A 2013 survey of over 3,800 small businesses by Google and research company Ipsos revealed that 55% of small businesses don’t have a website. However, Joseph Pisani of Inc.com notes, entrepreneurs that have jumped to the digital side say their websites have boosted sales, cut down on time-consuming phone calls and brought more people into their stores.
With over 78% of Internet users conducting product research online, is your brand properly represented on the web? We sought tips from Rikki Schneider, founder of Webgirl Technology, a Maryland based company that offers website and internet services worldwide.
What inspired the concept of Webgirl Technology and how has it developed over the years?
Webgirl Technology was inspired by my love for technology, and a nickname my husband has, Schniguy. I stole his concept of being this suave guy, and turned it into an internet based, woman-owned business name, Webgirl Technology. Webgirl Technology first started out just offering websites and has grown to include the Ultimate Online Solution. In addition to offering responsive websites, we offer graphic design, electronic newsletters, search engine optimization, search engine marketing, social media, and online reputation management.
From a professional perspective, of what importance is the right website for any business entity or individual?
Having the right website is critical for any business whether they are selling a product or service. It’s 2015, people are looking on their smart phones to find what they are looking for and they want immediate results. It’s imperative that your website is responsive. This is an approach to web design aimed at crafting sites to provide an optimal viewing and interaction experience—easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling—across a wide range of devices (from desktop computers to mobile phones). Your website needs to have effectively written content in structured paragraphs and bulleted lists as well as clearly crafted images and graphics. Today’s consumer is all about the website user experience. This can make or break a sale.
In creating an international brand, how can one effectively market it online?
For starters, just having a website is not enough. How will your customers find you? Will it be through Google, Instagram, or LinkedIn? After you’ve launched your responsive website, every business entity should invest time in developing effective content to drive traffic to their site and customers through their doors. This effective content targeting through Search Engine Optimization (SEO) will help bring customers to your website.
In addition, social media plays a huge role in driving customers and search engines to your site. Webgirl Technology recommends you pick 1 or 2 social networks to market your business in addition to having a responsive website. Which social network is right for you depends on your target market demographic. For example, Michael’s 8th Avenue is a banquet facility specializing in weddings. Instagram is a great platform to reach their target audience because it is a photo-sharing social network and 90% of the users are under the age of 35.
Seeing that you provide services in English, Spanish, and Chinese, how do you get such a diverse clientele to be comfortable doing business with your company?
The best way to have clients feel comfortable with our technology is to show them. Whether they are in the United States or abroad, it’s been our experience that providing a free demo in their language is the most effective way to provide comfort with our technology. We work in the following countries: Australia, Bahamas, Canada, Chili, China, Columbia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Ireland, Jamaica, Macau, SAR China, Mexico, New Zealand, Panama, Philippines, Singapore, Spain, Taiwan, United Kingdom, United States.
What are some of the biggest lessons that have impacted the way that you work?
The biggest lesson I’ve learned is to continue your education in whatever field you are passionate about. Take time not only to learn; but to learn from the best.
You also need to know your brand and be able to perfect your sales pitch down to 30 seconds. My pitch…. “If your website is icky, call Rikki!”
What would you like to share with readers in closing?
Webgirl Technology works with small-to-medium sized businesses around the world. Our technology is very affordable and effective for a variety of businesses including e-commerce solutions. Brick and mortar stores are going away. Click and order is here and continuing to grow. The true definition of an entrepreneur is someone who works on their business, not in their business. You need to have technology in place to handle business transactions 24 hours a day 7 days a week. Your business should be working even when you’re not, and our platform is the ultimate online marketing solution to make this happen.
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