AppNet Client News April 28 2014
We’re “Going LOGICAL” on You this Month.
By now, you guys know that we get a bit long-winded with these newsletters and BLOGS, but we’re getting some good feedback from many of you who are SAYING that you’re enjoying them and learning a little something along the way. Hopefully you’re not just saying those things to be nice.
WE’RE GOING TO START OFF TODAY WITH SOME LOGIC.
I’m going to ask you a few easy questions. Since you’re reading these, just answer silently as we don’t want anyone close-by you to think you’re nuts. Here we go.
Did 88,387 real human beings do a search on Google YESTERDAY (nationwide) for “homes for sale”?
If 88,387 people did search for “homes for sale”, does it sound reasonable that (319) of them were interested in homes for sale in Charlotte?
Were more than 6,600 real people interested in finding a landscaper last month – nationwide?
Does it sound reasonable that (20) of those people – who were looking for a landscaper across the United States – were ACTUALLY interested in an Atlanta landscaping service?
Do you think it sounds reasonable that of the more than 317 Million people who live in the United States, that 14,800 of them went to Google last month looking for custom jewelry online?
Of those 14,800 in question number (5), does it sound reasonable that (210) of those people who were looking for custom jewelry were from Los Angeles?
IF you answered “YES” to every question you made an “A”.
Now I have one more question. Of the 109,787 people that I just alluded to within the six questions above – do you think that these were REAL PEOPLE or merely just numbers?
If you answered that you BELIEVE them to be real people, with real fingers, who typed on their keyboards, then you are correct (AGAIN).
It is a fact that 3,225,806,451 (that’s more than 3 BILLION by the way) searches are performed A DAY on Google and they’re all REAL PEOPLE, with blood running through their veins. And they’re not ALL looking for Kim Kardashian. A fair number of them are looking for YOU – or at least the products or services that you provide.
WAKE UP TO A BRAVE NEW WORLD…
A lot of you who are reading this newsletter go about your daily business not even CONSIDERING the fact that people are looking for you – but finding your competition.
I was recently speaking with a potential tree service client who is based in Baton Rouge. His family had been in the business of taking care of trees in that area for (76) years. The COO of the company is an intelligent man who holds TWO degrees in economics. He used to be an investment broker, but the money was too good in the family business to ignore and he took over operating the company a few years back. He has TWO websites. One is a one page “website” and the other is one that a PR firm created six months ago. NEITHER website can be found for ANYTHING to do with Baton Rouge and tree care, tree service, tree trimming, tree transplanting, stump grinding – you name it. His website gets NO traffic.
During our discussion he kept going on and on about how all of the companies who were ranked in the top five for nearly ANY search were not as good as HIS company. He went on to say that his company was often called on to “fix issues” that these other, higher-ranked companies were creating.
It wasn’t until I SHOWED him that ONE company – that he seemed to have some admiration for – had received more than 4000 visitors during the previous month – that he stopped ranting and stated, “Good Lord, if you can get me 4,000 visitors, I’m ready to do business.”
It finally hit him that his admired competitor was getting all of the good leads and new customers. He then shared that he had noticed a HUGE drop off in calls to their office inquiring about estimates…at nearly the exact same time that we showed him that his competitor’s website began getting all that traffic.
IF YOUR WEBSITE ISN’T BEING FOUND FOR SEARCHES RELATED TO YOUR INDUSTRY AND YOUR COVERAGE AREA…THEN YOU ARE LOSING BUSINESS TO YOUR COMPETITORS.
HOW ARE THEY DOING THAT?
That is one of our most-often-asked queries – “How is this or that company always ranked in the top?” That question is usually followed up with, “How much will this cost?”
Once we share the “HOW” and “HOW MUCH” we usually hear some comments related to, “Well I definitely need to ‘get there’ but what can we do for about ‘half’ that budget?”
It should be simple LOGIC that we can do about one-half of what is needed.
Another response we get is, “Well I had a call from ‘XYZ web design’ where they said that could get me a website for $500.”
Ask yourself this question – “Does it make any sense whatsoever that you should be able to put up a website that is anywhere from FREE to $500 that will perform as well on Google as a company who spent $10,000 on their website?”
Does it make sense that you should be able to advertise on television and be seen as often as “He went to Jared’s” for $1000 when Jared’s spends MILLIONS?
It is the same thing.
There are tons of scammers and spammers out there – and a lot of otherwise legitimate companies – who seem to want you to believe that the internet is different. That probably stems from the early days when we all heard the stories of how someone put up a one page website and got rich.
Those days are long gone. You can still “get rich” but not without an investment of time, money or both.
Perhaps the most significant difference in marketing via the internet is that you CAN effect your own website’s success with a lot of your own sweat-equity. If you are short on budget, you CAN do a lot of the work to grow content yourself. Of course, then you have to ask yourself the following questions:
How much is YOUR time worth?
How good are you going to be at it?
HERE’S SOMETHING THAT ONLY THE MOST HONEST OF WEB DEVELOPERS WILL TELL YOU
There are ONLY two ways to get a website ranked at the top of the search engines these days.
OUTSPEND your competition.
“Outspending” affords you the option of contracting a SEO-savvy company to write and add in the content pages needed to beat your competition’s rankings. We can setup daily reporting that shows where your website needs help and what kind of content is needed to meet and beat your competition.
“Outworking” simply means that since you’re doing the content writing and work, you’re not having to pay for it.
If you want and need more customers, they are RIGHT THERE on the other end of your keyboard. They are LOOKING for you EVERY SINGLE DAY. If you don’t have a large budget and simply cannot afford the financial investment that it takes to compete with those at the top of all of the searches related to your business – then your only choice is to OUTWORK them.
AppNet and other companies that operate like we do make our living by building websites and by consulting and teaching many of our clients how to “outwork and/or outsmart their competition”.It is like that old proverb – “Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day; show him how to catch fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.”
WEB DEVELOPMENT ARCHITECTURE LENDS ITSELF TO BETTER FISHING…
It used to be that web design companies HAD to do all of the design, handling of edits, etc. When SEO (search engine optimization) came along it further made it necessary for only a seasoned professional to handle most web page growth, etc.
Now, with CMS (content management systems) that allows most anyone to add, edit and delete any and every page of a website, it is EASIER to build the website that businesses can afford and then teach clients how to use those tools to grow their own websites to a point that it becomes more competitive with those websites ranked at the top.
HOW DO YOU MEASURE UP TO YOUR COMPETITION?
The great thing about the internet is that we now have so many tools that we can plug most any website into and give you a pretty decent idea of the worth or value of any website. We can tell you definitively about how much of an investment (time or money) that your competition has in their website.
Then it’s a fairly simple process to compare your website with theirs and then you’ll know how much time and/or money that you have to put in to get yourself on their level.
While there is SOME science to it – it isn’t rocket science.
We were meeting with a group of realtors this past week who made our job rather easy when they first challenged us by stating, “We want to be THE TOP real estate company online for “X”, “Y” and “Z” communities on Google. What is that going to cost?”
All we had to do was SHOW them the following:
“ABC Realty’s” website is a $30,000 website.
“DEF Realty’s” website is a $15,000 website.
“GHI Realty’s” website is a $12,000 website.
“JKL Realty’s” website is a $10,000 website.
We then asked them, “If you’re okay with NOT being in the top four or five, we can strategize less – but if you’re wanting to be in the top four, tell US where you are budget-wise.” In some cities it may only take a $500 website to rank at the top. In competitive areas it can take more. When the top companies are all spending TIME and/or money like those above – the ONLY way to rank at the top is to outspend, outwork or both.
So we can work with most any budget. To compete with the companies above, we could:
We could create a nice website and provide them the tools and some training for under $1000.
Strategize for the new client to spend $5,000 and create a beautiful new website, display all of the local real estate properties and do a small amount of SEO – and provide THEM the tools and training to “go the rest of the way” themselves.
We could create a game plan that would spend $20,000-$30,000 that would put all of our creative, content writers and resources into doing all of the work to deliver a top ranked website in the shortest about of time.
So we CAN work with any budget…
The best approach is a balanced approach that allows you to get started on a path tomorrow – to gain your share of the new customers who are looking for your products or services every single day.
THE BEST STRATEGIES are now those that enable you to pay for the website that you NEED TODAY and allot some level of spending (whether monthly or quarterly, etc) that would allow for frequent GROWTH.
GONE ARE THE DAYS where you can put up a website and sit on it for ANY length of time. If you were to launch a brand new $30,000 website today and then not touch it for a year, you will see a boost in traffic initially and then it will drop over time.You’re better off to spend that same budget over a period of a YEAR because then your results will be more consistent over time.
Any approach that is outside of the realm of outspending or outworking your competition is like chasing after the wind.
WHO ARE YOU GOING TO BELIEVE? ME, OR YOUR LYING EYES?
WIX.com. WEEBLY.com. WEB.com. YOLA.com. MOONFRUIT.com
Do those dot coms mean anything to you? If you watch any amount of television and don’t fast-forward over the commercials you’ve probably seen the commercials that WIX runs a number of times every day offering FREE WEBSITES.
How about WORDPRESS, JOOMLA, DRUPAL, COFFEECUP? Have you heard of any of those? All of these tools are FREE as well and with a little time and some patience you can have a very nice looking website up and running.
If you’re a Realtor, according to household real estate names like Zillow, you can have a FREE website running in minutes AND you only pay $10 a month. If you have some products that you want to sale, according to Shopify and many like them, you can have a fully operational eCommerce website for FREE, without ANY setup costs and for only $29 a month (some are less).
By now you can tell that there’s a common thread with all of these offers. You CAN have a FREE website. You CAN. You’ll get no debate here.
AND NOW…THE REST OF THE STORY
Of course I’m stealing this lead in from that wonderful old, radio sage, Paul Harvey.
What ALL of these super-marketing-savvy conglomerates are not telling you is that they know something that YOU probably don’t know. They know that the website that they are giving you FREE – won’t work. Nobody will know that it exists. Nobody will ever see that wonderful, new website of yours without YOU telling them how to go to it.
It WILL show up on Google and Yahoo….around PAGE 103. By the way, FREE WEBSITES are not new. Back in the early 1990s Tripod, Angelfire, FreeServers, FortuneCity, Homestead and others offered free websites AND free hosting.
WHAT IS NEW is that these major players (at least major in that they are spending the most advertising dollars to entice you) are playing against your lack of understanding of WHAT makes for a successful website. One of our clients called me the other day complaining that they had put up an online store on one of these FREE website providers about six months ago. They shared that they had spent DAYS loading up more than 400 products and getting everything looking wonderful. After all those countless hours of getting everything looking great – not one visitor of value had seen the website. Oh they had spammers from the Russian Federation, Ukraine and India emailing them that THEY had found the website. But nobody looking to buy products.
When I explained what was missing, our client felt betrayed and lied to – but they couldn’t be angry when the website didn’t cost them anything. After we spoke a few more minutes she stated, “This is kind of like someone giving you a brand new Ferrari and then not telling you that the only place you can purchase the gas to make it go is from THEM.”
That’s not 100% accurate – but close enough that I’m not going to elaborate on her point.
Earlier this week I met with a potential client from Miami who is in the jewelry industry. Her brick and mortar store is located right next to a famous restaurant on 40th Street in Miami. Partly due to her great location; partly due to her unique product line and partly due to her family name – their jewelry can be seen adorned on such celebrities as Kim Kardashian, Jennifer Aniston, Alonzo Mourning, Dwyane Wade, Mickey Rourke, Beyonce, Billy Ray Cyrus and others.
Despite all of that notoriety and fame – she was frustrated because her website received MAYBE 100 visitors in the last year and a half! She commented about how often she BLOGGED and yet she was so consumed by the THOUGHT that her store website LOOKED great and that it shows all of these superstars wearing their jewelry – that she wasn’t seeing the forest for the trees.
She has had a website since 2009 and in ALL of that time MAYBE 800 people had visited her website. Instead of really addressing the issues as to WHY nobody was going to her website, she decided to build another new website in January of this year – this time using Shopify. She’s spent countless hours getting her product line in the online store. She’s written tons of BLOG articles since January – to the TWELVE people who have visited her website since January.
When I SHOWED her these revelations, her only response was to share the news that she had recently hired a PR firm in Miami (for three months) to help guide her.
Maybe they can help her find another gas pump for that Ferrari.
YOUR MOM AND DAD WERE CORRECT. NULL. NADA. CERO. NIETS. CIPHER. NAUGHT. ZILCH. ZIP. GOOSE EGG…NOTHING – IN LIFE IS FREE.
No matter how small your marketing budget might be – we can work with you in a fashion that WILL make a difference in increasing your business. Ignoring that your website isn’t generating business for you or putting off doing something about it while others are getting YOUR customers – doesn’t make since in this competitive marketplace. There are always options and the best time to get started in making a difference is today.
Until next month!