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Marketing AND Web Design Questions

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posted on Oct, 29 2014 @ 08:57 PM
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Hello! I have some questions for those of you who are up to date with marketing and web design.
I've been putting together mediocre websites and have been doing a decent amount of marketing since I became self employed 7 years ago. I've done some start up business stuff and have sold a few businesses (hence why I've put together so many sites).
Up until last year, I've always had a lot of traffic on my sites. I understand basic SEO, meta tags, content, etc. But for whatever reason, I am really struggling with my current website. I don't know if the market is just so flodded or what the problem is, but I am not getting the traffic I use to.
I use to get 25,000 hits a month! It was really amazing to see those numbers. Now it's like 100...
I switched my site to Squarespace from Vistaprint thinking that Squarespace would generate more traffic, but that is clearly not the case. Is there anyone who has worked with Squarespace who can give me some pointers? Or just general improvements that can be applied to a website regardless of who is hosting it?
I am also struggling with marketing for whatever reason. I had gotten to the point of showing up on the first page of google when appropriate search terms were used. Again, not happening anymore. Any ideas there? Or any other places to post ads for free besides Craigs, etc?
I don't know if I'm turning into one of those people who gets stuck in the "old school" way of doing things or what's going on! But I didn't struggle this much even when I knew very little about web design and marketing!

Stars for your help. Thank you so much in advance.

My website is at www.elevationperformanceinc.com...




posted on Oct, 29 2014 @ 09:40 PM
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a reply to: alishainwonderland

Have you done a word search analysis? It may seem like a dumb question but you would be surprised, do you use google's webmaster tools? Sitemap xmls? Keyword in your content? Do you hand build your pages or use a CRM or content management system like WP? Often times the backend SEO is done with little or no effort with plugins and those are always updated by the creator to stay current.

LOL I just noticed the link, more meta tags, get google's webmaster tools to find out what everyone is looking at, and view your ranking, they have recommendations, etc.

I think you need more content / articles on topics within the site, with keywords that are searched with high volume.

Just a few ideas, and get the google API authorization into your head section ,and if I am not mistaken you're not getting a good index because your use of frames inserted from squarespace. I have no experience with squarespace but there is nothing for the search engines to index in the page source. That is unless Squarespace is doing it for you.

I didn't see anywhere to sign up for news, or repair articles. Number one marketing rule is give something away for a email address to market to. Write a simple Ebook on how to detail a show car before a show, for an email address as an example.

Nice look to the site. Build more content, customer list would be good, customer testimony would be good, customer cars photos, projects start to finish with pics Any cars in shows? Any well known customers? What is your specialty? What do you do that no one else does? Map? Make me want to read an article about a customization you have done. Then post this on a car forum, with a signature and a link to the site. Any local businesses you can trade links with, you already know its all about how many people link to you. If you have other websites you take care of, interlink to them all.

Just a few ideas.



posted on Oct, 29 2014 @ 09:53 PM
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THANK YOU!



posted on Oct, 29 2014 @ 10:18 PM
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a reply to: alishainwonderland

I've one suggestion, nothing like the excellent (and over my head) advice from MarlinGrace's obvious experience in this area. I think trying to target the market you need to the right people is a big challenge. If I was you I would check out this guy on youtube.


He puts up cool car videos on a regular basis and has an 'advertise here' thing on the ends of his shows. He takes time to look into the cars details, and if he gets the owner he gets in close and has a good look. He has plenty of charisma and he seems to get a few thousand views per video (sometimes many many more depending on how viral a car goes). I can just imagine him plugging your website into his look over of cars.

No idea what price he has in mind, but sometimes you have to spend money to make money.
edit on 29-10-2014 by Qumulys because: (no reason given)

edit on 29-10-2014 by Qumulys because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 29 2014 @ 10:26 PM
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a reply to: Qumulys

Thank you too. I've just ran into some mental blocks... and have let some life events (for lack of better terms) really affect my tenacity. There are local people like this guy in the video. I will have to start putting out some feelers.



posted on Oct, 29 2014 @ 10:54 PM
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a reply to: alishainwonderland

No worries! Maybe you can get one of your better cars and have him come over and interview you? But with your website, some things that jump out to me is in the customising section. That first yellow Camaro photo is what people are going to see first. And maybe that's it... Why?
1. It is a very poor quality photo, jaggy and lightly out of focus. You are all about the small details, so I would ensure you have higher quality photo's done.
2. The pics all change in resolutions and sizes. You have to keep it pro-clean-tidy.
3. Took me 10 seconds to figure out I had to click ON the photo to change. Some people will be bored by then, especially after the first uninspiring pic. So I'd make it either automatically do a slide show mode, or have an obvious 'next pic' or arrow kind of thing to click on.
4. I know it will be hard trying to do this, but try and get the car owners involved in picking a good backdrop, simple, but still keep the car as the focal/standout. Also, do the pics just before sunset (or at sunrise if your up early). You will have a warmer quality of light. These cars are about the perfect details, you have to hit it out of the park on how your work translates into pictures, because;
5. Guys (or girls, but more rare) that want hot cars are like peacocks and love people looking at them. So if your cars look like kinda cool, but in a cold uninspiring ho-hum grey skies way. Well, you've lost that customer.

The Plasti-dip market is a pretty cost effective trend for younger demographics, so you need to hook them in. I'm guessing you've seen the dipyourcar channel?


Just look at that guy. It's so unfair. He has a face that he probably has to beat of the girls like flies. My god, those guns. Look at those freakin things! Super fit, super healthy, hot as all hell. Perfect cool hairstyle. God damnit, even his name is FONZ!

But what it all comes up to is he is brimming with confidence, and is grabbing that younger market. They are all on youtube these days. So, I hope your a sexy guy or gal with hopefully a hip-vibe and charisma - and then start up a youtube channel. It's free advertising. You might need to go to some drama classes to up your confidence? Maybe one of the guys in young workshop is wiping grease off his hands onto his tight white ab-stretched t-shirt with a cheeky smile?


Also, I like the grey car-art-logo thing you have going on. But I'm not sure it fits very well. It's grey and a little confusing and is taking up too much page space. Maybe have it re-worked a bit? Start again?


Anyway, I'm out of ideas for the minute! Hope some of my thoughts and ideas give you some non family type feedback that's sometimes hard to get.



posted on Oct, 30 2014 @ 04:28 AM
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now i don't know much about the area you're interested in geographically but from me as a brit taking a first look at it i'd probably make sure you don't need to scroll down to see your mission statement and the side menu should follow it if it does need to scroll, other things would be your brand name could be a bit more obvious on the menu bar

i haven't checked over the HTML etc but i'd say to check out your opposition and see what they're doing just incase you're missing something and i'll assume you're doing all the real world stuff like event visiting etc to hand out flyers as that should generate hits

over all the site looks a bit amateurish with stockish looking photo's and you sell your stuff as cheaper alternatives when it comes to plasti dip, i'd look at slightly rewording it into a more "value for money" way

the shop...one item...why bother, get a few good artists and get them drunk and make a line of stuff from baby grows to ar-15 parts

oh and a gmail address smacks of cheapness, domains are cheap just buy one and have it forward everything to the gmail address as you won't have a phone number that links to a public phone outside the shop will you?

and the most important thing is to get a logo so you can stand out from the crowd



posted on Oct, 30 2014 @ 08:56 AM
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a reply to: alishainwonderland

I like the responsiveness of your design it scales down nicely for smaller screens. I actually prefer the smaller version.

As already mentioned. You need better meta information. Your meta description is the same for each page. You don't have a meta title at all. Your actual < title > tag is the same also on each page. Try and use informative/relevant titles and descriptions. Containing the keywords that the page is focusing on.

Do a little research into the keywords you want to use. You're a small business so perhaps focus on your services/products and your location. Put these into your title and meta info and perhaps add a strapline across the top.

Your site doesn't use headings which I think are important for both SEO and user friendliness. (H1, H2, H3, H4, H5). They separate your content. Add some internal linking throughout your site. Try and have your content link through to your other pages. Especially your contact page. Good call to actions are important.

Place more information in your footer. Address, telephone number, email address and perhaps a repeat of the website links.

Use rich snippets around things like products, services, addresses and other contact info (schema.org)

Some of your images are missing ALT tags. The alt tags you do have are meaningless. Make them relevant or descriptive of the image. They are important. Your images may not appear for some people and those tags will describe what the image is. But also Google can not tell what an image is and reads the alt tags instead. A nice alt tag will tell google you are not putting pictures of dogs on a cat enthusiasts website.

Elaborate on some of the services you provide. Perhaps create some new pages focusing on specific areas or services of your business. Place links in the footer and sitemaps.

Make sure you have a HTML and XML sitemap. Upload both to the main search engines.

This sort of thing " Please like and follow us on whatever social site you use! Use the links in the corner above to find us online." doesnt really need to be there.

Try redesigning your content layout to reduce the amount of white space a little and reduce the amount of scrolling needed to get to the bottom of the page.

Finally I would re-word your main navigation to be more descriptive. (eg: "Customizing and design" could be "Vehicle customization")

Does Squarespace allow you access to the code? or do they only offer a front end design feature? Google analytics will help you out more than Squarespace's analytics. I now realise after writing this that without access to the code you wont be able to do all of the things I mentioned.

I always recommend after purchasing some web space and a domain, hire a professional developer to create absolutely anything you want from scratch. It will give you complete 100% freedom for your site to look however and do whatever you like. Have a site designed for you, upload the files to your web space and away you go.

Though developers aren't cheap. I know, i am one

edit on 1710Thursday102014-10-30T09:10:17-05:001017 10 by Silicis n Volvo because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 30 2014 @ 02:21 PM
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Thank you everyone for your advice and constructive words! I really appreciate it. And wouldn't you know... Squarespace just launched an update for their site manager that gives us users more control of the site. So I've been working with the update they rolled out, as well as implementing the ideas above.

I'll get better pictures of our work as time goes on. Unfortunately this is what I have for now. I am not an artsy person what-so-ever, so I failed in the picture department! But I will make it a point to get better ones. Maybe throw some stock ones in there as well.
As far as the youtube channel, everyone says I need to host one... the whole woman owned automotive business thing would be a big hit I'm sure on youtube. But... again... I have such a sourpuss business face... I'll have to get over my issues of being shy and kinda dry!

Thank you again for all of the information. It is greatly appreciated!



posted on Oct, 30 2014 @ 03:00 PM
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a reply to: alishainwonderland

don't use stock photos, if you want a picture of a bunch of tyres just grab em and take it and it always means you own the copyright and can sue anyone else who uses it


for a youtube channel it needs to stand out so either get a famous face to host it or at least some to make it interesting, no one wants to listen to marvin the paranoid android so to speak

the main thing i can never express enough is to look at your site as if you're the first person to see it, view it on multiple browsers IE/Firefox/Chrome/Safari as its amazing what differences it can make and if you use scripting have the site detect you are using a blocker rather than serving up a crappy site and even get that 90 year old great aunt to try it as every little input helps

in fact a small shop i'd like to see the work as it happens so regular photo's of the work being done would be good and it'll soon fill up a library to display and people can see that you deliver on your promises so a from a rust bitten thing to a fully chromed up job would be a good thing to see



posted on Jun, 29 2015 @ 02:37 AM
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Responsive Web design is the approach that suggests that design and development should respond to the user’s behavior and environment based on screen size, platform and orientation. The practice consists of a mix of flexible grids and layouts, images and an intelligent use of CSS media queries. As the user switches from their laptop to iPad, the website should automatically switch to accommodate for resolution, image size and scripting abilities. In other words, the website should have the technology to automatically respond to the user’s preferences. This would eliminate the need for a different design and development phase for each new gadget on the market.



posted on Jul, 1 2015 @ 06:35 AM
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off-topic post removed to prevent thread-drift


 



posted on Mar, 18 2016 @ 03:19 PM
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I know guys - web developers from Australia , which can help you with your marketing problems. They are great professionals in their field. I have worked with them for a long time and I`m totally satisfied. Good luck!

edit on 18-3-2016 by KatoriN because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 14 2016 @ 06:10 AM
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a reply to: alishainwonderland

Your site doesn't use headings which I think are important for both SEO and user friendliness. (H1, H2, H3, H4, H5). They separate your content. Add some internal linking throughout your site. Try and have your content link through to your other pages. Especially your contact page. Good call to actions are important.

Place more information in your footer. Address, telephone number, email address and perhaps a repeat of the website links.

Use rich snippets around things like products, services, addresses and other contact info (schema.org)

Some of your images are missing ALT tags. The alt tags you do have are meaningless. Make them relevant or descriptive of the image. They are important. Your images may not appear for some people and those tags will describe what the image is. But also Google can not tell what an image is and reads the alt tags instead. A nice alt tag will tell google you are not putting pictures of dogs on a cat enthusiasts website.


Link removed, see your inbox
edit on Jul 14th 2016 by Djarums because: (no reason given)



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