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Today I want to talk to business owners, and I wanna talk to you about what is your first impression, or what is the first impression your business gets. Now, today it’s all online. Now, we all know that, right? But as business owners, how often is that missed? You know, I was talking to one of my clients today, and we were talking about his business, and he was working on this very sophisticated marketing funnel, and it was really neat, except for the fact he missed his main first impression, or what I call your home base, which is your website.

Now, why is this important? Well, every time we do a search on the internet … Now, when somebody does a search, it’s a search of intent. It’s a search where you’re actually trying to solve a problem, you’re looking for a solution. Now, maybe you’re looking the best coffees shop in your area or best personal training studio, or maybe you are looking for a solution to a problem, like, “How do I start my own business?” Or, “How do I know what SEO is, or search engine optimization?” There are all kinds of questions people ask, and so when doing this, as a business owner, your first impression, or your home base, is gonna be your website. It’s even more important, I would say, than your storefront in most cases.

Now, I was talking to this client, and he was showing me this funnel, I asked him, I said, “Hey, you know, where do people land at the end of this funnel?” “Well, on my website Doug, obviously,”  he said. And I said knowingly, I said, “Well, how is your website performing? If I go onto your website, how is it working?” And he just didn’t know. So we checked, and I’m gonna give you a few resources that you can use right now. Now, if you don’t own your own business, what I recommend is going and checking this out with the company you work for, if you have an employee, and just check it out, and maybe show somebody in the IT department, or somebody at the C-Suite level, the business owner’s always a good idea.

But a couple things you can do. One is SightSpeed. Now, Google has an actual URL you can go to, if you go ahead and look at developers.google.com, and it’s PageSpeed Insights is the tool that I’m referring to. And you can paste the website URL into that, and actually see the score. Now, it’s gonna rate you on a score from zero to 100, for both desktop and mobile. Now, if your product or service is really tailored to the middle class or upper middle class, you wanna look much more towards mobile.

Conversely, you’re also gonna wanna look at that for people of lower incomes, because they don’t have computers. So it’s kinda the lower middle class that’s mostly gonna be using laptops, or students, depending, but again, this is all shifting, and we’re seeing search engine optimization, or Google and Bing, really diving into PageSpeed. So if you got a score below 80, that’s something you wanna change right away, and hire a professional to help you do that.

Also, how does your website rate, and how does it rate against your competitors? So you can go over to brandedinnovation.com, and you can actually do a website comparison. And what this is gonna do is take you and one of your competitors, and do some basic checks, and just see some missing elements, or potential elements, and make sure that you have them in place. Now, if you have them in place, great, you get a gold little badge. And if you don’t, you’re gonna get a red mark. And this will allow you to see exactly where you stand, on a very basic level, with some of the key elements of search engine optimization.

Now, it’s also gonna show you the same with one of your competitors, and also what your rankings might be. Now, this is very, very important. Now, full disclosure, Branded Innovation is one of my companies, so I own the company, and I can speak very highly for them of course, but also this is something that I know really well also.

Now the third thing that you wanna do is also when looking at your website, is have somebody go onto your website and look at their actual intent. What are the first few things that they do? Now, I always recommend putting a heat map behind your website. Now, what a heat map is, is just a way where you can actually see someone’s mouse move through the screen, and where their clicks are going on your website.

Now, as somebody who’s ran an agency for many, many years, often times we’ll put a heat map in the back of a website once we take it over from marketing, and we’ll notice that people are clicking in areas that we didn’t necessarily know about, or at least the business owner didn’t. For example, they might be clicking on a picture that doesn’t go anywhere. Now, if we’re seeing clicks on there, those are intent, those are signs of intent, meaning someone wants something to happen. What we wanna do is then go back and change that image to have it click to where we want them to go.

So these are three basic things that any business owner can do, and can do really quickly, and all of them are free. Now, the heat map might cost you money, depending on the company you’re using, but there’s a variety of free heat map sources that are out there. And maybe you require somebody to actually install it for you, depending on the website they’re utilizing. So try these three. Again, if you’re an employee, go ahead and try three now anyway, and give it to your boss; it’s a great report to get. As always, look at your business from the perspective of where your potential customer is going, but also look at the way that you utilize the internet. When we utilize the internet, we’re using it for intended purposes, and your business is no different.

So that’s my tip for you today. Remember, go out and be the Author of Your Own Story.

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