Posted by Mike on January 20, 2009
RSS is Your Friend
Your clients will want to know why using a blogging platform will produce more traffic and interest than a standard site. Blogging involves interaction between your customers and their customers.
Over on the left sidebar, you will notice that there is an icon for “RSS” feed readers.
As a savvy web user yourself, I lay strong odds that you yourself make use of RSS, and don’t need an explanation of how it works. The sites that you have added to your reader send an alert to your reader that there is a new update to read. Since adding RSS and a reader to my daily activities I have almost forgotten that my browser has a “Bookmarks” feature.
Bookmarks work well enough, and are handy for saving sites for later reference. As you know, it is hardly efficient to scan through your bookmarks to find new content on the linked sites. If you are like me, scanning your bookmarks has faded away from your daily activites checklist.
More likely, your routine starts with opening up your reader to check which sites have new content and then you scan the headlines to see if anything new interests you. This is much more convenient, and time-saving, isn’t it.
This is why using blogging software for your client sites is advantageous. You are helping your clients build customer loyalty. If your clients use new posts for product and marketing announcements, then their customers and visitors are going to see the announcements as soon as they are posted.
Help your clients by putting their sites in front of their loyal readers on a regular basis. Teach them how to use RSS. Give them a blogging site with RSS capabilities.
Posted by Mike on December 28, 2008
This is How to Serve Your Clients
The internet is a dynamic web. Allow me to take you down memory lane, to the wild days of the internet. Let me take you back to my first experiences with static pages supplied by Internet Service Providers.
Do you remember when you first signed up with your ISP? A key selling point for them was that they provided you with a “Home Page.” I can bet that most likely you posted pictures of your fanily; with your kids, your dogs, your ski trips and your considered personal thoughts on the world. As you started buildng your pages, you became frustrated with the limitations of the medium. The pre-set pages were standard, with few options for personalizing.
Your next step was to learn how to build your own custom pages using a text editor to code raw .html. You built tables. You added gifs and jpegs. Perhaps you even added audio files, so that people could listen to your favorite midi files. You were getting pretty good at this .html thing, and your neighbor who owned a small busines hit on the idea that exposure on the internet would be a great way to attract new customers.
You helped your neighbor register a domain name. You helped your neighbor choose a hosting service. You designed a site, and your neighbor paid you a few hundred dollars for your services and you decided that this is a great way to supplement your income.
Then you realized that coding in html is rather tedious, and frustrating. You purchaed (or cracked) a copy of MicroSoft FrontPage and your sites started to look pretty nice. Then you switched to a more expensive and more expansive suite of software, such as DreamWeaver and FireWorks as your business grew. You offered Flash laden sites, making ever “cooler” sites available to your customers.
The search engines weren’t finding your customers sites, and so you did some studying and learned how to integrate Search Engine Optimization into your meta-tags and content. The business started getting more complicated as it became more competitive. In order to be profitable, you realized that you had to spend more and more time designing solutions for your customers’ business needs.
What had started as a profitable hobby had become a chore.
All of your research has led you to the conclusion that you need to add “bells-and-whistles” to make your site designs “Sticky.” You scratched your head to develop ways of integrating games into your clients sites, so that their visitors would return and take action (purchase goods, etc.)
Site Design is Getting Stale
Most of the sites that I visit now for small business clients are displaying a stale design and function. The layout of links on the side, drop-down menus and pages is formulaic. To be blunt, it is painful to go to most sites now that don’t take advantage of Web 2,0. It is a signal to the visitors that your client is not paying attention to the new trends in website design and management.
Adapting blogging software, and especially WordPress into the sites you sell and design is a signal that you are ready to lead your clients on another new wave of internet business.
In the next post, I will go into more detail.