How To Make the Most of Your Website Through Advance Planning

Planning a website that will achieve the goals you have set for your business is probably the most difficult part of the entire Internet marketing process.  Yet, most people completely bypass this important step or, worse, just turn the whole project over to a website designer to handle. 

When you take the time to strategically plan the outline of your new website or an upgrade of your current one, not only will you achieve a website that will show off your business in the best way, but one you will be able to add and edit content easily, and probably most important will help to achieve your overall business goals.  Here are a few steps to use in the planning process:

1.  Write down on a piece of paper everything you think the visitors to your web site might want to know about your product or service.  For example, visitors to a school's website would probably want to know the attendance levels, size of the classrooms, information on staff members and what sports they can participate in.  Brainstorm every possible topic someone might want to know related to the industry, product or service your website will be offering.

2.  Put yourself into the visitor's shoes.  Visit some websites and review them as if you are in the market for the services those sites have to offer.  As a visitor who is genuinely interested in your product or service, what are the good things and bad things about each site you visit?  Are you inspired to take action from the website?  Are you able to find what you are looking for quickly and easily? How many times do you have to click to find what you are looking for?  Take notes on all this information with the purpose of making your own website as visitor friendly as possible.

3.  Investigate to find out the keywords your visitors will most likely search for to find your website. Google has a free keyword research tool that will work fine for this purpose.  By typing in a general phrase such as “exercise video”, other keywords will come up that are related.  Your visitors already have questions about these things.  Knowing this, you can plan your website content to answer their questions up front. 

4.  Make sure to plan your website to grow.  Avoid websites that can't be easily expanded to add more pages or products.  A website is not static, but rather should change constantly to meet your customer needs. 

5.  Finally, make sure your website is easy to control, so you don't have to rely on your website designer to make even the smallest changes.   Old fashioned websites that only a web developer can change do not work in today's dynamic Internet marketing environment that demands new content added regularly.  It is to your advantage to plan a website platform that will allow you to add content quickly and simply.

The investment by your business into a new website is a large part of your marketing budget.  Don't waste it with an inferior website that doesn't support your business objectives. 

Marty Dickinson is the founder of HereNextYear, Inc., a full service Internet marketing company in business for over 10 years. His specialty is Internet marketing solutions for the small business owner, speakers and authors. Visit to see what HereNextYear has to offer and to learn more about their innovative new website packages fully integrated for ease with social networking and other Internet marketing strategies.

Stay Focused On Your Business With Simple Organization Tips

The world consists of two types.  Those who are genetically organized, and those who are not.  Do you fall in the second group?  Don't worry!  There are ways to stay organized in your small business. 

There are a lot of great reasons to stay organized.  A person who is organized can complete their work much more efficiently.  They remember important events and meetings.  They are more relaxed and feel in control of their day.  This article will give you some realistic techniques to stay organized even if you feel you are a hopeless cause:

Don't Let The Sun Set on a Mess

Don't head out the door in the evening without taking a short amount of time to straighten your desk.  Gather  your pens, stapler, and other tools together so you can find them in the morning.  Throw out the trash and get rid of any used cups or other things that don't belong. 

Most important, quickly go through the papers cluttering up the desk and stack them somewhat in the order they need to be tackled in the morning.  This is also the perfect opportunity to jot down a to-do list for tomorrow, and rank each item as to importance. 

You will find that this simple 10 minute process each evening will fire you up to jump in feet first the next day to complete what needs to be done. 

Use the Rule of 3 to Group Work Product

There are those people with organization stamped on their forehead who never waste time looking for what they need to complete a task.  The rest of us make up the bigger population.  The rule of 3 is a helpful technique that has worked for me in finding work betters when I need them. 

The idea is not tricky.  Never have more than 3 stacks going at a time.  The first stack contains the most pressing items you hope to accomplish within the day.  Next, are those items to accomplish sometime during the week, and the final stack contains those less pressing items to get to within the month.  You may need to dedicate some time up front to get these three stacks organized, but the time will be ultimately saved as you are able to find needed paperwork much more quickly without digging through everything on your desk. 

Just Do It

Ultimately, the longer you wait to find an organization system that works for you and your small business, the more opportunities you miss for your small business.  Being organized allows you to spend more of your day focused on your small business and making it a success.  And remember, one person's organization is another person's nightmare.  So find the system that works for you and make sure you can commit to using it every day.     

Get more small business success strategies and claim your free white paper: "7 Ways Your Stone-Age Accounting System is Stealing Money From You Every Day ... And, How to Get it Back This Year"  to learn about an online accounting program that makes it simple to organize your accounting and finance.