Why Your Business Needs a Web Promotion Strategy

The web is the preferred channel for increasing numbers of people who want instant access to information and services whenever it suits them. 72% of searches for products and services are now carried out online, it is the #1 research tool for businesses and half the UK population now go online at least once a day. On a single day in July 2010 Britons spent an eye watering £5 billion online and annual spending on the web is set to grow by 56% to £35 billion in the UK over the next four years (a year on year increase of 12%). Whether you love or loathe the internet, it is an inescapable fact that any small business without an effective web promotion strategy in this day and age is at a serious competitive disadvantage.

Your website is the powerhouse of your online marketing and as a small business owner the time and money spent developing your website will probably represent one of the most significant marketing investments you ever make.

But the sad fact is that 95% of websites fail to get traffic let alone leads and sales. It is simply not the case that “if you build it, they will come”. That is why before investing in a new website you need to have a clear web promotion strategy.

This involves:

Setting measurable objectives
Prioritising the actions that are going to deliver most value for your business
Establishing design requirements from a customer perspective
Carrying out keyword analysis to identify the key search terms that will drive traffic to your website
Building a site structure with search engine optimisation in mind
Analysing your online competition to determine how well positioned you are to compete effectively in your online marketplace
Developing a compelling and distinctive online value proposition that will grab visitors’ attention and make you stand out from the crowd.
Putting together a blueprint for engaging, relevant and high quality content.

Only when all of these elements are in place will you be ready to begin developing your website. Once the site is built you should then configure web analytics and learn how to use the tools and reports to monitor your web performance. Then you will have a way of checking that you are on track to achieve the objectives you set at the beginning and adjust your strategy as you go along.

If you follow this process you should ensure that your website is one of the 5% that are successful in attracting targeted traffic and converting your visitors to warm leads and customers.

Jan Willis is Director of WOW Consulting, an Essex online marketing and website design company specialising in helping small businesses increase their visibility on the web and generate more traffic and leads.

Five Tips to Help You Get the Right Sterling Silver Ring

There is no denying that silver jewelry is exquisite. It is also known for its durability, appearance, and affordability. With 92.5 percent silver and 7.5 percent copper (or any metal), artisans mostly use sterling silver in rings and earrings.

Finding premium quality can be a challenge if you have an untrained eye. The popular jewelry material appears similar to platinum and pure silver and it is hard to spot the difference. However, to find a quality piece, it is important to know the difference between various jewelry materials.

There are numerous online and local jewelers selling imitations. Regardless of how unique and beautiful your ring design is, it is hard to assess its authenticity. However, if you think you do not have an experienced eye to pick up the real sterling silver ring, we can help you. These five tips will help you ensure that you are investing in the real deal.

Tips to Buying an Authentic Sterling Silver Ring

1. Assess The Ring Price: Assessing price is crucial as sterling silver is a precious metal and that must be reflected in its price. It is better to check the current market price of the material before you go to buy a ring. This tip will provide you a baseline to help you assess the ring’s price. Be aware of inexpensive deals and massive discount rates on the sterling silver rings

2. Look For Specific Hallmarks On The Ring: Luckily, sterling silver has certain specific hallmarks that distinguish it from other similar materials. Identifying these hallmarks is not easy as they are mostly in discrete places and can be incredibly tiny. You might need a magnifying glass and good lighting to check them.

’925′ or ‘STERLING’ are the two hallmarks that you can find on your ring when you physically inspect it. If your ring has any of these marks, it is of a good quality.

3. Ensure Authenticity with Physical Tests: This is one of the reliable ways to assess the quality of your ring. Simple, yet effective, these minor tests are harmless and do not take much time.

One way to test authenticity is to check if your ring latches on a magnet. If it does not have the magnetic property, it is pure and safe to invest money in.
Rub your ring with a white cloth, if you see black marks rest assure, you have made the right choice.

4. Talk to a jeweler: Talking to a jeweler will help you determine the price, quality, silver sourcing and hallmarks of the ring. Moreover, the jeweler will better guide you about the latest trends and designs in sterling silver rings.

5. Go For an Appraisal: Getting an appraisal is a convenient way to ensure the quality of your ring. Consult an expert after you buy the ring to make sure you have invested in the right product.

6. Bottom Line: Following the above-mentioned tips will go a long way in making sure you buy an authentic sterling silver ring. Although they are much more affordable form of jewelry when compared to gold, you still want to make sure that the one you buy is of very high quality.

Want to Save Some Money? Play Some Free Browser Games!

With many console games costing hundreds of dollars and game titles usually starting out at 40-80 dollars, a good alternative is to play any of the thousands of free online games. You can forgo the need to purchase a brand new HDTV and the latest audio equipment and simply use any modern computer with internet access to entertain yourself for hours.

Finding Good Quality Games

Often the best way to find the most entertaining games is word of mouth and often Google searches yield excellent search results. I find the best quality games are often found on games portals as they pre-screen their games for variety, quality and hold them to high standards.

Another option is bloggers that are often quite passionate about the newest and most entertaining games available so they are often a very useful resource when searching for new games to try out. There are thousands of these blogs available that are updated daily so I would recommend searching out one that appeals to you.

Game Portals

Online game portals have achieved broad success as a result of increased broadband connections among consumers but even dial-up modems are able to play many of these games due to the small file size of them. The increase of internet access speed also means that game developers are able to create higher quality games with better graphics and game play. Fans of all genre, type and flavor of game will be able to quickly find some entertaining ways to spend their time.

An example of an immensely popular browser-based game portal would be Miniclip which has upwards of 43 million unique visitors on their website per month. These larger portals often feature localization in multiple languages such as English, Korean, Italian, Chinese, Spanish, Polish, Portuguese and French.

Other very large and successful Game Portal sites would include Yahoo Games, Kongregate, Newgrounds and Armor Games. Millions of users every month visit these websites playing a variety of games ranging from chess to zombie games.

Variety is one of the most compelling features of these free portals so you will often find categories such as Action, Adventure, Girls, MMO, Racing and Multiplayer games. As well you can find entire game portals devoted solely to one type of category such as Racing Games or Dressup games for example.

Game Formats

The most popular format used for these games would be Adobe Flash Player. This format has become very well distributed across the desktop market resulting in market dominance. Adobe makes the claim that 98% of US web users have their software player installed. Also one of the best aspects of Flash is it is not specific to PC or Mac, but usable by both types of personal computer.

Other types of formats online browser games can include Html, Java, Shockwave, Unity and the newer Microsoft Silverlight format. Most new computers do not come pre-installed with the above game players so when you attempt to play a game without the appropriate software, it will often auto install the software for you.

Popularity

Numerous studies from research groups such as Deloitte & Touche have released reports detailing the surging popularity of online games. A five fold growth prediction was touted recently in one of their white papers. Developing nations such as China, India and Latin America are poised to introduce millions more of gamers which will drive the demand for even more games and games portals.

Summary

Browser games only require an internet connection and a web browser so why not give them a try, its one of the fastest growing game markets. They are fun, unique, often innovative and the best part they are all available at no cost at all.