At Perfect Layout Digital Marketing we are always surprised by how many small businesses still don't have a website in this deep-rooted digital world.
Just because you are a small business, it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t think and act BIG. The only things stopping you from growing are your own limitations – believing that you don’t need a website until you are bigger or more established is not the right way to look at it.
How many times do you pick up your phone to look something up on the internet? How do you find what you are looking for? After a few searches you find a website that matches your needs. So ask yourself now, by not investing in a website, how many customers could you be missing out on because people who are looking for your services are going to your competitors? Are you mentally kicking yourself? Did you know that a year ago it was found that mobile devices accounted for 51 percent of organic search engine visits?
This is how most businesses communicate news with their customers, most popular to least popular. Which do you do?
Advertising on TV and radio requires a lot more money, so it’s understandable that not all businesses can support that additional spend. However, there is no excuse that the rest aren’t on your marketing radar.
If you are making excuses in your head against doing any of these, you are limiting the potential of expanding your business.
I get all of my business from word-of-mouth.
This is great and well done for building up trust and confidence from your existing client-base. But if you have quiet periods throughout the year, wouldn’t you rather have those down times busy? And if you are flat-out busy and have a small team, imagine what could be possible by getting a new website and having more customers. You could expand your team and concentrate on the tasks you like doing and employ someone to do those other tasks. How nice would that feel?
If nothing else, create a simple website that can act as a business card or CV. This can be an easy way to get started.
It’s OK, I’m on social media
Social media is a wonderful platform to use, but like anything these days, it doesn’t maximise your potential alone. Social media enables people to connect with what they are familiar with and like. But what if your business is a one-off purchase, or something that they are not passionate about? Unless you are spending a lot on social media advertising, you are unlikely to reach those people who are looking for your service, but don’t know that you exist.
I’m a technophobe
Perhaps you don’t know where to start and all this technology is a little bit scary. That’s perfectly OK. No one is capable of doing it all, and frankly there aren’t enough hours of the day to fit everything in. So concentrate on what you do best and find the people who understand this type of thing inside and out (like Perfect Layout Digital Marketing!).
Building a website is something I cannot afford?
Try not to think about what you can or cannot afford. With this mindset you are thinking of it as an expense instead of looking at it in terms of what value it could bring to your business. A website is an investment, so what is that investment worth? What would it take to recoup those costs?
If for example if you were a cake maker and each cake is worth between £60-£100 , if your website costs were £150 per month, then getting two more orders per month would cover this investment. How easy do you think you could generate two more cake leads? What if the website brought you in 10 new orders per month? That would be an extra £600-£1,000 per month of revenue, thanks to the website.
Does that now look attractive?
Also consider that if your cakes are beautiful and tasty, how much repeat business might you get from these clients who found you because of your online presence? Map out these trends now from your current clients and how much repeat business you get from them and then do a quick scaling up of the potential. I’m sure that £150 per month in investing in a website doesn’t seem such an outlay now and maybe you have butterflies in your tummy as you see the potential of what your business might be able to achieve.
If you are going to dip your toe in the water with a website, now is the time to also think about your social media presence, if you don’t have one already. Social media is equally important and can easily help support the website’s rankings. As of 2017, daily social media usage of global internet users amounted to 135 minutes per day, up from 126 daily minutes in the previous year. (Statista)
You don’t have to be on all of them, find out what each one does and how you might engage with customers. You will soon realise that some platforms are perhaps not a great fit for your business. Here is a useful article outlining Ten ways small businesses can use social media to generate leads.
So to answer the question above, regardless of the size of your business, or even if you are just starting a business from scratch. In today’s world, it is vital for your business to have an online presence, and that includes a website, social media and more. Want some advice on how to take the next step, give Perfect Layout a call on 01708 578 015.
Looking back at 2016, I can’t help feeling what a remarkable year it was. The month of September was the most memorable as Perfect Layout Digital Marketing was born. Like many small business owners venturing into the world of self-employment, feelings were mixed; excitement, anticipation, enthusiasm, fear, trepidation, worry…the list goes on. I’m delighted to report that the negative emotions have dissipated somewhat, due to the early success of our business.
We’ve worked hard to understand our sector, the needs of our customers and diligently apply our style of website design and SEO to meet their needs. We have passion for what we do and hope that this comes across when you meet us. Our aim is to understand you, as well as your business, to ensure that our website creations represent your services and products in the best possible light. We also want you to start being found for relevant keyword searches on organic search. Let’s be honest, who goes beyond page 2, when looking for a product or service?
When we meet a client for the first time and talk through their needs, we always make sure to tell them that it will take a while for their websites to begin ranking. Whilst we can’t guarantee that your business will be found on page 1 within 6 months – what we can guarantee is that we’ll try our hardest to make it happen. We are realistic as well as eternally optimistic about the services we provide.
One year ago today...
On 1 December 2016, our very first website: Carly's Ice Cream Vans went live. We were excited and nervous at serving the needs of our very first customer. Recently, she was kind enough to undertake an interview with us outlining her journey so far…
I know the clue is in the title, but could you explain what services and products Carly’s Ice Cream Vans sell?
We sell soft and hard ice cream locally and attend school fetes, weddings, christenings, birthday parties, corporate events, festivals and football tournaments etc. Our ice creams range from the traditional 99’s, different flavoured hard ice-creams and various lollies. Bubblegum flavour is really popular at the moment.
How long have you been in the ice cream business?
I’ve been in the ice cream business for over 20 years now. My partner, Peri, has been around ice cream for even longer - over 30 years! Together, we know about ice cream, inside and out!
Before you had a website how did you promote your vans/get business?
Purely by word of mouth. We also supply our ice creams to people in local shopping centres.
What made you diversify and invest in having a website?
Whilst getting work via word of mouth is okay, a website is seen by everyone and offers me the chance to get around to different areas and attend different events. It also means that I’m making more money.
Why did you choose Perfect Layout as your website providers?
You were very nice and approachable. During our consultation, things were explained to me really well and I was able to understand exactly how my website would be laid out. I was also impressed with the amount of communication and quick response rate that I had from you whilst the site was being built. I was also pleased that I knew exactly what my website would look like before it went live.
How has the site made a difference to your business?
Local people are hearing about us, which means more jobs. This wouldn’t have happened if we didn’t have the website.
What kind of interest have you received since your website went live?
We’ve had loads of leads via the forms and direct calls.
Are you surprised at the number of leads the site has generated?
Yes, I’ve been surprised at the amount of extra work the website has generated - and very pleased!
What would you say to business owners who have not yet committed to having a website for their business?
Definitely get one! It’s made a real difference to our income and weighed against the cost of the site, it paid for itself quickly.
How do you see the future of the business evolving in the next 5 years?
I hope to be doing more of the same. To continue getting leads from the website and responding to the needs of those that fancy an ice cream!
The proof is in the pudding, or should I say ice cream!
To give the sceptics out there something to munch on, below is a snap shot of statistics showing how well her site did in a very short space of time. The information relates to just a couple of the keyword search terms we track as part of our ongoing SEO. Please note that not all months have been detailed.
Go live date - 1 December 2016
7 December 2016
Ice cream vans Romford – page 2, position 12
Ice cream vans Essex – page 5, position 47
Ice cream vans Romford - page 1, position 2,
Ice cream vans Essex - page 1, position 4
Ice cream vans Romford - page 1, position 3, Google My Business (GMB) listing showed
Ice cream vans Essex - page 1, position 8, position 2 on Map Pack
Ice cream vans Romford – page 1, GMB showed, plus 4 mentions on the organic page
Ice cream vans Essex - page 1, position 3 on Map pack and position 5
Ice cream vans Romford - page 1, position 1 on Map pack and positions 3, 4 6 and 8
Ice cream vans Essex – page 1, position 2
This demonstrates that the various digital strategies that Perfect Layout Digital Marketing implemented are making a difference. You’ve got to admit that these are pretty impressive results! Carly is happy and so are we.
If you would like your business to have results on page one of organic search, give us a call and let’s see how we can help your business be more visible online.
If you can’t remember the last time you reviewed the website for your business, now may be the time to undertake this task. Not having a new website could be the reason for your business lacking traffic and your competitors getting further and further ahead of you in the game.
It is now more important than ever to have a website that your customers will look forward to visiting. Consumers have a high expectation that a website will be visually attractive, easy to navigate, simple and informative. It should also be a website that works on whatever device the consumer feels like using at the time, wherever they might be.
But my website looks okay…
Recently, we were contacted by a client that had a very nice website. It had some great photos and was clean and easy to read. It was a business that worked mostly on referrals and chance passers-by.
There was no strategy behind their actions and they simply undertook tasks to keep their business afloat as opposed to thinking smart about what would work to promote what they offered and ultimately get more customers walking through the door.
They were working in the business, not on the business.
Their website lacked:
We also advised our client that if he wanted to attract customers to his business he had to get his website working in a way that would get his company appearing when searched for. Specifically creating pages on his website that targeted his local areas would help raise his profile.
Even though he had competitors in the local area, he had a unique selling point that he had never seen before. Perfect Layout was able to open his eyes as to how he could exploit these assets and show potential customers the benefits of going with him as opposed to his opposition.
We also discussed the websites of his larger sized competitors. What they had to offer as well as the pros and cons of their websites. Once the comparisons had been made he was very quickly able to see that his site was outdated.
Even though making the changes we recommended looked scary and trying to take on his competitors looked intimidating, we reassured him that with the right digital marketing approach (some of which are mentioned above) we would be able to increase his visibility and potentially turn those online visits into sales.
Be inspired to revamp your website:
Usain Bolt, Mo Farah and Perfect Layout Digital Marketing
...what do they all have in common?
Two legends of the track hung up their running shoes this year at the World Championship Athletics meet in London. Usain Bolt, Jamaican born and currently the fastest human in the world is considered to be the greatest sprinter of all time. He is an 8-time Olympic world medallist and has many other amazing track achievements.
Or how about admiring Mo Farah? He is the most successful British track athlete in modern Olympic Games history. He won gold in both the 5000m and 10,000m in 2012 and defended his status in 2016. He is the first person in history to defend both distance titles in the Olympics and World Championships Athletics. Very impressive!
So, what do they both have in common with our company Perfect Layout? Change. They knew that their bodies had had enough. It was time to be brave and take a new direction in their life, out of their routine, out of their comfort zone and out of the limelight.
Sound familiar? Are you a company that was once:
Have your sales now dropped?
Do you feel out of your depth when thinking about how to increase your revenue?
Are you at a loss as to how you can get new customers in through the door?
Then you need go no further. Bite the bullet and give us a call now to find out how we can help be your catalyst of change. Creating a new website or improving what you have is just one important facet to building your business up to where you want it to be.
Take action and be like Usain and Mo. There’s a time for thinking and a time for doing - let your time of doing be now!
How could your business benefit from having a new or revamped website with SEO? Why not make a list of the pros and cons to taking immediate action.
Looking for a local Essex web design company? Perfect Layout Digital Marketing can offer you web design services that will make a difference to your online business.
What's your website status?
If you’re a business that’s just starting out, jotting down ideas, creating a strategy, it’s never too early to start thinking about the type of website design you might have. Perfect Layout is a company that gets excited about helping new and established clients obtain a website that’s designed just right for their business. Every project is met with enthusiasm and we are happy to offer our advice about how your ideas can be translated and understood by your customers when in website format.
Identifying your target audience is key to ensuring that your future plan takes into account the ebbs and flow of the ever-moving online traffic. Your website design should include photographs that are personal and reflective of the service you provide. Content should be interesting and applicable to your product and written in a language that draws people in.
During your free consultation, Perfect Layout can help you focus and offer ideas that you may not have thought about. As an online business, it’s paramount that you get this right or otherwise you’ll end up stuck, going nowhere fast.
Be inspired – have a well thought out strategy
Travelling home on the motorway recently (from a wonderful week in Cornwall!) the strangeness of people’s behaviour whilst driving really struck a chord. All lanes had traffic, but it didn’t stop many drivers constantly swapping lanes. The effect? The traffic slowed down even more rather than speeding up. And there I was thinking that us British were always patient whilst queueing!
If you’re a business that is constantly changing its strategy, trying to get ahead of your competitors but getting nowhere fast, it may be time for you to take a new approach. If you’re a new start up business or your website hasn’t been looked at for a while or you’re a business working without a website – now is the time to make that change and get in the right lane to making your business work.
We’re not like some motorway drivers that can’t help but change lanes when they come up to a bit of traffic. We think long term and avoid reactionary behaviour. A constant 55 mph is way better than bombing it at 70mph for a quarter of the journey then travelling at 30mph for the remainder.
Having a good website seems easy to do these days. There are many website builders on the market offering web packages at reasonable prices, but there’s a lot you need to know when it comes to ensuring that your website design has everything in place to make it work for you - especially if you want to generate more leads.
1 Content is King. Make sure that you explain what your business is about, ensuring that you use keywords that customers will use when searching for you. Google can then marry up your website with their search terms. If you don’t have the copywriting skills yourself, we can help you get keyword-rich content onto your web pages.
2 Use Call to Actions. If you want your customers to strike while the iron is hot make sure that you have Call to Actions on your page. This could be your phone number, contact forms or special offers to make them act at that moment.
3 Make sure your website is user-friendly. Make it easy for people to find their way around your site. Bad navigation could lose you a lot of business.
4 Use external directories to help boost your online presence. Is the platform that you are building on mobile friendly?
5 If your website isn’t responsive Google will penalise you and your website could suffer in organic rankings*.
These are 5 essential tips to keep in mind when you are looking to build your website. If you feel out-of-your-depth and would like some help, Perfect Layout Digital Marketing can offer you a free consultation and put together a digital strategy to get your business to where you want it to be. We can either look at hosting you on one of our monthly packages, or you can arrange ad-hoc work, such as re-writing your current website copy, based on our hourly fee.
If your website has already been built, but you feel like you are not getting enough new leads, it could be because you are missing out on other digital strategies that help boost your online presence; this is known as Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). If you don’t know how to do this, Perfect Layout can help you with elements such as keyword-rich content, setting up and activating Google My Business and Bing Places accounts, as well as listing you on other directories.
Perfect Layout Digital Marketing is a web design company in Romford, Essex. While most of our customers are local to us we do have clients in London and across Essex. Whether you need ad-hoc work to help improve your website design and online presence or you would like ongoing website support, we can help you.
Give the Perfect Layout web development team in Romford, Essex a call today on
01708 578 015.
*if you are unsure of any terms or jargon that has been used, go to our Glossary Page.