So often when starting a small business, the founder(s) where multiple hats. Branding in the beginning is generally thought of nothing more than as a website, a logo, maybe a banner or sign by the road for the business. Is that really all there is to it, some fancy website, logo, or signage?
Not at all, that’s only the tip of the iceberg but is often the easy part. Getting started does not take much more than some money and trying to find a graphic designer or web designer. Technology has provided so many new cool tools for business owners, that depending on how savvy you are, you can have a logo and website up in a matter of hours. Which makes the DIY person kind of dangerous. Dangerous how you may be thinking.
Dangerous in the fact they think they know what they are doing. They see some fancy 10 sec ad on social media to build your own website for free and you only must buy the domain and hosting from them. These cookie cutter website builders lead you to believe that your website will be set up properly and will provide search engine optimization. Here is my question. If you do not how to build a website, how do you know if these tools you are going to use will have your website set up correctly and what is SEO really?
The answer to the first part is you do not. Just like liquidation so many people take things at face value and do not do the level of research needed when making this decision. It is on the internet so it must be true and legit, right? So, they go create an account at one of the websites that let you build some Drag and drop website. If you’re a creative person, they make building the front-end fun and a breeze. Drag and drop is the new plug and play. Where they get you is with the add On’s, The domain name, the hosting, and email services.
I cannot tell you how many people I have talked to that have gone this route, only to find out that at the end of they day, they do not own their domain. Meaning if you ever decide to leave them and go to someone like GoDaddy, you cannot take your domain with you. Now you must start all over. Talk about a branding nightmare, not to mention waste of time. If you catch this in the beginning maybe less catastrophic but still a complete pain in the ass. When it comes to branding owning you domain is EVERYTHING.
Often times this is where we step in and help people get set up properly. Only to find they paid for some add on to get a branded email. People get caught up in this because they do not know what they do not know. Most people do not realize how much money they are throwing away by not just hosting there website. When you host your own website, it comes with 100 email address for free. Then there is the hosting portion. When we ask customers why they are not hosting their own site. We often hear the same response. I do not know anything about that. Hosting your own site does not take a degree in graphic design. It is like owning a car. Most people do not know how to fix a car, so you take it the mechanic let them work on it, fix the issue and off you go. Hosting a website can be done for around a $100 a year.
There is no reason to not be hosting your own domain. A website is a huge piece of your branding and maintaining control and staying compliant with the ever-changing PHP standards and search engine requirements. This is crucial to get organic traffic and make sure you site is ranking well for industry related searches. The World Wide Web is a black hole of information, so if your pages are not set correctly and do not meet search engine optimization requirements you still will not get found.
The first step in getting found in any industry is a industry related domain. With 60,000 searches happening every second, and a decade worth of data to look at. Picking a domain can extremely profitable. Let’s unpack that some. When working with clients, we understand branding on the internet. We also understand what opportunities there are when it comes to high traffic key words. High performing key word domains can be a huge opportunity to jump start a business with organic traffic.
For example, let’s say you want to start a Christmas light installation business. First thing people tend to do is pick a business name based on what domain is available. Let’s say, they live in Georgia, so they start searching go daddy for available domains. They narrow it down to Atlanta Christmas lighting and Atlanta’s Christmas Lights. Is one better then the other? If so, how do you know?
The average person will never know. This is why so many people end up spending tons of money in ad dollars. When we have the opportunity to work with a company from the very beginning and we are providing insight on what domain to pick. This is how we pick. We research the keywords around the business, so for the domains in my example, Atlanta Christmas lighting gets 5000 searches a month, where Atlanta’s Christmas Lights gets 50,000 searches a month and during the holiday season it gets 250,000 a month.
If you would have picked Atlanta’s Christmas lights. You just picked a real money maker!
So what does that mean? Well, it means if you build a compliant website that has some good content, it will rank well. Which means you have a real chance of getting those 50,000 to 250,000 people to land on your site. Which means MONEY! Not only does it mean money, but it is also free traffic, because it will be organic traffic. This is how multimillion dollar business are formed. How do you pick a web designer?
Well unfortunately, the web design and SEO world are not that different then the liquidation world. Its full of people and companies that over promise and under deliver. They take your money upfront and their version of what you asked for and what they deliver are often different. We hear so many horror stories of people dumping thousands of dollars into a website only to be unhappy in the end.
I cannot tell you how many times we look at a website for the first time only to find the website doesn’t even have a title. You are probably thinking only a fool wouldn’t notice a website not having a title. This is where people get duped. It not only the front end, meaning what you see on the home page that has a title, the most important title is on the back end. This what search engines use to identify your page and how to rank or classify it among others.
People all over the world are searching on the internet, to the tune of 60,000 searches a second. That’s right 60,000 searches a second. Think about that for a second……………. In the time it takes you to leave your desk to get a cup of coffee in the morning and sit back down. 36,000,000 people have searched something. I often think that people do not really grasp the magnitude of that. That means every hour you do not have a website, or your website is not set up correctly on the internet, that is potentially 216,000,000 people that cannot find you. Unless they know and type your exact URL in the address bar.
I am not sure about you but coming from a generation where you had to remember every phone number, and now with portable electronic devices, that remember everything for me. I could not tell you a phone number let alone a web address. Especially if it is long, has special characters or the name is spelled creatively.
This is where branding is so important, it must be catchy or short. Your logo needs to be related and uncomplicated. If you are not sure what uncomplicated looks like. Download a logo game on your phone and play a round or too and see just how many you know. Then think about the ones you know vs the ones you recognize but cannot remember their name. Then you will have a better understanding of how the world is going to remember your logo.
In closing, if you are not doing what is necessary to get people to remember your branding, how can you ever hope to be a household name. Do some research, make sure your business name, and domain are based on high performing key words or phrases when you can. With so many domains having been bought up, high performing Domains can be expensive. This does not mean go buy a .net or some other odd ball suffix. Just go search anything and see how many listings on page one of google are not .com domains.
If you are not sure where to start. Tellap Technologies will take what can be an overwhelming and scary experience and turn it into an easy, educational experience. When they are done, you will know not only did you get way more than what you paid for, but you can be rest assured your site will be built to out rank the competition. If you are not striving to get on page one for key words in your industry. Be prepared to spend some serious marketing dollars with google.
Investing in your website will always be cheaper than paying google when done correctly. It is the investment that keeps on giving back to your business. As organic traffic is one of the keys to steady revenue. Whether you start this process early or already have it going. Invest in yourself and your brand first. Use marketing dollars to expand your reach or breakout into new markets.
HELLO LET’S BUILD SOMETHING GREAT
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