Do You Sell Hamburgers or Hotdogs?

Do You Sell Hamburgers or Hotdogs? More importantly, do your customers know what you are selling?

So you had a dream and you went with it.You started a small business with an idea ,not much cash and there you are.Now what should you do if you want that idea to survive? Recently here at Small Business Branding we had some discussion whether you really need to brand in the early stages of your business.Contrary to what a lot of people feel I say build your brand from the start.How you brand your business ,product or service will decide whether your dream lives or dies .This does not have to take a lot of cash as most would have you think.

Do You Sell Hamburgers or Hotdogs?

Do You Sell Hamburgers or Hotdogs? More importantly, do your customers know what you are selling?

A good example is a new burger joint recently opened in my neighborhood.It has a nice catchy name, nice building and a big promise for the best hamburger to ever cross your tongue. I have been looking forward to trying it out. Here is where the problem came in. My co-workers beat me there. I listened to an un-solicited review of the place.
-Prices were high but if it is a good burger that is OK.

-The wait was 50 minutes with no other customers.

-Part of the staff was playing on loud old games that was annoying. (Also explains the 50 minute wait) I like PAC-man but it`s a bit dated today.

-You can have 4 toppings on your burger but on delivery it was pretty scant.

-French fries were cold

-Drinks were small

-Burger was small and nothing to set it apart from any other burger joint .

-The menus main features was for hot dogs. One whole page.

I think you get the idea that these will not be repeat customers.I feel bad for this business starting out but the harsh cold reality is this is how your business will live or die.It is how a brand gets a reputation.It is how your Brand will grow with or without your help. This will last longer and stand out above and beyond anything you can say or do.This has affected my judgment towards this new place and I have not experienced it first hand yet.
With this example if your main staple is Hot dogs then don`t play up the Burgers as your secret weapon . Sell a better Hot dog to your customers. Decide what you want your business known for and develop a strategy around that.Tie your tag-line and logo together with what your customer experiences when they are there. If you deal with the public then customer service is a must it is not an option.Bad customer service does not lead to sales.

If you think Branding is not important in your Small Business at first,chances are you won`t have to worry about it for long.So my question to you is Do you sell Hamburgers or Hot dogs? Do you leave the right branding on your customers.Most importantly do you really know your business?

Photo by Wayne Marshal

5 Key Components Needed For SEO Success

It is the 21st century, and literally, everything is on the internet. Whether it is a product or a service you are searching for, chances are they are somewhere online, only a few searches and clicks away.

<img src="keyboard.png" alt="5 Key Components Needed For SEO Success"/>

The influx of websites has been immense over the last couple of years and that means search engines have had to better their ranking algorithm to ensure users get exactly what they are looking for from the pool of millions of related websites.

Whether you are a professional service provider, an online business person, or just a blogger, you have to know how Google works to be able to rank favorably and increase traffic on your website.

This is because there are hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of other websites competing for the same users you are targeting.

In this article, we will be discussing elements of a good SEO strategy but first you need to have a nodding acquaintance with the basics of SEO and how search engines work.

Understanding SEO Basics

One thing you need to know is that you won’t become a pro by simply getting acquainted with the core basics of search engine optimization. Virtually every website owner has enough information about SEO to do something about their website’s ranking, but implementation is not always that simple an affair.

Understanding how Google’s search algorithm works may bring you closer to understanding what goes into a good SEO strategy.

So, Google does something called “crawling” on every new webpage in search of content to put in their index. The Google search index is where Google stores important information about your website to help it rank you in searches.

The search engine reviews each website’s off-page and on-page SEO elements to determine what is being talked about in the specific webpages. On-page SEO elements include metadata, internal linking, URL, Image Alt Text, and XML sitemaps and architecture. Off-page SEO elements, on the other hand, focus on credibility, authenticity, and authority.

They are what Google uses to determine if your website provides quality content and lives up to its promises in the on-page SEO. Inbound links and social media optimization are among the most influential off-page search engine optimization elements.

Here are the components of SEO you need to focus on for a successful strategy:

Keywords

You may be hearing this for the umpteenth time but keywords sit at the center of a successful SEO strategy. Keywords are the first thing the Google algorithm checks to know what your website is all about.

By this, we mean that Google will only know you supply bread if it finds the keywords “bread”, “bread supplier”, “bread seller” etc. in the content on your website.

One way to identify the right keywords to put in your website and content is listening to your customers. Is there a specific question they keep on asking about your product or service? How do they tend to frame their questions?

Keyword research is even easier if you have been running your website for a while. You can use the search function to tell what users are typing in your search bar. This will, however, be helpful in retaining customers that know about you already.

For new users, you have to know what the competitors in your market are doing. Google Keyword Planner and similar tools can help you identify the most popular keywords in your niche.

Social media optimization

With everyone now on social media and your rivals finding this the perfect place to fish for new customers, you simply have no choice but to follow suit. A brief social media profile detailing what your business does, where you are located, and the links to your website can be very helpful in attracting a large number of potential customers on the internet.

Just ensure what is on your social media page reflects what is in the webpages where the links are directing. This includes specific keywords and content tone.

Your content

Content quality is imperative when it comes to retaining users that have already been to your website. Remember, traffic and bounce rates are among the most influential SEO factors.

A good SEO strategy invites Google to rank you favorably in its results pages, which will likely increase the traffic to your website. If the webpage is good and informative, they will remain on your website and probably inquire about your services.

If the content is bad, they will leave almost immediately, and Google will realize there is something wrong about your website. Consequently, they will lower your ranking and affect your traffic.

So, while you work to seduce the search engines to rank you higher, do not forget about the expectations of the people you are targeting.

Your blog

A website that has a blog is better positioned to get more traffic than one without. That’s a known fact! The more you post blogs that link to your website, the likelier you are to be found by random users on the internet.

Blogs give you the platform to account for alternative keywords that you may not have had room for on your main pages. Also, by writing about random topics around your niche, you are likely to grab the attention of customers who were initially looking for information about your type of product but weren’t sure if they needed the product.

Give your blogs the same attention you would your main web pages in terms of quality, information, and optimization, and let the users get curious about your website and product or service.

Feedback and reviews

With so many products investing on the blurb and online marketing rather than the product itself, potential customers may not simply believe in your hype, however convincing you seem. They will still want to hear from your current and past customers for a more informed decision.

The best way to get positive customer reviews on Yelp, Facebook, Google, and other review platforms is definitely to provide quality products. However, you can still use discounts and other forms of gifts to incentivize satisfied customers to give you five-star reviews on these sites.

About The Author

Catherine Park is a connector with Caffeinated who help businesses find their audience online. She loves working in the ever-changing world of digital and is fascinated by the role content plays in today’s marketing.

Apps To Increase Productivity

The worst thing an entrepreneur can do is busy work. No wonder we like to stay productive at all times. Productivity can cover a wide number of things. Not just about managing time. To me, part of being productive is to shave off time everywhere I can. Even if it means seconds because they all […]

Continue reading...

4 Reasons Why Your Business Needs Vision Now More Than Ever

Welcome to the age of information overload, a world where everyone can share their thoughts, ideas, experiences from anywhere and at any time. For business owners, this can be a huge asset – you no longer have to live only by trial-and-error, guessing your way through what works and what doesn’t. Those who have “been […]

Continue reading...

Hitting the Bullseye When Creating Your Brand Identity

Branding, in general, is only effective if it falls on receptive ears. That is, if you communicate a value proposition to your target audience and the message(s) falls flat, then you didn’t do an effective job of branding, to say the least. Effective branding is all about not only understanding who your target audience is […]

Continue reading...

From SEO to SXO: How to Enhance Your Website User Experience

The power of Search Engine Optimization cannot be disputed easily. It can help any business build credibility and take its brand to the market, attract the type of traffic that can lead to more sales, and give you an insight to the character of your customers. However, in order for a business to benefit fully […]

Continue reading...

Get The Complete Step-by-Step Process

To Cultivate A Responsive List eBook (FREE)

Subscribe to download this guide for FREE and work through the steps at your own pace.

Launch A Profitable Podcast

Discover how to start your own podcast business, leverage it to grow an existing business, grow your influence, and more.

There's No Better Time To Start Your Store

Have Your Own Store By This Weekend. Get This Quick-Start Guide To Launch Your Own Profitable Store Online.

The Time To Start Your Service Business Is Now

Launch Your Own Service Business By This Weekend. Get This Quick-Start Guide To Starting A Service Business Online.

Today Is The Day To Kickstart An Affiliate Business

Have Your Own Store By This Weekend. Get This Quick-Start Guide To Launch Your Own Profitable Store Online.