Yes Really, You can easily build a website for your business.

Why should you have a website? 

  • After all if you are a brick & mortar business you have your name in the phone book and local paper advertisements.
  • With a website the local brick & mortar business can advertise globally and advertise specials & sales with a couple of mouse clicks.  Much quicker than sending something to a printer then mailing it out.
  • A website is the only way a non-brick & mortar company can be seen and visited.
  • In today’s technical environment having a web site increases credibility, increased convenience  for shoppers.

The first step is to decide what to name the site.  If you are putting an existing brick & mortar business online, then you would want to use the business name with a .com etc.  If it is not for an existing brick & mortar business you will need to do some domain name research.

Steps to select a domain name [name of your site]:

  1. What is your main product or service?   Search keywords to see how people are searching for information and sites.  [Google has a free one https://adwords.google.com ]
  2. Try to design your name using a keyword.  If not possible create something that will brand you or your product.  Good keywords can be used as meta-tags to increase the site information [hidden words that the web browsers can read].
  3. Take me for example, I am Dr Jill so I am putting my name on the sites that I use.  I have an informational site for business and health tips, another is my blog and another is my business expansion site.  All have Dr Jill in the title, but have different words in the title as keywords or descriptions, to assist people in finding me.
  4. I used the company GoDaddy to purchase my domain names and they have reasonable packages to purchase your domain name and web building software all at one place.  [link to GoDaddy]

Ok so you have your name – now what?

  • There are many companies that have software to help you design your website.  Some are free and some are for sale at a variety of cost.
  • Some require you to be able to understand and use the html language and some do not.
  • I opt for the ones that you can use text much like using Microsoft word so that it is familiar.  These programs have a template that take the material that you input in a text form into the html for you. Yipeee – one less thing to cram into your already full brain.
  • A good start and the one that I use is GoDaddy’s Website Tonight which is free for a basic 5 page web site, including a tech phone number for real person to help.  You can purchase additional pages or custom templates for extra money.
  • With the idea about what you wish to promote select the template, picture, that best suits your business
  • The template software also offers ways to add social network links and paypal or other payment options with a click or two.
  • You can put pix of your shop, yourself, products, services into the web site with a click or two with easy software program at a site like GoDaddy.

So you have your domain name and your website template – now what?

  • The basic template has tabs for pages that are built in.  Home, About Us, Contact Us are usually used.  The tab names may be changed to meet your specific needs. The templates come with a selection of pictures to use on the home page and other pages, or has instructions to use your own pictures on the site.
  • Remember the language used for online marketing is more like talking face to face rather than the stiff formal, technical printed brochures that have been used for brick & mortar companies for years.  The language sets the tone of the business.  Strive to have the language and presentation show expertise without being stuffy.  People are more likely to buy from your site if you present as knowledgeable, helpful and friendly.
  • The home page is your front door, make it inviting, tempt people to enter.
    • The page should show visitors what you are about in a manner that piques their interest to continue reading.
    •  Remember internet searchers may only read for 5-10 seconds before clicking to another site.
    • So, capture their attention.
    •  You can put small blip about temporary shipping reduction, special sale item on home page – but remember to change it frequently.
  •  Products Page[s]: Show the product picture, give some attention grabbing information regarding ease of use etc.
    • At the end of the description or on another page [click for details] show the technical features.
    • Do not start with the picky technical features – only the teckies will need or want that info, so don’t feature it.
    • Remember the short attention span of the online visitor.
  • Policy page:  Shipping and return policies need to be spelled out in easy to understand language.  This information can be placed on the contact us page with a separate heading.

All done, right?   Not quite, remember to proofread and preview your website then check to see that all links work and the pages look like you intended them to look.  It should be clean, easy to navigate. 

Ready ->  Set  -> Go for it!

 

“The New Golden Rule for Women”

What follows is a quoted excerpt from Healthy Women newsletter by Bottom Line on January 25, 2012.  It is an excellent reminder for us women who are wearing many hats… The Mommy Hat, the Wife Hat, the Employee Hat, the Chauffeur the Kids Here and There hat the Housewife Hat, The Caring for Parents and Own Children Hat, The Grandma trying to help Daughter/Son Hat etc…  I think the article and the linked video is a wonderful reminder to all of us caregivers.

“Mother Teresa said, “To keep a lamp burning, we have to keep putting oil in it.” Most women are so busy filling the lamps of the people they love that they let their own lamps run low. Here is a little movie to remind all women to fill their lamps…”

“If you like this video clip[link below], I encourage you to share it with others. Join me on my mission to empower and inspire millions of people around the globe. At the end of this video, you’ll see simple instructions on how you can help. Together we can spread words of Encouragement, Inspiration & Empowerment, one video at a time… and wouldn’t you agree our world could use a little more Positivity these days!”

Together we can make a difference..

http://www.flickspire.com/m/BLHW/OilForYourLamp

The Most Important Trait for Small Business Success.

I have been reviewing articles about traits that foster success in small businesses.  From my review of many articles I believe the most important trait is a well defined niche market.

Small businesses will benefit the most from the very narrow niche markets.  It is so easy to try to have a wide range of products, things offered to try to attract everyone.  Many businesses do fail because of this.  I agree with the authors that I reviewed that a focused small market can offer quality better than a wide scope marketing plan for a budding small business.

The author of an article on smallbusinessme.com gives the example of a restaurant that originally offered one excellent product and had a solid clientele and was successful.   Later they expanded their menu offerings and sales plummeted.  The items added did create variety but they were from a variety of Asian countries.  But none those additions had the masterful excellence of that one original product.

When adding products the restaurateur should have stayed with Thai region recipes like the original wonderful soup.  That would have kept him in his area of expertise rather than the eclectic mix of recipies from all over Asia.  Staying in the narrow niche of good Thai dishes would have been more likely to maintain existing customers and bring in some new ones.

What drives many customers away from the big box store is quality of product and poor service of the mega stores.  High numbers of selections does not necessarily end up with high sales and profits.  Poor service always equates with customers that only purchase one item and never return, except to request a refund or complain!  That is not the type of customer that will build your business.

A focused small niche in your area of passion and expertise is the way to proceed to increase your potential of success.  So take time to look inward and find your passion your area of expertise before jumping into ownership of a small business.  When you find the area of expertise the perfect product, launch your marketing for your business to the narrow niche of people searching for that product.

Formula for the best online home business.

The best online home business will follow the formula for success.

1.         The mission and the business model must be clearly stated and understandable.  Is it a franchise, a MLM, partnership, online store  etc?

2.         The training and knowledge of the company must be easy to understand and complete.  Too much techno-jargon will scare away the beginner, but training should take into account some folks are a bit advanced.  So the balance is beginner information with another tab for the more advanced person to begin their training.

3.         The mentor, must be very knowledgeable, break things down for understanding and very available to answer questions.  He needs to show you respect and help you.  A mentor never looks down on you, a snob does.  Availability is the key to keep the momentum of learning rolling, email, phone calls, webinars etc.  Easy access to your mentor thwarts frustration.

4          The support and community must be available and hold you accountable for what you say you will do.  Technical support and The support and information from others that are in the business is invaluable.  The mentor should hold you responsible to follow through with the steps you agree to perform.  You should hold yourself responsible to follow through so your business can grow.   Does the company have a forum website, webinars or another easy way for members to communicate?

5          Goal driven behavior must be fostered by the company’s program for you to emulate.  Your mentor and training programs must show measurable and attainable goals or goal steps.  Does the company have a clearly defined career progress path that is spelled out so you know where you are on the ladder of success?

6.         The next part involves YOU taking full advantage of the 5 steps above.  No halfway “I’ll try statements”!  Just make the commitment “I will do this step, follow the guidance.”  Commitment and follow through with the steps to success is the path to follow.

 To take advantage of the 5 steps, click here.


 

 

 

 

Copy & paste link if hyperlink sticks:

http://businesswithdrjill.com/?site=Introducing&t=blog+a

Marketing Is Not a Dirty Word!

Marketing according to the Webster’s New World Dictionary is:  1.The act of buying or selling in a market. 2. All business activity involved in the moving of goods from the producer to the consumer, including selling, advertising, packaging, etc.

Marketing according to common usage is: a word used to describe fancy packaging to promote something – frequently false, defective, less than optimal.

Lets look at the concept. We all have heard the statement that “People love to buy things, but hate being sold”. 

Very evident by most of our reactions when coming into a boutique section of a department store and there are several clerks standing around jockeying for position to “pounce” upon the next person who enters the department with the question “May I help you?”  Most of us do not like this rush technique and respond by saying “Just looking, thanks” or “No” and walking out.  This is an example of salesy turnoff technique.

How does one make the sales pitch more palatable and not like a sales pitch?

  • By appealing to or creating a need for the product.  If we the shopper, perceive that this item will fulfill a need that we have we are more likely to explore the features and the price of this item.
  • We all have needs, problems, values, or dreams that can be appealed to by this method for countless numbers of products.
  • Take the SUV for instance: the marketing appeals to the American concept of the rugged individual – the can-do attitude.  But, it also appeals to the everyday need to get a lot of stuff and people from place to place.  Even though the average purchaser has no need or actual desire to take the vehicle out in the wild and make their own roads, many of us just love the idea that we can and will ignore the low miles per gallon that curses the SUV. Marketing accomplished.

So what do you do with the less positive attributes of an item?

  • Omit mentioning them, gloss over them or figure out how to paint them as neutral if not positive characteristics.

What is the result of this practice? 

  • The problem with this is that when the truth of the less positive attribute is discovered there is a loss of trust.
  • The loss of trust will cause negative “word of mouth advertising” and will lose you that customer and more.
  • The omission or gloss over of items in order to sell an item is what gives sales and marketers a bad name.
  • The same rosy painting is what gives us the stereotype of “used car salesmen”.

Good marketing will strive to make the product appealing to the customer and provide a solution to his need or desire with honesty. 

  • The marketing will honestly provide information that may not be a good feature.
  •   The focus is on the attributes, but the drawbacks are mentioned also so the customer does not feel tricked.
  • He wants the product despite the drawback.
  • Remember the SUV driver who loves the vehicle, but knows the mpg is not good.

The end result of good marketing:  is making an honest sale and having a satisfied customer who just may come back to your establishment for additional products.

Prepare for the Snow Daze!

I work at home online, but my recreation takes me on the road.  So, take it from someone who travels from SW PA to and through Buffalo, NY [through the snow belt and the “lake effect snow” and to the DC area [over the Allegheny Mts.] snow is sneaky.  What starts as a few puffy flakes can mount up in a hurry! 

Here is a list of some stuff you should have in a box in your car for winter emergencies to increase your safety…

  1. Cell phone and cell-phone car charger
  2. Sand or kitty litter for traction
  3. Lubricant for frozen locks
  4. Small container of motor oil
  5. Funnel—for an emergency infusion of motor oil or water
  6. Two roadside flares
  7. Safety matches
  8. Jumper cables to start a dead/low battery
  9. Flashlight and fresh batteries
  10. Thermal blanket(s)
  11. Bottled water
  12. Packages of crackers, protein bars and/or nuts
  13. Empty 3 lb. plastic coffee container with lid = portable potty.
  14. Small hand shovel
  15. Spare tire, jack and lug wrench
  16. Work gloves
  17. Spare pair wool or thermal socks.
  18. Container of windshield washer fluid [antifreeze type is best.]
  19. Ice scraper and brush
  20. Small fire extinguisher
  21. Tire chains
  22. Money [five $5.00 in zip lock bag under seat]

Don’t say that getting stuck only happens to the “other guy” prepare and be safe….

Is your online marketing system automated or too automated?

Spending time manually sending out emails to find leads for your business?  Spending time manually sending out personalized follow-up emails for any opt in leads you have on your list?  You are wasting your valuable time!

An automated system may save you time and energy.  Your time and energy you should be spending on advertisement writing, article writing and especially down line support and training!!

The automated mailing system for your marketing should speak in your voice to increase perception of your personality and availability.  It should not be filled with communications that read like “corporate-speak”.  The formal or too technical corporate-speak communications usually turn potential leads and customers off and they will never see your business opportunity.

It is a fine line to walk between being too flippant  and casual and too corporate formal.  But when you find the balance you have personable emails!  That is your goal Personable communication.

When your humanness shines through your communications your readers will be more likely to perceive you as helpful and supportive.  That is the type of person I want to have as my up-line in business.  That is the type of person I am and I want to show it in all my communications.

The early emails in the system may be more like speaking with an acquaintance and the later ones more like speaking with a friend.  Write as if you are actually talking with the person.  Someone you have just met is not going to get the buddy-buddy type vocabulary as someone you have known for a while.  Attend to the developing relationship and write accordingly.

The above assumes that you have an Awebber account or some other automated email service and that you know how to use it.  If not prepare to learn the mechanics of the automated email service before mastering the relationship developed email text process.

Lots of work?  Yes it is, a good automated marketing system is very much worth it, but times taking.  But, if you would rather work directly with customers you may want to short cut this step.

To see more about a company that uses this system click here.

Jobs, Are We Cultured & Educated for Mediocrity?

 Looking for More?  What if you are a free thinker, someone with desires to have a life of meaning and purpose and you are stuck in a “job”.  

Our culture said our fathers and grandfathers were trained for a “job” and worked for a company with the goal of the “gold watch” at retirement.  Our education is geared to creating good workers.  Workers that will fit into a specific work mold or career.

Unfortunately, with the way businesses are changing and evolving, the average worker will change jobs more than 4 times before retirement.  Some of these changes will require more education and a significant mindset shift.  Our education trains us to seek and ensure basic survival.

Even if this “ideal job” of our fathers and grandfathers still existed,it is not enough for many of us any more.  We are looking for more to life, more fulfillments a goal beyond the “job”  But how do we move on to more???

Realization of the changes in our business society is the first step.  The operative word is change.  Some industries have vanished others have arrived.  “Change is the new normal.”

The second step is belief in your self and trust in your imagination to guide you.  Imagination is the foundation of change and growth.  If you can see something in your imagination it will be possible to follow a plan to make it reality.  You must be focused to guide your image in to fulfillment.

  • You want to have more time for your family.
  • You are tired of a salary ceiling, that you can not get through.
  • You are bored and unhappy with a routine job.
  • You want to be of service & help people.

Break free of the habits of the past and the way you react to work and your life.  Let go of old habitation; to make room for the new work opportunities and broaden your horizons.

 

To explore a more fulfilling career option click here.

Focus is a 5cent word for Meditation – A busy person can focus & grow??

I was thinking about what topic I should write on, I kept thinking about the word “focus”Focus reminded me of “single mindedness” which is a component of meditation.  Busy people attend!

How many people, maybe yourself included, are scattered multi-taskers?  These folks end their day with a feeling of exhaustion and a fuzzy mental feeling.  They spend their days busily doing two or more things at once.  Many of these folks get a lot of “stuff” done, but don’t feel they did an excellent job of any one thing.  What is missing?

Focused lack of thinking with or without physical activity is Meditation.  We have heard for a long time there are many health benefits from meditation.  They include: anxiety, depression, pain, high blood pressure, stress, mood swings, self control issues, risk taking behaviors, concentration and creativity.

According to Roger Walsh, MD, PhD during an interview with Bottom Line/Women’s Health, e-newsletter spring 2011 simple meditation is a matter of focus.

  • Focusing on a single task.  Experiencing it.  For example when folding laundry  experience the feeling of the clothing, smells etc.  Another example is chopping veggies for dinner.  Focus on the texture of the veggie, the smells, the rhythmic action of your knife when cutting.  Only attending to the task at hand, not extraneous thoughts.
  • Focusing on your breathing.  Feel the air entering through your nose, feel your belly rise with the air expanding your lungs and the slow deflating of abdomen and release of air through your nose.  Focus all your attention on this cycle of action, not extraneous thoughts.
  • Phrase or word that is meaningful to you spiritually.  Examples could be: God is Love, Peace, Bliss, or the old standby Ohm.  What ever you choose make sure it has meaning for you.  Repeat this to yourself either aloud or silently with each breath.  When extraneous thoughts occur, just redirect yourself to your phrase.
  • Meditation for those that can’t stay still may be found in Qigong, tai chi or yoga classes.
  • Dr. Walsh also says there are more complex methods of meditation and covers these more in depth in some of his books.

So what good is this meditation?  You have heard all the health benefits, but is if for real?  The act of slowing down and focusing, clears the scattered thoughts and mind – sort of like a gentle washing rain between your ears.

As little as 5 minutes at a time helps clear the mind and leave you refreshed and ready to continue with your activities.  Or, you may be refreshed and open to new ideas, new twists to an old problem, or a completely new plan.  [meditation rock & flower]

It has been said that seeing is believing.  But, in this case feeling is understanding.  Make mini-meditation a part of your day.

Challenge yourself!  Journal about how you felt before meditation and how you felt after each session.  Also note any special ideas that crossed your mind at the end of your meditation session.  Did you have insight about a problem?  Did a new avenue open up for you in your business plan?  Did you have an “a-ha moment”?

If you are inclined I would appreciate it if you would share with me and other readers what occurred after a week of meditation practice – share the results of this new tool to focus your life and your business.