With Instagram, Snapchat, Periscope and more eating up all the virtual column inches these days, good old email marketing doesn’t get a lot of attention anymore. Everyone is so worried about whether or not they’re live-tweeting, self-broadcasting, and keeping up with all the other ‘shoulds’ of modern marketing that they forget to perfect their strategy on what remains one of the most effective platforms – email!

With the holidays just around the corner, now is an incredibly important time to optimize your marketing efforts – especially if you sell things online. Even if you don’t, email is a great way to bring people in to your physical store and keep your brand top of mind as people are filling out their holiday gift lists.


Amazon search bar

Technically, search engine optimization (SEO) is a means of optimizing your website’s ranking in just about any search engine. However, since Google is by far the most popular search engine in the US, most SEO agencies and gurus abide by Google’s standards of SEO best practices. Although the search engine giant is notoriously secretive about the details of their algorithm, they’re open about general best practices such as producing high quality content, good link building, avoid black hat tactics and the like.


Webs coupon codes

As of this week, Webs Pro website owners have a new tool with which to grow their online businesses: coupon codes!

Limited time: Save 40% on a new Webs package with the code WEBSBLOG40 at checkout! Click here.

The ability to create customized coupon codes is one of the most frequent feature requests we see. If you are among the business owners who requested coupon codes, you most likely already have a good idea of how you would use them. But if you haven’t considered this option before, here are a few examples of how you might use coupon codes in your own business:


Screenshot from Amazon Cart Video

The Inbox Diaries is a new series designed to help busy entrepreneurs keep up with all the latest news in small business, marketing, and social media. I’m scouring my inbox every day for interesting tidbits – so you don’t have to.

This Week’s Stories:

1. PayPal Exec Resigns In a Blaze of Twitter Glory
Remember how mom always used to say that nothing good happens after midnight? PayPal’s now-former Director of Global Strategy apparently did not get that maternal memo. In a series of progressively less coherent tweets over the weekend, Rakesh Agrawal let his true feelings about his employer and colleagues show. At one point specifically disparaging Christina Smedley, PayPal’s VP of Global Communications.


If one element of your small business website is a web store, now might be a good time to think about how you could inject a little joy-of-the-season into your site. If you’ve gone outside your home and into a retail store in the last couple of weeks, you may have noticed that the subtle signs of the season have already begun to crop up. Whether it’s the occasional holiday song mixed in, displays of holiday gift ideas, or even seasonal flavors creeping into restaurant menus, you can already feel the shift occurring.


October has officially begun, which puts us smack in the midst of holiday planning season. Savvy marketers (like yourself) have long since finalized their overall marketing plans for the season, but there’s one item you might not have included on that list: your website!

Amidst all the email campaigns, social media planning, online ads, and print ads that make up the typical holiday marketing plan, people sometimes forget to polish up the destination all that marketing is directing people to. If your marketing efforts are successful, you’ll have lots of new visitors making their way to your website. Don’t drop the ball once they get there! Here are 4 things to do this week to make sure your site is serving you best throughout the season to come


Small Business Saturday will take place on November 30th, 2013. This annual event focused on the promotion of small businesses in local communities is in its 4th year now, and has grown by leaps and bounds since it was first launched in 2010 by American Express.

For the uninitiated, Small Business Saturday is “a day dedicated to small businesses across the country” by encouraging members of local communities to get out and “Shop Small” the first Saturday after Thanksgiving. Falling directly between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, this day gives small businesses a chance to compete on their own terms.


Planning how you’ll communicate and find customers for your small business is an important first step. But once you’re all set with tools for your small business website, your social media profiles, and your email marketing campaigns, it’s time to get down to step number two: selling stuff!

This is a great time to be a small business owner offering a product or service. Technology has made leaps and bounds toward allowing smaller operations to compete with big brands that can afford big brick and mortar locations. There are lots of tools out there to help you market and collect payment for whatever you have to sell. Today we’ll talk about two popular solutions: Etsy and Square.


Here in Silver Spring, Maryland it’s a pretty dreary day. So today’s Webs user Example Site post will attempt to add a brighten things up a little by featuring The Beachcat Sail Company of Reno, Nevada!

Beachcat sells customized sailing vessels through their website, and they have done a fantastic job of setting up their web store and supporting sales throughout their site. We’re going to take it piece by piece and talk about what makes it so successful.

Reasons To Believe
Whenever a business decides to sell a product, part of their marketing plan should be coming up with their unique selling proposition, or the best “reasons to believe” for their potential customers. Beachcat shares these right up front on their homepage, citing their outstanding design and performance and their premium materials.


Whether you have a brick and mortar store or offer a personal service, your small business needs a presence on the web. Even if you have no plans to consider e-commerce, there are still plenty of other reasons to build a website. What are they? Glad you asked:

1. Wait, why aren’t you considering e-commerce? While it’s true that online sales are not suited for everyone, you should at least think about the option for a moment. More and more, consumers are turning to the internet for their shopping needs to avoid lines, get products from companies out of their driving radius, and find more options. Don’t sell a physical product? Maybe gift certificates for your services are in order. Even if you decide it’s not for you, a web store is an option that you should consider.



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