5 mandatory steps for SMES on the web

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Here’s an interesting fact: 92.4% of start-up entrepreneurs admit to feeling lost like a beaver in a colombian jungle with everything related to the web. (source: me)

Luckily for these entrepreneurs, there are good samaritans (like us!) which simplify the task through a beautiful list of simple in 5 steps. As a bonus, the answers to two questions that we are commonly asked: how much does it cost and how long it takes? (Spoiler alert, the answers will please you, surely not)

1. Create a web site

The first step will be to create a web site. For some, it may seem obvious, while for others, the relevance of having a web site is questionable.

Ask yourself this question: Who is going to do a search on Facebook to find a business? Person. Therefore, it is not because you have a page Facebook that it is not necessary to have a web site. People will look you up on Google and not on Facebook. Hence the importance of having your site, so that you find on the web.

If this is not in your immediate plans, then I would advise you, at a minimum, buy your domain name for you, to protect you, and this, with the extensions .com, and the .ca.

WordPress VS SquareSpace

The phrase “create a website” in search engines has been sought in average 9 900 times per month during the last year. Do not, therefore, think that you are the only one who didn’t know how to do 😉 And there, once the search is complete, you are mixed, like a card game because there are so many options available to you.

I’m going to simplify your life and provide you with the 2 options, which, according to me, are the best on the market, depending on your needs.

squarespace-vs-wordpress

squarespace-vs-wordpress

Basically, if you are planning to develop a web strategy for your business, go with WordPress. The platform is much more flexible, gives you full control over all the elements and allow you to trade online easily. Expect to invest time and patience, if you do not have great skills in web.

However, if what you want is a showcase page on the web, expose your achievements and give your details, then SquareSpace is the perfect platform for you. It will allow you to have a professional website in no time, with little skill, for a small fee. SquareSpace offers a platform for online trading, but it is not yet quite adapted to the French market, or the two taxes in Quebec. However, I just received an email that the payment with PayPal is in beta. To follow…

paypal beta squarespace

paypal beta squarespace

Recommendations WordPress

If you go with WordPress, then you will have to a web host. I do not advise to go with a hosting provider of WordPress, but rather to pass by InMotion Hosting.

Then, WordPress comes with a base template, which did the job, but if you want to push it a little further, there are two themes that we recommend, because Olivier has tested and likes their ease of use and flexibility: Divi and ThriveThemes.

Finally, for your domain name, I highly recommend you buy the .com, and the .ca, as mentioned previously. Why? For you not to do as Olivier and having to pay the .com a modest sum of$ 1,000, on the day you will decide that it is important for your business.

You may have seen recently, different extensions to appear, like .ninja .marketing, .surf… I suggest you NOT to go there with these extensions, simply because people are not yet accustomed. There are strong chances that they are wrong and they cannot find your web site.

Final recommendation: your domain name must pass the test of the bar. What is that? If you are in a bar and you say the address of your website to someone, he must understand the first time how to write your url, and this, in spite of all the distractions. There should be no confusion as to the writing of the name.

To learn how to create your website in WordPress in less than 10 minutes, click here!

2. Create accounts and manage his social media

The second step of your web strategy will be to create your social media accounts and manage them.

On what social media?

The first question that you ask yourself is the following: on what social media should I find myself apart from Facebook? My answer will simplify your life: everywhere.

There are two reasons why you should create your accounts on all social media:

  • To reserve your name. Even if you don’t animate the page now, your name will be reserved for later.
  • For seo. In fact, links from LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, etc are worth much when Google is calculating your position in its search engine. They will help you to better position yourself.

How many times and what to publish?

What you must remember here: it is published when it is relevant to do so. It’s as simple as that.

il faut être pertinent

il faut être pertinent

Publish articles of non-interesting just because you think that it is necessary to publish once per day will play the role opposite of what you want to accomplish. This will lower the rate of reach (the number of people that you join) by publication. You may have heard that you joined between 1 and 10% of our audience on Facebook. Be aware that you will increase this percentage by posting things bright and relevant to your audience.

Tools for your management

Here are 2 tools to help you manage your social media:

  • Buffer is a platform that lets you publish on different social media outlets via a single place. You can also customize your messages depending on the platform, for example, add the hashtag on Instagram.
  • Canva is a Photoshop for dummies. It is a platform that will allow you to create photomontages that are adapted to the dimensions of the different social media outlets. With Canva, you can also create business cards, posters, RESUMES, presentations, infographics, etc

3. Manage prospects

Until now, your company is on a good base of departure: you have designed a website that suits you, you have created your accounts on all the social media and you know how to animate them intelligently.

You are, therefore, rendered to the stage where it is necessary to generate traffic, interest in your products or services. But before that, you need a system that will manage your prospects, or at least the emails that you get from your prospects.

MailChimp VS ActiveCampaign

I have two solutions for you: MailChimp and ActiveCampaign. These are two platforms that have been used extensively by Olivier. He has recently made the migration from MailChimp to ActiveCampaign.

These are two platforms that allow you to manage your mailing lists, design emails or campaigns or professional(le)s, the program and track the results. The ultimate goal of email marketing: report of sales. If you are still not convinced, read this article.

mailchimp versus active campaign

mailchimp versus active campaign

MailChimp is very simple to use and intuitive. It has a basic plan for free if you have less than 2000 subscribers (email addresses), but some functions, such as automation, will not be allowed with the free plan.

MailChimp does not offer a CRM system (customer relationship management) as opposed to the Active Campaign.

Finally, MailChimp offers an option to the automation database so that the logical sequence of e-mail is much more comprehensive in ActiveCampaign.

For those who are lost here, I explain in detail what is a CRM, and automation in the next section.

The CRM with ActiveCampaign

One of the major differences between the two platforms is that ActiveCampaign has a CRM included.

For those who don’t know, a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) is a tool that you structure and allows you to optimize the contact with your customers.

Therefore, you can assign tasks to clients, write notes in his card, send him an email directly, etc … You can also get a list of people who are worth contacting because of the actions they have had with your emails or your web site (leadscoring). By here for more info.

The automations

The automations, e-mails, automated that are sent automatically when a person performs an action.

For example, on the home page of this web site, when you click on “Learn my best stuff” and you enter your first name and your e-mail, you enter in an automated sequence, e-mails programmed in advance.

Looks like this sequence? An hour after you have subscribed, you will receive an email when Olivier tells you who he is, what he does, how to contact, etc

Three days later, you will receive another email when Olivier tells the story of the time where he helped a guy who knew absolutely nothing of politics, and that had almost$ 0 budget, to win his campaign.

Six days later, you still receive one e-mail where it shows you a lifestyle entrepreneur, who has won 232 000$ in a month thanks to sales on the internet. Then, it explains the strategies possible to monetize your web site.

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And it continues like this for 14 e-mails. And then after these 14 e-mails, if you are a subscriber, then there is a high chance that you will receive a promotion on one of its courses.

In short, you understand the principle. It is possible to do this with MailChimp (with a pay plan) than in ActiveCampaign.

4. Develop a strategy for attraction and retention

Now, how does one go thanks to the web, to attract customers and retain them?

The ultimate goal, in the strategy that I propose is to collect emails. Why? Because it’s going to be the lever for your business. This is what will earn you sales.

So, how do you collect email addresses?

Do you think that by inserting a mail box such as “Subscribe to our newsletter!” on your web site, e-mail leads will abound? No, of course not. Is there anything less interesting than to register his e-mail in such a box to capture?

boite infolettre ne pas faire

boite infolettre ne pas faire

How is it done then? It’s simple: you offer something, a gift, in exchange for an email address. This is what is called a lead magnet or a magnet to prospects. Be aware that Olivier has written a blog post completely dedicated to this subject.

Examples of a lead magnet

Concretely, the following are examples of what you could create as a Lead Magnet:

  • Book/Ebook: the 10 mistakes to avoid before buying a home (real estate agent)
  • Video: how to improve your LinkedIn profile to find a job in a week (head hunter)
  • Webinar: how SMES dominate the web (marketer web)
  • Training schedule (coach)
  • Template CV Photoshop (graphic designer)
  • Discount: 15% on your next purchase (any business that has a storefront or selling online)

Regardless of the lead magnet is chosen, the important thing is that it has value in the eyes of your prospects. It should really give you the trouble to create something that has value, because the more your lead magnet will be, the more it will be easy for you to get to know.

5. Create a sales page

And now, the final step of your plan of domination. What you have to do is create a sales page (like this) where your prospects will land, once your lead magnet will be attracted.

To promote your lead magnet, you can make advertising Facebook. This is what Olivier is, among other things, to promote his ebook on advertising Facebook (this is a lead magnet!).

exemple pub facebook olivier lambert

exemple pub facebook olivier lambert

There are some important elements to consider on its sales page so that it plays its role well. You can refer to this article for more details. But basically:

  • No navigation, like that people can’t go to something else
  • A catchy title
  • A call-to-action clear (colors are important)
  • A pitch convincing
  • Video: it increases the rate of conversion (source)
  • Testimonies of people who have read/listened to/tested and who share their experience

This kind of page will allow you to convert up to 50% of your visitors, in contrast to less than 5% on a regular page of your website.

Good and bad examples of sales pages

Below, an example of a sales page correct. It is not bad in and of itself. It is correct. It includes the necessary information, but without extras.

gif power run

gif power run

By contrast, in the same product category, the page below is just perfect. It has been optimized and thought, by putting himself in the skin of a consumer by giving answers to all the questions they may ask. Graphics, videos, statistics, testimonials, reviews, ingredients, recommendations from pros, etc, is All there is.

Tsetse, it is a bit the same principle as for a home page. Try to focus in on a action. You want to bring your customers to ask for a specific action (the one that will bring you sales!) so don’t try to cram your home page, as does Desjardins.

gif desjardins

gif desjardins

Compare with Simple, a us company that wants to reinvent the model of online banks by offering an experience on the mobile platforms. See their home page want to spend a single clear message: “Get Simple”.

gif simple

gif simple

To make a sales page effective

Finally, to make this kind of pages, I recommend using the tool Lead Page that offers a wealth of relevant tools, and that is very easy to use. You can then link to your sales page LeadPages with your WordPress site or SquareSpace.

How long will it take?

Good. I know that you want a number here. But, I can not give a number of hours, it is so different for each person for each company, depending on your skills and how you take it, etc

What I can tell you is that there is not a lot of people that use those strategies, because it is long to put in place. But once they are in place, it works for a long time.

A lead magnet is a long time to do. Advertising Facebook smart also.

It is necessary to take the time and make it a priority. The important thing is to put it in your calendar, block off time to do just that. I suggest you reserve AT LEAST half a day per week for a few months to put in place such a strategy.

How much does it cost?

My answer will surely disappoint (yet).

The idea is to not be afraid to invest in the basics: a WordPress theme that looks great, a hosting platform with your domain names, Mailchimp or Active Campaign, etc… Remember this: the more you put money, the more you will reap money.

If you start in advertising Facebook, during the research phase, it is not necessary to expect that it is cost-effective. It is necessary to test, adjust, be patient, etc, You can start out with 1, 5 or 10 $ per day. Analyze how much you have got to clicks, to leads. But be careful! A lead does not have the same value for everyone.

The ultimate goal is to find a recipe that works and once one has it, sky is the limit! 😀

Conclusion

It is this that determines the web strategy in 5 steps and the answers to the two questions commonly received. Feel free to comment under the article or to ask questions about The Trench if you want details. Now, it is up to you to play!

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