Getting Your Online Business Started

Any business starts with an idea. Turning the idea into a profitable business takes time and dedication. It doesn’t happen overnight. There are a few fairly easy ways to turn your business into a profitable website.

Online businesses are part of the internet. The internet is full of people searching for things from all over the world. This is one reason to have a website. You will be able to reach many more people than a local business. In order to get your website started you need to have a domain name. This is the name of your business online. You can search through places like GoDaddy to find available website or domain names. Usually a domain name will cost about 7.99 and up for a year. You will need to pay this cost each year to keep your website or business name online. You want to be sure that your domain name fits with the type of business you have online. If you sell clothes you don’t want to use a domain name that goes with selling pet food. You also have to make sure this is a unique name that is only used by your business.

So you’ve got your domain name, but that’s not all. You have to choose a web host provider. In order for your website to function right you need a good company to host your website on their server. Some good web host providers include BlueHost, Startlogic and Resellers Web host. Make sure it is a reliable company with good reviews. You don’t want to have your website with error messages or saying this website is under construction. If you can’t see your website chances are other people can’t. If you wish to avoid this choice you may wish to use a company like Wix which will do these things for you for a monthly fee.

Now you need to list your business and product information. Even if your business is an Ecommerce website it is still important to have good content. In other words, describe your products well. Also make sure you have good pictures of your products. A picture says a thousand words. Even if you go through a company like Wix you are responsible for managing the pictures, products and information on your website. If your website is more of a blog or information website you may wish to go through WordPress which is free for blog type websites.

In order to be a profitable business you need to make money. You may need to use money to advertise but make sure you are reaching a targeted audience. You want people to come to your website who are looking to buy from you. There are several ways to advertise your website for free. Social media like Twitter and LinkedIn are great ways to do this.

In order to get the right people to your website, be sure to do some good SEO or Search Engine Optimization. WordPress Ecommerce is a great program to use in order to make this step easier. There is a learning curb but if you check forums and do some research you will learn how to do this step yourself. You may wish to hire a programmer if it is too complicated. Be sure to use good keywords and keyword phrases. If you are selling perfume, you don’t want to use keywords like pets, food or words that have nothing to do with your products.

These steps may seem a bit overwhelming, but study each one at your own pace. Stay focused and keep doing what you know to do. It takes time to get your website to be a productive online business but it is very possible. Keep learning and stay encouraged.

Is Your Company Name Killing Your Online Business?

Ahhh… your company name.

Your identity. What separates you from everyone else.

I would be willing to bet that you spent a good deal of time coming up with the perfect name for your company. Am I right?

Something catchy, easy to remember, and unique. How am I doing so far?

What if I were to tell you that your company name is possibly the single biggest hindrance to your business’s success online.

Unfortunately, for many companies it is.

Choosing a name for your business online is much different than choosing a name for a brick and mortar business.

You see, in the real world, a business with a catchy, easy to remember name will get traffic simply from people driving by on the street or walking by in a shopping center even if they have never heard of you before.

Unfortunately, this is not how things work online. Online, there is no drive-by traffic, no people walking in to your business because they were next door shopping.

Online, you must be found among a pool of tens of thousands of other businesses.

Online, people don’t casually browse with friends to pass the time.

Online, people search… and unless your name is Microsoft, Wal-Mart, or another extremely well known and well branded name, people are not going to search for your company name.

Studies show that approximately 80% of Internet users find what they are looking for by way of search engines (i.e., Yahoo, AltaVista, Excite, etc.), and I guarantee you, they are not going to be searching for your wonderful catchy name, they will be searching for the topic they want.

Let me give you an example. Let’s say you own a gourmet coffee business called “The Brewmaster” that you decide to take online. Of course you love your name and create your online identity around your offline name. You reserve the domain name “http://www.brewmaster.com,” keep your company name, and title your site “The Brewmaster.”

You’ve submitted your site to Yahoo as well as all the other directories and search engines. Ahhh… life is good. Orders should start rolling in any minute now…

Guess what? Unless you have a HUGE marketing budget for banner ads, etc., you’ve just doomed your business.

Let’s look at why.

First, let’s look at the…

*Site Title*

Whether you’re dealing with a directory or a search engine, the site title is the single most important aspect of your listing. For search engines, the text found within the title tags of the page is given more weight than any other single factor on that page (i.e., keyword density, keyword frequency, heading tags, etc.). In a directory, your entire listing is comprised of two things, your title, and your description.

In both cases, if the keywords related to your business are not found in your title, your chances of coming up in a search are virtually non-existent. If your site is about “gourmet coffee” then those words, or at the very least, “coffee,” should be somewhere within your title.

*The Company Name*

Just as your site title should have your most important keywords within them, so should your company name.

Why, you ask?! The answer… directories.

In directories, when a visitor uses the search function (which is what the vast majority use) you will only be found if the search term the visitor uses is found either in your site title or your description. Unfortunately, virtually all directories require your site title to be your actual company name. Remember that directories are powered by humans, not software. A human reviews the site, and assigns the title and description that he/she decides is correct. Yes, they all let you suggest a site title, but ultimately, regardless of what you submit, your title almost always ends up as your company name.

Looking again at the above example, this would mean that your title in almost all of the directories would be “The Brewmaster.” This means the only place you would have left to put your keywords would be the description, and this again is up to the editor. This means that any site that has the search term “coffee” or “gourmet coffee” in both the title and description would come up far ahead of your site in the search results, costing you traffic and sales that could have been yours.

*The URL*

Here is another very much overlooked tool. Whenever possible, your URL should contain your most important keywords. Many engines and directories will give your site a boost if your keywords are found within your URL. Also, when you submit your site to the directories, if your URL, your company name, and your site title all match, that will virtually guarantee that you will get the title you requested.

Let’s tie the three previous areas together with an example of what you could have named your site instead of “The Brewmaster.”

Here’s one possible alternative: “Gourmet Coffee Brewmaster.”

The above alternative would give you a company name that includes your most important keywords and the perfect title for your page.

You could then reserve the domain — [http://www.gourmet-coffee-brewmaster.com] — giving you a perfect trifecta. The same company name, page title, and URL — practically insuring that you get the directory listing you want.

Of course, this is only one possibility, but I think this should illustrate the point.

To Summarize

  • Unless you have a huge advertising budget or are an extremely well branded business, DO NOT name your online business something like the above example.
  • Use a business name that contains your most important keywords.
  • Use this business name as your site title.
  • Use a URL that contains your most important keywords and whenever possible, is the same as, or as close as possible to, your keyword-laden business name.

Follow these rules and you should have no trouble developing a very steady flow of large amounts of traffic from the directories, and you will be well on your way in the search engine arena as well.

How Domain Name and Web Hosting Affect Your Online Business?

Since the globalisation has set in, the need of online presence has increased to a great extent. Working in an isolated manner is not an option as everything is interlinked. Hence businesses have to mark a global presence so that they can increase their reach in the market and improve revenue generation. For these reasons, business setups are looking for options, which can help them in getting enough traffic on their websites. But having enough traffic does not guarantee success. There is a need for relevant and valid traffic on the site to increase the sales. Now, the big question is what should be done to attract relevant traffic to the site. There are multiple ways by which one can accomplish the aim of attracting genuine leads, such as choosing the right domain name and having a reliable web hosting service with high up time.

Choosing the right domain name is of prime importance in order to provide a proper sense of the kind of business one is into. While choosing the name, one has to make sure that it adds value to the official website of the company. It is always better to select a name that is easy to memorise and spell. The name should not contain more than two or three words and it is also advisable to include keywords so that your site becomes more result-oriented on search engines. An appropriate domain name can not only generate leads but also help in establishing a brand name for your business. With an easy-to type and memorable name visitors can easily search your website.

A reliable web hosting service for high uptime is recommended for any website. The quality of the web hosting solution can make a huge difference in the performance of the site. Choosing a reliable service provider is one of the prerequisites for a successful online business. With the advancements in technology, not only large companies but also SMEs (small and medium enterprise) can afford having a website of their own. But every provider can not do justice with the website and therefore it becomes crucial to opt for a provider who ensures high uptime for the site. A bad server can ruin the performance of your site and give a bad impression to the visitors, which in turn can hamper company’s sales. Hence it is important to ensure while making a final decision about the website hosting service provider that he facilitates good bandwidth as well as uptime. Making a note of these things can save businesses from losing potential customers. A website with the uninterrupted access can have a great impact on the company’s online business as visitors can navigate the website any time they want to. Proper running of the website is vital and it can be considered as a pivotal factor for a website’s success.

Therefore, a right domain name, domain registration and a trustworthy hosting service can elevate the value of the web portal. The need for quality website hosting and appropriate name forms a crucial part of running an e-commerce website.