Internet DNA Podcast
As a small business should I be using Facebook or Instagram, should I be using a market place like Etsy, Ebay or Not on the High Street or should I have my own website? And if I have my own website do I need a blog - can you keep a blog up to date? - and if not what to do. Then should I have eCommerce on my website if I sell products or just an enquiry form? For once all your questions are actually answered with no curve balls, just a little underwater sounds and a ticking clock (sorry!).
This weight, trying to stress, try to discuss the differences in the types of websites often
get us website do I need and we went to the shoe with different types of websites and what she may or may not need.
So let's start with why don't I just have a Facebook page or can I start just for the Facebook page? Maybe it's more the question
I get asked this a lot, this route, and actually I find a lot of people feel that they need a website. You already have a Facebook page, but for some reason it's conditioned into them that they must have a website too. That really depends on your type of business and who you're communicating with. For example, if you're a dog trainer, it is most likely that you will easily get, oh the contacts you need in your local area through the Facebook business page. And I am saying business page because it does give you more functionality than just a Facebook page. And look does make you easier to be found as a business. So let's say you're a dog trainer. I would. So textbook patch belt, you probably don't ignore that. If you started to need people to look, no courses are nine, that might be a couple of dog trainers.
You might be all through manner than just going out and traveling people's drugs each week. Then it may be time to go for our website because people need them. The professionality and the security of thing that a pay online doing that, it's a sort of proper business and it's not going to disappear. So at that point you might think that you want to move either way. So you said to me the website, as your business starts to grow, however, if you, you're dealing business to business than a Facebook page may not be enough. A business wants to see, okay, you are a professional and they can trust you and that you are not going to disappear when they've paid you money. So at that point I would say actually you do need a website because of the people you're dealing with. So personal with people, probably even in a sort of recreation or line of business. Then Facebook is fantastic starting to get more professional. And dealing with businesses. And I'd say you need a website.
Okay. But obviously your website will give you a whole new range of things so you can actually own your own data, which then means you can do marketing outside the Facebook.
Yeah. Outside of Facebook and Instagram as think is the point to make there. And there is power for endo to analysis and the ability to market within Facebook, which is useful for you. So nab is all bad, but yes, you're right. If you want to start marketing outside of Facebook.
Yeah. So I'm building up a database of your customers, the people that have been a, the people who are interested in your staff. So it starts to allow you to do more things. So you might write a mini ebook for example, about if you're a dog trainer, how to get your dog ready for training, for example. And then you collect the people's email addresses and you say, if you download this, then in return, obviously I've allowed you to my email list and I will send you emails that you can unsubscribe it anytime.
Yes. Oh, social media is fairly transient. Inflammation. Oh good. I used it in any way. So once it's past it's past and it's very difficult to find where there on a website, it can be them such engines actually for that ebook and you can always link to it. It smelt going to disappear to the bottom of the pile as it would do on Facebook or Instagram or other forms of social media.
So there's a real difference between a website and social media. Platforms is ineffective. You own the platform whereas in Facebook or Pinterest or Twitter or any other, the social media, you may discover they own the network. So they own the platform and therefore your going to have to use their platform to do anything. Whereas when you're on a website, you own the platform effectively. And so you can decide how you want to manage it and how it wants to be laid out and how you want to do things. So it just gives you more control. And also it means that in their terrible event that Facebook became the non leading social media. You've not got all your eggs in one basket or Facebook say, oh, we're not doing that anymore. Or the way you do this is now this way and that's not the way you want to do it and you don't have any control over that because you don't own the platform and that's the control that having your own website has. Certainly when you're starting out, the advantages that Facebook give you, I'll probably higher than owning your own website. They already have the audience, they already have the tools, they were already plugged into a load of other people. Whereas a website we will take time to gain traction and
to discuss different marketplaces have started to up here as opposed to a website audience as you've said, that is already there. And so for example, at sci high street, if you're starting to say Emily's in terms that you design and make lampshades a crafty and creative audience that for you is really, really good because trying to get people to find you when you start your shop on its own. It's about putting our shop, not on the high street, in the middle of the fields that your house people that to find you so easily. So from that market place, a really quick way to stop as you then get better and better in the setting. More and more, you might want to barely ran a website because you don't want people to be sidetracked by the other things in the market place. But again, I think it's a really good place to stop. There's even anyone I found crate joy if you weren't so subscription boxes or everything by subscription here as a marketplace. It's the same with events, right? If you have an event or a web show today, it's amazing to press it on Eventbrite because people are actively looking for events in that area. But then afterward, as you start to get to your audience, when you start to grow, you might want to move away so that you are not rooms shock as opposed to being a stool in the market.
Okay, so there's a crossover point. So let's say you start off because you need the audience on any platform because we've talked about a lot, but I mean there's Ebay, Amazon affiliate market place. I mean there are hundreds, depending on what product you're selling, you will find one or more platforms that will work with you. The reason why Facebook is very important is because almost everybody's on it. Even if they just casually browse it, they don't interact with it too much, you will find that they're still there. For example, I don't post anything on Facebook maybe once a year, but I'm always on it. Well not always on it, but I want to at least once a day checking out bike parks. So if you were looking to push anything to do with mountain biking at me, Facebook knows that that's what I'm interested in and therefore it will show those ads to me and not to people who were not interested in mountain biking. So it can be a really interesting way of building up your presence early on to an audience that you wouldn't be able to find yourself. But it gets to a point where you're strong enough to stand on your own. That's the point you need to transition to a website. There's that what you're saying.
Yes. And that sort of comes in with a branding and things as well. At that point you need to really start thinking about your business, your brand, what you stand for. So that visual communication is reflecting who you are. No, that's a great way to sort of test the water on Facebook or any of these platforms without needing any, just to see who you're talking to and who they feel you are. So he was trialing and then when you're ready, you start to get your visual communication and you're a brand shop or business grows from that. So I would say it's a really good and cheap way to start.
Excellent. And it's a great way of doing some market research. Is there actually any demand for your product or does your product stand out in a crowded marketplace? Because if you can't find anybody on Facebook that likes your product or I'm going to guess you're not gonna find anyone anywhere. Really.
I have to say, you know there's Facebook on Facebook, in belting up friends or advertising on Facebook. Ads of your products gets put in front of the whole way that you don't necessarily know. There are other platforms you are paying straight away so you took the results and things so you don't have family side on and most of these marketplaces that's just a Facebook and Instagram thing that differentiates social media for my market place or something like Facebook is both.
So Facebook is better for getting your ideas out there, seeing if people are interested. Then probably a market places better for testing your product and your pricing and finding out how that works and once you've got it all together, then you can start to think about standing on your own, getting your website. We're talking about new businesses here, aren't we? I mean established businesses probably already have a website and the social media presence, they might not harness it very well, but they will have these presences anyway
say is if your audience is other businesses, I would say that that's not the route for you to start with a website to be actually of who your early wins one need to be.
So it's the difference between being a trader and then being a business.
Yeah, exactly. So now getting onto websites, we've gone through a little phase. We've done our social media, we found a product and a price range and an audience. We're building our website now. Obviously there's a lot of different types of websites out there, but the main types really are either what I would call a page based site, which is there's a lot of information about features and benefits and pricing and that. And then the other side is there's a blog now I know you can mix and match that slightly, but really you tend to find that these things are either focused on one that have some of the other or the other way around. So they're either mainly blogs that have some pages about their product or they're mostly about their product and they have some blog posts.
Yes, she read specific content about what you do so that you can be found across search engines across social media because you post a social media.
Okay, so let's say I'm a business, I don't know. Let's say I'm a dog trainer, so I've got a couple of pages about my pricing, what I do, the services I provide. But then what you're saying is what I really need to do is concentrate on, on going because my prices may change once a year or once every six months. And the services I provide, I might add one service, but I'm not really doing anything changing the website. So what a blog is doing is allowing me to add new content. So I need to focus on that and look at what keywords people are searching for for my services and make sure I've got articles written.
It's about the success stories you've had, training with dogs, what to expect from training or adults with type of difficult behavioral issues. You might be able to sell a few and talk about it in the fact that you don't train them in Suffolk. So I mentioned the places and stuff and in that way when people are searching, I need a dog trainer in, you will come up with a set changes without having to pay someone a lot of money to do that for you. So it's time consuming. So it's not free because it's takes time. But that blog having to spend money on advertising,
oh, this is often where I find people fall down, which is you explained to them the benefits of a blog. You tell them why it's important, they agree with it all. But actually what turns out is they've got a job, they'd trading dogs 10 hours a day and then they've got rest of their life to deal with. And so the blog often becomes a sort of, there were four posts at the beginning and then there was another post a month later and then really nothing. You've spoke to the last day, it was two years ago and it looks in Bass. And then can they keep their website search engines or just don't have time to write the blog? Okay, so in the old days, there used to be things called Seo agencies. They did your Seo, so what they did was make your pages more easily found on the web. But as Google evolved and the Internet involved, you will find that these SEO agencies are now calling themselves content agencies and what they actually do is research keywords, write content, and put it onto your website for you because you don't have the time you're running your business. And hopefully it's profitable enough where you can say, I can pay x amount for a blog post every day, week, fortnight, obviously.
Yeah. Yeah. I mean doing it yourself is a lot of work because you've got to do the Seo Research, you've got to do the copywriting, you've got to do the fact checking. You've got to make sure that it all ties into your overall aim. Some people, it would be really helpful to them. I mean, different people find different things easy. I actually find personally that having a list of keywords or topics, basically what I do is I just steal the keywords down and then that gives me the topics that I need to write about. I kind of disregard the keywords after that. I literally do the keyword research to give me the topics and what that does for me is it helps me so I don't get to a blank bit of paper and saying, what am I going to write about today? I know what I'm going to write about, like being able to think about it for a couple of days so that I find writing the articles is actually much easier.
Don't look at Seo researchers pouring through loads of stuff and you're going to know your business pretty well. You're going to know roughly how people would search for your business. Google has got a load of tools, there are thousands out there that will help you work out what are the topics that you should be writing about and what types of was are people searching for? Let's say you're training dog. What you might find is people are actually searching for how to help with a certain dog behavior. So you need to start writing content which would include those behaviors in there and that's all that it does for me. It just gives me topics and subtopics I know I need to cover.
I do exactly the same. It's a list of topics that are related to what I do and that I should write it around. I might think about it in the car and I stepped formulate some ideas. That topic and then we're gonna come to write. It just comes out. It does work well was to ask you a question about the keywords you can basically tank is tagging a globe with keywords that are in your article. Good Seo.
If you wrote a really good piece on the top 10 dog behaviors that you can help, you will find that people will start to link to that and that's where it really gets helpful. You shouldn't write for search engines and then that sounds really odd cause we are writing for search engines. But what I mean is you shouldn't sit there thinking I need to put this exact key phrase in. I need to link these words to this thing. It should be much more natural.
The best of the blogs. That's what I was asking. Is it wet?
Yeah. That's actually organizing content. So that's internal linking. So usually you'd have a concept of categories and categories are things that you write about a lot, so you might have a category dog behaviors, but each behavior you would have as a tag because you're not going to write more than let's say two or three articles about that one particular behavior and so that's what you would use tags for. It just links together the articles that cover the same subject rather than you having to
Google is curling or site and things for Seo that the fact that it finds lots on this same subject.
Yeah, exactly. Cause it can say, okay this is the node cluster around this subject and therefore it will add weight to that subject because internal linking isn't as important as the external linking, but it's not far off. I think the misconception a lot of people have is that Google looks at your site as a whole and it actually doesn't, it looks at each page individually. Then understands that that's part of a domain and it's a lot about that subject which adds as a scoring factor, but it actually ranks each page itself as a standalone page on the Internet. So that internal linking helps it to understand that there are links to other bits of content and other bits of content link into it and so it helps you it to understand the real relevance of that piece of content. You know what it's looking for is that, let's say I wrote an article on, I'm a dog trainer and I write an article on hotels in Ibiza. It's going to say nothing else on this site about hotels, and so I'm going to disregard that page because it's an anomaly
how you started off with it for about a social media and knock places and then moving onto a website and how if you can't write the blog post, it may be worth getting someone to help you. It implying someone to just help you keep on top of the digital marketing and other types of websites but people may think about?
I would say it's probably the next thing is email marketing is by far the most effective way of reengaging and talking to your customers. It's an art form unto itself. Email marketing is incredibly effective. It can be done incredibly badly. There are some clear things that you should not do on email marketing. I think that maybe a subject for next week, which is what are the key components of email marketing and how is it used effectively
that next to it. I grew, it was fairly path folks talking to an early combated audience, but we will so that for next week that we call miss. Then now I met with the other small businesses and I often meet people go on, I want to show all my thoughts. For example, I'm an artist, I'm not sure what I do and I can row. You clicked put the price of where people won't know that they can buy it. It would be good to put the Christ son. Well, I don't let them buy it online and then artists go, when I'm sharing my web, isn't that enough? Because you're not there to talk them through it and temperament. We need to be much more cushy as it were. I'm going to look, this costs 700 pounds now do you want to talk about it? And I think just putting in people's minds, I can buy that. Is it or isn't it in my price range is very, very important. And whether you are then going to allow them to actually purchase online or inquire, making it clearer.
Well, I think if you've got a product page that's highlighting a single product to step from that to any ecommerce system is almost negligible. You know there are thousands of ecommerce engines that you can get for free or as a percentage base. I mean you can start on Ebay for instance. If you want to incorporate an Ebay shop into your own website. If you've used wordpress for example, you could use we've commerce, which is free. There's Shopify,
the platform that you start. Don't, don't forget about your ideal customers on Facebook. So when you have a website, you can always post your content back to the social media. So I have your products for sale on post, but you can have your products from your reps using as many channels. Don't district have the channels as you move the next step.
Yeah. Haley at night, the audience that you've cultivated. Yeah.
Well we're trying to do it in the channels that you are sending around communicating on, not just moving in a forward direction to a process where it was subscription models. This is becoming more and more common and if you have something that you won't be able to buy on a monthly basis, again, that's something that you could start thinking about through your website, whether that's content and we will talk about that next week and the email marketing. But now I think we've got to finish up. We are out to tomorrow,
so I'm going to say goodbye.
Dan & Abi work, talk & dream in tech. If you would like to discuss any speaking opportunity contact us.