Customer Service Vector

We recently touched on the importance of customer experience and how companies large and small are tuning into this relatively new business area. However, with the advent of customer experience, we can’t forget about good old customer service. Customer service is a company’s backbone, and plays a central part in any business’s success. Yet, in these ever-changing times, traditional customer service methodologies are no longer making the cut. Customers have higher expectations, there is greater competition in the market, and support is no longer an ancillary entity, but rather an integral part of the customer experience. As consumer demands increase, innovating with the changing atmosphere is necessary.  As a small business, it’s the time to up the ante and refresh your customer service strategy.

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Hipster Nerdy Santa Selfie

‘Tis the season for giving; and with days like Black Friday and Cyber Monday just behind us, we know that you have been scouring the internet for the best gifts for your friends and family.

Now we are sure you are almost done with your holiday gift list (right?), but just in case you haven’t found the right tech gift for the “geeky one” in your life, don’t worry – your search is over!

We present to you the 10 impractical but fantastic tech-related gifts for the nerds on your list:

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Growing Your Startup Infographic Mashable

Attempting to establish a startup takes courage, determination, and a slight leap of faith. To run a successful startup, it takes hard work, perseverance, and a lot of luck.

Statistics show, of the 514,000 new business owners in 2012, only 18% will succeed in their first venture. Those who are brave enough to try for a second or third venture see their success rate rise to 20%.

So why are so many business owners willing to take the plunge?

68% believe the odds of their business succeeding are better than others in their sector. And with such a positive attitude, they are more likely to stick it out to see success.

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small-business-apps-cover


It’s an overcast Friday afternoon just after lunch, so this seems like an appropriate time to talk about boosting your productivity. It’s also a great time to scour the web for great infographics, like the one you’ll find below from Middlesex University in London. Many of the university’s graduates go on to start small businesses, so to lend them a helping hand, the school created a collection of their favorite (sorry,
favourite, this is from London) apps that can make life simpler for small businesses.

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fresh

With January coming to an end, this is when the rubber meets the road for people’s New Year’s Resolutions. While it’s definitely a relief to see the surging crowds at the gym starting to subside, there are some resolutions that are definitely worth hanging onto – like keeping your website fresh.

Statistically, one in three people will give up on their new ventures by the end of this month. If you want to be one of the other two people, read on for some tips regarding your website resolutions. We’re going to look at three areas of websites that can go stale, and how you can keep them fresh.

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affiliate

Today’s article is a follow up on Monday’s post in which Webs’ Acquisition Marketing Coordinator Laura Kranz provided an introduction to affiliate marketing for small businesses.

Even if you’ve considered the affiliate marketing channel as a possible tactic for promoting a business, you might never have thought about how you could bring in extra income by becoming an affiliate yourself. While it takes a lot of time, effort, and dedication to earn a substantial income through affiliate marketing, it can also be a hobby to make small profits that are related to the content on your website. However, before you dive in, there are many things to keep in mind when deciding to advertise products and services that are not your own.

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During the month of September here on the Webs blog, we’re going to be talking about leveraging local marketing opportunities for your small business.

We’ll kick things off today (and Friday) with one of the single most important things you can do if you are the owner of a brick-and-mortar operation: setting your company up on Google Places For Business.

Points of Clarification:
Before we start talking about how to get the most out of your business’ Google presence, we need to clarify few things. Since Google itself is an ever-evolving landscape, they sometimes end up with products that are just similar enough that they are easily confused.

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Do you ever wish there was an effective and efficient marketing strategy out there that could bring you new customers while at the same time building loyalty with your current ones? Poof — wish granted.

Referral marketing is a seriously underutilized method of driving traffic and revenue by small businesses, likely because of their limited time, budgets, and tech resources. But the good news is that referral marketing doesn’t have to be costly or complicated. Your program can be as simple or robust as you’d like — the important thing is that you have one.

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Admittedly, the marketing strategy of offering a rewards program is nothing new. But as with the success or failure of many tactics, it’s all in the execution.  You will likely get some benefit from a generic ‘refer a friend’ or ‘spend more, save more’ type of program, but to really maximize your rewards program ROI, think about offering something that really resonates with your target market and reinforces your brand’s role in their life.

Take, for example, Sweetgreen restaurants. They will be our case study today not only because everyone in the Webs office is loving that they just opened a franchise across the street, but mostly because Sweetgreen started out as a small business, possibly much like your own.

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In keeping with this month’s theme of trends and inspiration, today’s example site was chosen for its great use of a major trend in marketing right now: content marketing.

Content marketing is a strategy that involves creating and sharing various types of content (articles, photos, whitepapers, etc.) with the goal of boosting SEO, driving traffic, building loyalty, and acquiring new leads. If you’ve been reading the blog here for awhile, you’re no doubt already familiar with Content Marketing – not just because we’ve talked about it before, but also because a blog is a great example of content marketing!

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