Monthly Archives: March 2011

Website Leasing

Could Website Leasing Kill Websites?

Weighing up the pros and cons of website leasing will almost certainly have you choosing to ditch your self build plans and get on board the most clear and concise way of ‘getting online’. But could website leasing be the end of websites as we know it?

Website leasing, although still relatively new in the digital marketplace, is an area growing rapidly in popularity. If you’re a small to medium sized business wanting to attract new customers or retain brand awareness it’s a perfect alternative to resource-heavy website builds. You know you’re going to hit the top search spots and be accessible to your target audience at the click of a button, yet there’s limited outlay or commitment.

So why would anyone still choose to design and build their own websites and is there a danger that website leasing could change the way the Internet functions?  The answer to that is yes. And no.

Firstly you need to look at the types of website offerings available to the casual user. Generally, a person’s online usage could be categorised into three areas; entertainment and gaming, information and academia or goods and services.

Website leasing comes into its own in the goods and services category, where the Internet user wants to find a product, service or contact for a specific task. The range of tasks could be infinite, but all have the same elements in common – they are all things that your website surfer needs and is searching for. Whether it’s a hunt for a local florist, mechanic or national retailer the principles are the same, they want to find it quickly, easily and without too much effort.

And make no mistake; the vast majority of people will click on one of the top search results Google spits out. Being on page two or three of the results list just doesn’t cut it when there’s so much choice and so much competition. This is where website leasing does beg the question, ‘is a traditional website really the best solution to get noticed?’

Of course there are many small and medium businesses that are enjoying the best of both worlds. They retain a traditional website with more detailed information that caters for existing customers, but they also invest in website leasing for their brief profile, which is what will land the top search positions.

So, that’s where the answer is ‘yes’, website leasing does change the nature of the Internet, but the flip side is that in many cases, no it doesn’t.

Why? Because when you move to the other main categories of online use, people generally fall into one of two areas. Either they are happy to ‘surf’, chat to others and click around for something to entertain and spark their interest (for example YouTube, bbc.co.uk or Facebook), or they know exactly what they want and how to get to it (for example Internet banking or an academic resource).

Will website leasing kill websites? Of course not, we’ll still be inundated with more websites than we could ever imagine, but perhaps by insisting that our online profiles work more effectively we cut out some of the dross currently served to our audience.

Choosing your key phrases

Rent A Website Key Phrases

Choosing your key phrases

Choosing your key phrases

This My Rent A Website post will show you how to choose good converting key phrases for your product or services.

 

As a small business or sole trader considering whether to have a website or if you already have a website but aren’t getting the enquiries you hoped for, the first thing you need to do is check your key phrases.

Your website should have a consistent theme across most of its pages and should be relevant to your key phrases. If you go to Google’s Keyword tool (see figure 1) you can type in some phrases related to your products or services. It might be an idea to add certain modifiers to your phrases if you are in a very competitive market. Modifiers can be a subset of your service, such as cosmetic dentistry instead of dentistry. You can also use your location, e.g. carpet cleaners in Stoke.

 

Rent a website adwords

Figure 1: Google's Keyword Tool

 

Look through all the key phrases and choose ones relevant to you. Bear in mind the object of the exercise is to get clicks through to your website when people search for specific phrases. There is no point in targeting massively competitive phrases as the work required to get your website on page one simply won’t be worthwhile. Better still is to choose a less competitive key phrase that can get you to page one in a reasonable period of time. Once you are on page one then you can work on pushing your site towards the top of page one or even getting more than one listing on the page for your website. This way you are increasing your chances of a searcher going through to your website and calling you.

Don’t forget that searchers looking for your particular product or service are interested in what you have to offer. This is different from advertising in other media as the readership may or may not be interested in what you have to offer.

Why You Really Should Rent A Website

Why You Really Should Rent A Website

Why You Really Should Rent A Website

Why You Really Should Rent A Website

If you are a small business owner or a sole trader then let me explain why I think you really should rent a website.

 

If you are in the above group, what marketing are you doing at the moment? Most small business owners I talk to tend to do a mixture of the following:
Marketing methods of small business owners
Marketing Media/Method Cost Notes
Advert in the local paid or free paper £50 to £100’s per week Many of the free papers are going out of business
Advert in the local freely delivered booklet £40 per month these are usually delivered to individual suburbs of each town and therefore have a very small readership
Advert in Yellow pages £550 Minimum per year Cannot cancel this regardless of how effective it is or not!
Sponsored listing in online directories £50 – £500 per annum This figure depends on the popularity of the directory, i.e how many visitors it has
Leaflets & Flyers £150 for the first print run This doesn’t account for the cost of paying someone to deliver the flyers.
Advert in Post Office £500 For this you will get an image on a screen that is rotated along with other ads to the people queuing at the post office
New web site Think of a number times it by ten, take off the number you started with… blah blah blah… Sorry for the sarcasm. The figures vary depending on whether you get your next door neighbours 15-year-old son to build you a website (hmmmm!) or get a professional developer to do it for you.

The Problem?

Here’s the question… what is the problem(s) with all the above methods?

Not one of them targets people who are interested in what you offer. In other words, if you are a painter and decorator, a plasterer, an auto electrician, a driving instructor or one of the thousands of other small business owners then if you use the above methods you are selling to people who in the most, really, really aren’t interested in what you have to offer. The secret to long-term success in business is to get your offer in front of enough people who are interested in what you have to offer.

Adverts in Newspapers and Booklets

Whilst this can be successful if you are advertising on the prime spot of a large or national newspaper; using a small local newspaper will have a limited impact simply because of the limited readership. Look at it this way, let’s say the local newspaper has a stated readership of 100,000. What percentage of that number will read the paper in its entirety and see your advert.

On top of this what further percentage of that number will be in the market for your service or product at the exact time that they happen to see your newspaper advert? This is why advertising salespeople will tell you that you have to advertise regularly to get any benefit. They are hoping that someone will fall on your ad just as they need your service. And you wonder why you get very few enquiries from your ads.

Yellow Pages and Similar Style Online Directories

It is slightly different if you advertise in the Yellow Pages and other directories, but only a little. Obviously people are looking for your particular product or service – this is known as a hot lead. But if only they would spot your ad from the other 87 or so adverts offering the same service. Yes, you could pay for a sponsored listing or bigger ad but you still have no guarantee that potential customers will call you even though you have spent several hundred pounds for that advert.

Leaflets and Flyers

You have paid good money to have a few thousand flyers printed and now the tricky part… how are you going to deliver them? If you are going to post/deliver them yourself, is that an effective use of your time? How much is your time worth? Also, how effective are leaflets, the market suggests that for a professional, well designed leaflet you are looking at a response rate of between 1 -2 %. Of course that doesn’t mean that the 1-2% will all do business with you. Just that they will call for more information.

Post Office Video Screens and Other Kiosk Adverts

You stand there, getting more frustrated at having to wait in a queue. Are you really going to remember the advert you see on the TV screen or are you more interested in why the person at the front of the queue hasn’t got their money out ready to pay.

New Website

Having a shiny new website should bring in tons of new business, right? Unfortunately it’s wrong! Unless people can find your website you have wasted your money. It’s a little like having a retail shop at the top of the Himalayas. If no one can find you then what’s the point? Nowadays, unless your website is on page one of Google for your key phrases then you have probably wasted your money.

Is there a Solution

Yes, You can rent a website that guarantees you a page one organic result for your key phrases or you don’t pay. The reason this is different is that you are targeting people who are actively searching for your service or product. Lets say you are a joiner in Derby, last month there was 720 local searchers for a joiner in Derby. Now if you have a rented website that targets that key phrase and you are on page one of Google, how many of those 720 searchers will call you? Quite a few I think.