Today’s Ask Gail: Will My Online Store Be More Successful If I Sell Just One Type of Product?

ASK GAIL: ANSWERING YOUR SMALL BUSINESS QUESTIONS

ASKgail

Hi Gail

“Your online shop should sing the same tune.” This is advice that I’ve seen posted by others.  When I asked my recently graduated business student son what I could do to get sales, he said basically the same thing.  “You have too many ideas going on.  Choose banners OR stationery and stick with that.” The thing is, I think the fact that I’m using paper as my medium, and die cutting the majority of my products IS cohesive. Plus, I get bored doing just one or the other.  What’s your take on this, Gail?

Deb Michalik

SisBoomBaa Papers on Etsy

Hi Deb,

I understand what your son is saying and why others post that advice. It has to do with search engine optimization (SEO). When you focus on selling one type of product or having a niche online, it really helps your SEO because all the keywords on your site are similar. Therefore, the feeling is that you are not confusing the search engine as to the type of products you sell.

But the truth is Google doesn’t just read your shop as a whole. It reads each individual shop section on its own as well, and that entire section can show up in Google search results as if it were its own website. By making your shop section titles three-keyword phrases. and then having each listing in that section start with that same phrase, you can easily offer a range of products (as long as they are all in the paper realm, as you mentioned, as Google also recognizes like-minded products) and it won’t affect your shop’s overall SEO. If you are still not sure how to do this, try my Etsy Shop Critique where I tell you exactly what your shop section titles should be to maximize your SEO.

Good luck! Gail

Have a question about your business that you would like answered on the blog? Send it to attentiongetting@gmail.com.

Weekend Reading for 7/3/15 #FridayReads

by Gail Oliver, Online Small Business Consultant

I am doing something a little different this week, and instead giving you links to some very cool businesses that might inspire you. Check them out!

small business blog roundup

Don’t forget to send me questions you would like answered about your business at attentiongetting@gmail.com for my new feature starting next week.

Have a good weekend and Happy Fourth of July to my American customers! Gail 

Free Small Business Advice

Hello!

I am going to be starting a new advice column on my blog whereby I answer a question specific to your small business. For example, questions such as: “Why am I getting lots of traffic but no sales?”, “Is it immediately obvious what my business is?”, “Where can I find my target customer online?”

If you are interested, please email me at attentiongetting@gmail.com (in the email subject line put, “Free Advice”) or fill in the form below with your website and the question you have.

Please note, I will not be answering these requests individually, but rather my advice to you will be published on my blog for all to see so you must be comfortable with that. It does mean exposure for your business as well as a link to your website. I welcome all types of businesses and industries to submit, but I will choose questions and businesses at my discretion.

Thanks! Gail

Weekend Reading List for 6/26/15

by Gail Oliver, Attention Getting Marketing

Can you believe June is almost over? Why doesn’t January go as fast? Oh well, here are some interesting reads for the weekend.

small business blog roundup

Enjoy your weekend … Gail 

WANT TO CHAT? I offer 30-minute phone consults where I can advise your small business. Click here for more information.

5 Must-Do Marketing Ideas for July

by Gail Oliver, Online Small Business Consultant

My July Marketing Calendar is out and I wanted to give you a sneak peek as to why it is such a valuable marketing tool, especially if you struggle on social media, with getting publicity or just promoting your business in general. So below are 5 of the 93 ideas, tips and tactics in this month’s calendar.

marketing calendar for july

5 Must-Do Marketing Ideas for July

  1. Who doesn’t watch Netflix these days? Every month when Netflix updates its listings, it trends huge on social media. One of my calendar tips this month is to tweet out something about your favorite @Netflix show because they are very good are retweeting compliments, which puts your business name in front of their 1.42 million followers.
  2. Now is the time to be pitching to print magazines to get into fall editorial. Magazines will be writing about fall fashion, fall food, fall entertaining, fall decor, fall weddings, fall shows, fall movies, you name it. So come up with a fall-theme story pitch that involves your business.
  3. Creative Market is amazing! They give free goods away on their website including fonts, icons and graphics that you can use in your marketing. This is just one of many insider tips I uncover for you each month in my calendar.
  4. Two big events this month that will trend well on social media are Shark Week and Comic-Con. I give suggestions on how your business can get noticed when these hash tags are trending.
  5. Remember my post a couple of weeks back, 5 Ways to Promote Your Business at Summer Events? Well, in July’s calendar I remind you to take advantage of free advertising on your car (and your family and friends’ cars) by having a cardboard windshield sun visor made that displays your logo and url.

Download my July Marketing Calendar here!

Have a Question About Your Small Business?

I am going to be starting a new advice column on my blog whereby I will answer a question specific to your small business. If you are interested, please email me at attentiongetting@gmail.com (in the email subject line put, “Free Advice”) or fill in the form below with your website and the main problem or concern you have. The advice will be published on my blog for all to see so you must be comfortable with that, but it does mean exposure for your business as well as a link to your website. I welcome all types of businesses and industries to submit, but I will choose questions and businesses at my discretion.

Thanks! Gail

© 2015 Gail Oliver, Attention Getting Marketing. All rights reserved.

Weekend Reading for 6/19/15

by Gail Oliver, Online Small Business Consultant

Can you believe it is Friday already?! Below are some cool articles to read this weekend, and please read my free offer below.

small business blog roundup

Have a Question About Your Small Business?

I am going to be starting a new advice column on my blog whereby I will answer a question specific to your small business. If you are interested, please email me at attentiongetting@gmail.com (in the email subject line put, “Free Advice”) or fill in the form below with your website and the main problem you’ve been having. The advice will be published on my blog for all to see so you must be comfortable with that, but it does mean exposure for your business as well as a link to your website. I welcome all types of businesses and industries to submit.

Thanks! Gail

Where to Sell Your Products Online

by Gail Oliver, Online Small Business Consultant

I have added a permanent page to my blog for your reference. It is called 50 Online Marketplaces where you can sell your products online, and, as the title says, it includes links to 50 online selling sites.

50 Online Marketplaces to Sell Your Products at from Attention Getting Marketing

50 Online Marketplaces to Sell Your Products at from Attention Getting Marketing

Some of these sites sell all types of products (Etsy, Amazon), whereas others specialize in art (Society6), clothing (Not Just a Label), vintage clothing (As0s), food (Artizone), kids (Buy Baby Buy) and home decor (Houzz).

Some are regular marketplaces (11 Main), some are auction sites (eBay) and some are flash sale sites (One Kings Lane). Hopefully you can find the one(s) that are right for what you sell.

Now, things are always changing in the online e-commerce world, so you may see some of these sites merge in the future. There have been rumours that Wayfair might take an interest in CustomMade and Alibaba (that owns 11 Main) has invested in Zulily, so who knows.

Please note that I did not include businesses like Shopify and BigCommerce as these are considered e-commerce solutions.

Be sure to share this list with your fellow sellers on social media!

Till next time, Gail

© 2015 Gail Oliver, Attention Getting Marketing. All rights reserved.

Weekend Reading List 6/12/15

by Gail Oliver, Attention Getting Marketing

As usual, here is my list of small business news (including a couple of my favorite finds) that you may want to catch up on this weekend.

small business blog roundup

Enjoy your weekend! Gail 

7 Things Customers Want to See on Your About Page

by Gail Oliver, Online Small Business Consultant

Writing an About page for your website is necessary, but tough to do when it is your own business. You can be too close to it to be objective and get your message right. You can also be leaving out vital information that might be stopping people from doing business with you.

how to write an about page

7 Things to Include in Your About Page:

  1. Introduce Yourself and Your Business – Customers want to know the business but also the person/people behind the business. Start with an opening paragraph that is keyword friendly (as Google may read this as your default text) that basically sums up quickly who you are and what goods and/or services you are providing.
  2. How Are You Better – Here customers want to know why they should choose you over the competition (without bashing the competition) so highlight your strengths and how you not only match, but exceed, the competition.
  3. How Long Have You Been in Business – This is important as the more years you’ve been in business, the less risky you seem. Now, if your business is fairly new, then spend some time talking about past successes you’ve had either in your career or other business ventures.
  4. Customer Testimonials – Visitors want to hear from people who have done business with you. Don’t just give a first name, that’s seems made up. You have to give a first and last name and a city. Not all of your customers will go for this, so give them an incentive to do so. Be sure to read my blog post, “4 Ways to Get Reviews and Testimonials for Your Business“.
  5. Other Testimonials – Be sure to include any press your business has received, any business awards it has won, any major sales records (10,000 copies sold to-date!), and any other milestones such as, “Voted one of the top businesses to watch in 2015 by Yahoo Business” and so forth.
  6. Contact Information – I actually think you should have contact information on every page on your website. You never want people to have to search for how to contact you. So give your email, a phone number (if you have one), a mailing address, a fill in contact form and even a live chat (if you can implement it on your site).
  7. Images – Customers want to see your personal photo (I know some people hate this, but it can be a side profile shot or action shot), as well as photos of the business, your workspace, logos of the awards you’ve won and covers of the publications you’ve appeared in.

FINAL TIP: Always write your About page in the first person. You want to be talking to your customers, not act like some distant, mysterious figure.

WANT TO CHAT? I offer 30-minute phone consults where I can advise your small business. Click here for more information.

© 2015 Gail Oliver. All rights reserved.

Weekend Reading List for Small Business 6/5/15

by Gail Oliver, Online Small Business Consultant

Sorry, I know I missed last week but I was swamped with consults! Here is my list of small business news to catch up on this weekend.

small business blog roundup

Lots of great reading in my archives as well. Just use the search option in the sidebar. Enjoy your weekend! Gail 

WANT TO CHAT? I offer 30-minute phone consults where I can advise your small business. Click here for more information.

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