All of the things we learned this week are vital to having a successful online business. I wish we had been told about this before we started out web businesses. I can see that they had to have us run our businesses and then write about them, so it was necessary, but there is a lot that we missed out on. I am glad to have that knowledge now. I think of the links we make to give us strong connections in business and can’t help thinking about the human connections we make in life that strengthen us and how important those are to our well-being. I think about how Google Analytics gives us all kinds of important information that can help us learn how to do things better and make better decisions for our businesses. The Holy Ghost can teach and tell us all kinds of things that will help us make better decisions in life. I am amazed at what a great tool Google Analytics is, how quickly it can gather vast amounts of information. Our brains can’t do that, but we have opportunities to learn while we are here in mortality, and we will be able to take that knowledge with us into eternity.
This week was a harder one for me. I am not terribly familiar with social networking. I get on Facebook and Pinterest to do my social networking. I don’t know much about Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Google+, and so forth, although I have unused accounts with them. So I learned a lot this week. I am not sure how well I will do on all of these social media sites, but I have learned that I need to go where my customers like to hang out. I enjoyed learning different ways of connecting with potential buyers. My niece just started a new business and is promoting it on Facebook. It is interesting to watch her use many of the ideas we learned in class this week. She has a continuous presence on Facebook. She creates conversations and is quick to reply when someone posts. She advertises sales and suggests Christmas gift ideas. She has had a couple of contests. I have learned a lot from watching her example. It has given me more ideas for my own business.
Snooditude.com has some beautiful faux fur snoods. A snood is a tubular scarf. They are so soft and luxurious to wear! They look classy with any winter outfit. I totally love mine!
This week in some ways felt like a review of things we learned earlier, but I found it reinforced what we had learned and built upon it. I can see how important all of the things we have learned are for building a successful web business. The more I work on my website, the more mistakes I notice. There is so much to learn about creating a web-based business, building a website for it, making it user-friendly and a place people enjoy visiting, and optimizing it for search engines. I somehow picked up on the idea that I should send all of my clicks to the shopping page of my website, where they could immediately see my merchandise. I think that was a smart idea, because it minimizes the number of clicks it takes to arrive at the product. I was pleased with my website in the beginning after all the work I put into creating it. However, I am coming to the conclusion that it could use a lot more work to optimize it for search engines. I never knew all that went into creating a business. That alone is a pretty big deal. But then to put that business on the Internet by building a website is also a rather large feat. I have to admit that it is intriguing learning all of the different ways to make my business and my ads more appealing to my buyers. It has been an interesting project. I am grateful for the knowledge I am gaining.
I learned a great deal this week. It is a lot of work figuring out ads, keywords, conversions and how effective they all are! I can see why people hire advertising agencies. It is almost a science figuring out what attracts people to certain things, the right words to use for descriptions, wording the actions you want visitors to take, etc. I think conversion tracking can help here with pinpointing the ads or keywords that need to change to produce a conversion, but I still feel like such a novice at this! I have a product that is a little hard to describe in a few words and whose name most people don’t know or recognize. It is a product that people really like once they try it, though. I just need to use the right words and phrases to convey that idea to prospective customers. I can see how a much larger spending budget for my campaign could help get my ads seen. I am making a few changes to ads to see if that helps me get more traffic to my site. I am concerned that my site may not be as inviting as it needs to be (because I am a beginner) to produce conversions or sales. I don’t know if I have found the right price point either. All these things must be right in order to make a profit, yet that cannot be the main goal. Giving the customer what they want is the top order, and so there has to be a proper balance with all the other aspects of the business. There is so much that goes into creating a business from scratch! I can understand why serious entrepreneurs often work 15 to 20-hour days. I am finding this to be a beneficial learning experience, and I am glad for this knowledge.
One thing I can say about this class is that there is so much to learn every week. I knew this would be true coming in, because I know so little about doing business on the Internet other than being the shopper. I make so many mistakes as I try to do each lesson, but I learn a lot from those mistakes. I get a little better all the time at navigating my way around the Internet doing things I never thought I would be able to do. I loaded Google Analytics on my WordPress website this week. That was a huge accomplishment for me! I used a YouTube video to help me. It didn’t work the first time, but I figured out what I needed to change, did it, and it worked. I look forward to the information it will give me about my website and the customers who visit it. I’m still a little nervous starting up my business next week. Will anyone like my website? Will anyone like my products? Are my prices right? I know Analytics will help me discover those answers pretty quickly. I am grateful for the knowledge it will share with me. I never knew there was so much help on the Internet for web-based businesses. I am just in awe as a mature woman who has only come into learning how to navigate computers as something more than just Facebook and email the past eight years. I know I am probably still the one with the least knowledge about computers in this class, but I am pleased with the things I have learned how to do this semester.
This was a fairly simple week, but much harder than I had anticipated. It should not be that difficult to come up with a couple of catchy headlines that will attract visitors to my website. Well, it wouldn’t be if people were more familiar with the name of my product, which is probably the reason my competition is low. Also, trying to use more popular keywords added to the difficulty of creating a great campaign. I think I still need to rework and rewrite it, so I can have success persuading people to check out my website. One of the reasons I am having difficulty with this is that I usually don’t pay attention to ads. In fact, I rarely watch TV shows that have ads. It is quite foreign to me anymore. I admire people who write ads for a living. It’s not easy to come up with short yet meaningful and attractive ads. This week’s work has been a great learning experience. I am not sure I would ever want to try to start my own website business, but if I ever decide to do so, I have learned many things that will help to facilitate my success.
I learned a lot in this week’s lessons. I knew I used keywords in my searches and that the more accurate they were, the better chance I had in finding the items for which I was looking. I did not realize how much work goes into deciding the best words to use to allow someone to find an item or service to be sold. People are so different. The task of choosing the best keywords and making effective ads is a science and an art. Much research has been done in marketing to facilitate learning the secrets to successful campaigns. It takes knowledge, resourcefulness, creativity, and skill to come up with words and ads that will entice customers to websites. I can see why people hire firms to do that for them. This exercise helped me figure out why some of the words I chose were good to use and why some of them would not be beneficial in getting the number of clicks I desire. A business can only be successful if it has customers. Attracting interested buyers is not an easy thing to do. It requires careful thought and planning. I am grateful for the knowledge I gained this week that will help me better work my business.
There is so much that goes into starting a business! There are so many things to understand about legality. I learned a lot about the legal structure of going into business. If I were to start my own business to try to add income to our family on a regular basis, I would hire the services of a lawyer to ensure that all of the things I was doing and preparing were within the bounds of the laws of the land. There is no way I could understand all the pages and pages of instructions and how they affect my business on my own. I learned it was not as expensive to start a small business as I thought it might be. Our state seems rather friendly toward small businesses and gives them a fighting chance. The permits required for “brick and mortar” businesses aren’t as hefty as I thought they would be. I’m sure there are plenty of taxes to pay once a business gets up and running, but I feel our state tries to help small businesses succeed. That’s good for our community and good for America.
This has been a most interesting week. We are learning so much about designing our websites. It may sound ironic, but the more I learn, the more I realize how much I don’t know. I think I am getting a little anxious about how my site will look and if I will be able to figure out all the things I need to do. My host has assured me that it is mostly “drag and drop” and that I can get support from them if I have any problems. I am trusting that this is true. I have gotten a lot of great ideas from my classmates about designing my website—things I hadn’t thought about, like ensuring the writing is timeless, rather than something that needs frequent updating. I was also reminded of how important my content is. I appreciate my classmates’ comments about having a PayPal button on my site. They shared so many ideas that I can check into, since my site requires a PayPal button. I didn’t know that we could design our button’s look. Although I feel terribly unskilled at this, I will work to make my website look and be as professional as I can make it.