Friday, March 31, 2006

Know Your Customer

Know Your Customer: websites that try to sell everything are going to be a turnoff to the average consumer. Even though the Internet is an anonymous electronic force, consumers want to feel as if the website owner knows about and cares about them as individuals, and a website that tries to be Wal-mart to you is going to get exactly what it deserves - nothing.
At the same time, if you understand the type of person coming to your website and you can deliver to them items that they really want and need, you're going to get a repeat customer. Ideally, your web sales should take place within content on your website, and when your customer reads about the item you're selling, they should instantly want it.
Use Targeted Content: Once you know exactly what you should be selling to your customer, you can target your content to support those sales. Consumers, more than anything else, want information on products they may want to buy. And those who sell products depend on "buzz," people like you talking about the product's advantages and disadvantages, to get those products sold.
Targeted content can be the obvious reviews of books, new products, etc. But it can also be things like descriptions of fishing trips where you drop in links to your products you actually used. For instance, if you caught a huge bass last weekend using a particular lure, you can drop in a photo of the lure, linking the photo and a text reference to your lure sales page where you actually allow the consumer to purchase that lure.
This is a trick that television networks are just catching onto. While recent fashions may have been largely driven by the clothes characters wear in popular TV shows, there was no way to purchase those fashions without searching for something similar throughout stores. Just this season, networks are starting websites where you can purchase the sweater Jennifer Aniston wore, or Tom Welling's jacket, even funky new glasses frames. It's the ultimate targeted-content model, if they sell it right.
You probably don't have a network to sell your products on. But you can develop a dedicated audience that knows your recommended products are good, reliable, and exactly what you say they are.
If you need help developing content for your site to promote your products please visit A1AWEB Thanks for visiting my blog- Ann Menke

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Promoting Your New Online Store

OK. So you took the leap and started your online store-perhaps you were selling Dump Trailers. But, oops, there are no customers and your store is lost in the crowd. All is not lost. You just need to be very creative in how you market your site. The key thing to remember as you market your site is "people buy from people, not companies."

To make money online: 1) You must get traffic to your site. 2) You must convert that traffic to paying customers. To begin simply create a T-chart. Label one column "Traffic" and the other "Conversion." Then brainstorm what methods you will use to to make those happen and turn them into an action plan.

Traffic suggestions for you:

* Pay per click
* Offline advertising
* Article marketing
* Newsletter
* Autoresponders
* Word of mouth
* Joint ventures / strategic partnerships
* Talks to groups
* Participation in online forums / discussion groups

Most online stores are extremely competitive (what's not these days?) and they compete on price - one of the worst ways to compete. What you need to do is find a way to take the focus off the money, find your unique value and promote it from there.

So how do you do that? First you have to know who your prospect is so you can speak to them directly. Hint: Your market is not everyone or anyone. Once you know who your prospect is, you can implement tactics that will convert them into customers.

Here are some ideas that will help your conversion rate:

* Bundled products
* Free gift with purchase
* Regular newsletter
* Autoresponder course
* Helpful content on your website
* Companion blog for your website

These should get you thinking about where you need to go. This is not by any means a complete, comprehensive list -- just a start. Begin by putting all of your ideas together in an action plan. Use your action plan to drive what you do every day. Spend at least one hour on these tasks per day. In no time you'll find you've made a lot of progress.

If you need help getting started please visit A1AWEB
Thanks for visiting my blog - Ann Menke

Monday, March 27, 2006

Create One Page for Each Product

Use unique web pages to promote each separate product you are marketing. Don't try to lump a bunch of products together to save a bit of money on web hosting. Have a site with individual pages dedicated to each product and to nothing else. I just created a site like that called Maxi Dump. Include affiliate product reviews on the website to spell out exactly what the product will do for the purchaser. Include testimonials from users who have enjoyed the product and are willing to allow you to use their names and photos on your website for that product. Write articles highlighting uses for the product and include them on the website as additional pages. Make the web pages compelling, and include calls to act on the information. Every headline must attract the reader to read more. Bullets and highlights of special points will help the reader who is scanning to learn what the page is about find that they have to know more!
If you need a website built today look at the websites I have already created for many happy customers at: A1AWEB Internet Advertising
Thanks for visiting my blog: Ann Menke

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Keep Content Fresh

The Internet is primarily two things. It's a huge reference library with information of varying quality, free to anyone accessing it. And it's the biggest marketing and advertising engine ever invented. You can take advantage of the enormous advertising potential of the Internet by using well-written and optimized content articles. Content articles are the key to:
- Delivering good information to your customers
- Showing that you are the master of your topic
- Placing well on search engines
- Keeping your customers happy enough to come back
Good websites, laid out in a friendly way, with excellent and constantly fresh keyword-optimized content, are the ones that will wind up on top. Always keep content fresh. This may be the second most common mistake made by business owners- putting up a website, then sitting back and ignoring it. Web crawlers seek out fresh content, and sites that are always fresh get ranked higher at the top of the search engine rankings.
I have lots of content articles about all different type of subjects your site may benefit from so if you are looking for content even if it is for something as mundane as Dump Trailers please email me and I will see if I can help.
Thanks for visiting my blog- Ann Menke

Friday, March 24, 2006

Being Prepared for Any Disaster

With all the things in the news about natural disasters that could befall us like mad cow, bird flu, hurricanes and tornadoes it is in my opinion a good idea to prepare for any eventuality. Of course I hope none of these things ever happen but if you live in Florida nowadays you are at least prepared in case of a hurricane. This means stocking up on water, canned goods, flashlight batteries, gasoline and having a generator handy just in case. When you live here these are just the bare minimum of things that you need to keep on hand. But if you are looking at something more long term you might want to think about stocking up more food and supplies than what is just needed for a bad storm. We buy a few extra canned goods each time we shop to help spread out the cost of stocking up and we rotate what we have so the older stuff gets used and the new stuff goes in the back. One thing people don't think about is trash pickup-it's good to have a backup plan in case that gets disrupted. It's hard for them to pickup your trash when the streets are flooded. We bought a dump bed for our pickup from so if we have to we can haul trash to the dump ourselves. I know it came in handy for yard cleanup after the hurricanes last year. Do yourself a big favor and get prepared now-think about it each time you go grocery shopping. Remember how empty the shelves get right before a storm-don't wait till the last minute. Thanks for reading my blog, Ann Menke

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Secrets of Getting Your Site Indexed in the Search Engines

I get emails all the time from people whose sites just aren't getting on the search engines. On of them whose site I redid recently was I usually refer people with questions about how to optimize their website to a page that tells about all the things they need to do to accompish this:
The first thing I do is look at their website and view the source code to see if their website developer remembered to put meta tags on each page and then I look to see if these need any improvement. If they don't have meta tags I tell them to have their website developer add them or I can add them for a small fee per page. If you don't have a good meta tags with your title, description especially than the search engines will make up their own title and description for your site based on your content. And this may not be as good as what you would of wanted them to come up with. This is why it is so important to have meta tags, this way you can define exactly what you want the search engines to have come up about your site when someone does a search. The Titles are especially important because keywords in them are looked at very closely by the search engines. So make sure you put your most important keywords first and your company name after that in your title. I would suggest doing the same for your descriptions as well. If you need help with it please visit the page suggested above, read it and then contact me. Thanks, Ann Menke

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Others Things You can Do To Get More Hits

I just got off the phone with and would like to recommend them as an addition to or alternative to doing pay-per-click thru Google and Yahoo. Thru them you can buy a keyword that pertains to your business and everyone that uses their browser will end up finding you at the top of their search for that keyword. For instance I can buy the word "dump trailer" for my customer for $500 for 5000 clicks/hits to their website. This is much less than you would pay for that word on google or yahoo for ppc. So they get alot more bang for their buck this way. Of course they are paying a lump sum in advance versus one day at a time like they do for the major search engines but that is why it is less per click. They do have starter packages for less for those who are interested email me at
Thanks, Ann

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Is It Better Not to Give a Phone Number On Your Website

I have found that by leaving my phone number off of my website people are more apt to fill out the contact form. Perhaps it is pure laziness or the inability to type that keeps people from filling out forms but I have been able to cut down on lots of dumb questions by removing my phone number. It seemed that most calls could of been answered with an email if they had taken the time to fill out the contact form. So yes I would recommend leaving your number off your website unless you have someone there to answer it all the time. Also it helps you to collect more email addresses if you force them to fill out a form to contact you versus writing down someone name and number when they call and then possibly losing it on a notepad. When their contact information comes into your email it is easy to drag and drop it into a customers folder.
I use these later to email those in one group perhaps interested in Dump Trucks. I can create one email telling everyone to visit my website or to look at new listings for dump trucks or dump trailers. So take your number off your website and save yourself a whole lot of phone interuptions.
Thanks for visiting my blog, Ann Menke at

Monday, March 20, 2006

Prepare for a Long Hurricane Season

Well it sure is getting warm here early this year...and seeing that bad weather in Australia and in the Midwest just makes me think that is going to be a bangup hurricane season. So now is the time to think ahead and prepare. We just bought a dump bed from
for everything from yard work to disaster cleanup. And even if we don't need it I know there is always someone around here that would like to rent it...notice I said rent and not borrow. I will also throw in a few teenagers for a small fee. Don't forget to get yer generator primedup and running for those weeks without electric. I have a wireless connection so I can still get online as long as I have a few hours I can plug my laptop into the generator to recharge the batteries. If you haven't got a generator nows the time to get one before you really need one and plenty of gas cans on hand. We live out in the sticks and the electric is not very reliable so that is something that is a given out here. I still haven't forgotten the gas lines caused by Katrina last year so think ahead everyone....Hope you'all have a safe and happy summer,

Friday, March 17, 2006

Answer All of Your Emails ASAP

I know that most business owners just don't have the time to answer emails and it is not on the top of their list of things to do. I would like to see more business owners show a greater respect for email inquiries for their products. To me when someone takes the time to look at your website and fill out your contact form they deserve as much attention as the person who walks into the door of your office or store. They deserve more than just a short one line email answer in return. After all if you treated a customer that way in person would you expect to make a sale? I know that alot of the people who answer the emails are either too busy, can't type very well or just think email is annoying. Pay attention to these people they are your prospective customers and need the same courtesies as the walkins. Thank them for visiting your website, make sure you put your website address in your email so they can visit it again and ask them if they need help finding anything. Just a few extra lines of appreciation for them taking the time to visit your website can mean the difference between a just browsing or a sale. If you don't have time to answer your emails, get someone that knows how to do email to do it for you. Come up with a well thought out response and save it in a drafts folder for easy copy/pasting to speed up email replies. If you really need help I answer emails for alot of my customers for only $20 per can see a list of my customers here at and be sure to visit my newest one

Thanks, Ann Menke

Thursday, March 16, 2006

To Busy To Create A Blog For Your Business

My customer says he is just too busy to do blogging so I offered to do it for him for $10 per paragraph. I am going to write a paragraph a day about the products he sells with links going to his site in the hopes it will someday soon get his new site more hits.
If you are a busy business owner and find yourself in the same position email me at and I will do the same for you. You can see all the work I have done for my customers at
Thanks, Ann Menke

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Blogging to get your New Website indexed faster

IT can take months for google to index a new site.
One way to get them to index it faster is to create a blog on for free.

For example write just one paragraph per day about dump trailers and put a link in the paragraph going to
Do this for 8 days in a row and after the 8th day google will index the new site.

To get to index your site create a blog thru
Write 1 paragraph per day for 3 days in a row.
Bring your blog in as content on your free yahoo account at
This will cause yahoo to spider your blog and find the links to your website after it sees that you have posted for 3 days.