choice when browsing your website.

Related Products

When a customer visits a particular product page, he or she demonstrates an interest in that type of product. Why not show them other products that either compliment the product being looked at or solve similar problems? This type of feature can keep users on your website for longer and increase the amount of money that each customer spends.

Share Features

Give your customers quick and easy ways to share your product pages with friends and colleagues. Although it is very easy to do this manually, it increases the chances that someone will share a product with a friend if there is an easy-to-use button to do so.

Out of Stock

Just because some products, sizes, or colors go out of stock, does not mean that your customers should have no options. When such an event occurs, allow customers to sign-up to be notified when the product size and color they desired is back in stock. That way they are less likely to go to a competitor and it shows that you care about serving their needs.

Product Details

Extensive product details can make the difference between almost making a sale and an actual sale. If a customer cannot find all the information they are looking for regarding a product, they may feel too uncertain about completing their purchase. It is very important to provide all of the information that you have on your products in a clean, concise manner.

Dynamic Shopping Cart

When a visitor adds an item to your shopping cart, rather than taking them straight to the shopping cart, display your shopping cart on the page in a small window that dynamically populates with the product(s) the customer is adding. This way the user experience is smooth and the customer is assured that their products have been added to the cart.

Save for Later

Many visitors may add a number of items to their shopping cart without having the intention of actually completing their purchase. Rather than forcing your customers to make the black and white choice of deleting a product from the cart or buying it, allow them instead to save it for later.

Shipping Cost Calculator

Allow customers to calculate the shipping costs directly from your shopping cart before going through the checkout process. The purpose of this is to avoid having users who leave due to the uncertainty they face going into the checkout process. Since the checkout process is a significant investment of time and effort, many will rather not start the process than find out halfway through that your shipping costs are too high. Instead, give them the ability to find out upfront, to avoid disappointment later. This may also give them the chance to go back and change some of the items in their cart or save them for later.

Shipping Options

Do not use a flat rate or a single rate for shipping. Different customers will want different shipping methods; some will want their products to arrive immediately and others are fine with paying less for slower shipping. Cater to all types of clients to avoid a drop-off in sales due to shipping options.

Payment Confirmation

Clicking the final “Submit Payment” button for many customers can be a stressful moment. Calm their nerves by not only displaying a payment confirmation page, but also sending an email confirming reception of their payment and containing next steps that they should expect.

Order Tracking

Once an order has shipped, provide your customers with tracking information so they can feel at ease during the shipment of their order.

Back-end of a Successful eCommerce Website

Dashboard

As the administrator of your website, you should have a place where you can review all pertinent information regarding your the performance of your website. The dashboard should be customizable and offer summary information regarding various aspects of the website: out of stock items, information requests, sales figures, and ecommerce performance metrics.

Administrator Management

You may have a team to work on your website, which means you should be able to give each team member a certain amount of administrative control. You should be able to decide what sections of your CMS each team member can edit or view.

Crawler Control

A robots.txt file allows you to limit what content search engine crawlers get access to. Your content management system should allow you to upload a robots.txt and also be able to edit it if need be.

META Data Control

Ability to control your meta data is crucial when trying to get your website to rank well for various relevant keywords in search engines. You should be able to customize the title tag of every page on your website as well as easily create rules for types of pages to handle title tag creation. For example, you would not want to have to write the page title of each and every product on your website, especially if you have thousands of products. Instead, creating rules for each product will help you optimize a large number of product pages all at once.

Sitemap

A sitemap.xml file tells search engines of all the pages on your website, to ensure that those pages get crawled.

Store Management

Each of your categories, subcategories, and products should be easily editable through your ecommerce back-end. That includes updating of product colors, sizes, descriptions, etc. and the ability to specify which categories/subcategories to feature on the home page or menu.

Tracking Code Addition and Editing

Whether it’s your Google Analytics code or Google Website Optimizer, you should have the ability to easily add and update tracking code on various pages. This will compress testing timelines by skipping the need for a web developer each time work is required.

Order Management

Whether you have integrated with a 3rd party system or not, you should have a comprehensive understanding of the status of sales on the website, shipping orders, and customer information.

Want to design a responsive website you can be proud of? This is definitely not an easy feat. Even though your project looks pretty good from a design point of view, there are still many things that can break it along the way. Fortunately, We’ve got some useful advice for you to save your time and nerves. So, today we are going to discuss couple (seven) of suggestions and tips you should consider achieving your goal. Let’s dive in

1 – Focus on content

Mobile-first, desktop-first or whatever approach you use or like, the most important thing to keep in mind is content (and then context). The content should always drive the structure and organization of the website. So, the first thing to do is to become familiar with the content of the website. This should be done before getting your hands dirty – before creating any wireframes or mockups. The sooner you will take this step, the better. When you omit this part of the process, you are only putting yourself at risk of trashing your current work and starting all over again. You certainly don’t want to waste the time of your and your client.

2 – Forget the resolutions

Yes! Remember this, spray this on your wall if you have to because this is (after being content-focused) one of the most important rules of responsive web design. Understand, you are not creating for fixed dimensions. Your creation will have to adapt to various sizes of screens. What’s more, if you are not able to see the future, the range of resolutions in use will only expand. So, if you are still working in resolution-focused approach, you are about to get into big troubles.

A quick way to get out of this dead end is to adopt the content-focused approach. What this means is simply testing your website on different resolutions and dimensions to see where the content (layout) starts to break and use this dimension (width or height) as a breakpoint. In a case of some websites, this will probably mean adding a bit more breakpoints than you are used to but don’t worry. It will benefit you (or your client) in the future because, if done right, your website will be ready for devices that are about to come.

3 – Think about bandwidth

Another thing to keep in mind is available bandwidth. To make this topic even better, users will have the different resource to use according to their devices. All this means is that you have to consider thoroughly what to provide with and to optimize everything you can. so We just mention here that you should always optimize the CSS and JS files through minification and proper coding style and also optimize other assets.

4 – Phones, tablets, desktops and …

Do you also live in the illusion that there are only three types or categories of devices you are designing or developing for? Well, in that case, you should finally wake yourself up. In the world, the plethora of various devices exist and with time, even more, will come. Now we have wearables like smart-watches, eBook readers, phones, smartphones, tablets, notebooks, notebooks, ultrabooks, desktops and more. Give it enough time and your t-shirt will be connected to the web too.

This all means only one thing. When you create a website, responsiveness means seamless experience on all of these devices that already exist and also that not. Excuses aside. You have to tailor your design in such a way that no device, no matter its resolution or pixel density, will be an issue.

5 – Typography

The Web is about 95% typography. The most of the content we consume on a daily basis is in a certain way dependent on typography, whenever it is a blog post or infographic. When working with type, plan and test how it should look at different devices. Some article can look amazing (from a typographic point of view) on a desktop, but when you visit the same article on phone, it looks like a crap. The only way to avoid these situations is to always test different scales of the fonts.

You should always preview the content on as many resolutions as possible. Make sure the content looks great in every case. There is no “perfect” way to achieve this goal. You will have to learn about psychology and laws of typography and then go through trial and error to see what works and what not. If you feel that increasing the font-size will benefit the legibility and readability of text, then go with your gut. Only by doing this, you can bulletproof your website. And please, don’t believe that bullshit about smaller font-size on a smaller resolution.

6 – JavaScript & performance

When it comes to performance, JavaScript can be the major influence. JavaScript became very popular in last year or two and many sites are starting to overuse it. It is not so hard to find a website with more than seven different script files (not including jQuery source files) linked in. Even though some effect made or managed by JS can be pleasant, the can also have the significant impact on the performance and loading time of the website. Keep in mind that good performance and low loading time should be prioritized.

Ask yourself if this or that fancy stuff provided by JS is really necessary or consider using that feature only on certain devices with more available resources and performance like tablets and desktops. You can do this easily by using dedicated commands and event listeners in your scripts.

7 – Retinas!

The last thing we want to touch is retina displays. These screens have higher pixel-density which means an ability to display more pixels and so much better, smoother viewing experience. In a short, you are able to see much more details in high-resolution pictures or little flaws in low-res images. It is similar to DVD VS blue-ray. Conclusion? Think about including high-resolution versions of images that will be served only for the devices with retina displays.

Summary

Responsive design is not just about making website looking great on smartphones, tablets, and desktops. To create truly responsive experience there is much more to keep in mind. We hope that these seven tips will help you in achieving your goals we are providing.

Get more information about web designing & development at DiligentCreators.com

Pay per click, as the term itself suggests, is a form of advertising that makes use of keywords for popularizing your business on the web. To make a success of your pay per click marketing you need to find the keywords that will best describe about your business. Pay per click marketing is used these days on a large scale, as this is the best way to reach out to online visitors. A study found out that more than seventy five percent of online visitors could be reached through pay per click marketing.

Yes, pay per click marketing is the best source to attract the attention of online visitors, but you must also realize that you need to know all you can before you actually start the process for your business. Nothing can be more frustrating then being caught in a situation where you are not aware of what you are doing and what is happening to your business. So make sure that you know in detail all the nitty gritty about pay per click marketing before using pay per click marketing for your business.

Finding out and identifying the proper keywords is the first task for undertaking pay per click marketing. What you need to do is find out what words will be used by online visitors for searching information or the products that are being sold through your business. There are various tools that can be used for finding out the correct and appropriate keywords for any particular business. Overture, word tracker and digital point are some of the tools that are capable of finding out appropriate keyword for any site in the web.

Sit and plan out carefully what amount of money you are willing to spend on your pay per click marketing campaign. For pay per click marketing, you will have to bid a certain sum of money on keywords that describe your business. Those particular keywords will be used for advertising your goods in major search engines. Whenever a visitor clicks on your site a pre determined amount will be reduced from your bid amount. It is inevitable that you will get many visitors who will click on your site just because your site happens to be listed at the top of sponsored finds in search engines. This cannot be avoided.

There is very little time to grab the attention of visitors. What you can do to grab visitor attention is to making very compelling landing pages. It is very possible that people will not buy goods from you for the first time they visit, but design the page in such a way that at least the visitor leaves behind his email address so that you can contact them in future and tell them about your products. Your landing page must appeal emotionally to the visitor. If you manage to gather the email address you can create a strong database and send out emails through auto responder.

Competition is something that is inevitable and you cannot avoid this in any field. So any marketing strategy including your pay per click marketing strategy must be made and implemented in such a way that you always stay miles ahead of them. Being successful in business is all about beating the competition and no matter how tough the competition, you will have to beat this at all cost.

There is money to be made in finding the right keywords to be used in your site, marketing and design. In the event you are not specific enough you can be certain the effort you put directly into your website won’t be as effective as you would like. Making space for essentially the most successful keywords and phrases will be a primary thing to consider within your online niche market.

Numerous ideas can be found which match a niche market. The trouble is for every good idea that’s executed well there are dozens that are thrown together with very little focus on fine detail.

One particular intriguing niche is gourmet pickles. These come in such unique flavors as lime or cinnamon. Keyword choices for this type of business will be crucial.

It is easy to assume the majority of pickles that happen to be eaten come from regular supermarket shelves, yet there will usually be those who want an experience that’s in some way better or even more unique than the classic crunch of a store bought jar of pickles. That’s where the market of gourmet pickles comes in.

You could perform some preliminary research on the types of cucumbers utilized in the pickle making process. Consider if there’s anything unique concerning the canning procedure that could be a phrase sought by some consumers. What flavors of pickles do you provide? Become a person that pays a significant degree of focus on information. Use those aspects to develop worthwhile keywords and phrases for Search Engine Optimization (SEO.)

Using particular keywords and phrases in your website content is important to the profitable searchability of your website. Every article you’re posting, all of the description you compose, every press release you put together should take notice of the distinct keywords and phrases you might have identified will be most useful when you are looking at search results. If you focus on keywords choices you will find that search engines like google may observe and rank your site much better for this particular term.

The reason it is important to pay attention to these types of terms is the fact that when you only use profitable keywords some of the time then you’re really losing useful internet space for material that may be valuable, but has no promoting use.

You could possibly impress the reader using the content, but without the helpful keywords or phrases you have very little power to draw those readers to your website. Consider everything you do as potential way to get visitors to your site. The keyword selection gets them on board; the exact content is what keeps them there and causes them to consider the importance of your message and product to their lives and personal interests.

There are online tools you should utilize to fine-tune the keywords you use in your online content so there should be no excuse not to identify and begin using these words to help turn a profit. You didn’t go into business to be timid so there is nothing wrong with making certain your message gets the attention of search engines that can introduce you to actual customers.

Website traffic is deemed the single most important factor when it comes to the success of a website but that statement needs to be qualified. Although it’s true that a constant stream of traffic is the lifeblood of a website, the quality of the traffic is far more important than the quantity.

Of course, any amount of website traffic is better than no traffic at all but even if you have the most perfect website, your site is doomed to fail if you are not getting visitors that are looking for the products or information you have available on your site.

It’s easy to get caught up in a numbers game. It’s exciting to see the number of visitors to your site climb from a few a day to a few hundred a day. On the surface, this looks like exactly what you want but if your visitors are looking for something other than what you are offering, for the most part, your website traffic is wasted.

You could have a great website design, compelling copy, the lowest prices and fantastic specials but all your efforts will be useless unless your website is drawing traffic that is interested in what you are providing or promoting.

You could have a great website design, compelling copy, the lowest prices and fantastic specials but all your efforts will be useless unless your website is drawing traffic that is interested in what you are providing or promoting.

The web is a very different venue than a shopping mall. A shopping mall relies on unfocused traffic, wondering from store to store, not looking for anything in particular but willing to spend it’s money on an impulse.

Believe it or not, people surfing the web will leave a website after viewing it for only about 2 seconds. They’re looking for specific items or information and if they don’t quickly find what they are looking for on your site, they’ll click out of your site and go to one of the other millions of sites on the web.

That’s why most of the successful websites are tightly focused on their ‘niche’ and their marketing plan is focused on driving people to their site that are looking for what they offer – they understand the importance of ‘targeted traffic’.

Of course, targeted traffic and a website focused on a particular ‘niche’ go hand and hand. Think about your website. Does it really lend itself to a specific product or service, or is it so broad that it tends to confuse potential customers?

Here are a few tips to help you prepare your website for targeted traffic:

Design your website to promote one particular product or service as your main item.

Determine the type of people that will be interested in your product or service and adjust your website to be attractive to them.

Establish the items or services that are ‘closely’ related to what you’re promoting on your website. If you think that they would be interesting to your visitors, offer those items on your website as well.

Keep a constant flow of free content, that your visitors will find useful, on your website and add new content and information often. Invite your visitors back to your site to see the new material you’re constantly adding.

Keep in mind, a website that’s focused on a particular ‘niche’ item or service lends itself to targeted traffic simply because there is something specific to target and the more targeted traffic your site receives, the more productive your site will be.

There are many conventional and many not so conventional ways to drive targeted traffic to your website but we’ll explore them in other articles.

The purpose of this article is to point out the difference between website traffic and targeted traffic. More isn’t always better and if you focus your marketing on ‘targeted traffic’ you’ll quickly find that the hits your getting on your website aren’t just empty numbers – they’ll be potential customers and, more importantly, sales.

Anyone who owns a website needs to realize that monitoring Google’s algorithm updates is most important. While you will usually find small updated that may not impact your online campaigns significantly, every now and then you will see that there are meaningful updates that will inevitably affect your marketing efforts. Google’s latest update focuses on its mobile ranking algorithm that encompasses usability factors for mobile experience as well as app indexing. In contrast to days gone by, your mobile site must now have everything in place to enable a mobile-friendly experience.

Two Mobile Algorithm Changes

  • There are two major changes being made to the mobile search algorithm that will impact your mobile site’s search result rank.
  • Google is set to implement mobile-centric elements on April 21 for improving search results. Mobile apps that take part in App Indexing will be ranked better.

Google to Rank Mobile-Friendly Web Sites Higher in Mobile Searches

Google’s mobile ranking will encompass tag sites as mobile-friendly ones while also using this label to ascertain whether or not a site ought to have a better ranking. The new algorithm changes are expected to have a meaningful impact on mobile search results and will affect all languages globally.

The new developments in Google’s mobile ranking algorithm are said to be an expansion on Google’s mobile ranking demotion algorithm that was launched almost 3 years ago. Google says that users would now have an easier time obtaining pertinent, quality-driven search results that match their device formats.

Why Google Has Chosen to Announce Its Intentions a Month in Advance

Users have a month to prepare for Google’s new implementations and make sure their sites are mobile-friendly. The giant search engine had been experimenting for a significant time with mobile ranking elements, and now it’s time for implementation. You can leverage the usability reports that Google offers in order to test your site for all recommendations. There are also numerous sources that offer help for this purpose.

Types of Apps that Google Indexes for Improved Mobile Search

At the time of its announcement, Google implemented ‘App indexing for improved mobile search’ with immediate effect. It said that indexed apps will start reflecting a better ranking in mobile search almost immediately. However, they representatives said that this would only take effect with signed-in users. Users will now be able to see indexed app content more often in search results.

These days, everyone seems to have an opinion or the other in the SEO field. Well, it will not serve any of your purpose if you keep on listening to everybody and implementing everything that you come across. If you are very serious about your online business venture, your best bet would be to hire the services of the best SEO firm in your city to do the work for you. No one needs to be told that SEO means search engine optimization, but what they need to be told is what are the proper methods of doing SEO.

Basically, SEO is nothing but publicity methods of a site on the web. Publicity rules and you must make sure that you have the best advertising methods in place for announcing your presence on the web. Competition is immense and you have to risen yourself in this competition to be successful in online business. Search engine marketing is one of the fastest growing industries. To be successful on the web, it is important to do search engine optimization.

For doing successful online business, it is important that your site must be available and accessible to all online visitors at all times of the day. If visitors come to visit your site and sees that your site is not functioning properly, then they will not come back again to the site. The net is a very good source for you to learn about the basics of SEO. However if you want to make use of SEO methods for popularizing your site, hiring SEO services from the best SEO firm is the perfect as well as the safest bet for you.

Sure you will let the best SEO firm handle the job for you, but it pays in the long run if you have a proper knowledge about this. The first and foremost thing that you should do is find out and determine who the target audience of your product is. It would be rather stupid on your part if you are targeting the wrong audience for advertising your product. All your money, time and other resources will simply go waste without yielding any visible results. Your business will just go to a downwards spiral. So take a hold of your online business before it is too late to amend the damage.

Work towards getting targeted traffic to your site. On any given day, your site can have thousands of visitors, but what purpose will this serve if their visit is not monitorized. Making commanding landing pages on your site is a great way of going about attracting the right kind of visitors to your site. Visitors on clicking the link of your site must be immediately transferred to the page that they want to see. This will ensure that visitors do not face any difficulty in finding out what they are looking for.

Hiring the services of the best SEO firm in your city is an excellent source for you to do successful online business. SEO firms are experienced and know what they need to do to make your site successful on the web. There are many aspects that need to be dealt with and taken care of popularizing for your site on the web. Just make sure that you find out the best SEO firm to do the work for your site.

Article marketing is not really rocket science. If you like writing and love putting words with each other and are aware of the principles of spelling and sentence structure usage, then you might be a whole lot closer to becoming excellent at this type of promoting. There are of course things to avoid otherwise known as “don’ts” as well as things you want to focus on with marketing with articles, otherwise known as “do’s”

As a result of browsing some other articles as well as your past ones, you might discover a large amount of the don’ts and do’s that are essential to your internet marketing success. The more knowledgeable you grow to be with marketing, of course the more you’ll learn of exactly what to avoid and what to do.

Let’s start with a number of “don’ts”

* You should never begin your rough draft with the phrase “The following article is about gardening,” (or whatever it happens to be). Always begin by using a thought-provoking problem or bold statement. The concept would be to draw your audience in and make them want to understand more about what you have published.

* Never make your article too long. Shorter ones tend to be more powerful with fewer chances of your reader becoming lost in your article.

* You should not turn your written article into a big product sales message. Steer clear of this process, it won’t improve your results. Your readers are searching for true information or, precisely what could this do for me personally? They are not looking for hyped-upped ad copy.

* You should never overly cram keywords and phrases into the articles. The various search engines aren’t keen on it.

* Don’t confuse your readers by starting off a sentence and never answering it or not identifying the resolution in the article.

And now for the do’s

* Discuss ideas that you’re experienced in or you have expertise in. When you possess experience with a certain subject, it always shows in your writing

* Do proofread your article, and then proofread it once again checking for spelling and grammar errors before posting it on the internet.

* You should always include a professional bio box with your article. Attempt to help make the reader interested in what else you provide.

* Regularly write articles and submit them to directories and websites. You should not stop at just submitting to a tiny handful. It’s going to take many submissions for you to benefit from it.

* Pay attention to your article statistics. Which ones are getting you the most traffic. You should promote or showcase those specific articles somehow.

There you have it, some simple do’s and don’ts of article marketing. If you don’t work marketing the proper way, then you’re wasting your time. You can write the best pieces in the world, however, if they’re not represented correctly, or you don’t follow the basic tips above, you are also wasting their time. Why not do it the proper way to begin with?

Square buttons, round buttons, flashy buttons … will they match my shoes, my handbag or my tie? Are you stuck in a maze of buttons, headings, bullets, sub-headings and color schemes?

STOP!!!!

Take a deep breath and read some practical tips for professional looking websites.

1. Select a color scheme and stick to it.

If your company has a logo or preferred colors on its stationery that’s a good start. For those of you starting from scratch, choose two or three complementary colors and stick with them – don’t change colors on every page.

The most common color schemes include:

  • Red, Yellow and White
  • Blue and White
  • Red, Grey and White
  • Blue, Orange and White
  • Yellow, Grey and White.

If you’re not sure what color scheme to choose, ask experts. You can then model your color scheme on what already exists.

2. Use templates.

Can’t find a website you really like? Another option is to choose a template. There are many templates or preset designs. These come as part of your web design software or you can check out some websites that specialize in designing templates.

3. Provide an easy to use navigation system.

This is one of the most important issues to consider when designing a website. You need to ensure your visitors can find what they are looking for easily. Most websites either display their navigation bar on the left or at the top. And since most people are used to this type of navigation, it’s best to stick with it.

It also helps to include your navigation bar at the bottom of each page to save your visitors from having to scroll back to the top.

4. Don’t go overboard on special effects

Whilst it is ok to have one or two special effects to jazz up your website, spinning graphics and logos often distract your visitor from the content, not to mention they can take too long to download. Your visitors may click away even before your spinning logo finishes loading.

5. Backgrounds

Ensure your visitors can read the text on the background, ie. no black writing on dark blue background or yellow on white. Also be careful that your links are visible before and after being visited. The default for links in most programs is blue (before being visited) and burgundy (after being visited), so if you have a dark background, ensure your links are light.

6. External Links

It is a good idea to open links to other websites in a new window. That way your visitors can easily return to your site when they are finished browsing the external link

7. Site Map & Search Feature

If you website is more than 15 pages, it is useful to have a site map or a “Search” feature to ensure your visitors can easily find what they’re looking for.

8. Content is King

While it is important that your website looks clean and professional, it is far more important that you concentrate your efforts on the content and promotion.

If you want a professional website, things to stay away from include:

  1. Flash intros, revolving globes, beveled line separators, animated mail boxes
  2. Loads of pop up or pop under boxes
  3. Auto-play music. Allow your customer to play music only if they choose.
  4. Hit counters of the free variety, which say “you are 27th visitor”
  5. Date and time stamps, unless your website is updated daily or weekly
  6. Busy backgrounds.

Don’t sweat the small stuff and get yourself focused on what to include on the website.

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