Monday, August 31, 2015
Determine what you plan to use your Web site for. GoDaddy hosts small business and personal Web sites. Visit the GoDaddy 'Hosting Plans' Web page to view your options (see Resources below).
Decide how much storage and transfer capacity you need as well as how much you're willing to pay. Your storage and transfer needs will be dictated by how large your Web site will be and how much traffic you expect to get. You will also need to decide whether you will be using a Linux or Windows platform for your site.
Sunday, August 30, 2015
Contact businesses in your community and ask if they have a website. If so, visit their sites. Make notes about each site's look (whether or not you like it and why), navigability (how easy it is for visitors to find information) and its content (whether the information provided is engaging and gives a distinctive perspective on the company).
Check the phone book to gauge the size of the business's ads. This is a good indication of how it approaches advertising and how much it spends. Create a sample website implementing the improvements you have noted.
Check the phone book to gauge how businesses without websites advertise. Visit these businesses and take brochures back with you. Create a sample website for each business based on the brochures.
Research the latest statistics regarding website use (impact on consumers, best ways to attract consumers, fiscal advantages for businesses and so on). Create a proposal that includes your notes, website samples, statistics, website costs (factoring in the costs for Web hosting and basic search engine marketing), information about you and your company, companies you have designed websites for and testimonials from these companies.
Saturday, August 29, 2015
Go Daddy is an Arizona-based company that registers millions of Website domain names and hosts many sites as well as providing email, analytics and business tools.Log in to your Go Daddy Account Manager by typing your customer number or login name and password.
Click 'Web Hosting' from the 'Products' section.
Locate your hosting account and click 'Launch' next to it.
Type your external domain in the 'Enter domain' field.
Use the automatically generated user name in the 'FTP user name' field. If you wish to change your user name, click 'Change.' Enter your preferred FTP user name.
Type and retype a password that you wish to use to access the hosting account with FTP.
Thursday, August 27, 2015
Develop a free offer. Most web surfers won't give out their information unless they get something in return. While information about your product or service may be enough of an offer, the best lead generation sites give away something more, such as a free report or weekly newsletter related to the product or service.
Write compelling copy to entice visitors to leave you their names. The old adage, 'It's not what you say, its how you say it,' is true in lead generation. Visitors need to know the benefits of your offer to them. Not that your product or service is better, but what it will do for your customers specifically (i.e. make them happier, thinner, richer, etc). Your lead page copy should also present you as an expert and increase your credibility with testimonials. Finally, it needs to include details about your offer to encourage them to give their contact information.
Buy a domain name. Visit a domain registrar and buy a domain name that fits your business or service. It helps to have a variety of name options in case your first choice is taken. With some host providers you can buy your domain when you purchase hosting.
Buy web hosting services. Choose a web host that offers CPanel and Fantastico for fast and easy website creation and management. CPanel offers a graphic interface to manage your site. Fantastico offers scripts such as forms, templates for web pages, and a variety of helpful website tools. Hostgator.com is one hosting option that offers these features.
Build your lead generation page. Log into your hosting account, choose Fantastico, and the web site template option. Or build your page using a web design software such as Kompozer (which is free) or Expressions from Microsoft. Put your enticing copy and form information on the main page. Fantastico has form scrips or you can use FormMail. Be sure to set the script to either email you the lead or enter it into a database on your server. The script you use should have details on how to do this. If you'll be sending a newsletter or want automatic delivery of a free report, consider using a list management service such as Aweber which allows you to capture full contact information if you want, but also allows you set follow-up emails and send broadcast messages in the future.
Market your page. Let your network know about your lead generation page. Include the website URL (domain name) on all your online and offline marketing materials such as email signature, business cards, brochures and advertising.
Manage your leads. When someone fills out a lead form, he has raised his hand and indicated an interest in what you've got. Be sure to respond to the lead right away, delivering your offer and following up with more information. Include lead information on all your future communications to increase the odds of a future sale.
Tuesday, August 25, 2015
Select your company name. Your name should be easy to remember. Once you've selected your name, purchase a domain name from GoDaddy.com (see Resources).
Choose an E-commerce site to host your Web site. Volusion.com offers an entire package that includes your domain name, shopping cart and Web hosting, starting at $19.95. Corecommerce.com is another E-commerce site that offers packages for as little as $29.95 (you will need to purchase your own domain name). Both sites offer business e-mail addresses, Web site templates (and the ability to use your own design), marketing tools, accounting tools, data feeds, Google AdWords coupons, the ability to create coupons or newsletters for your store and the ability to accept a number of different payment methods such as Paypal, Google Checkout and credit cards. GoDaddy.com allows you to pick and choose the services you need, such as a domain name or shopping cart. Web hosting starts at $4.99. If you aren't familiar with SEO and online selling, an all-inclusive site such as Corecommerce.com may be the way to go. Both Volusion.com and Corecommerce.com offer a free 30-day trial.
Build an attractive storefront. Take high-quality images of your products and create clear and thorough product descriptions that use relevant key words.
Create your business profile on an About Me page on the Web site that includes some information about how your business began, your vision and your goals. Create a Shipping and Returns page as well as a Privacy Notice page that tells your customers how you intend to use and safeguard their personal information.
Minimize risks by using security measures such as Secure Socket Layer (SSL) certificates such as those offered by VeriSign and payment gateways such as Authorize.net (see Resources). Contact your hosting site to see what services they offer or which gateways are compatible.
Hold a raffle. Advertising prizes will get more people in the door, some of who may walk out more interested in your products than they may have expected. Remember, just because people think they won't be interested, doesn't mean that they really won't become so. Getting them in the door for your party can sometimes be your biggest obstacle.
Keep plenty of samples, so that you can make sure that everyone gets one. Many people don't think they will like a product, but change their mind after using it. Therefore, it is important that you don't run out.
Find a friend who is in a related direct sales business and host a party together. This will give you both a chance at additional customers or prospects, since those who came for your friend's products may be interested in yours and vice versa.
Offer to have a babysitter on hand for those who have small children. Sometimes a mom of a young child feels that she cannot attend a direct sales party like this because her child may disrupt the party. If you have a baby sitter on hand for these parents, they are more likely to come. An ideal candidate would be a teen, who won't charge too much and will like to make a little extra cash.
Monday, August 24, 2015
Start researching home party businesses by attending home parties and looking up party companies on websites such as the Home Party Plan Review. You will need to see what kinds of products are available to sell at home and which ones you would be interested in selling.
Examine the offerings of the companies that interest you to see what your initial investment would be. Find out what each home party company's start-up kit comes with, what kind of support it offers, what it charges for products, what kind of purchase discounts you get and what its return policy is. It is important to have a comprehensive understanding of how the home party company does business before you get involved.
Designate one of the rooms in your home to be your product party room. It should be one of your larger rooms with plenty of center floor space. Make sure your product party room has a television and DVD player in case the party company offers video demos that you can show to customers. Be sure your room is easy to walk around in, and is clean. You can add to the experience of your party guests by investing in some new curtains for your room and putting a fresh coat of paint on the walls.
Decide on a date for your first party and begin circulating informational fliers to your friends and family. Be sure to advertise the home party as a casual event. Most people are familiar with home product parties and may come out of curiosity. It would help to schedule your first party close to a holiday such as Christmas when people may need quick and easy solutions to their gift-buying needs.
Create a feedback form for your party and ask each attendee to fill it out anonymously. Include questions about the quality of the product, the quality of your party room and how interesting your presentation was. Make adjustments to your next party based on the feedback you receive.
Sunday, August 23, 2015
Plan a model for your website by asking yourself important questions about its design and purpose. Do you want your site to cater to particular demographic and community, or will it be more general like Youtube? Do you want to host user-made videos and copyright-free music at your website, or do you plan to distribute copyrighted material in exchange for a fee? If you choose the latter, you'll need to acquire the appropriate licenses and strike deals with content copyright holders.
Choose a web hosting company. This will allow your web site to have an online presence, complete with its own URL. Yahoo! Small Business offers web hosting packages for as little as $10 per month. This includes unlimited data transfer, disk space, audio and video galleries, and web design tools, all of which will be necessary for a movie and music download site.
Consider choosing an alternative, purpose-specific web hosting site, such as Fliggo. Fliggo is a free web hosting agency that will allow you to create a video hosting site without any technical knowledge of web design. At this time, Fliggo is free. Unfortunately, the level of customization involved with a method like this is rather limited, and you won't be able to run a for-pay site. This will, however, allow you to test the Internet waters and find a market before taking the plunge with a custom site.
Hire a team of skilled individuals to help with the development and day-to-day operations of your website. You'll need web designers, content creators, marketing experts, moderators and probably a legal specialist. Unless your consider yourself to be a 'jack of all trades' with an unlimited amount of free time, starting a movie and music download site by yourself will be overwhelming.
Build an online community around your website. One of the biggest problems facing Internet startups is a lack of traffic. The Internet is flooded with music and movie download websites, and your site will need unique features, excellent design and interesting content in order to stand out. Find other websites catering to your chosen market and demographic, and purchase advertising.
Saturday, August 22, 2015
Type a company name in a search engine if the name is known. Use additional extensions like .info and .us if .com does not bring up a site. Scan the results and click on the link bringing up the company website. Log on to an Internet directory such as Yellowbook.com and type in the company name to bring up the site. Write the company’s partial or full address in a search engine to bring up the site. Use a directory or search engine dedicated to a particular city such as At-la.com.
Log on to a comprehensive business directory like Manta.com or Hoovers. Enter the business name provided in the search box. Scroll down the page on Manta.com to locate the title “Find U.S. Companies by Category” or use the link immediately below to find companies by location.
Type the name of a city and industry in a search engine or online directory if the name of the business isn’t known: “tool-and-die makers, city, state” or “restaurant, city, state.” Click on a company website that shows up in the results, or enter the name of the company in the search engine or online directory.
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Enter the name of an association in a search engine such as “professional employer organization,” then scan the roster of members to find the business name and company website.
Log on to Facebook.com and enter the name of a company or put out a request asking for a particular website. Ask friends on line and in person for referrals on a specific type of company if the name and website are not known.
Visit the business reference section at the local library. Use a comprehensive directory like Harris Information directories. Search through industry listings, find the name of a company, and the website in the contact information. Read through Thomas Register and the listing of companies.
Ask through local business networking groups or the local chamber of commerce for names of specific companies and the website url; or ask for specific industry referrals.
Friday, August 21, 2015
Register a domain name for your website. Your domain name is the web address that will be used to reach your website. Your domain name should be catchy, memorable, and easy to spell. You may choose to use your name as your domain name or the name of your production company. Registration for the domain name can be as little as $1 to over $14 per year.
Obtain web hosting for your website. If you choose to have music samples on the website, your web hosting package may be more expensive than choosing to have a website with general information about yourself. Web hosts have multiple servers used to maintain the content and traffic that comes to various websites. Web hosts can charge as little as $3 dollars or over $100 per month. Start with a cheaper web hosting package initially, and as your business and content grows you may be asked to upgrade to a more expensive account.
Sketch out the look and content of your website. Since music producers are considered creative, your potential clients may expect to reach an edgy and creative website as well. Draw out the colors, logos and messages you would like to add to your site. Use word-processing software to check for grammatical and spelling errors when writing your content.
Choose your best music, beats and samples of finished work to showcase on your website. Potential clients need to hear a sample of your work to determine if you will be a good match for them. Make sure any work you upload to your website is copy-written so it is not stolen. Copyright your music through the U.S. Copyright Office (see resources). Allow friends, family and people you may know in the music industry to help you pick out the best media you would like to showcase on your website.
Create your website using preexisting templates or hire a freelance web designer to create your website. There are website templates (free and paid) you can download that will allow you to input information for your site. Web templates may limit you to certain colors and content, so you may want to hire a freelance web designer to design a unique site. Use sites like getafreelancer.com or guru.com.