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Case studies from design industry professionals, from the smallest of firms to large, global organizations. Click on image - order your copy today!

Build Customer Loyalty to Grow Your Small Business

Acquiring new customers helps any small business grow.  Customers are known to come and go.  All customers that leave are not necessarily dissatisfied or disgruntled.  Customers may move out of your area for any number of reasons, or no longer need your products or services.  Worst case scenario would be that for some reason, you failed to build customer loyalty. To grow a small business,  former customers have to be replaced. Remember that current customers are the lifeblood of your business and keeping them satisfied should be your highest priority.  Their experience with your firm, your products or services and your staff needs to be exceptional.  For all of these reasons, it is imperative that you build customer loyalty. Statistics show that, on average, U.S. companies lose [...]

By | October 30th, 2016|Customer Experience, Customer Relationships|2 Comments

Calls-to-Action: Essential for Small Business Websites

Did anyone else see these unsettling statistics about small business websites on the SCORE website ?  They created a clear and concise infographic on small business websites you might find interesting.  The statistics revealed here (12/2014) are probably even higher today in terms of the impact of online sales from mobile device access. Only 51% of small businesses have websites.  If that isn’t bad enough, the following statistics cover other weaknesses of the sites that do exist: 70% have no call to action. 27% don't provide a telephone number. 68% don't have an email address on the home page. 82% don't have social media accounts. 50% of online sales are lost when visitors can't find content. It’s hard to believe that any small business is not yet aware [...]

By | October 27th, 2016|Customer Experience, Marketing|0 Comments

Create a Small Business Bucket List to Get What You Want

'Designing Strategies' Newsletter September - October 2016                      Volume 13 -- Issue 73 Have any of you written a personal bucket list? A bucket list is pretty simple, it is just a list of things you want to do and places you want to see during your lifetime. It’s a matter of putting down in written form those hopes and dreams you don’t want to miss out on. Writing them down improves the likelihood they will actually become a part of your reality. Wait! How about creating a Small Business Bucket List for your firm? Interesting concept, no? Back in 2007, 'The Bucket List' movie came out. Jack Nicholson's character, Edward Cole, was filthy rich, a [...]

55 Small Business Website Features You Must Have

Maurer Consulting Group recently created and published a four-part series of articles on the importance of a small business website.  As THE most important hub of any small business marketing plan, a high quality website is critical to the success of every small firm.  Putting together someone else's idea of an quick, do-it-yourself website, and calling it a day, simply isn't the way to go. Any site does not guarantee a good, strategically focused representation of your company at it's best.  Using as many small business website features as you possibly can will improve the quality of your website and the messages it sends to customers. Not every small business website feature that is important and necessary could be addressed.  Topics  in our series included why a small business [...]

By | August 30th, 2016|Marketing|0 Comments

M-commerce: What On Earth Is It?

Now that everyone is finally familiar with eCommerce, along comes a new kid on the 'X'-commerce block of Cyberspace: m-commerce.  Electronic commerce, commonly written as e-commerce or eCommerce, is the "trading or facilitating of trading in products or services using computer networks, such as the Internet or online social networks," according to Wikipedia. Now, media publications all seem to be talking about m-commerce.  Until last week, I was totally unfamiliar with the term and what it stood for.  But, a few minutes of online research told me all I needed to know. M-commerce:  What Is It? M-commerce is the new techo-term for mobile commerce - selling things to customers through a mobile device like a smartphone, tablet or notebook.  Needless to say, with the rise in [...]

By | August 26th, 2016|Marketing|0 Comments

Small Business Growth: 5 Important Stages

'Designing Strategies' Newsletter July - Aug 2016                      Volume 13 -- Issue 72 Do you ever think about the stage, or phase, your small business enterprise is in, or has passed through? We are all aware of when our family members and friends birthdays are. We celebrate anniversaries, graduations and other of life's watershed moments. We celebrate in a big way with parties, gifts and major events to celebrate these great moments as we move through different stages of our lives. Small business growth stages aren't much different. It seems that our small businesses, into which we have poured our hearts, souls, time, energy and money, deserve at least the same milestone recognition. After all, it [...]

Small Business Website Basics – Part 4

This is the fourth, and last (at least for now) part of our series of posts on Small Business Website Basics.  When I began working on this topic, I had no idea just how much information there was to consider when beginning work on a website to represent your small business to the world.  'An' article grew into two articles, then three, now a fourth.  If you missed any of the previous articles, you can link to them below: Small Business Website Basics - Part 1:  A Small Business Website is Not an Option Small Business Website Basics - Part 2:  What does a Small Business Website Cost? Small Business Website Basics - Part 3:  What to Include on a Small Business Website Disclaimer:  I [...]

By | June 6th, 2016|Marketing|0 Comments

Strategic Planning According to Dilbert – Dilbert Asks: “Why Bother?”

'Designing Strategies' Newsletter May - June, 2016                      Volume 13 - Issue 71 One of my favorite comic strips is 'Dilbert' by Scott Adams. Day to day, Dilbert represents corporate America in a way that has never been done before in a syndicated comic strip. My take on the strip is Dilbert represents Generation X, dealing with management in a corporate world run by Baby Boomers.  He has all kinds of opinions, most of which are ignored by his supervisors.  Of course he would have an opinion on strategic planning and how effective it is - or isn't. He is frustrated on a daily basis by his superior, Pointy-haired Boss, and coworkers. Dilbert is often drawn [...]

Small Business Website Basics: Part III

Tiramisu Studio / www.freedigitalphotos.net Welcome to Part III of our ‘Designing Strategies’ Small Business Website Basics series.  This four-part series covers these important topics as they relate to a small business website: Part I:   10 Reasons a Small Business Website Is a Necessity, Not an Option Part II:   What Will a Small Business Website Cost Me? Moving on to Part III of our series, we'll talk about what a small business owner should consider when it comes time to develop the content for your site – which would be NOW if you don’t have one yet. What To Include On a Small Business Website Every small business website needs to be customized to include information specific to your firm.   Your company needs be different enough [...]

By | May 18th, 2016|Marketing|0 Comments

Small Business Website Basics:  Part II

What Does a Small Business Website Cost? Krom Kratthog / www.freedigitalphotos.net  In our Small Business Website Basics series, Part I post, our discussion covered small business websites being necessary, not optional, to the success of a small business and ten reasons why it is true. It was pretty alarming to learn that 46% of small businesses in the United States do not have a website for their business.   It never ceases to amaze me how many small businesses still do not understand the need for a web site to represent their company online.  Let customers know you are out there.  Tell them why they need you. Most Common Excuses for Not Having a Small Business Website “I’m on social media, so I don't really [...]

By | May 9th, 2016|Branding, Marketing|0 Comments