Small Business Exposure Vector

Getting off the ground as a new small business is a challenge all its own. Sure, you’ve got great products and a solid business plan. You’ve got the passion and the drive to succeed. But marketing your small business is absolutely vital for sustained growth, and especially when you are just starting out. You simply can’t expect customers or clients to find you unless you’re getting your business in front of them.

Here are a few tips each new business should consider for getting that exposure:

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Webs Local Listings

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a skill that many small business owners work hard to master. Not only do they want people to find their small business website, but they want potential customers to see their location, store hours, social media profiles, and any other web presence that will convince customers to do business with them instead of a competitor.

One of the best ways to reach SEO success with minimal effort is to perfect your business’ local listing. If you need some background, we have written a number of articles on this topic:

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Flip Number Tally

The evolution of content marketing has been entertaining to watch. We’re currently experiencing a permanent shift away from static, traditional content and towards fresh, interactive content. While blog articles will always be the bread and butter of corporate content strategies, many brands have complemented this standard with more engaging mediums like infographics and video. However, there’s still a form of content marketing that very few brands are aware of and it’s called interactive content.

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how-advertisers-can-extend-their-relevance-with-search_infographics_cover

While big box brands may have the budget to reach a national audience, small businesses have a distinct advantage on the local stage. Not only are people gravitating more and more toward local businesses (48% plan to increase local patronage), these smaller brands are able to leverage local search listings more effectively if they know what to do.

If the hipster movement has taught us nothing else, it’s that people want the things they eat, the clothes they wear, and the places they shop to say something about them as individuals. In that environment, the local business will beat out a national chain in local search results any day. Take advantage of that starting point by making the most of your local listing. How? Check out this research and infographic from Google:

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Happy Tricks Cover Image

Happy Hump Day, Webs readers!

To help you get through the rest of the week, we thought we would pass on Mashable’s 15 magical tips to make you happy throughout your work day!

Bringing a few desk gadgets that you love to the office can do wonders for productivity. It is also just a nice stress reliever to reach for your computer mouse and accidentally grab the toy stuffed manatee you brought from home that reminds you of your kids.

You’ve made your desk feel like home, and sometimes it is hard to get away from it. Taking a walk is a good option to clear your mind if you reach a writer’s block or if you just want to work a little exercise into your day. Moving to a standing desk is also a good option if you don’t have ten minutes to spare.

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Google Search Engine Optimization 101

By the time you are done reading this sentence, Google’s search engine will have completed over 300,000 queries, each one containing unique webpages, advertisements, photos, and other information.  The sheer computing power of Google can be mind-boggling, yet the typical user never asks the simple question, “How does Google work?”

Organic Search
All search engines, whether it’s Google, Bing, or Yahoo, work in similar ways. In order to find relevant material associated with a search term, the engine deploys their army of automated robots (software programs) to browse through billions of individual links.  If a link is seen by a robot, its on-page content, link information, and page titles are stored in a massive index. When a search is conducted, Google’s bots return to those indices and look for webpages that contain the search term. Google then considers over 200 factors to determine a webpage’s relevance and popularity. These factors include:

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Web Design Vector

When starting to build your small business website, all of the pieces that go into properly executing your business online can be quite overwhelming.

From vision, to fonts, to imagery, we consulted our in-house web design expert, Justin, to bring you the five factors to focus on when designing your small business website:

1. Come with a GOAL in mind
It’s always a good idea to know what you want for your website before you start designing.

Is the goal of your site to sell something, generate leads, show off your portfolio, or just display your business hours? Once you establish this goal, you can start crafting the content of the site around it. If you’re an artist showing your work, focus on your art and include nice imagery. If you’re advertising a store front, have your contact information and hours of operation front and center.

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Work From Home Infographic Screenshot

We’ve talked about how to organize your home office, which gadgets to add to your desk to improve your work environment, and suggested tools for telecommuting for your employees. But, have you ever thought about why we continually focus on tips for working remotely?

It’s because it is improves morale for you and your employees!

From the office supplies specialist, NeedaOffice, we bring you an infographic that uncovers all of the benefits of working from home for not only the employee, but also the employer. Take a look at the stats we thought were most persuasive, and scroll down to the infographic for ALL of the reasons to consider remote employees.

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social_media_scheduling

Small business owners are always trying to strike the right balance between the time they spend marketing their products and services, and the time they spend actually running their business. Because of this ongoing struggle, they are often hesitant to jump into social media, having heard that maintaining a social presence on multiple networks can be pretty time consuming.

As with all things, social media management is what you make of it. And having the right knowledge and tools at your disposal can make all the difference in the world when it comes to the amount of time social media marketing occupies. One of the first steps toward making social media less intimidating is to know when, and how often you actually need to post to engage your audience. For the purpose of this article, we look at Facebook and Twitter, since we find they’re most popular with people starting out.

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Content Marketing Institute SlideShow Box Office Success

Every day it seems that the amount of content available for consumption continues to grow. And while we love to give you tips on how to create better content and how to plan your content strategy for the upcoming year, we thought we’d also pass along this helpful ebook we found from Content Marketing Institute on the best ways to actually measure and see if all the content you are creating is working!

With cunning puns on movie lingo, here are the top three tips we took away from the Measuring Your Content Marketing Box Office Success SlideShare:

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