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An Online Business Website is Your Storefront or Head Office

While it is possible when you first start out to use only sales pages, which are focused advertisements, to conduct your business, you want to eventually have a professional presence. Your website is your official ‘storefront’ or ‘head office’.

put your best foot forward

So even if the majority of your sales are done from the sales pages or other ‘online store’ sites that display your links, you should have a website that tells who you are and what you are about. This should also have your links. Ideally your website will include a blog right on it.

It’s a very smart move to use a free blog theme from WordPress to build your website. So what you have then is more or less a ‘monetized’ blog ; however the blog does not need to be the home page and you can have a nice advertisement or your own logo as the main focal point of your website. It’s also very easy to use WordPress widgets and pages to develop your site.

If you have ever sat even for 2 minutes looking at HTML code (the language used to build most websites) you would realize what a blessing it is that this is all done for you in WordPress (PHP). You would only need to know very basic HTML – just enough to copy and paste your links into your blog posts or pages.

Even at this it is menu-driven in WordPress, but you should know the parameters so you don’t mess up the block of code by placing something in the wrong area. It is very simple to learn just the elementary protocols just by looking at the code logically. It is all pretty much the same in this regard.

Since you now have a professional online presence with your website, you should consider some things. You want to make your website attractive, welcoming and easy to navigate for people. This would involve for one thing, choosing pleasant colors that are attention-getting without being garish or glaring.

Look at it yourself in different lights – how does it make you feel? Relaxed and ready to learn more about the products or business? Or does it make you nervous? If you have too many things flashing and blinking and popping up, the person may leave because it is too tedious to read anything.

Another issue is making good use of menus – It is a good idea to have a horizontal navigation bar that lists your pages, as well as a vertical listing on the sidebar such as would be done with text widgets. Make it easy for people to find what they need so they don’t give up and go away.

There are many other fine points you will wish to consider such as a call to action and making your ‘about us’ and ‘contact me’ pages friendly yet professional. Remember you mostly ‘don’t get a second chance to make a first impression’ so put your best foot forward!

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The Evolution of Blogging

The original acronym ‘Blog’ stood for ‘Web Log’ and ‘personal ‘ or ‘documentary ‘ style blogging would suffice to define that genre as they are primarily catalogues of the life experiences of their author. There are many blogs today however that serve other functions. Although there are quite a few ‘artistic’ and ‘creative’ blogs that focus on collecting poetry and other forms of creative writing, the vast majority of personal blogs are in some sense documentaries.

blogging

What has evolved from a ‘documentary’ style, which usually would just mean an objective ‘reporting’ of current events or in some way an honest ‘review’, seems to be a definite movement towards using the blog platform to voice one’s opinions about the various life events that are no longer just ‘chronicled’. They can be scathing reviews! It seems the public loves drama and the more a writer can emphasize what he is saying whether positive or negative, it seems the more attention he will get – which is the whole idea!

There was a time when for Internet marketing, the blog was formatted or designed solely for the delight of search engine robots – oh and a vague nod to a few human readers. Although SEO (search engine optimization) has always preached ‘content is king’ and you have to assume they want readable and enjoyable for humans, the real focus seemed to be on the robots – the back-links, the keywords, various elements that only a robot could appreciate.

So marketing bloggers were instructed to pick meaningful keywords (relevant to their business and content) and build their articles/ blog posts around those themes. This it was/is said will make it easier for the search engines to index the site and know exactly what is there and which search terms would trigger them displaying your link to someone so that you might generate ‘targeted’ traffic. This still seems quite logical if you look at it that way. Particularly if your blog is apart from your business website you might want to stick with these concepts.

However if you had the insight to build your website on a blog platform like WordPress, then it doesn’t really matter what your blog post is about – people and robots are still going to be directed to your domain when you post ‘fresh content’ and it is re-indexing time. Hence there appears to be a trend going back to the documentary or personal journal style of blogging where people are talking about any number of interests that do not include their business. (remember this is ok if you are on the business’ website). Otherwise unless you are trying to grow a following as a writer, commentator or journalist, you probably want to stay focused on why you are blogging in the first place = TRAFFIC for your business.

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