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Issue 14
Sunday, September 4, 2011





Letter from the Editor

Welcome back to the latest issue of the Shoestring Entrepreneur Newsletter!.

Summer has gone by so quickly. It seems like only yesterday we were leaving spring and get acclimated to the heat and humidty here in the northeast.

The dog days are just about over and it's time to gear up for the upcoming holiday season. A time we all love as marketers and entrepreneurs.

In this week's newsletter, I'll share an article titled "Is Your Website Helping You Generate Profits?." This is the first of a two-part series. If yours isn't, this article will get you up to snuff.

To your success,
Brian Carson


Is Your Website Helping You Generate Profits? Part 1

by Brian Carson

Getting traffic to your website is only one part of the job when it comes to connecting with your customers.

It’s what happens when people GET to your website that makes all of the difference in your sales and profits!

Websites should be built to ultimately convert visitors into paying customers - that’s the whole point. Websites are powerful marketing tools, but unfortunately, most businesses are not using them to their full potential.

You need a website that is setup with all of the proper components to help you generate more leads and sales.

If your website is not helping you generate profits, it’s probably just costing you money. Who needs a money-sucking piece of technology that doesn’t do anything for them?

Your website marketability and profitability is based on how well it is able to convert your visitors to paying customers.

Here are some components that will turn your website from an EXPENSE into a PROFIT-PRODUCING MACHINE:

Professional, Clean Layout

Your website should be clean, professional and easy to navigate if you want visitors to stick around for any amount of time.

Flashy, confusing websites only cause visitors to hit the back button as they search for information or products related to your industry.

Many businesses make the mistake of overcrowding their websites with stuff that their visitors really don’t care about.

Your website, especially your home page, should be built to grab attention quickly so people can find what they’re looking for.  

Most people who visit your site simply want to know how your business can help them solve their problem or solution.  

For instance, don’t put your business biography on the home page of your site. Your visitors aren’t really looking for that... they’re looking for that SOLUTION that your business can provide to them.

Let’s look at some of the other factors of a profitable website...


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Lead Capture / Direct Response

You probably already know that “The Money is in the List!”

Building a list of prospects and leads should be the priority of any business owner. Once you start establishing a relationship, you will create a loyal following of buying customers.

If you are not capturing leads on your website, you are letting potential business go down the drain. If people are already visiting your website, this is the perfect opportunity to grab their contact information so you can continue to build a relationship with them.

One of the easiest ways to capture leads is by installing a lead capture system on your website. This is usually a form that asks visitors to entire their name and email address in exchange for a free offer - such as a coupon, free report, or whatever your customers would find extremely valuable.

Once you have these leads in your funnel, you can then start sending emails to them about your company. Your emails should focus on building a relationship with your list and you should only send promotions from time to time.

When done correctly, your list will love you and continue to do business with you as long as you keep giving them what they want.

Strong Call-To-Action

Every page on your website should have a call-to-action, which is something that tells your visitors what you want them to do.  Depending on your type of business, this could vary.

Some businesses want their prospects to call them, some want them to email them, and some want them to come into their establishment.

Whatever you want your website visitors to do, put this on your website and make it stand out.

This probably sounds like basic information, but you’d be surprised at the number of businesses who do not have a call-to-action on their websites.

Call-to-actions have proven to help businesses convert more website visitors into actual, paying customers. Some people simply need to be told what to do when they hit your site - and it works!

Whichever call-to-action you use, just be sure to make it stand out and available on every page of your website.

The ideal place for a call-to-action is in your website header... this way, it will be shown at the top of every page of your website.

Also include the pertinent information they will need in order to perform that call-to-action.

For instance, don’t just say “Call Us Today!”...

Instead, say, “Call Us Today at XXX-XXX-XXXX!”...

Include your phone number - don’t make them search for it.

If you want them to come into your establishment, don’t just say “Come See Us Today!”...

Instead, say, “Come See Us Today at XXX Main Street City, State!”

Again, make it as easy as possible for them to act.

Speaking of contacting you...

Make sure that all methods of contact are easy for your visitors to see on all pages of your website. Some business owners make the mistake of only putting their contact information on their “Contact Us” page.

However, your contact information should be on all pages of your site to make it easy for your customers and prospects to get in touch with you.

It is very frustrating to land on a website home page only to find out that their contact phone number is not there… and now you have to search for it!
 
Also be sure to put a contact form on your Contact Us page so visitors can reach you right from your website.

This will give your visitors a variety of options when it comes to contacting you.

Once they fill out and submit the form, you will receive a notification at the email address you tie to the form.

We'll discuss more on profit generating websites next week in part 2.

Brian Carson

Brian Carson is the president and CEO of the Market Ownership Group. Before founding the Market Ownership Group, a marketing consulting/business coaching company, Brian owned three brick-and-mortar businesses that he ran profitably for over 15 years. Brian sold them off to focus all his attention to the formation of the Market Ownership Group, founded in 2008. Brian has created marketing strategies, done for you marketing materials and given advice in a diverse range of businesses, from restaurants to barber shops to online only businesses to small retail stores, and financial advisors. If you would like to grow your business to new levels of profit and growth, or if you need help starting a business from scratch, email the Market Ownership Group at bricar@marketownership.com.

 

The Brian and Lee Show

On this week's episode of THE BRIAN AND LEE SHOW, our guest will be author and entrepreneur Wayne Breitbarth. Wayne is the author of the new book, “The Power Formula for LinkedIn Success”. He’s a Certified Public Accountant who received a BBA from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and an MBA from Marquette University. He is an owner of M&M Office Interiors in Pewaukee, Wisconsin.

 

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Brian and Lee Resources

Copyright 2011 The Brian and Lee Show and the Market Ownership Group. All Rights Reserved.