user-experience

How does your user experience measure up to your competitors?

None of us can afford to stand still in business. If we aren’t continuing to grow and to learn new ways to interact with our clients, we’re dead in the water!

The global marketplace has defined how we interact with our customers. There is really no such thing anymore as a captive audience. Technology and how our clients and prospects interact with our businesses continues to evolve.

The seven questions in this article can help you evaluate how your user experience compares the competition.

 
One of the more important metrics is to evaluate your performance over time. To help measure this, ask these three questions;

1. Has your customer experience changed since you run your last test?

2. Is your customer experience improving, especially as compared to your competitors?

3. Can you attribute the changes to something you changed on your site, something different about your products or services, or changes within the market?

By asking these three questions, you will be able to evaluate how your company continues to adapt to new realities within the marketplace.

But we must also evaluate how our clients are accessing our businesses online. Mobile now accounts for over 40% of all searches, and this continues to grow and to change the way that we are interacting with our clients and prospects. Therefore, it is equally important that we understand and evaluate the customer experience across the different channels.

The following four questions will address those issues;

1. what does the interaction between your business and your client look like on their smart phone, desktop, tablet, and in person?

2. Regardless of how your client is interacting with you, is there experience consistent?

3. Should your client need to access or complete a process across multiple devices, does it happen smoothly and efficiently?

4. Which of the various channels do your users consider their primary choice?

Understanding how your users are interacting with your company, and how seamless and simple their experience is, will give you a leg up on your competitors. Put yourself in the shoes of your clients and prospects, providing them with the same type of experience that attract you.

Until next time…

Are you ready to grow your business now? If you’re ready to take the next step and make your business more profitable, call me directly at 403-879-4297 or email me at admin@agapimarketing.com

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analyticsWhat the heck is analytics data, anyway?

Okay, your website is live and you have set up your appropriate social platforms for exposure and engagement. What now?

Depending on your business model and your service offerings, your website and other online platforms will serve different purposes.

If you are primarily offering custom services and engaging clients on a one-on-one basis, your online presence may be more about exposure and demonstrating authority in your market place. However, if you are offering products, especially through an online shopping cart, it is imperative that your online tools are all working together to get prospects into your sales funnel, converting visitors to satisfied customers.

Regardless of the purpose of your online presence, it is still important to understand the analytics data gathered from your website and social engagements.

Google analytics is most likely the most recognized analytics gathering tool, however many tools exist. In fact, most social media platforms have their own analytics tools within their platforms.

Okay, so you have accessed your analytics data but aren’t quite sure exactly what it means. Some of the data is self-explanatory, but some might require you to delve in a little bit deeper.

To understand how to get the best results from your online presence, be sure that you can answer the following five questions:


1.  What is a bounce rate, and why do certain pages have high bounce and exit rates?

A bounce rate is basically when a visitor comes to your site and exits directly from the entry page. It is also considered a bounce if a visitor remains inactive for 30 minutes or more on their entry page. But be sure that you understand what this data means. It is far more important to understand the bounce rate for first time visitors than recurring traffic. As long as someone is returning to your site, the bounce rate is not as significant. Find out what pages are recording the highest bounce rate and review them to see if they can be restructured in such a way to reduce the bounce.

2. Why are users leaving your site at specific points?

There are many reasons why you may be experiencing high bounce rates from specific pages. One reason is that perhaps your pages aren’t optimized properly. When you create a post, a “title tag” is developed which is used by search engines to figure out what your content is about. If your title isn’t even remotely connected to your topic, visitors might leave your site immediately. Make sure that you’re not playing games, creating a title tag that is highly searched in the hopes that you will attract visitors to your site. All you will do is create an animosity with the site visitor, and alienate them from ever visiting your site again.

Also, ensure that the content that you are providing for your visitors gives them something. Helping people understand an issue or providing helpful tips will create loyal visitors, increasing the potential to convert them to clients down the road.

And make sure that your content is presented in a way that is attractive and easy to read. Don’t mix too many fonts, as that tires the reader’s eyes, and be sure to include appropriate imagery.

And always include a call to action. Invite your visitors to take further steps within your site, either by signing up for a newsletter, a reading another article, or giving them a link to related materials. And engaged visitor doesn’t bounce.

3. Why are your conversions lower on mobile than on desktop?

Or perhaps you’re experiencing the reverse; less conversions on desktop than on mobile.

Is your site properly optimized for mobile? Some time ago, Google’s search results started penalizing those websites that were not mobile optimized.  Mobile continues to gain traction over desktop, and if your site takes too long to load or is not optimized for mobile viewers, you are guaranteed to lose visitors.

Most analytics tools will give you a breakdown of where your traffic is coming from. If you find that you are experiencing a higher bounce rate from mobile versus desktop, or vice versa, review your site to make sure that it is optimized, has good load speeds and simple navigation.

4. What is your demographic behavior?

Another great piece of data to review in your analytics is that of your demographics.

Analytics tools will give you a breakdown of the demographics that are visiting your site. You can learn where your traffic is coming from, i.e., from which geographic location. You can also discover ages, genders, and even income levels in some cases.

It is important to understand the demographics of your website visitors so that you can learn if you are targeting your market appropriately. If you are providing a product or service that is mostly geared towards businessmen between the ages of 35 and 54, but you learn that most visitors to your site are men aged 26 to 38, you will need to review how you are presenting your materials in order to capture more of your target market.

5. Does any particular webpage have a high average “time on page”?

The amount of time a visitor spends on your page can be bit of a confusing analytic. While at first glance, it may appear obvious that the longer someone spends on your site or your page, the more interested they are and what you have to say or offer. However, it can be a bit more complicated than that.

First of all, it’s important to understand how this metric is measured. The time that a visitor spends on your site is calculated as the difference between the recorded time of their last page request on the site and their first. Time on site doesn’t account for the time spent reading the last page in the session, therefore it can’t be said to be an accurate reflection of how your visitors are actually using your site.

Back to the understanding of the bounce; if someone is inactive on your site for a period of time, usually 30 minutes or more, it will be recorded as a bounce.

So review the pages the people are exiting from and their entry points to track pages of interest and to gauge what content and what cause of action are most effective.

Until next time…

Are you ready to grow your business now? If you’re ready to take the next step and make your business more profitable, call me directly at 403-879-4297 or email me at admin@agapimarketing.com

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WinLoseHow Do You Measure Up To Your Competitors?

Who do your clients and prospects prefer?

Let’s face it… a free-enterprise based economy provides the environment for a number of businesses to exist within the same industry. Take a look at fast food hamburger joints as just one example. There are multiple choices, yet all of them have carved out their niche.

As entrepreneurs and business owners, we should not fear competition. Competition is what makes us focus our business on our specific target market, and drives us to do better for them.

As consumers of product, we are all familiar with what happens when a monopoly exists; often, we end up with higher prices and substandard service. And although we may dream of cornering the market in our given business sector, competition is healthy and keeps us always working to provide the best customer service and to keep current with trends and improvements within our industries.

Reviewing and improving our businesses is key to ensuring our long-term growth and sustainability.  Reaching out to your clients and prospects is the best way to gauge how your business is viewed.

The following seven questions should help you determine how you measure up to your competitors:

1. If your clients and prospects are familiar with other businesses providing the same products or services as yours, which do they prefer?

2. What is it that makes them prefer one company over the other?

3. What company do they believe does the better job of explaining the product or service offerings in a clear, concise way?

4. Which company does a better job of convincing the client or prospect to convert?

5. What is it that people like or dislike about your top competitor’s newest product or service?

6. What would convince them to switch to your company?

7. What is it that you are doing that might convince your current customers to switch to one of your competitors?

Keep this list handy and refer to it often. Consider polling your clients on these questions at least once a year to ensure that you are continuing to provide the types of products and services that keeps them in engaged with your company.

Competition is not the enemy; becoming complacent in your business, is!

Until next time…

Are you ready to grow your business now? If you’re ready to take the next step and make your business more profitable, call me directly at 403-879-4297 or email me at admin@agapimarketing.com

If you like the information you are receiving, please consider forwarding this post.

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Hire ProThe inspiration for this article came from a conversation I had the other day with a family member.

 

This person is looking for employment, primarily in sales. He has responded to several ads and, although he has heard back from a good number of them, none of them have proven to be enticing.

 
 

Why, you might ask?

Well, simply put many of these businesses are looking to hire independent salespeople but are not willing to provide enough incentive to make it worthwhile.

Independent salespeople are, by definition, just that-independent. And with this independence does come some responsibility for absorbing your own expenses.

But when a company expects the independent sales rep to absorb all the risk with potentially little to no reward, there is little balance between employer and contractor and little incentive to jump into the deep end.

A truly effective relationship between a company and their independent reps is based on mutual respect, level expectations, and for both parties to be invested in the process.

Independent reps must expect that there will be some risk involved in accepting the role. Each person must be comfortable with the level of risk that they are willing to accept, based on what they expect in terms of results.

While some positions require some level of financial commitment from the independent rep it would be fair to say that all of them require a level of commitment. These reps must be prepared to invest a certain amount of time and energy into any role. The amount of money, time, and effort should be clearly delineated at the time of engagement, and mutually agreed-upon by both the company and the rep.

It is equally important in this equation that the company is invested in their rep. Keep in mind that these individuals are out there representing your business, and if they feel that they are being mishandled or mistreated, is it reasonable to expect that they will give their best and represent your company in the most favorable light?

Businesses must be fair when looking to bring on independent representatives. As a small business owner, I understand the value of hiring independent reps. It is a way of managing expenses while growing your business, when done fairly and properly. But to expect an individual to invest significant cash as well as time and energy, with no support of any kind from the business, creates an uneven playing field and a potentially toxic environment.

Don’t risk your businesses reputation. Be fair to employees and independent contractors alike, and your business will thrive. Take advantage of others at your own risk.

Until next time…

Are you ready to grow your business now? If you’re ready to take the next step and make your business more profitable, call me directly at 403-879-4297 or email me at admin@agapimarketing.com

If you like the information you are receiving, please consider forwarding this post.

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BrandHow is your brand perceived?

Presenting a unified brand-one that resonates with clients and prospects-is perhaps the number one element that will determine the success or the failure of your business.

As mentioned in previous articles, a brand is so much more than simply a logo. Your brand should define your company; what it represents, the guiding principles, and how you do business. It is a combination of colors, logo, and a clear representation of your core values.

 

When considering your brand, consider these following six questions to ensure an accurate depiction of your business.

1. How do clients and perspective clients perceive your company?

This is perhaps one of the most important factors. How your clients and prospects perceive your company will determine their interest in doing business with you.

2. What words would they use to describe you?
From time to time, ask your clients how they would describe your company. Also, you could consider an online poll to reach prospective clients and gauge their response.

3. Do those words match the way you want to be perceived?

Once you have the feedback from your clients and prospects about how they describe your company, compare their responses to what your intention is with your brand.

4. Does your brand appear trustworthy?

More and more, business is being done online. You must be sure that your brand is able to convey that you are trustworthy. But also remember that your off-line presence is just as important, so be sure to develop your brand to show authority and that your company can be trusted.

5. Would they recommend you?

One of the most important ways of marketing is that of word-of-mouth. Aside from the fact that it is the least expensive type of marketing, it is also more likely to create a better relationship with new clients due to the implied trust from the person who is recommending you. When reviewing your brand, engage your clients and ask them if they would consider recommending your business.

6. What do they like and dislike about the way you present your product or service?

Another key question that will help develop a strong, trustworthy brand is to ask your clients what they like-or don’t like-about how you are presenting your products or services in the marketplace. People like to do business with “winners”, so determining how you are seen through the eyes of your clients is critical.

Whether you are just starting your business or re-branding your business, keep these six questions in mind to help develop an identity that has strength and authority.

Until next time…

Are you ready to grow your business now? If you’re ready to take the next step and make your business more profitable, call me directly at 403-879-4297 or email me at admin@agapimarketing.com

If you like the information you are receiving, please consider forwarding this post.

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