9 Reasons to Use WordPress for Your Website Redesign

9 Reasons to Use WordPress for Your Website Redesign

For some business owners, even entertaining the thought of a website redesign can be headache-inducing. Between concerns that the project will be overly time-consuming and the possibility that it may cost more than you’re willing to pay, it can be a lot. Add to that the challenge of trying to decide which website-building platform to choose among the many on the market today.

We get it! That’s why we’ve put together this comprehensive guide to help you along in the process. First, let’s consider why you might want to have your website redesigned in the first place.

7 Signs It’s Time for a Website Redesign

  1. Your site hasn’t been updated in a while. While there’s no hard-and-fast rule, most professionals agree that business websites should undergo a redesign every two to three years. As web design trends are constantly changing, what was considered attractive and aesthetically pleasing just a few years ago probably isn’t today. As rapidly as technology is advancing, any business website that hasn’t been upgraded in three years is unlikely to provide the best user experience to customers and potential clients. On top of that, when your site is regularly updated with valuable content Google takes notice – and that’s never a bad thing!
  2. Your site isn’t mobile-friendly. For most businesses, the majority of their website traffic comes from mobile users. Therefore, you need to make sure that your site performs as well on mobile devices as it does on desktops. A fully responsive website is simple to navigate on a smartphone, thanks to a mobile-friendly menu, easy-to-click buttons, and text that can be effortlessly read without having to zoom in. Not to mention the fact that Google gives preference to mobile-friendly websites in search results.
  3. You’re not getting enough traffic to your site. If your website isn’t generating traffic, something needs to change. Perhaps your content isn’t optimized for Google searches, or you’ve failed to address broken features or duplicate content – neither of which Google is very fond of. Search engine optimization (SEO) is an ongoing battle between Google and your website. Google wants to provide searchers with the most relevant results high up on the first page. If it’s been years since your website was last updated and your competitor’s site is updated often, Google will likely rank the competitor’s site ahead of yours.
  4. Your site isn’t converting visitors into paying customers. Are people visiting your website and leaving without taking any action? Are they spending scarcely any time on your pages before “bouncing“? If so, it’s obvious that while your site is easy to find in searches you aren’t delivering what visitors are looking for. Using tools like Google Analytics, you can monitor how customers are responding to your website’s current design. Low conversion rates could be a result of a site layout that isn’t compelling enough to persuade visitors to stick around. This is a clear indication that your site needs a makeover – and quickly!
  5. Your site looks and feels old. People like attractive things; it’s as simple as that. If your site layout is chaotic, cluttered, or just plain ugly, that’s not going to cut it with today’s consumers. An unappealing website can (and will) negatively affect how potential customers perceive your business. Is your website riddled with recurring “technical difficulties” that need to be addressed? Are there new features you want to introduce or outmoded functions (such as traffic counters or flashing banners) that need to be eliminated? If so, a website redesign is certainly warranted. Redesigning your site allows you to modernize the look and feel of it; you might choose to modify your brand colors and fonts, revamp your logo, or update the images and written content – the possibilities are endless!
  6. Your site isn’t performing well. If visitors encounter a bunch of broken (or “dead”) links, pages or images load slowly, users can’t easily access the information they’re looking for, the website is constantly crashing, or (as previously mentioned) it isn’t mobile-friendly, then it’s time for a website redesign. In short, if any part of your website isn’t functioning properly, consumers will quickly move on to another company offering similar services. A poor user experience can create an unfavorable impression of your business and can even negatively affect your search rankings. By contrast, a positive user experience will result in visitors spending more time on your site, increasing your potential to generate leads, engage with your market, and solidify your brand.
  7. Your site doesn’t clearly or accurately reflect your business in its current state. Your website is the digital face of your company – so, you’ll want to be sure it makes a good impression. After all, the first interaction that the majority of customers will have with your business is through your website. Accordingly, you’ll want to ensure that your site accurately represents the business as well as the products and services you offer. Over time, your business model, messaging, offerings, or priorities may have changed. Naturally, your website should be updated to reflect these changes. If you aren’t regularly refreshing the content on your site, people may incorrectly assume that you’re no longer in business or that you don’t value your online presence – in which case they’ll probably look elsewhere for a company to do business with.

What Is WordPress?

Since its humble beginnings as a blogging tool in 2003, WordPress has evolved into a robust content management system (CMS) and website-building platform. It’s the most popular CMS on the market today – in fact, over 43% of all websites worldwide are powered by WordPress!

In technical terms, WordPress is free and open-source software that uses the PHP scripting language to send and retrieve information from a MySQL database. In layman’s terms, WordPress is a web platform offering tons of features and functionalities without requiring a high level of expertise in web programming after the site is developed. 

Aside from the basic WordPress code itself, there are three major components to every WordPress installation: themes, plugins, and widgets.

A theme is a collection of files – specifically HTML and CSS files – that serve as a design template for your website. Themes define what the pages will look like without altering the content within those pages. You can choose to use a pre-built framework or have a theme custom-designed to suit your specific needs.

Similar to an app, a plugin is an extra bit of code that can be used to add customized functionality to your website depending on how you want it to work. Plugins allow you to expand the capabilities of your site beyond the features included with the basic WordPress installation. With the right mix of plugins, your site can run faster, look more attractive, and be more user-friendly than ever before.

Widgets are small blocks of content that you can drag and drop into the sidebar, header, footer, or other enabled areas of your site (depending on the theme you choose). Similar to plugins, widgets are used to add specific features or functions to your website without having to write any additional code. Common examples of widgets include recent blog articles you’ve posted, embedded social media feeds, fillable forms, calendars, and banner ads.

Why Should You Use WordPress for Your Website Redesign?

From startup website builders to more established CMS platforms, there are many options to choose from when you’re considering a website redesign. So, are there any clear advantages to using WordPress over any other platform on the market?

In this article, we’ll explore some of the top benefits of WordPress and offer 9 compelling reasons why this platform is perfect for your website redesign project.

WordPress Is Easy to Use, Update, & Manage

Initially, it may take some time to familiarize yourself with the ins and outs of the WordPress platform. But once you get the hang of it, you’ll find that the user-friendly Dashboard interface makes it easy to add, remove, or modify content – such as text, images, videos, and effects – to web pages and blog posts. You can update and optimize your website structure, add navigation menus, and even customize your colors, fonts, and other design elements.

One of the greatest advantages of WordPress is that you don’t have to possess any prior knowledge of HTML, CSS, PHP, MySQL, or any other programming language to effectively use WordPress – nor is it necessary to have any formal training or professional experience as a web designer or developer. 

As flexible and powerful a program as WordPress is, virtually anyone in your organization (who is authorized to do so) should be able to maintain your website quite easily. Assuming you have an internet connection and a web browser, you already have everything you need. If you’re familiar with any of the most popular word-processing programs, editing a page within WordPress will look very familiar to you.

WordPress’s visual editor – known as Gutenberg – allows you to add or modify content without ever seeing your site’s code. The simple interface features a toolbar with text editors, formatting tools, and the ability to upload media files in various formats. When you’re done making changes in Gutenberg, WordPress automatically updates the code on your website to reflect those changes.

A Word About Website Structure

Website structure refers to how your content is organized, interconnected, and presented to visitors across the various posts and pages of your site.

Having a good website structure can improve the user experience of your site by providing visitors with the information they need while making it easy for them to navigate to other relevant pages. Creating an orderly site structure also makes it easier to keep track of the various pages on your site.

Website structure is also a major factor that Google considers when assigning a rank to a site. When Google detects that visitors can quickly find the information they’re seeking on a website, Google is more likely to recommend the site as useful by ranking it higher on search engine results pages (SERPs). WordPress’s user-friendly interface allows you to create a clean, simple-to-navigate website structure that’s designed to appease users and search engines alike.

WordPress Sites Are Fully Customizable

With a wide selection of free and premium WordPress themes and plugins on the market, it’s entirely possible to build a fully customized website that caters to the specific needs of your business.

Currently, there are over 31,000 WordPress themes – more than 9,000 of which are free – that you can choose from to create a basic layout and structure for your website. Themes range in price from being completely free to $299, with the average cost being around $40. Even if you do end up having to pay for a theme, the cost will still be considerably less than if you were to hire someone to custom-develop your theme.

While many of these themes can be found on WordPress.org, several third-party websites also offer plenty of great options. As there are themes available for every industry imaginable, the real challenge isn’t finding what you need – it’s choosing the one you like the best.

Keep in mind that not every off-the-shelf theme has to match the design you have in mind. While it’s highly likely that the theme you end up choosing will be one that other businesses have previously used, that doesn’t mean your site is going to look exactly like someone else’s.

While some free or low-cost themes have only minor customization options and are generally intended to be used “as is,” the more robust off-the-shelf themes can be configured and customized as much as you want and still give you the website you need – at a tiny fraction of the cost of custom development.

Take the time to scour through the myriad off-the-shelf themes available and find one that’s high-quality, well-reviewed, and comes as close as possible to what you want by default. You’ll thank yourself later.

Plugins serve many important functions on your website, both on the front end in terms of user experience and on the back end for overall site performance. Like themes, WordPress also offers a wide range of plugins that you can add to your site. Some plugins are offered for free, some at a cost, and some have both options (these are often referred to as “freemium” plugins).

There are currently over 59,000 WordPress plugins to choose from on the WordPress.org website. If you can’t find a suitable solution from WordPress’s database, you can comb through the directories of third-party providers and independent developers to find what you’re looking for.

Imagine any task a typical website may need to complete, any problem it may need to solve, and any feature it may need to offer, and there’s probably a plugin for it. Of course, having thousands of plugins to choose from can be overwhelming. That said, there are certain essential WordPress plugins we recommended adding to every website:

  • Contact Form: This gives your website visitors a way to reach out to you and allows you to get back in touch with them as well.
  • Analytics: This allows you to see how many visitors your site is getting, how much time they’re spending on the site, and what actions they might be taking.
  • SEO: This allows you to optimize the content on your site to attract more traffic from Google searches.

Depending on the specific needs of your business, you might want to add plugins that enable advanced features such as foreign language translation, online payments, appointment bookings, multi-factor authentication, and social media integration.

WordPress Is Versatile & Scalable

In the beginning, WordPress was largely regarded as nothing more than a blogging platform. But over the years, it has progressed to become a powerful platform that you can use to produce virtually any type of website

Whether you’re looking to build a full-service website, you simply want to create or blog, or you want to incorporate a blog component into your existing site, WordPress is up to the task. You can construct a static homepage with static pages behind it or dynamic pages with drop-down menus. You can create customized landing pages to sell your products or easily add image galleries and social media links to encourage user engagement. The possibilities are endless!

In addition, given that WordPress is highly compatible with many other website builders, the platform is perfect for redesign projects. The flexibility of WordPress makes redesigning an existing website simple, convenient, and affordable.

Scalability is another important advantage of WordPress. As your business grows and changes, your website needs to be able to grow and change along with it. Fortunately, WordPress makes that process easy.

The WordPress platform is cleanly coded and well-equipped to handle massive amounts of traffic. If you should encounter a performance bottleneck, there are plenty of plugins you can install to help with scaling by performing tasks such as caching, compression, resource minification, and image optimization. Once installed, these plugins allow your site to accommodate more traffic without buckling under pressure.

WordPress Is Mobile-Responsive

These days, people spend more time surfing the web on their mobile devices than they do on desktop computers. Websites that aren’t optimized for mobile devices won’t perform well for visitors trying to access them with smartphones, tablets, or other mobile devices. Users may struggle to read text, view images, or click links on your site.

Most people won’t think twice about ditching a website that doesn’t load properly or function as it should on their mobile devices. With millions of results available in every Google search, it’s all too easy to simply look elsewhere to find the information they’re seeking.

Over the last few years, Google has placed greater emphasis on websites’ mobile responsiveness. In 2018, Google officially announced that it would be taking a “mobile-first” approach to search rankings. This means that the search engine now primarily uses the mobile version of a website’s content for indexing and ranking. While it isn’t required to have a mobile version of your for your content to be included in Google’s search results, it is strongly recommended.

Fortunately, WordPress makes it easy to create a mobile-responsive site that loads smoothly on all devices. Most WordPress themes are designed to be mobile-friendly by default, so you don’t need to worry about your site being inaccessible to mobile users.

Moreover, when you update your theme for desktop, the mobile version of the theme is automatically updated as well. So, you can rest assured that your website will look equally as good on smartphones as it does on desktops.

Another great perk about WordPress? Since the Dashboard is also designed to be mobile-friendly, you can easily manage and update your website anywhere, whether you’re on your phone, tablet, or desktop computer.

WordPress Is SEO-Friendly

SEO involves lots of keyword research and search metric analysis – and it’s an essential component of any high-performing website. That said, the technical SEO process can be extremely complicated, especially if you aren’t familiar with the terminology and tools involved.

While WordPress won’t automatically optimize your site for search engines, the platform does come uniquely equipped to assist you in your SEO efforts.

Here are just a few reasons why WordPress is great for SEO:

For these reasons alone, it’s no wonder that WordPress websites are much more likely to rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs) than sites built with other platforms. Better ranking means more visitors to your site, and having more visitors greatly increases your chances of boosting profits.

While some SEO-enhancing aspects are built into the framework of WordPress, still others can be implemented by adding plugins specifically designed for search engine optimization

These plugins can be used to help optimize the content on web pages by providing instant audits of your on-page optimization efforts as well as managing key SEO data such as H1 titles, meta descriptions, meta titles, keyword embedding, and schema markup. In short, SEO plugins are designed to do everything possible to ensure that your site appears more often and higher up in SERPs.

Yoast SEO, one of the most popular WordPress SEO plugins, gives step-by-step information on how well (or not so well) your content will rank and provides clear guides for how to improve your site’s readability for search engines and users.

All-In-One SEO is another great SEO plugin that’s easy to use but incredibly powerful; we can recommend this plugin with confidence, as we use it on our company’s websites.

WordPress Is Safe & Secure

Having a secure website is central to maintaining a business’s good reputation. If your website is an easy target for hackers, your visitors may be confronted with inappropriate content or even be exposed to dangerous viruses and malware. If you have an ecommerce site, security is even more critical. After all, your customers are relying on you to provide a secure interface for entering and storing their personal information and credit card numbers.

While WordPress sites aren’t impervious to cyberattacks, they’re generally better protected against unauthorized access than sites built with other CMS platforms. When a WordPress website does get hacked, it’s usually because the site is utilizing questionable themes and/or plugins, is hosted by unreliable providers, or has been compromised due to a paucity of basic password literacy. In short, the problem doesn’t lie with the platform itself. Considering that WordPress powers well over 40% of all websites globally, it’s merely a statistical coincidence that WordPress-based sites appear to be targeted more often than non-WordPress websites.

That said, you still need to have a strategy in place to make sure that your website is continuously monitored and backed up frequently in the event of a catastrophe. Aside from enlisting the services of a reliable managed IT services provider (we can recommend a really good one!), you can also install security-focused WordPress plugins to further safeguard your website against hackers, malware, and other threats. These plugins can be used to implement features like multi-factor authentication (MFA), limiting failed login attempts, and scanning your site for vulnerabilities.

At HighClick Media, we highly recommend adding the Sucuri plugin to your WordPress site. Sucuri creates multiple layers of security to help protect your website from hackers, malware, DDoS attacks, and blacklists; provides continuous website monitoring and site scanning; plugs any security leaks or loopholes it may detect; and can even make your website faster in terms of speed and performance.

WordPress developers are constantly making improvements to the platform to ensure that it runs smoothly. Security updates are rolled out regularly as new cyberthreats arise, addressing and promptly correcting any possible gaps detected in the platform’s defenses.

Users are informed whenever security updates are required, and these updates are easy for users to make. By updating to the latest version of the WordPress core, you’re decreasing the chances of your website falling victim to cyberattacks and ensuring that everything continues to work properly.

WordPress Benefits from a Thriving Developer & Support Community

Because WordPress is open-source software and has been adopted by so many individuals and organizations around the world, the platform enjoys a sizable and active community of contributors

This highly engaged community – comprising thousands of users, developers, designers, and business owners – has created a vast array of plugins, help sites, and forums for discussing issues surrounding WordPress and suggesting solutions to common (and uncommon) problems.

Since community members are more than willing to share their knowledge and experience with others, you’ll never be at a loss for invaluable resources that offer the support you need to manage and update your WordPress website.

On the official WordPress website, you’ll find a wealth of reference materials, training courses, how-to video tutorials, and support forums to help you take full advantage of the platform’s potential. Offsite, there are numerous independent forums and Facebook groups to further help get your questions answered.

The WordPress community also engages in lots of outreach to users, hosting WordPress camps around the world and supporting the growth of local WordPress user groups.

WordPress Is Cost-Effective

Whether you’re just getting started or your business is already well-established, you’re probably looking to keep expenses as low as possible. Choosing WordPress for your website redesign project is one way to save money.

Nearly all DIY website builders such as Wix and Squarespace place commercial restrictions and limitations on what you can and can’t do with their programs. Not so with WordPress. That’s because WordPress is open-source software, which means that it’s free to download, install, use, and modify in any way you choose.

Keep in mind that while the software itself is free, you’ll still have to acquire a domain name (which can be free but usually comes at a minimal cost) and pay for web hosting; and you’ll most likely have to spend some money on themes and plugins as well.

A domain name is the internet equivalent of a website’s physical address. It’s the text that users type into a browser’s search bar to directly access your website.

If the domain name is the address of your house, then web hosting is the actual house that the address points to. Web hosting is where all your website files are housed, served, and maintained, and it’s what makes your website content accessible to other users on the internet.

WordPress Is Time-Tested & Trusted By Many

Website builders come and go – even the big names can fade from view (remember GeoCities?). WordPress, however, is far more likely to stick around for the long haul. This is because open-source software like WordPress isn’t maintained by a single person or business entity. Even if WordPress were to cease to exist (which is extremely unlikely), any competent developer could simply copy its source code and launch “new” software with a different name in a matter of minutes (a maneuver known as “forking.”)

In the 19 years since its original release, WordPress has been tested, fine-tuned, expanded, and optimized time and time again. Throughout its evolution, WordPress has become a first-class web publishing platform that’s well-suited to meet virtually any website’s needs. Millions of users worldwide benefit from WordPress; it’s available in over 53 languages and propels thousands of multilingual websites as well.

It isn’t just small- and medium-sized businesses that are using the platform, either. According to data from BuiltWith, WordPress powers over 36% of the top 1 million websites (based on site traffic). Many leading brands and organizations in a variety of business sectors rely on WordPress to power their websites and blogs. 

Chances are, you will have heard of a few of these companies:

Final Thoughts

For many business owners, the choice between having a website custom-developed versus going with a more ready-made solution such as WordPress is not an easy task. We hope this guide has been helpful in assisting you with that decision.

As we’ve detailed here, WordPress is designed to be easy for everyone to use (not just web developers), allows you to create any type of website you need (whether it’s an ecommerce store, online forum, marketplace, membership site, or just about anything else you can think of), and provides a wide range of tools and options for customizing the site you’re creating. The platform allows you to create a site that looks and performs equally well on mobile devices as it does on desktops, scales easily if you need to add more pages or features as your business grows, and positively contributes to your overall SEO efforts

WordPress sites are uniquely positioned to withstand some of the most common cyberattacks and can be bolstered further through the use of security plugins. Thanks to a passionate support community, WordPress users have ready access to the information they need whenever they need it. A WordPress site is relatively inexpensive to create, requiring only minimal investments towards domain name acquisition, web hosting, and plugins/themes. Finally, WordPress is a tried-and-tested solution for creating any and every type of website.

In short, choosing WordPress for your website redesign project is one of the smartest decisions you can make as a business owner.

HighClick Media Can Help You with Your WordPress Website Redesign

Redesigning a website can be a complicated process, especially when you have a site with a lot of moving parts. While WordPress positions itself as a platform that anyone can use to build a website – and to a certain extent, this is true – creating a site that’s both fully functional and professionally designed often requires an expert touch.

Just because you can build a site on your own, thanks to WordPress’s impressive arsenal of tools, that doesn’t necessarily mean it will be a good site. After all, you want to make sure everything works flawlessly and that the user experience is configured in such a way that the website will contribute to – not hamper – the performance of your business.

If you need more advanced functionality or a custom-developed theme to help you further stand out from the crowd, partnering with a professional WordPress web design and development company might be the way to go.

Once the redesign project is complete and your site is up and running, your web development partner will train you and all other authorized users on how to access the backend of WordPress so that you’re better prepared to make future updates to the site on your own.

If you’re thinking about redesigning your website (or even building a brand-new site from scratch), we at HighClick Media wholeheartedly recommend using WordPress as your preferred platform – and we can help make your design project happen, too! When you partner with HighClick Media, we’ll work with you to determine how best to approach your website project to maximize your online presence and #elevateyourbrand! Call us today at 252.814.2150 or drop us a line here to schedule a website design consultation!

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How to Grow Your Business by Optimizing Your Website

How to Grow Your Business By Optimizing Your Website

Prioritize Creating a Data Recovery Plan

Unfortunately, business owners too often minimize the importance of cybersecurity until after their company has been targeted and compromised by cyberattackers. Rather than waiting until disaster strikes, it’s imperative to educate yourself about cybersecurity data protection and be proactive about protecting your company’s website.

Coming up with a cyber-recovery plan to safeguard your company’s digital assets – including your website – should be your number one priority. This will allow you to get your website back up and running quickly in the event of a cyberattack. You’ll want to establish a proposed timeline with your preferred “deadlines” for system recovery, as well as details about which programs and applications will have to be addressed in order to execute recovery. Finally, make note of who will be responsible for conducting each task included in your recovery plan.

Develop Educational Content

Sure, your website is a sales and marketing platform – but it can also serve as a vehicle for customer education. Whether your typical customer is another small business, a nonprofit organization, or an individual consumer in your area, you can establish your website as a place that visitors can turn to for up-to-date resources on everything from product use cases to new developments in your industry.

So, how can you ensure that your marketing content is also educational? Business 2 Community recommends publishing blog posts that address your audience’s most common “pain points,” hosting live video lessons with product demonstrations on your website, or even establishing a special membership section of your site with bonus content for paying subscribers.

Integrate Your CRM & ERP

Your customer relationship management (CRM) system and enterprise resource planning (ERP) software are both indispensable to your business. From tracking and capturing leads to managing your overall operations, these software programs can be leveraged to carry out a plethora of key business functions. You can use these programs to their fullest potential by integrating them and then connecting the internal, integrated system to your website. In doing so, not only will you boost your team’s productivity and efficiency but you’ll also be able to seamlessly transfer information from your website to these interconnected programs.

User-Friendly Design

Have you ever had an unpleasant experience while browsing a particular website? Maybe you found it difficult to find the particular page you were looking for. Perhaps you tried to use the search function to find an important piece of content, but it didn’t deliver accurate results. Or, maybe you were seeking contact information so that you could get in touch with a customer support specialist – but no matter how hard you looked, you didn’t see any contact forms, email addresses, or phone numbers.

Crafting an enjoyable user experience should be at the heart of your website design and management approach. But, how can you go the extra mile to make sure that your customers can easily navigate your website and make the best use of all its features? Rock Content recommends designing a clear menu that allows your customers to visit key sections of your website with one click, including an easy-to-find contact form.

In addition, it’s also essential to make sure that your overall site layout looks attractive – after all, visually appealing content might prompt visitors to stay on your website longer (and the longer visitors stay on your site, the more likely they are to take action, such as making a purchase or booking an appointment). If you can’t find a theme that you like with your current content management system, you might consider enlisting the services of a professional web design and development firm that can create a custom layout for your site.

Local SEO: How to Get Found Online by Customers in Your Area

You might be acquainted with the basic principles of search engine optimization (SEO), and perhaps you’ve even been incorporating some useful keywords into your website content already. But have you taken the time to focus on local SEO? By emphasizing local SEO in your website strategy, you can specifically target customers in your area who are seeking products and services like those that you offer.

What can you do to reach customers nearby using SEO tactics? BrainChild Studios recommends putting your city and state on your homepage, adding your city to your page title tags (including the local schema code in your website pages), claiming your Google Business Profile listing, and including your business in local online directories.

Boost Your Conversion Rate

The ultimate goal of your business’s website is to convert visitors into paying customers. Therefore, you need to find ways to boost conversion rates with your website. While implementing user-friendly website design principles can help in this area, there are also some other steps you can take.

A/B testing is key to increasing conversions – you can run tests to analyze your conversion rates with your current site features. Then, as you implement new features like headlines, calls to action, or contact forms, you can run additional tests to compare their effectiveness. By conducting multiple A/B tests at once, you won’t have to wait until a new feature has been thoroughly tested to analyze the impact of another.

Speed Up Your Website

The ultimate goal of your business’s website is to convert visitors into paying customers. Therefore, you need to find ways to boost conversion rates with your website. While implementing user-friendly website design principles can help in this area, there are also some other steps you can take.

A/B testing is key to increasing conversions – you can run tests to analyze your conversion rates with your current site features. Then, as you implement new features like headlines, calls to action, or contact forms, you can run additional tests to compare their effectiveness. By conducting multiple A/B tests at once, you won’t have to wait until a new feature has been thoroughly tested to analyze the impact of another.

Final Thoughts

Your website doesn’t exist just so your company will show up in search engines. In reality, your website might be an unrealized tool for your business’s growth. If you haven’t prioritized growing your business by maximizing your website’s potential, you can get started by integrating some of these recommendations.

If you need help with optimizing your existing website, creating a new website from scratch, boosting your SEO for greater discoverability in Google searches, or any other aspect of your digital marketing, you don’t have to go it alone! HighClick Media is here to help! Contact us today at 252.814.2150 or drop us a line here to see how we can help #elevateyourbrand!

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Guest blogger Cody McBride’s love for computers stems from high school when he built his own computer. Today he is a trained IT technician and knows how the inner workings of computers can be confusing to most. He is the creator of TechDeck.info where he offers easy-to-understand, tech-related advice and troubleshooting tips.

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How Can I Use Instagram to Drive Website Traffic?

How Can I Use Instagram to Drive Website Traffic?

 

All the cool kids use Instagram.

Instagram is a social media networking app that allows you to share content in the form of photos and videos. In recent years, the mobile photography craze has made Instagram highly successful, with the platform reaching 1 billion active monthly users in June.

Number of Instagram users in millions

And to the mystery business-owner reading my blog: If you don’t even have a business Insta yet, you’re seriously missing out!

With a smart strategy in place, social media platforms can assist you in building a dedicated following, strengthening your brand, and, YES, driving tons of new traffic to your website! Take a look at my 4 proven ways to use Instagram to drive website traffic.

1. Create the perfect bio + include Call to Action

Who are you and what do you do for your audience? This is the question your bio should answer. Your words should be powerful and compelling. The goal is to attract your audience and what your brand is and how it your product or service benefits them.

One of my favorite business bios belongs to Airbnb:

 

Their bio quickly explains their services in a playful way, and the brand encourages audience participation by inviting followers to share their photos.

Most importantly, there is a Call to Action. “Book from our feed: abnb.co/instagram” links visitors to their website to take the next step. You’ll definitely want to link your website to your bio, because this particular social platform prevents links in photo captions from being clickable.

2. Be consistent

“How often should I be posting to my Instagram?” It’s such a common question, but there is no right or wrong answer. As long as you’re being consistent, you’re doing it right. Don’t post ten times on Monday, zero Tuesday and Wednesday, once on Thursday, and then nothing for a week! Find your balance. Don’t flood your followers’ news feeds. Space your content out without falling off the map. Having a consistent presence builds trust and keeps your brand fresh in your followers’ minds.

3. Incorporate hashtags and location tags

Posts with at least one hashtag attain 12.6% more engagement, while posts with a location tag gain 79% more engagement. On the flip side, overuse of hashtags and use of irrelevant hashtags are subject to penalties. Nine hashtags is a solid number to use. Make sure your hashtags are relevant to your brand, and don’t use the same hashtags for every post.

4. Share useful content

At first glance, Instagram is a place for pretty pictures, but let’s not forget how important compelling content is for every component of your digital strategy. Showcase your products and services. If you’re a boutique owner, give your audience styling tips based around your clothing and accessories. Or let’s say you’re a chef. Share pictures of your beautiful meals and direct visitors to your website for recipes.

The best thing you can do on Instagram is provide value to your followers so that they’ll be compelled to visit your website. What makes your business stand out?

instagram

If you’re looking for more Instagram marketing tips, our experts can help you strategically grow your account. Contact us today so that we can produce the results that you need to drastically increase your website traffic.

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Choosing the Right Digital Marketing Agency

Choosing the Right Digital Marketing Agency

 

I had no trouble hiring a digital agency for my business. We jumped right in and there were no issues at all! – No one ever

So, your business has grown to the point where you realized you need outside help, and it’s time to make moves! You’re ready to hire a digital marketing agency to help tell your story. If you’ve been reading our blog, you already understand the importance of a professional website design and smart marketing strategy. It can be pretty easy to get wrapped up in the enthusiasm and awe an agency can offer, especially if this is your first time. However, if you aren’t careful when making your selection, you might find yourself disappointed by an agency that over-promised and under-delivered.

 Answer these questions before reaching out to an agency

Which set of skills do we need?

This is a good question to start with, because if the answer is “Nothing” then why are you even reading this blog, silly? If you’re considering hiring an agency, you’ve obviously come to the conclusion that your current set of skills isn’t cutting it for the goals you want to reach.

Consider your digital marketing strengths and weaknesses to determine which services you really need. As liberating as it might feel to shout out “EVERYTHING!” it’s not very practical or cost-effective to dive into everything right off the bat.

What are our goals?

When determining your company’s goals, specificity is key.

“Generating leads” is not a specific goal, but “Generating 20 new leads a month through SEO and content marketing” is. The more you specify your goals, the better chance you have at finding an agency that will deliver.

And if you don’t know what your goals are, that’s okay too. A good agency is essentially a good partner, and they’ll be able to help you elucidate your goals after initial meetings.

What are our priorities?

Time to put on your thinking cap and brainstorm ALL THE THINGS! There are things that need to be done, no doubt, but what, when and where? Get your team together and throw your magical ideas around like confetti!

Once you put these ideas in writing, you’ll likely start to notice themes. Grouping your goals into these themes will help you truly identify what needs to be done. Maybe you have several goals related to social media marketing or a lot of goals related to website updates. Pull 3-5 themes out of your list, and then put those themes in order of importance and start with those!

What will happen if we don’t make a change?

Nothing changes if nothing changes.

Realizing that you need to do something different, then making a choice not to do it comes with consequences. Will you continue to drop in ranking if you’re not staying on top of your SEO? Will you continue to lose leads if you don’t optimize your website?

Consider the effect that inaction would cause your brand, and decide whether or not it’s feasible both short and long-term.

How much time can we spend with an agency?

This is a question full of questions that need to be answered in order to find the right agency.

Are you willing and able to communicate with your agency? Are you available for regular calls and meetings to ensure that your business and your agency is on the same page? Is your leadership team willing to be available if need be?

It’s vital to consider how much time you have to invest in your relationship with your agency so that you can be straight-up with them about how much of your time they can have. Make sure you’re able to help them understand what is doable for you.

What are our relationship goals?

Each of our clients are unique. Some want steady communication, while some prefer monthly check-ins. Some clients want to give final approval on all decisions, and some simply want their agency to tell them what is happening and then go for it. Knowing where you are on that spectrum allows you to communicate that at the start of your new relationship. Help the agency help you!

Ready, set, go!

Seems easy enough, right? Answering these questions before you reach out to an agency can mean the difference between success and failure. Any agency is as helpful as you allow them to be. Arm yourselves with the knowledge needed to attain your specific goals and your agency will help you get there in the most efficient way.

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Magic Marketing Words You Should Use in 2019

Magic Marketing Words You Should Use in 2019

 

We’re a week and some change away from the new year! Have you considered ways to elevate your brand in 2019? Language is a powerful instrument when it comes to content marketing. But do you know which marketing words encourage your target audience to take action? If you’re a business owner, chances are you’re always on the hunt for words and phrases that compel your audience, and we want to help you get started.

Elevate your content with these magic marketing words and phrases that:

Generate curiosity.

What do the following marketing words have in common? They generate curiosity. You can never go wrong when you leave your audience wanting more. Just make sure that once they make their next move, your brand delivers.

  • Discover: Imply there is something unknown that offers specific benefits and gives them an advantage.
  • Introducing: Let customers know that they’re the first to hear about something.
  • Join: Invite your readers to join an exclusive community.
  • What if?: Remind your customers that their possibilities are endless if they keep an open mind.

Inspire.

Marketing words that inspire the customer will allow them to visualize how your brand will improve their lives.

  • Real results: Everyone wants them! Let readers know that your business will deliver.
  • Grow: Your customers are working towards a specific goal, and they need to know how your brand will help them thrive on their journey.
  • Easy: Your customers are researching options to help them solve specific problems. Let them know how much easier their life will be when they choose your brand to provide a solution.
  • Because: You want customers to take action, and ‘because’ gives them a compelling reason why they should.

Encourage Urgency

Use marketing words and phrases that enforce a time-sensitive promotion to encourage customers.

  • Last chance: Nothing inspires customers to make a move quickly more than hearing ‘last chance.’
  • Flash sale: Provide your readers with a sense of being in the know, and create an opportunity that only lasts for a limited time.
  • Act now: Wanna motivate an immediate response? Let the people know!

Connect with your audience

Relate to your target audience an emotional level, and your brand will soar. These marketing phrases are especially useful for retaining an audience.

  • Thank you: Readers are receptive to gratitude from a brand.
  • How to…: Convey to your audience that your brand can help them accomplish something exclusive.
  • We get it: Showing empathy builds trust and loyalty. Let your customers know that you understand where they’re coming from.

Using the right marketing words could make all the difference between a campaign being successful or falling flat. Remember that these words and phrases are not necessarily one size fits all. Different language will elevate different campaigns, and a solid strategy is key!

Not sure what words work for your brand in 2019? Contact our seasoned staff, and we’ll help you get started today!

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8 Step Digital Marketing Process for Optimum Success (Infographic)

8 Step Digital Marketing Process for Optimum Success (Infographic)

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What is digital marketing?

Digital Marketing is tough to define. Truthfully, there is a multitude of ways to define it, and none of them are wrong.

Digital marketing encompasses all marketing efforts that use an electronic device or the internet. Businesses leverage digital channels such as search engines, social media, email, and their websites to connect with current and prospective customers. (via HubSpot)

Common questions I’m asked by potential digital marketing clients:

  • When will I notice a return on investment?
  • Are you almost done updating my SEO?
  • When will this marketing project be finished?

What do all these questions have in common? They all demonstrate a dilemma based on the potential client’s mindset.

All too frequently, people try to fit digital marketing into a neat little box with a defined beginning and end, but that’s not how this works. Digital marketing is not a project; it’s an ongoing process. At HighClick, we go through an 8-step process for each and every client, and today’s your lucky day! I’m going to share our process with you.

Digital Marketing Process

digital_marketing_process_infographic_2019_greenville_NC

Step 1: Probe

The first step in the process is the detective work. We conduct a thorough analysis based on the area you need assistance with. This process allows us to identify your brand’s strengths, weaknesses, threats, and opportunities.

If you’re a business owner attempting to tackle Digital Marketing on your own, you may be tempted to skip the first step. Don’t do it!

No doubt you know your business better than anyone, and you probably already have a general idea of your brand’s strengths and weaknesses. But, when you dig deeper you’ll find that your original list of strengths and weaknesses was just the tip of the iceberg. Being thorough is key.

Step 2: Strategize

After the initial analysis, it’s time to come up with a plan. We create a custom set of actions to help you achieve your brand goals through carefully selected online marketing channels.

Business owners, I cannot emphasize the importance of having a strategy enough. You can create and distribute all the content your heart desires, but if the content has no rhyme or reason, it does your brand no good. Think of it like this – we all know those people that talk just to hear themselves talk. If you don’t have a strategy, that’s how consumers will view your brand.

Without strategy, content is just stuff, and the world has enough stuff.
-Arjun Basu, writer

Step 3: Build

Now that the strategy is in place, we’re ready to use our plan of action as an instruction manual to build your website, campaign, blog post, etc.

For my business owners who want to do the building themselves, go for it! You may find that the building stage is fairly easy, but there’s still so much to do.

Step 4: Optimize

If you build it, they will come… right? Wrong. 

It’s not enough just to build; We’ve gotta optimize! In the optimization phase, we strive to get big results without logging an outrageous amount of unnecessary hours. The ability to do more with less is what optimization is all about! And it’s a wonderful thing.

From search engine optimization to using industry-relevant hashtags to designing a website that is web and mobile friendly, this step cannot be grazed over.

My advice to business owners: leave optimization to the experts. If implemented incorrectly, trying to take this on yourself could hurt your brand rather than help your brand.

Step 5: Publish

What are we going to do with all this compelling content now that it’s optimized? We’re gonna publish it!

Review your strategy to get an idea of which pieces of content go where.

Step 6: Promote

After we’ve published the content, website, etc., the next step is to promote!

There are endless ways to promote a digital campaign. To name a few: syndication across relevant platforms, guest blogging, PPC, audience engagement, influencer partnership, press releases, paid social media advertising.

Just make sure that you’re promoting effectively. Different outlets are viewed by different audiences, so learn where your audience is and plan accordingly.

Step 7: Track

One of the beautiful things about digital campaigns is the ability to track results and measure success. We never want to invest time, energy, and money on a campaign that isn’t generating conversions.

We use a wide variety of methods to track our clients’ campaigns. It all depends on the type of campaign, where it’s published, and what the goal is.

It’s not unusual for business owners to dabble in all things digital marketing to determine what sticks, and if you’ve got that kind of cash, I say go for it! But, if your marketing budget is limited in any way, ask for guidance and recommendations from a trusted digital agency. Doing this will put you ahead of the game, and prevent unnecessary tracking efforts.

Step 8: Refine

After we analyze your results, we make the necessary adjustments to your marketing campaign, and begin the digital marketing process all over again! Each time we cycle through the process, we learn more about your brand and your target audience, gearing us up to make the next cycle even better.

 

Do you need help implementing a digital marketing process for your business? Let’s talk about it!

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Valentines Day Data Insights 2019

Valentine’s Day Data Insights 2019

valentines day data marketing strategy digital marketing email marketing blog post celebrating valentine s day marketing campaign free gift gift ideas

Violets are blue,
roses are red.
Regarding your Valentine’s Day marketing strategy,
are you thinking ahead?

One of the many things we do to identify opportunities for our clients is to analyze consumer data revolving around holidays and other major seasonal periods. Although Valentine’s Day isn’t everyone’s cup of tea (only 60% of consumers plan to celebrate this holiday), this mushy-gushy day of love has certainly not lost its momentum. According to the National Retail Foundation, the average American will spend $143.56 on Valentine’s Day with the predicted nationwide total spend at $19.6 billion.

What does this mean for your business? This “Hallmark” holiday presents a massive opportunity for your brand to make some extra cash, but you must have a strategy in place to prosper! I’ve gathered the best Valentine’s Day data to inspire your digital marketing campaigns leading up to the main event.

Timing is everything.

Consumers are on the hunt for that perfect Valentine’s gift as early as December, but last-minute shoppers make this Holiday the retail success that it is. In 2018, conversion rates peaked at 264% on February 12th. However, this doesn’t mean you should wait until next month to execute a strategy. Start now to reserve a space in the minds of your customers.

Flower sales will flourish.

On February 12th of last year, online flower sales increased by 900%. Flower shops are the fourth top location for making Valentine’s Day purchases, with 20% of consumers opting to gift a traditional bouquet to celebrate the holiday. 15% of women will send themselves flowers.

Think outside of the heart-shaped box.

Valentine’s Day isn’t only for lovers. 11.5% of consumers will spend around $200 on themselves for the holiday in the name of self-love. Have you ever heard of “Galentines Day”? 9.8% of US consumers will reserve the holiday to splurge on a night out with friends. And, let’s not forget about our beloved four-legged children! The estimated spend on Valentine’s Day gifts for pets this year is 647.9 million. Fur real?

Aim your cupids bow at the right audience.

  • Committed partners will spend the most with 72% of them purchasing gifts.
  • 48% of singles plan on Valentine’s Day shopping this year.
  • Consumers between the ages of 25 and 34 make up the highest age category of spenders, with an average spend of $234 each.
  • The second highest spending age group are between the ages of 35 and 44, with an average spend of $148 each.
  • Consumers that are 55 and older will spend the least amount on the holiday, with an average spend of $95 each.
  • Men typically spend more than 2x as much as women on Valentine’s Day.

Marketing Suggestions

1. Run retargeting campaigns during key periods.

February 11th – February 14th is your best timeframe to capture last-minute shoppers.

2. Be mobile-friendly.

Many consumers are spontaneous shoppers who prefer to purchase on a smart device, so a user-friendly, responsive landing page is vital to your brand’s success during the season of love.

3. Create a gift guide.

Your audience needs direction. Provide them with products and services suggestions that complement one another or go hand in hand. This will allow for more cross-selling and upselling.

4. Get social.

Use social media platforms to promote your holiday specials, gift guides, etc. Visual posts are easier to digest, so add some romantic flair to your posts leading up to the big day.

In Conclusion

I know we’re barely halfway through January, but it’s never too early to plan your marketing strategy. Preparation is key, and the sooner you get started, the more consumers you’ll reach. The more consumers you reach, the stronger your brand will become.

Still need help? Reach out to our Greenville, NC team and together we will elevate your brand.

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5 Marketing Lessons We Learned from the Fyre Festival Fiasco

5 Marketing Lessons we Learned from the Fyre Festival Fiasco

What we learned as a digital marketing agency from the Fyre Festival fail

If you’ve paid any attention to social media or your favorite streaming apps within the last month, you’ve probably heard about 2017’s now-infamous Fyre Festival. The story of Fyre, the “festival” that never actually happened, is so fascinating that it became the subject of recent Netflix and Hulu documentaries, released within just days of one another. If you’re part of the tiny percentage of people who aren’t aware of this twisted tale, here’s the rundown:

The Fyre Festival Fraud

The festival, founded by Billy MacFarland and Ja Rule, was shamelessly promoted across social media by A-list supermodels and Instagram influencers (including Kendall Jenner, Bella Hadid, and Emily Ratajowski), as an exclusive, luxurious experience spanning multiple days on a private Bahamian island. The promos and Instagram ads were mesmerizing and suspiciously vague, using the brand hashtag #fyrefestival. Ticket prices ranged from $1,500 to over $100,000 for the “cultural experience of the decade,” and included airfare, gourmet meals, and luxury accommodations.

Upon arriving, festival-goers were disappointed to discover that the “luxury villas” were actually disaster relief tents, the “culinary experience” was actually cold cheese sandwiches, the “branded jet experience” was actually a commercial 747, and the artists scheduled to perform were actually… nowhere to be found. Fyre Festival organizers, who were unreachable for help or clarity, released a vague statement that the festival had been cancelled, and a plethora of lawsuits were filed against the organizers and other parties involved. The chaos was chronicled by furious attendees, whose videos and photos spread like wildfire across social media platforms, making national news. Talk about trouble in paradise.

The infamous cheese sandwich photo that now symbolizes the failure that was Fyre Festival.

5 Digital Marketing Lessons we Learned from the Fyre Festival Fiasco

From a digital marketing standpoint, Fyre Festival demonstrates how powerful, and ultimately, detrimental, digital marketing (social media marketing and Instagram influencer marketing in particular) can be without a proper strategy in place. Although the festival was a disaster, it serves as an important lesson to brands and marketers alike, and we’re discussing what we learned below.

1. Never underestimate the power of experience marketing.

Millennials prefer to spend their money on experiences over material things — and they are willing to pay extra for it. In fact, many brands already recognize this and are turning to experiential marketing to try to connect. Basically, this encompasses setting up opportunities for interaction, but with the brand and with other consumers, often through special events.

Understanding the Research on Millennial Shopping Behaviors | Angela Woo

Tickets to Fyre Festival promised more than a live music event. Promos for the festival heavily focused on providing an experience, implying that, if only for three days, attendees would live the same lifestyle as the celebrities in the SMM promos. From traveling to an exclusive destination on a private jet to partying on a yacht with supermodels to having the chance to win an actual buried treasure, Fyre Festival marketed the event as an organic, magical experience for it’s target audience.

2. If you make big promises, you have to hold up your end of the deal.

Rule of thumb: don’t over promise and under deliver, or you risk ruining your brand’s reputation. Organizers of the event regularly refereed to the Fyre Festival as “an experience that exceeds all expectations.” Fyre’s audience consumed these promises for months on end, truly believing that the event would exceed their already high expectations. We already know what happened when Fyre failed to deliver, to say the least. Now, everyone associates the Fyre brand with fear, dishonesty, and chaos. RIP Fyre.

3. Influencer marketing comes with a price.

Festival organizers launched an influencer marketing campaign featuring over 400 widely-known social media brands and influencers, aka “Fyre Starters,” to share photos or videos to spark discussion about the event. Within the first 2 days of their Instagram marketing campaign, the promoted Instagram posts attained 300 million impressions. Impressive, right? But let’s not get carried away. This marketing strategy was anything but strategic, and here are the cold, hard facts:

  • Kendall Jenner snagged a sweet $250K for a single post promoting the event.
  • Billy MacFarland spent millions on marketing and endorsements from famous celebrities and Instagram users, using up a majority of the budget.
  • This careless spending left little to no budget for proper infrastructure, staff, and the artists.

Now, this is not to say that influencer marketing isn’t effective- it obviously is. But successful influencer marketing all boils down to implementing a specific digital marketing strategy and doing what you say you’re going to do.

4. Don’t play the blame game.

Once the crap hit the fan, Ja Rule took to Twitter to apologize for the frenzy. Claiming that he’s working to refund everyone’s money, he still had to emphasize that the failure of a festival was “NOT MY FAULT.”

Meanwhile, Billy McFarland issued an apology of his own to Rolling Stone:

We launched this festival marketing campaign. Our festival became a real thing and took [on] a life of it’s own. Our next step was to book the talent and actually make the music festival, and that’s when a lot of reality and roadblocks hit. We were a little naive in thinking for the first time we could do this ourselves.

One surefire way to destroy brand trust and loyalty is to deny responsibility for an issue that’s clearly your fault. Successful brands are accountable for their actions, acknowledge their shortcomings, and don’t rest until they make things right.

5. Just be honest.

Transparency has been a popular term in marketing lately, and for good reason. Customers only want to cultivate relationships with brands they can trust; Brands that are honest, transparent, and authentic. Every brand makes mistakes, and accidents happen. However, deliberately misleading your target audience to make a quick buck will ultimately leave you broke as a joke, because if consumers can’t trust you, they’re not going to support your brand.

McFarland admitted to launching Fyre’s multi-million dollar marketing campaign before the actual event organization was even a thought. Fyre organizers knew that they were in too deep long before the scheduled date of the event, but they made no effort to warn their ticket-holders

Conclusion

Fyre Festival’s marketing campaign was, albeit short-lived, a massive success. It was the product, not the marketing, that didn’t deliver. As of right now, the only influencer who has made an apology is Bella Hadid, Ja Rule is still desperately trying to defend himself on social media, thousands of Bahamian festival workers remain unpaid, and Billy MacFarland is in jail.

The Fyre Festival turned out to be a total train wreck, built on fraudulent activity and lies, but one truth remains – social media is a powerful component of the digital marketing game.

Curious as to how you can utilize social media marketing (SMM) to elevate your brand? Our expert team creates honest, authentic, and transparent campaign strategies to make your brand the best it can be! To set up a free consultation, reach out to us today!

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5 Questions That Lead to Mind-Blowing Marketing Campaigns

5 Questions That Lead to Mind-Blowing Marketing Campaigns

digital agency in eastern north carolina helps you boost your marketing strategy and grow your business

There are endless ways to create brand awareness for your product or service through marketing campaigns: email marketing, social media marketing, SEO… and a whole lot more.

But such a wide variety of choices can become overwhelming. Which marketing strategies do you apply, and how are you supposed to determine what your campaign involves? Where do you begin? Choosing the appropriate outlet to promote your campaign prevents you from missing the opportunity to connect with your target audience.

It’s stressful, I know. Whether you run a large corporation or you’re a small business owner, you make important decisions daily. If adding one more thing to the list makes you want to run for the hills, 1. You’re not alone. 2. Relax. The groundwork for your successful marketing campaign is only a few questions away. When you ask yourself the following questions you’ll be able to identify 5 fundamental components of your campaign right out of the gate.

Successful marketing campaigns start with these 5 questions:

Who are you trying to reach, and why?

It all comes down to who you want to talk to and how the products or services your brand provides can benefit them. Your target customers want solutions and a reason to care, and it’s up to you to give them one! No pressure. 😉 But really, the answers to these questions are going to play vital role in not only what you say, but how you say it.

So before you move forward with any part of the marketing process, determine your target audience and what this audience can absorb from your marketing campaign. You cannot create and carry out successful campaigns without doing this step first and foremost. Identifying and understanding your audience is always the first step in the right direction.

What is your campaign goal?

If your first thought was “make more money!”… same. Seriously, that’s the same goal for everyone. We need to be more specific than that! The answer may not be as obvious as you think!

Ultimately, yes, your campaign will ideally lead to an increased ROI. But, try to think of campaigns as stepping stones – each individual campaign should elevate you to the next level within your overall strategy.

HighClick Media’s parent company, DataGroup Technologies, offers IT services, for example. Many of DataGroup’s campaigns revolve around the benefits of our services to intrigue potential customers.

The motivation behind creating a marketing campaign in the first place determines how the content you release will be consumed by your target audience.

How do you want to convey your message?

So now that you’ve decided who you want to talk to and what you want to say, it’s time to pinpoint the most efficient ways to communicate with your audience. In what ways will your potential customers best respond to your message? Are they active on Instagram, or do they still not understand the purpose of hashtags? Do they prefer emailing or texting?

Deciding how you communicate is where your brand will really benefit from having a creative marketing team in the mix. Digital marketing provides an endless selection of marketing channels, and more are created all the time. My advice to you: Don’t risk missing your mark because you made a quick decision due to feeling overwhelmed. Let the industry experts help you create a solid marketing plan.

How can you make your brand’s campaign stand out?

Once you’ve identified your target audience, goals, and platform for your campaign, the next step is making that campaign pop! In 2019, consumers are constantly being force-fed information 24/7. Even if you decide to “unplug” and go on a digital detox, you likely won’t leave your house without crossing paths with at least one advertisement of some sort, digital or traditional.

But don’t stress. This also means that your campaign has a ton of flexibility and potential! Digital marketing is not one-size-fits-all. Brainstorm and get creative with your campaign! The sky’s the limit!

What will you do to pull this off?

Brilliant ideas remain only ideas if you don’t have the finances to carry them out. I strongly suggest you determine your marketing budget before you get too deep into planning your campaigns. After you’ve determined your budget, it’s a good time to start looking at the details. What bells and whistles does your budget allow for? Where will you put your marketing dollars to ensure that the audience will remember your brand?

So, are you ready to launch a mind-blowing marketing campaign yet? If not, it’s all good – we’ve got you! Reach out to us and one of our campaign experts will contact you to chat about your marketing goals. We’ll help you make your marketing efforts a success!

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How to Strengthen Customer Relationships

How To Strengthen Customer Relationships

boost your customer relationships with digital marketing strategy tips

Developing strong customer relationships is essential for business success. This is common knowledge, or at least it should be.

One common mistake I see business owners make is this: They put so much focus on connecting with potential new customers that existing customers get put on the back burner.

According to a recent Acquisition vs. Retention survey, The likelihood of selling to an existing customer is 60-70%, while the chances of selling to a new prospect is only 5-20%. Additionally, when compared to new customers, existing customers are 50% more likely to try new products and typically spend 31% more.

Without customers- especially those that return for your products or services again and again- your business wouldn’t exist.

How does cultivating stronger relationships with your customers benefit you?

Let me count the ways.

  • Stronger relationships lead to repeat business, which establishes a loyal customer base.
  • Having an established customer base allows you to save money by cutting back on customer acquisition marketing spend.
  • You’ll fully understand and easily anticipate the needs of your customers regardless of what stage of the relationship you’re in, giving you the opportunity to provide excellent customer service.
  • The number of organic referrals will increase.
  • Your business has a higher chance of generating positive reviews.

I could keep going, but I think you get the point.

No two customers are exactly alike, but each of them will pass through the same stages of the customer journey your brand provides for them. Strengthening relationships is an ongoing process, and if you’re wondering how to connect with customers in each stage of the relationship, keep reading!

How To Build Customer Relationships In Each Stage Of Their Journey

customer-relationship-process-infographic-digital-marketing-greenville-nc

 

Connect

Your relationship begins the moment your potential customers first become aware of your brand. This stage of their journey includes the action that occurs before a formal relationship is established. This connection could come from a Google search, a social media campaign, or even word-of-mouth.

How do you ensure potential customers make a connection in the first place? Strategic marketing. The right people need to see the right content at the right time. Research and analyze everything from your target audience to your industry leaders to your direct competition. A solid strategy is a must if you want to connect with quality leads.

But don’t get ahead of yourself. While connecting with new consumers is worth celebrating, they will not convert to paying customers this early on. Your goal during this stage is to capture consumers’ attention. Once that’s happened, you keep building from there.

Collaborate

 

So, you’ve connected with a potential customer, and now it’s time to nurture that connection through collaboration.

If you’re a business owner, you likely recognize the value of collaboration between colleagues. But did you know that you can benefit even more by collaborating with customers?

Collaborating with customers may look and feel a little different than collaborating with colleagues. It can happen in a variety of ways, big and small, including:

  • Engaging with them on Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, and any other social platform they’re active on.
  • Inviting them to attend business workshops or webinars.
  • Developing personal connections via customer centric events.

Our customers are the lifeblood of what we do, and therefore we want them to feel they are a part of our decision-making process and our brand. Whether it is through social interactions, live workshops, or feedback surveys, we are constantly listening to them, and based on what they are telling us, improving the customer experience.
– Sahar Meghani, Trunkaroo CEO

Create

Relationships are built upon trust. After the collaboration phase, there should be a level of trust between you and the customer, and now it’s time to create!

And, for you business owners thinking something along the lines of: But, I own a clothing store/accounting firm/dance studio… I don’t create anything! 

Wrong!

Every business, whether knowingly or unknowingly, creates a customer experience. A customer experience refers to the impression you leave with your customer, which directly influences how they think of your brand.

How do you create a great customer experience?

  • Create a seamless UX (user experience).
  • Respond promptly to their questions or comments.
  • Understand and solve the customer’s challenge.
  • Build a positive connection with your customers.

Confirm

Let your customers know that you value their opinion. Ensuring customer satisfaction is key to getting repeat customers, positive reviews, and referrals – all of which can increase ROI and improve relationships.

Here are 5 easy steps to measure and confirm customer satisfaction:

  1. Outline your goals, and make a plan.
  2. Create a customer satisfaction survey.
  3. Choose your survey’s trigger and timing.
  4. Analyze the survey data.
  5. Make adjustments and repeat.

Commit

Let me tell you something I’m sure you already know- there is no business without a customer.

Now, let me tell you something else you probably already know but might not always remember – what you want your customers to give you, you must first offer them.

It’s not enough to send a customer satisfaction survey. Customers want to know that you’re thinking about them and still eager to help them.

How can you show your customer base that you’re committed to helping them?

  • Show appreciation by rewarding long-term customers with a loyalty program.
  • Tell your brand’s story and promote your solutions on platforms that your customers frequent.
  • Follow up with them periodically after their purchase to ensure that they’re still satisfied and assist them further if need be.
We live in the digital age where building relationships with your customers is more important than ever. Whether positive or negative, customers will share their opinions on a variety of channels. The effort your brand puts into maintaining and strengthening relationships will make or break your business. Just like any relationship, successful customer relationships are an ongoing work-in-progress, but the benefits are SO worth it.

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