Small Business Toolbox – May Twenty Six

Each week I like to post useful tools and resources that you may be able to use for your business.  The resources I post here are either free or available at a low cost.

I don’t go into much detail here, so feel free to check them out yourself and let me know what you think.  If you know of any great tools and services that will help small business owners, please share them in the comments below.

Tiny Letter –  Owned by Mail Chimp, one of the biggest email marketing services in the industry, Tiny Letter is a very simple service for sending out newsletters minus the confusion in setting up a newsletter system.  Easy to use and easy to setup, great for small and simple newsletters.

Minus – A free and easy to use file sharing service that gives you a generous 10 GB of storage.  Share images, files and video with ease.  They also offer Chrome and Firefox extensions for easy sharing.

Have questions about the best tools to use for your business?  Contact me with your questions and you can rest assured you will receive a response!  Contact me here

A nice post

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How To Embed A Document On Your Website

Have you ever wished you were able to publish a copy of your printed brochure or menu on your website so customers could read it or download it online?  Embedding a document on your website is actually very easy to do and I'm going to show you two ways to do it right now!

As a business owner, there are many useful reasons for embedding a document on your website:

  •  The current schedule of programs or classes for your business
  • A signup form that needs to be printed and filled out by customers
  • A guide or instructions for using your product or service that people can read online or download

You can embed all sorts of different files such as:

  •  PDF and Word documents
  • Spreadsheets
  • Power Point presentations
  • Audio files such as MP3's

There are two ways to host a document on your website, linking to the document itself or embedding the document directly onto your website so people can see the document online.  The benefits of embedding the document over just linking to the files are:

  •  Customers can read the document online instead of having to download it first in order to read it
  • Customers can see what they are downloading
  • Customers may not want to download it, they may just want to read it online

In order to embed a document on your website, the first thing we'll need to do is upload the document to an online storage document service.  I've written about several cloud storage services in the past, but for today, I'm going to discuss how to embed a document using Google Docs (now called Google Drive).  If you don't have a Google or Google Apps account or would just rather use another service, I would recommend Box.com, they have a free plan and it's really easy to grab the embed code from a document after it's been uploaded.  Once you have the embed code, you'll follow the same steps below for placing the code onto your website.

 Login to your Gmail account and click on “Documents”

google drive-the small business playbook

This will open up your Google Docs page

 

Once on the Docs page, upload the document you want to embed

google drive-the small business playbook

Once the file is uploaded, click on the file you want to embed.  This will open up the document in the Google Docs online viewer

 

Click on “File” and select “Publish to the Web” on the drop down menu

 google drive-the small business playbook

Once you make this selection, the linking and embed options will appear

 

Select you linking option

google drive-the small business playbook

#1 Be sure to leave the option to require viewers to login to their Google accounts UNCHECKED

#2 Select the “Web Page” tab and select the “HTML to embed in a page” option.

 

Copy the HTML code

google drive-the small business playbook

Copy the HTML code so we can paste the code on our website.

 

Paste the HTML code into your website

 google drive-the small business playbook

I use WordPress to power my website, here you will simply paste the code in the page where you want to embed the document.  Make sure you're using the HTML page editor to paste the code and not the visual editor.

 

Here's the finished embed

 google drive-the small business playbook

The size of the spreadsheet I embedded is a bit too large for my blog page.  You can adjust the size of the embed window by increasing/decreasing  the Height and Width inside the embed code, it's simply a matter of changing the sizing numbers around to see what size works best for your document and website.

 

Embedding documents on your website isn't very difficult after you've done it once or twice and it makes life simpler for your customers when they can view your menu or brochure online.  If you run into any difficulty with these steps or have any questions about it, you can always send me a message.

 

Small Business Toolbox – May Twenty

Each week I like to post useful tools and resources that you may be able to use for your business.  The resources I post here are either free or available at a low cost.

I don’t go into much detail here, so feel free to check them out yourself and let me know what you think.  If you know of any great tools and services that will help small business owners, please share them in the comments below.

Enloop – Probably the easiest way for a small business to develop a business plan.  An easy to use template, that's fully customizable, lets you create a great looking business plan without the frustrations.  Free and paid plans available.  Read my review on Enloop here.

Vcard Maker –  A Vcard is an electronic version of a business card, great for sharing contact information via smartphones or sharing through a QR code.  This free tool let's you create a Vcard and lets people download your contact information with a click of a button.

Have questions about the best tools to use for your business?  Contact me with your questions and you can rest assured you will receive a response!  Contact me here

10 Books That Changed The Way I Think About Business

What experiences have influenced you the most as a business owner?  For myself, besides learning from the mistakes I’ve made (too many to count), reading books has had a tremendous influence in becoming the person I am today, both personally and as a business person.

I’m a firm believer that in order to grow as a person and as a successful business owner, you need to always be learning.  Learning new ideas, new skills and most importantly, new ways of thinking.  I’ve read dozens and dozens of books on business, biographies, and personal development and I feel the 10 books listed below are the ones that shaped me the most in becoming a knowledgeable and confidant business owner.  They shaped me not only because of the great messages written in these books, but more importantly, they  changed the way I think, about the way I view business and people.

What books and people have shaped the way you think and act as a business owner?

The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don't Work and What to Do About It

by Michael E. Gerber

For anyone thinking about starting their own business or has just started one, this is the first book I recommend they read.  It contains some cold truths and insights about owning your own business that could spell the difference between success and failure for your business.  I think Michael Gerber hits the nail right on the head as to why people start a business and why they fail….and what you can do about it.

What I learned: 

Being a business owner and entrepreneur is much more than just doing the work you love, it’s about understanding what it takes to manage the dozen different hats you’ll need to wear as a business owner and not to get caught up in just doing the work itself and forgetting that you’re now running a business.

My favorite quote:

If your business depends on you, you don't own a business, you have a job, and it is the worst job in the world because you are working for a lunatic.

 

 The Magic of Thinking Big

by David Schwartz

This book is like having your own motivational coach.  It talks about having the right mindset, having confidence in yourself and your ideas and be bold enough to think big.  I’ve read this book several times and it’s one of my go to reads when self doubt starts creeping in.  This is one of those books that you read with a highlighter in your hand because it’s full of great nuggets of information.

What I learned:

Almost everyone is better than they think they are and can do more than they think they can.  Having self confidence and removing excuses from your vocabulary is the key to a successful business and life.

My favorite quote:

The thinking that guides your intelligence is much more important than how much intelligence you have

 

How to Win friends and Influence people

by Dale Carnegie

I think this book should be required reading in school.  It teaches invaluable lessons on communicating with other people, be it your spouse, co-workers or customers.  It basically teaches you how to communicate in a friendly way, give others the benefit of the doubt and to start thinking about others, not yourself. This book was first published in 1936 and the lessons learned are just as relevant (probably more) today than they were when the book was first published.

What I learned:

To always listen first, to think the better of people, and to communicate with the other person in mind, not just yourself.

My favorite quote:

Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain – and most fools do. But it takes character and self-control to be understanding and forgiving.

 

First, Break All The Rules: What The Worlds Greatest Managers Do Differently 

By by Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman

A must read book if you manage others.  It’s not a book on leadership, but a book on management, there is a difference as the book explains.  The key point in the book is hiring for talents, not skills, education or anything else.  Know what talents you need for each position and then hire people that have those talents.  Great advice on building employee engagement, promoting people and the things that turn managers into great managers.

 What I learned:

The key to being a great manager is finding the hidden talents and strengths in your employees and putting them in a position or situation where they can show those talents off.  Find the intrinsic motivations that drive your team and stop trying to fix everything with rewards and rules.

My favorite quote:

The great manager mantra is don’t try to put in what was left out; instead draw out what was left in. You must hire for talent, and hone that talent into outstanding performance.

Creating Magic: 10 Common Sense Leadership Strategies from a Life at Disney

by Lee Cockerell

A great book on what it means to be a leader.  Lee Cockerell ran Walt Disney World Resort for over a decade and in the book he writes about the journey he took from soldier to CEO of Walt Disney World Resorts and that the secret to the Disney magic is the people who work there, from the cleaning services to the CEO.  I really like this book because the lessons are not so much about how a great leader did such a great job, but how the people in an organization can do great things when they have a leader who cares and believes in them.

 What I Learned:

Everyone is important and vital to the health of an organization and every position and person should be treated with dignity and respect.  Everyone can be a professional, not matter what their job is.

My favorite quote:

It’s not the magic that makes it work; it’s the way we work that makes it magic

 

Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High

by Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan and Al Switzler

A must read book if you tend to avoid uncomfortable, but important situations.  For both personal and business, this book will show you how to approach difficult conversations and how to work through them without a breakdown in communications.  If you’re a business owner and you’re uncomfortable with giving feedback to others, or you’re avoiding letting someone go because you dread the conversation, this book is for you.  What I like about the book is that it’s not just theory, it’s kind of a “How to” and outlines steps to take and things to be aware of when entering a potentially difficult conversation.

What I learned:

If you’re avoiding a situation or conversation with someone, it’s probably important and not an option to avoid it.  There are often many choices that can be made in a given situation and don’t “fool yourself” into thinking you had no other choice except the one you made.

My favorite quote:

Watch out for Villain, Victim and Helpless stories. They are limiting, not empowering. Choose stories that empower you to take action and produce more effective results.

 

The 360 Degree Leader: Developing Your Influence from Anywhere in the Organization

by John C. Maxwell

John Maxwell is probably one of the most respected and liked leaders in the world.  I really like his simple writing style and how he includes real life stories in conveying his message.  What I really like about this book is the premise that you don’t need to be at the top of the hierarchy in order to be a leader.  Everyone has the ability to be a leader and influencer, even if you’re a middle manager or just starting out in an organization.  I give this book to all of my managers to read and it shows you how to not only lead those under you, but also your peers and those higher up in the organization.

What I learned:

Leadership develops from the little things you do everyday, it’s not something you start when feel you’ve been promoted to the proper position.  Everyone in an organization can be a leader.

My favorite quote:

Influencing others is a matter of disposition, not position. – You can influence from anywhere in the organization

 

Anything You Want

by Derek Sivers

What a great book.  I would call this the Winnie the Pooh philosophy of business.  It’s contrary to most things you read about from other business books.  The main premise of the book is to keep it simple and to care about your customers more than your business.  Derek Sivers is the founder of CD Baby and shows you how to went from happy go lucky musician to running a multi-million dollar company, and not caring if it succeeded or failed, as long as it served it’s customers.  If you’ve never seen his Ted talks, you should check them out.

What I learned:

Life’s too short to be unhappy in what you’re doing and serving the needs of your customers should be the sole focus of business, if it’s not, it probably shouldn’t exist.

My favorite quote:

If you think revolution needs to feel like war, you’ll overlook the importance of simply serving people better

 

The Ultimate Sales Machine: Turbocharge Your Business with Relentless Focus on 12 Key Strategies

by Chet Holmes

A great book about marketing and sales and what it takes to be good at both.  The secrets to success in sales is straightforward, you need to have “Pigheaded determination and discipline”.  Chet writes how so many of us in sales and marketing run away at the first sign of resistance or the first “no” and miss the opportunities that are waiting for us.  It’s a very straightforward book and a little egotistical, but if your business includes sales, it’s a must read.  I really like this book because there’s really no fluff, theory or anything else….if you want to be good at sales you need to be able to accept rejection and keep moving forward.

What I learned:

To stop taking “no” or any kind of resistance as a personal  rejection of myself.  Pushback is a natural part of doing business and it can either be looked at as a brick wall or a platform to see more opportunity.  You’re not going to succeed sitting around, you need to go out and make things happen.

My favorite quote:

Implementation, not ideas, is the key to real success

 

The Alchemist

by Paulo Coelho

This book is a simple fable about a boy’s journey to find his “own personal legend”.  It’s a short and simple book that is packed with life lessons that can applied to anyone’s life.  What I liked about the book is that it talks about pursuing your dreams, and how so many of us give up on our dreams out of fear, self-doubt and insecurity.  Every teenager should read this book, and every adult who has given up on their dreams.

What I learned:

The path to pursuing your dreams is one with many successes, failures and roadblocks.  Regret is much worse than trying and failing.

My favorite quotes:

There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure

The secret of life, though, is to fall seven times and to get up eight times

Small Business Toolbox – May Thirteen

Each week I like to post useful tools and resources that you may be able to use for your business.  The resources I post here are either free or available at a low cost.

I don’t go into much detail here, so feel free to check them out yourself and let me know what you think.  If you know of any great tools and services that will help small business owners, please share them in the comments below.

Moo – Create great looking business cards on paper with a quality unlike business cards you've seen in the past.  The standout for this service is the ability to create a different background on every single card you create.  They have a design gallery and blog that will give you lots of ideas for creating awesome business cards.

PayDirt – A low cost and hassle free way to track time and invoice your customers.  Suited for 1-2 person businesses, freelancers and small teams.

Have questions about the best tools to use for your business?  Contact me with your questions and you can rest assured you will receive a response!  Contact me here

Why it Pays to Use Google+ as a Business Tool

In the current age of social everything, the number of social networks available to use as business tools can be daunting.  Questions like how many networks to use and which ones to choose seem to be everywhere.  But it pays to take a look at how Google+ can be used as an effective tool for your business.

Although Google+ is a relatively new social network – it was introduced in summer 2011 and made available through Google Apps a few months later in November – it has a number of features that are rapidly putting it among the top social networks for businesses.  Mainly, this is because Google+ provides businesses with unmatched promotional, communication, collaboration, and tracking tools.  And with the recent Google+ redesign, sharing and navigating on the network are even easier than before.

how to use google plus small business

The promotional tools on Google+ are superior because they enable both you and your customers to participate.  As far as promoting from your end, there are a few simple steps you can take to make web users aware of your Google+ page.  First, you can add a Google+ badge or icon to your business’ website.  With the badge, visitors can add your Google+ page to their circles without leaving your website, and with the icon, people can go directly to your Google+ page.  And finding your Google+ page is easy even for those who aren’t on your website thanks to Google Direct Connect.  When it comes to customers promoting your business, the +1 button is key.  When someone gives your business a +1, they are telling the world that they like your business and would recommend it to others.  Think of the +1 as virtual word-of-mouth marketing.  You can maximize the advantage that +1’s offer by linking all of the +1’s your business receives.  This means that you should link the +1’s for your Google+ page with those for your website and for any advertisements you might have.  Then, when your business pops up in a Google search, people will be able to see all of the +1’s you have received and the people from whom you have received them.  Seeing these +1’s shows potential customers that others are happy with your work.

While these promotional capabilities set Google+ apart, it’s important to remember that communication is essential, and Google+ is great for this as well.  The stream, circles, and hangouts are three key communication and collaboration tools to which businesses on Google+ should pay close attention.  With the stream, your business can post content in a variety of formats (text or visual) to share new information with customers and let people know what you’re doing.  You can share information with everyone or, thanks to circles, a specific group of people.  Circles allow you to put people into specific groups, which is helpful to businesses because it makes sending targeted messages simple.  For example, your business may want to make a circle for customers registered in a rewards program or who have previously purchased a certain product or service.  However you choose to group people in circles, you can then use this organization to send information only to the people for whom it is relevant.  Not only is this useful for your business when it comes to sending targeted messages, but it also makes your customers feel like the interaction is a little more personal.  You can even take personal contact to the next level on Google+ with hangouts, which allow for multi-person video chat and screen-sharing.  This type of communication also enables you to work and collaborate with others in real-time.  While these three mainstay features of Google+ helped propel the social network to the top for businesses, new features incorporated in the recent redesign, like chat, will only add to the communication and collaboration capabilities available.

After your business has put in time and effort promoting its Google+ page and communicating with customers on the network, you’ll want to know how worthwhile your work was and what efforts were most successful.  On Google+, that’s easy.  Ripples, in particular, is a Google+ tool that can be used to determine the effectiveness of your social strategy.  Ripples allows you to see the path the information you posted on Google+ has taken by showing you who shared what information and the people with whom they shared it.  Seeing this data is especially helpful in two ways.  First, ripples can help you determine what type of content is most effective because you can see what garnered the most attention.  Second, ripples identifies who is really promoting your business to others because it shows who is sharing information.  You can use this data to improve the content you post and the people with whom you share this content.  In addition to ripples, you can take advantage of analytics to manage your +1’s and keep track of the activity on your Google+ page.

With promotional tools, communication and collaboration driven features, and tracking data to maximize your results, Google+ is certainly a worthwhile social network for businesses.  This combination of capabilities allows the social network to stand out from the crowd and makes it easy to see why so many businesses are turning to Google+.

Cloud Sherpas is a leading cloud service provider and was named the “Google Enterprise 2011 Partner of the Year.” As one of the first Google Enterprise partners, Cloud Sherpas has migrated over one million users across a variety of industries from legacy, on-premise messaging systems to Google Apps, helping organizations adopt cloud computing to innovate and dramatically reduce their IT expenses. A Google Apps Reseller in Atlanta, GA, Cloud Sherpas has regional offices in locations including San Francisco, New York, Chicago, Austin and Sydney, and has more Google Apps Certified Deployment Specialists than any other partner in the world.

Small Business Toolbox – May Fifth

Each week I like to post useful tools and resources that you may be able to use for your business.  The resources I post here are either free or available at a low cost.

I don’t go into much detail here, so feel free to check them out yourself and let me know what you think.  If you know of any great tools and services that will help small business owners, please share them in the comments below

Twylah – A free Twitter tool that organizes your tweets in an organized and visually appealing way.  Create a tweets page and host it on the Twylah page or host it yourself on your own domain.  Check out the Twylah page that I host here.

Joliprint – A free bookmarklet you can install in your browser that let's you create clean and ad free pdf versions of web pages.  Great if you read alot of online articles.  Read my review of Joliprint here.

Have questions about the best tools to use for your business?  Contact me with your questions and you can rest assured you will receive a response!  Contact me here

How To Get Your Business Website Found Online

Having a website for your local business is a given in this day and age.  It should look visually appealing, be easy to read and should be able to explain your business's value proposition.  But the questions is…..you have a great looking website, but can anyone find it?

Unfortunately, many business owners don't know the answer to that question because they lack the understanding of what's involved in getting their website found online.  Whether you created a DIY website from a low cost or free website builder or paid ten thousand bucks for a great looking website, in both cases you're usually left in the same situation…..a nice looking website that nobody (except close friends and family if you're lucky) can find.

Maybe you don't have the budget to hire a professional to handle your internet marketing  just yet, or want to test the waters yourself first, below is an outline  of the steps you should be taking to get your website found online.

Be aware that optimizing your business website to get found in the search engines is not a quick fix…..it takes time and consistent effort to build authority for your website.  Being consistent is key.  If you need to get your website found ASAP, take a look at the end of this article under the pay per click (PPC) section….you can start getting visitors to your website in a few minutes, though you will be paying for them.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

SEO is the practice of optimizing your website so that people can find you when they conduct a search using keywords and key terms relevant to your business.  SEO consists of two parts, on-page optimization and off-page optimization.

On-Page SEO

Check out my article on optimizing your small business website

Find the important keywords relevant to your business.  Imagine that you are a potential customer of your business and you're sitting in front of the Google box getting ready to start typing in a search query.  What do you type into that search box?  The keywords and key terms that you're potential customers will use to find your business are the ones that you should be optimizing on your website.  By optimizing, I mean incorporating those keywords and key terms naturally in the copy you use on your website.

If one of the key terms that people use to find your business is “plumbers in Parker Colorado”, somewhere on your website you should be incorporating that term, and other variances of it in your website.  Just make sure that it's written naturally and doesn't sound weird as the copy on your website still needs to make sense to people reading it.  Aim for one or two keywords or key terms for each page you are trying to optimize……adding any more than this and you won't be optimizing for anything.

An easy and free way to conduct simple keyword research is to use the Google Keyword Tool.  There are lots of other tools, but for the beginner this will work just fine.  To learn how to conduct simple keyword research, read Keyword Research for Dummies.

Include your business information on every page of your website.  If you're a local business, either in the header section or the footer section of your website should be your business information.  Your business name, address and phone number should be included in this information. Search engines take this contact information as a sign that your a business in a particular area and will give you a preference in the search results when people conduct searches from that area.  Google is trying to make search results more local and relevant to users and  including your business information on every page will make things much easier for them and will help you get rank higher.

Start a blog.  You've probably heard all about the benefits of blogging, and yes, they are true.  A blog gives your website frequent and fresh content and gives the search engines like Google lots of material to index for people searching online.  A blog can also establish your business (and yourself) as a thought leader in your industry and the “go to” place when people need to find relevant information.

Most small business blogs are short lived as business owners realize quickly that they are business owners, not writers.  Yes, it is difficult to maintain an active blog, but it's worth it. Every article you publish on a particular topic is another piece of content that will get a chance to get found by a potential customer online.  I have articles that are almost two years old and they still get 2-4 visits a day…..that's between 730 and 1460 visits a year for a single blog post.  If I ran a pay per click (PPC) campaign at .50 cents per click, (which is on the low end) to get that many clicks I would be paying between $365 and $730 every year!  That's right, one well written article could be worth thousands of dollars a year to you……and you only have to create it once!  If this isn't a clear ROI winner for your business, i'm not sure what is.

Check out this article from ProBlogger on creating a successful blog

Off-Page SEO

Get other websites to link to yours.  Getting other websites, preferably popular and authoritative ones to link to your website is the most important factor in getting your website found online.  Most search engine marketers believe that up to 80% of search engine optimization is the number and quality of links you have pointing back to your website.  Every time another website links back to yours, it's like getting a referral, a sign of trust that your website is of some kind of importance for whatever industry you're in.  The search engines take these “signs of trust” from other websites to determine is your website should rank higher in the search results for a given keyword or search term.

So how do you other websites to link back to your website?  Here are a few examples.

  • Add your website to directory websites that are relevant to small business and your industry.  Though they are not considered powerful links, they do help and it's relatively easy to do.  To get some ideas on how and where to do this, read my previous post on local citations for small business
  • Get local papers to do a write-up about your business.  Often times they have an online version of the paper……see if you can get a link pointing back to your website when they publish the article.  Alternately, see if you can be a guest writer for their paper or blog, and get a link back to your website that way
  • Guest post on other relevant blogs.  Find blogs and websites in your industry and offer to write a guest blog article for them.  Bloggers are always looking for fresh content, and welcome well written articles and are usually happy to give you a link in exchange for your contribution

 

Use Social Media.  Search engines like Google and Bing monitor the social activity on most of the major social networking platforms like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.  If people are talking about your business on those networks and linking back to your website in their posts and tweets, the search engines take this as a sign that people are interested in what you have to offer and may bump you up in the search engine rankings.  Social media can also be a great way to generate traffic back to your website as every retweet or like exposes your business and website link to an ever growing network of people.

Claim and optimize your Google Places page.  Google offers small businesses a free webpage that you can customize with images, video and links back to your website.  The great thing about Google Places is that often times, your free Google Places page will rank higher than your actual website and higher than other, bigger websites in your industry.  I've written extensively on the importance of claiming your Google Places page in the past.

claim your google places page today

 

Paid Search and Display Advertising

Paid search marketing or Pay Per Click (PPC) marketing are those links you see at the top and right side of the Google search results whenever you type in a search query and Google returns it's results.  People and businesses purchase those ads through an auction type marketplace, which Google calls Adwords.  Bing and several other companies offer similar advertising, though Google is far and away the biggest platform for this type of marketing.

google adwords for small business-the small business playbook

The down side of paid search marketing is that you have to pay for every click to your website (you only pay when someone actually clicks on your link and goes to your website), the great part of it is that you can start generating targeted traffic immediately upon activating your campaign.  Also, with PPC marketing, you can select highly targeted keywords and terms and only have your ad show up if someone types in that keyword or term in the search box….talk about highly targeted advertising!  Setting up a paid search campaign can be complicated, and expensive if not done correctly…..luckily, Google has created a quick and easy way to get started with Adwords with it's new service called Adwords Express.

Microsoft, through their search engine Bing,  also offers similar Pay Per Click marketing, though I find the interface more difficult to work with.  If you spend the time though, you can often get clicks cheaper on Bing than on Google as their is less competition for keywords.

Display Advertising.  Display advertising is creating image based advertisements that appear on websites where people can click on the image and go to the website associated with that image.  Think banner ads you see on many popular websites like Inc.com or Yahoo.com.  While these are considered display advertisements, what i'm talking mostly for small business owners is Facebook advertising.  When you're on your Facebook page, you'll notice on the left or right hand side, a few small square images with some text underneath…..those are Facebook ads.  Occassionaly you'll see bigger ones, but the majority are little square ads. The nice thing with Facebook ads is that they blend in with the rest of the page, often people don't realize they're actual ads.  Also, you only have to pay Facebook when someone actually clicks on the image, regardless of how many times your ad is displayed.

Facebook ads for small business-the small business playbook

You also have the ability to target your ads based on city, gender, marital status, and a host of other criteria, which is great if you have a very niche audience.  Though slightly less efficient than Pay Per Click marketing, Facebook ads are a great way to reach a targeted audience.  To learn more about setting up a Facebook advertising campaign, check out this Facebook guide from Copyblogger.

Getting your website found online takes time

Though it does take time and effort, the above techniques can all help you get your business found online.  For the longer term, focus on Search Engine Optimization (PPC) and for the shorter-medium term, consider using paid advertising methods so you can start getting targeted traffic to your website today.  I personally use all of the above techniques myself and find having a balance between free and paid methods works great for me.  Have questions?  Contact me here, I answer every email.

photo credit: marciookabe