What is Google Analytics and Why You Should Install It On Your wWebsite?

Google Analytics

google analyticsThis is a free analytic service based on the web. It produces results and statistics as well as provides basic analytical tools for the purpose of marketing and search engine optimization. To gain access to this service, all you need is a Google account. The background of this service can be traced back to 2005 when Google acquired Urchin Software Corporation and made use of its on Demand product as the basis for the Google Analytics.

Features of Google Analytics

The following are what you are likely to experience or come across when making use of this service:

  • A set of data visualization tools that comprise of motion charts, dashboard and scorecards for showcasing changes in data.
  • Different segments for subset analysis
  • Email-based communication and sharing
  • Other Google products such as Public Data Explorer and Website Optimizer are integrated
  • The use of Google Analytics

The primary consumer for this tool is the small or medium scale retail website.

How to install Google Analytics

  • The first step in installing Google Analytics is to create a Google Analytics account. To do this, you need a Google Account that is already connected to other Google services like Gmail, YouTube etc.
  • Set up your Google Analytics account with the relevant information making use of your Google Account.
  • You are likely to come across three steps when trying to sign in to Google Analytics but they are all for gathering information about your website.
  • If you have a lot of websites, then you do not have to worry about creating multiple Google Accounts as Google Analytics provides you with the opportunity of ranking your websites according to importance. You can have several Google Analytics accounts with just one Google Account. You can also have several website properties with just one Analytics account. All you have to do is rank them so as to properly organize your account.
  • To set up your Analytics account, there is no wrong way as your way is the only one that matters as long as it is organized the way you want it. The renaming of accounts or its properties can be done in future but you cannot move a website from one Google Analytics account and place it on another.
  • In your Google Analytics settings, you have the option of configuring where the data for your Google Analytics is shared.
  • Once you are done setting up your account, the next thing you have to do is to click on the Get Tracking ID button which brings about a popup window for the Terms and Conditions of using the service.
  • Agree to the, then you are given a Google Analytics code which needs to be installed on every page of your website.
  • Installation of this tracking code differs from one website to another. Certain websites have specific areas where headers and footer scripts are to be placed and you can choose to have your tracking code there.

The top 5 hosting companies for your website

InMotion Hosting

website hostingThe InMotion Hosting Company is probably the best for all business websites regardless of size and that is why it ranks as number one on this list. Its address is www.inmotionhosting.com and it offers a lot to professional businesses when it comes to offering high performing web hosting services. They offer a variety of plans that are linux based to fit into the needs of customers. These plans also include the standard vps, shared and dedicated. The hosting company also has affordable prices with a starting rate of $3.49 per month and a 90 day money back guarantee. The company also has a reseller plan available for both web developers and web designers.

Web Hosting Hub

The Web Hosting Hub is suited to the small business and also for those looking for shared web hosting. Its address is www.webhostinghub.com and unlike the InMotion Hosting, the only plans offered are the shared ones with no Dedicated or VPS due to the fact that its suitability is not intended for larger sites. Even with its limitations of plans, entrepreneurs, start ups and small business can rely on their fast and affordable hosting which costs $3.99 per month with a money back guarantee of 30 days. The plans of this hosting company have cPanel and 1-click installs that make it suitable for all popular applications.

iPage

The third hosting company on our list is iPage which can be found on www.ipage.com. Known for its low cost prices that are only charged at introduction, this host is for individuals who own personal use sites or are just starting out in business and seek cheap hosting for the price of $1.99 per month. So if you happen to be on a strict budget and need a cheap hosting avenue that has all the convenient tools for your website, then this is the way to go. Its control panels which is provided by vDeck are user friendly and allows for cutomers to easily make changes to their web hosting accounts. Their plans also include VPS and Dedicated.

HostGator

Are you looking for a host for your personal site, your business or your start-up? HostGator is probably one of the best multi—purpose hosts out there and it can be found on www.hostgator.com. Having gained a lot of recognition since its inception, this hosting company is regarded as one of the largest in the world and it is the go to choice for developers and blog users. The plans offered by the site are suited to Windows and Linux based servers. The plans are Dedicated, Reseller, Cloud and VPS for $3.45 per month.

A2 Hosting

Finally on our top 5 hosting companies, you have the A2 Hosting whose site is www.a2hosting.com. Affordable for the price of $3.92 per month and a 30 days money back guarantee, if you want an alternative to InMotion then this is where you should be. Small businesses, Medium size businesses, Web Developers and Ecommerce stores are a majority of its customers due to the fact that it is easy to implement and the plans are customizable.

What is Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?

search engine optimizationSearch Engine Optimization is an aspect of marketing that focuses on the increased visibility in the results of organic search engines. In summary, search engine optimization combines creative and technical elements so as to increase the awareness of a website on search engines, drive traffic to the website as well as improve the rankings of the website on search engines. Search engine optimization is also referred to as SEO and it has various facets to it. You may find that the words on the pages of your website as well as how often other websites link to you all have an effect on your SEO. At the end of the day, search engine optimization is all about structuring your website in a way that is easily understood by search engines.

When considering search engine optimization for your website, the aim should not be based on making it search engine friendly but also about making it user friendly. Before you decide to delve into the whole technical element of search engine optimization, it is important to understand the why of it as well as what would happen if your website does not have it. Take a look below for the answers:

Does my website require search engine optimization?

The simple answer to that question is yes it does but if you need a fleshy answer then go on reading. The truth is that there are three major commercial search engines in the world Bing, Yahoo and Google which is the biggest of them all. Web traffic that occurs is driven majorly by these search engines and although other forms of traffic can be generated by having a social media account, the search engines are the primary source of them. You find that when internet users need something, what they make use of is the search engines which redirects them to what they need. So whether your site provides information, content, products, you are bound to be featured but the problem is you might not be amongst the top rankings.

If search engines are so smart, then why can they not rank my site without the use of search engine optimization?

This is a question a lot of website owners tend to ask their SEO assistant. Even though search engines are smart, they are basically software that requires that human touch to help them along. You will find that yearly, the major search engines update their technology so as to improve results for users but this does not change the fact that when it comes to operation mode, they have their limits. If the right search engine optimization techniques are applied, then you improve your chances of attracting a wide range of visitors to your site constantly but if you apply the wrong ones, then your site might be buried so deep in search results that chances of visibility are reduced.

You want to gain more customers for your business, then you need more visibility on search engines, to gain more visibility on search engines, you need to boost your rankings so that your products and content can be viewed.

How to Find a Domain Name for Your Business

find domainIn a world where Dictionaries are updated every year, you would think that the act of finding a good domain name to aid in your business practices would be easy. The sad news is that over hundreds of millions of domains have already been registered meaning that there are certain names you would just have to give up hope on. For the budding business or the already established business needing to stretch its outreach, take a look at the following steps on how to find a good domain name:

Research

This is where you have to put your internet research abilities to the test as there is no better place to find out if a domain name has already been taken and also which ones are available. There are several places where you can locate domain names such as Sedo.com, BuyDomains.com and Domain Tools.com. They also offer you an alternative to certain names that are available. If you end up finding a name you like, then the next step is to open an account on a domain registration site like eNom.com and pay to register it.

Bring out your creativity

Just like everything in life that has its season and period where it trends, the same goes for the domain name. Nowadays, the simple one-word domain name is no longer fancied and this might be due to the fact that most of them have been snapped up or they are too expensive. This leaves you with no option but to try creating your own domain name. If you decide to use a name that is common, then it has to have an uncommon ending to make it stand out. You can go for certain tags or industry modifiers like: Group, Inc, Tech, Capital etc.

Have the right extension

In the world right now, there is the one popular extension that most people differ to when making use of their search engines and that is “.com”. Try as much as possible to get a domain name that has that extension as it makes it easier for individuals to search you out. Never be in a hurry to pay for a domain name to the extent that you settle for something like “.net” or a shortened or hyphenated version of your business name. If you do this, chances are customers might make an error and send out emails to the wrong domain address that has .com and you may very well lose your business to a competitor.

Make use of words that never grow old

Another way to find a domain name for your business is by making a list of simple names that define your business and its operations. You can also make it an industry based list as long as your business embodies what the names mean. To the names you have on your list, you can then go about adding unique words that stand out. For example, if your company sells nuts, you can decide to make use of an animal that loves nuts such as a “squirrel” and combine it with the evergreen word “nuts”. The result would be SquirrelNuts.com a name that is quite simple but still resonates well as a domain name.

Why Your Business Needs to Embrace Social Media

social mediaIt is the normal order of things in life to come and go. You can find a certain trend in vogue for a couple of months and within the next few months, it has been totally forgotten. We have seen a lot of technological innovations over the years with each new breakthrough bringing about the redundancy of the technology that previously existed in its place but such is not the case for social media.

The truth is social media is here to stay and the sooner you accept that, the better the chances of survival of your business is.  In this modern age, it is highly unrealistic for a business to want to maintain a successful run yet avoid anything and everything that has to do with social media when a majority of its consumers are on those platforms waiting to reach out to them. Consumers at present are now making use of online platforms to shop as well as interact with the brans they love on social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter.

Also, companies can no longer survive on just the random posts or responses to queries as this can give a negative portrayal of their customer service. To make social media work for you, this has to be approached strategically. First and foremost, the goals and objectives of your business have to be clear and this can be anything from increasing revenue, promoting corporate social responsibility etc. Once this is clear, you can come up with a social media strategy but before you do that, look at the reasons why embracing social media is imperative to your business:

Foster trust

The only way you can create trust in your relationship with your customers is if you work on building the relationship in the first place. The avenue by which you can do that since it is not possible to have your office doors open every day and every hour is by having a social media presence which allows for you to create an online community for customers and potential customers.

Direction

Direction: one thing most organizations set for themselves is an objective or goal but how to go about achieving them is something they are left pondering on. For your business, taking the time to interact with customers on social media can bring about ideas on how to achieve your goals and in some cases determine new ones. Social media platforms also have analytic tools which can also provide insights on these things.

Communication

Communication: as humans, we need to be reassured that the people in which we entrust our care and satisfaction to also care about us. As a business, it is your responsibility to make sure that your customers know that you care about them and not only about making profit at their expense. To get feedback about the services you provided or the products created, social media can be used. You can also make your social media account a place where customer service complaints and enquires are dealt with.

Benefits

Benefits outweigh the costs: when making use of social media, there are a lot of benefits you get to enjoy that normally are meant to be paid for in the ordinary world. Such is the case for advertising as social media allows for your marketing team to deploy campaigns aimed at attracting new customers and keeping old ones interested without having to spend a dime.

The Importance of Having a Good Brand for Your Business

What is a brand?

good brandThis is the representation of the view individuals have about a company, its logo, the customer service, reputation and marketing. The brand is also in certain ways the goodwill of the company as this decides if customers are going to continue patronizing it in years to come. If all the areas that make up the business are in working order, then the brand is set to be good but if just one is amiss then chances are, it can tarnish the brand of the company.

Why do you need a good brand?

The following are valid benefits of having a good brand for your business:

Recognition

The logo is a major component of any good brand and it also serves as the face of the company. In most cases, individuals are able to point out the business name of a company just by seeing the logo which shows you how good the brand is. If you want to achieve the level of recognition where your business name does not need to be spelt out in clear letters, and only your logo suffices, then you need to have a simple but memorable logo design.

Advertising

Having a good brand also aids a business in areas of advertising. Your chosen demographic allows for you to build up your brand using targeted marketing techniques that reflect well on it. You have to be careful when trying to sell your brand to an audience as you do not want to narrow your demographic and risk being compacted to a certain area thereby affecting your chances of reaching out to new markets.

Trust

Customers and potential customers need to believe in a business’s ability to live up to their claims and a way to go about building this trust is by having a good brand. The professional appearance given by a business is just one of the steps that adds to its credibility this way, individuals are likely to patronize them.

Financial Returns

Most companies apart from providing needed products and services are in the business to make profit and returns on investments. The publicly traded companies that are constantly valued on the stock exchange are the ones who have high pressure placed upon them to make a return so as to pay shareholders their dividends. A company’s strong brand is one of the things that affects its value on these markets especially if the company has just decided to source out funds for an initial public offering. The more effort a company puts into building its brand by providing good service and products as well as performing corporate social responsibilities, the greater the returns.

Turn Leads into Customers

A business with a good brand is likely to keep attracting customers as it continues to exist. These customers might be attracted by what the brand sells or they might be referred to your company due to one friend or the other being satisfied by your service. To get the type of referrals known as “word of mouth”, your brand needs to be impressive enough.