mobile phones

Mobile Surpasses Desktop!

In October 2016, smartphones and tablet devices accounted for 51.3% of internet usage compared to 48.7% by desktop. This is the first time worldwide smartphone and tablet usage has moved ahead of desktop.  We feel this is important for small businesses for an number of reasons.

What It All Means

Think about it.  An equal number of people are looking at your business online presence on their smartphone while out shopping or perhaps from the comfort of their home on a tablet.  These consumers and hopefully prospective new customers expect to find you easily.  When your website pops up on their phone they want a A+ viewing experience.  They DO NOT want to have to push their finger to the left or to the right to follow your content.  Nor do they want to try to enlarge the page to see the super tiny print they can’t read.

Optimized For Better Viewing

Your website must be developed to format properly on smartphones.  Perform a test yourself.  How do you look?  If it isn’t formatting properly we work with older and outdated websites.  The Narrow Door Team can fix the issue inside your content management system, test it and get it working correctly.  Make the move to improve your website to ensure it is optimized and responsive for smartphone and tablet viewing.

Next Steps

The first thing that you need to do is to figure out if your website is displaying properly on smartphones and tablets.  This is known as a responsive layout.  Experiment by opening up three or four popular websites and see how they look.  If the information, images and menu display in the center of the phone and don’t expand beyond the viewing screen then your website is responsive.  If not, get started fixing and updating your website technology.  Mobile usage will continue to grow.  And you want to look good on a smartphone, no questions asked!

Read All About It

Read about this important change at Mobile Surpasses Desktop.


Social Media

Covering The Basics

Is your small business using social media?  Do you have a Facebook page?  LinkedIn?  Facebook and Google+ help your small business.  These pages allow you to share and engage with your audience in new and different ways.  As a result, you will connect with more customers and improved your company loyalty, build your brand and grow your business.

Posting Strategy

You should have a dedicated employee who handles your pages daily.  They are in charge of finding information that in interesting and helpful.  Make sure you have fun.  Offer a trivia question for Trivia Tuesday or display an old picture on Throwback Thursday.  There is no shortage of good ideas!  Help your audience to see a different side of you.  You want to put new content on your page each day.

Experience Matters

Does your marketing team and and web person have the experience and skills to represent your brand?  If not look to Narrow Door Web Solutions to assist.  That’s what we do.  We offer guidance, solutions and perform the posting work for you.  We know the right ways to look strong in today’s challenging business environment.  Big companies have teams of people focused on this.

Social Compliments Other Digital Tactics

Social media is new for a lot of small businesses.  It can be scary.  But to win you must be participating.  A website alone won’t do it.  A great Yelp page isn’t enough.  Or just a You Tube page.  Google comments aren’t enough.  A mix of web, social and other online digital tactics are required to be successful and to be seen and heard.

Getting Started

What important things about your company should your customers know?  Build your topic list.  Look at other social pages in the same industry.  Success will come when you see comments, re-posts, likes and shares. That’s a big step forward.  Play the social game the right way and you’ll be a winner!

Your Reading Assignment

The Ten Benefits Of Social Media


Your Small Business Website

You work hard to compete day in and day out with bigger companies.  So, do you really need a website?  During a recent meeting with a prospective new client he told me “Life without a website is a good reasom to focus on my business.  Then i don’t have to learn about how to manage or update it.”  Fair statement.

Business The Old Fashioned Way

That thinking worked 10 or 15 years agg.  Not today.  Word-of-mouth marketing, church bulletin ads, living on your legacy, thinking you have new customer loyalty and the fact you’ve been in business for 50 years isnt enough.  That’s business the old fashioned way.  Making a step in to digital marketing grows your business.  Helps your new customers find you.  Generates revenue.  Isn’t that all part of good business strategy?

Building Your Online Presence

Online presence means people found you on the website, and became a new customer.  They found you through search, saw you had the product or service they wanted, felt comfortable and are now standing in your lobby. Let’s say you drive by a dentist office and think about changing from your current dentist.  You look up the dentist online.  Nice website.  Good pictures.  Helpful information.  Easy enough.  I’m making the switch.  If there is no website there is no swith.  Lost customer.  Lost revenue.  It’s time you give serious thought to how your online presence is helping or hurting you.

Still Not Interested

OK, you can survive without a website.  Print ads, flyers, Yellow Pages, word of mouth marketing.  Hope.  Prayer.  Sure, those help.  In today’s dog eat dog business world a small investment in a a website compliments thos other tactics.  You ned balance.  Yes, you may think you have a strong customer base but “still not interested” is a bad excuse.  You’re a small business.  Competing with bog box retailers and online sellers like Amazon.  Your survival depends on having a website – and that’s the law!

Next Steps

Make an investment.  Ask for a consultation.  Learn.  Explore.  Look at what others are doing.  Make the move!

Helpful Article

Why Small Businesses Need A Website

bounce rate

What Is A Bounce Rate?

Bounce rates have nothing to do with trampolines or bouncing over canyon rocks.  It has to do with how your customers behave while they visit your website.  By definition, it is the percentage of visitors to a particular website who navigate away from the site after viewing only one page and not interacting with that page.  The longer a person stays on your website the more opportunity you have to sell them a product or service.  Or provide them general education or information.  When they bounce after a one page visit that is a concern.

Low Or High?

If 100 viewers leave your website after a one page visit that is a 100% bounce rate.  When 50 viewers go deeper than one page then you are at 50%.  If they find your telehone number on page one and leave that’s good.  But not everyone is looking for just one piece of information.  The goal is to get your viewers to travel further in to your site.  Explore!  Check out your About Us page, Products and Services, Testimonials, Contact Form – all worthy pages to visit.  So low is the goal.  Go low, and you win.

Improving Your Bounce Rate

improving your bounce rate requires specific changes to your site. Your bounce rate, and improving it, is as individual as your business.  Do you have a one page website?  Many small businesses do.  Is your site layout or navigation confusing?  You may be used to your own site but other new users are not.

Next Steps

Make sure you have a Google Analytics account set up to capture your bounce rate.  Keep an eye on it.  Measure it weekly.  Make adjustments.  Ask customers if they had trouble or difficulty with your website through a simple survey or face-to-face when they visit you.

Homework Exercise

Seven Ways To Lower Your Bounce Rate


shutterstock_47282155I’m Not Playing The Website Game

An article in Inc magazine quoted a study that found that more than half of all small businesses do not have a website – wow, that’s a scary statistic.

What’s Going On Here?

Unless you don’t care about growing your business, or providing better customer service, then I suppose you don’t need one. But who falls into that category? And building an effective website is not that expensive, so there’s just no excuse.  Small business owners are always weighing the benefits of an efficient marketing strategy, and that includes investing in their website.


Traditional Versus Digital Marketing

We find that many small businesses are getting by with traditional marketing.  That means they are buying media such as newspaper ads, using flyers, billboards, radio, or sponsoring area schools, charitable events or sports clubs.  These are helpful tactics that generate results.  When you fall in to the 50% of small businesses that are getting by without a website that means you are most likely not gaining the benefits of social media, blogs, social posts, Yelp, reputation management, pay per click advertising, display ads, Pandora ads, re-targeting or re-marketing.  These tactics are commonly referred to as digital marketing.

Return On Investment

As a small business owner you want to look closely at the return you receive with each tactic.  Can you validate that your billboard is bringing new customers in to your business?  Does your radio media plan give you a good idea of the number of people that might of heard your ad?  Knowing this information will make you more confident about your investment.  Striking a balance between digital and traditional is absolutely essential in today’s dog eat do world.

Now What?

Contact Narrow Door Web Solutions to discuss your media plan.  We will be happy to review it in detail and guide you toward the best approach.  Remember, word-of-mouth marketing and traditional marketing are only one piece of the new customer generation puzzle.

News and Views

Small Businesses Beware!