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Greg Jameson's Ecommerce Blog

What is GDPR and should I be concerned?

GDPR stands for “The General Data Protection Regulation” a privacy law from the European Union that goes into effect May 25, 2018. Even though it’s a European Union law, all online entrepreneurs need to be paying attention because the GDPR will mean major changes for the way we operate. If you use Google Analytics, Facebook pixel tracking, or have an email opt-in on your website, you need to pay attention to this post!

In essence, if you have ANY contact with someone in Europe through your website, such as downloading a lead magnet to get them to sign up for an email list, you MUST comply with the GDPR, even though you are in the United States and are only selling in the United States. You will probably need to re-write your policy page to show that you are compliant. Specifically, the way you collect and handle emails will require a change. Here is the  simplest form:

1. If you offer a lead magnet to collect emails, you CANNOT automatically add those people to your email list if they are in Europe.

2. If they are in Europe and have not previously opted in to be on your email list, you MUST delete them from your database.

3. When offering a lead magnet, you MAY ask them to join your email list, but this cannot be the default. They must specifically state that they want to be on your list.

4. All of this must happen before midnight on May 25th.

Does this mean that you should be concerned and the CDPR police will come knocking on your door on May 26th if you haven’t complied? […]

Being Proactive With Getting Reviews

There is a special offer that I strongly recommend you take advantage of at the end of this post – make sure you read the whole thing by clicking through and reading to the end.

While the number one concern for most small businesses remains, “How do I get listed on page 1 of Google?,” the second biggest concern is “How can I get more positive online reviews?” And interestingly, these two concerns are intrecately tied together: the more positive online reviews you get, the higher you are likely to be shown in the search engine results. And, believe it or not, you can actually control how many online reviews you get. I recently interviewed Doren Aldana of MyTestimonialEngine.com for my podcast (20MinutesofInfluence.com) about this topic.

There are lots of places on the internet where people may be leaving reviews about you: Google, Facebook, Yelp, Amazon, AngiesList, Trip Advisor, Yellow Pages, Manta, Better Business Bureau (BBB),  FourSquare, and many industry-specific sites like Houzz, Cars.com, Edmunds, OpenTable, and HealthGrades .  Yet, businesses are often afraid to manage customer reviews on business review sites as they don’t want to end up in one of these situations:

  • receiving zero business reviews
  • receiving zero recent online business reviews
  • receiving negative online business reviews

Unfortunately, these businesses are missing out and hurting their business through inaction, as reputation drives both traffic and conversion. Online reviews and ratings heavily influence consumers’ purchase decisions and can make or break a business. A number of research studies suggest that online reviews are more trustworthy and useful than branded social media content, advertising, information from salespeople, and even natural search engine results. Here are 3 factors you want to consider when getting reviews: […]

Influencers: Ordinary People With Superpowers

People are tired of sales pitches. I recently had a friend unfollow and vow to never support a brand because of retargeting ads, as she found them invasive. We are all inundated with marketing messages constantly and consumers are sick of it. How then, as a small business, can you get your message heard? Influencer marketing has become the big buzz word in the last year or two, and the reason is simple: it may be the only real way to get your brand’s message out there!

What exactly is influencer marketing and how can a small business participate? First, let me be clear: many people are jumping on the influencer marketing bandwagon like it is something new. It is not – influencer marketing has been around since Eve convinced Adam to eat the apple. Despite what many people are promoting, influencer marketing is not simply Instagram models with lots of follwers posting photos wearing the latest fashions in exotic places. Influencer marketing instead is about getting someone to take action!

Influencer marketing is about getting someone to take action! Click To Tweet

Consumers may have stopped trusting brands and ad campaigns to tell them about useful new products and inform them how well something works, but they haven’t stopped needing those things to make their lives better. So, where did they turn? To each other! Influencer marketing used to simply be called word-of-mouth. The problem is that word-of-mouth wasn’t very scalable, it was hard to track, and unreliable. What changed? Technology.

We all carry around little computers in our pocket that have more computing power than what NASA used to send man to the moon.  This allows ordinary people to develop their superpowers and become an influencer.  And smart businesses are tapping into this effect.

The strongest influencers out there are people just like you and me. Ordinary people who are authentic and  relatable make the best influencers – not celebrities! The power of the ordinary person is so great today that […]

Be the Best Answer on the Internet

I was talking to someone the other day who was only making about $200 per month from their website. Do you ever wonder how some businesses flourish online, while others struggle to make even a few hundred dollars a year from their website? The answer is actually very simple: be the best answer on the internet. Notice, I didn’t say it was easy, just simple. Regardless of what you are selling, if you provide the best answer on the internet, you will win. You will not only get the best search engine placements, but you will have other people sharing your content, referring you, writing positive reviews about you, and you will sell more. So, just how do you become the best answer on the internet?

The first thing you must decide is what is the question? Who is your primary audience? Once you identify who that person is, what is the question they want answered? This may seem like a bunch of rhetoric, but it really is a necessary step. Let’s say you sell paint. Who is the person that usually makes a decision about what paint to buy? Is it the contractor or the homeowner? If it is the homeowner, is it the husband or the wife? My guess is that it is the wife who makes the decision about how a home is painted, but that information would of course have to be verified. Assuming it is the wife though, what specifically is she looking for? Color? Durability? Cost? Washability or maintenance? Guarantee? Ease of application? Ability to match the exact paint 5 years from now?

It is your job to provide the best answer on the internet. Not just any answer, but the BEST answer. Click To Tweet

Now that you know who your buyer persona or avatar is and what questions they are asking, it is your job to provide the best answer on the internet. Not just any answer, but the BEST answer. Sticking with the paint store example, this means that you do not simply want to use the manufacturer’s photos and description of the paint, you want to provide your own information. This is critical, as information is what your buyer persona is looking for. You are the expert in what you are selling, so talk to your customer as if they walked into your store and were asking you those exact same questions. Specifically, here is my recommendation: […]

Page 1 of Google

Long-time customers and followers of my marketing know that I have always advocated that “if you do all of your other marketing right, the search engines will take care of themselves.” Still, there is something very alluring about SEO (search enginge optimization) and getting listed on page one of Google. This seems to be the Holy Grail of internet marketing. In the recent survey I conducted, it continued to be the most requested item that people wanted to know about. SEO is much like dieting – most people just want to take a magic pill to lose weight, but for it to be really effective, you have to put in the work.
SEO is much like dieting - most people just want to take a magic pill to lose weight, but for it to be really effective, you have to put in the work. Click To Tweet

How can you get to the coveted number one spot on Google?

Start by Taking Our Free SEO Audit

The dream of every business owner is to get their website listed on page one of Google. In order to do this, you must understand a few things about website traffic. The first is that almost 52 percent of all traffic to a website comes from bots – electronic spiders that are crawling your site either for the purpose of indexing your pages or trying to hack into the site. Clearly, security and optimizing your page for the bots to understand your site (and thus list you on page one for a specific term) are critical. The second thing to understand is that Google doesn’t just index your website, but it indexes individual pages within your website (that is why the bots are crawling your site). Your goal should be […]

Own your platform!

Last week, I showed you how you can use YouTube to rank your pages on Google. This is a technique that I highly recommend. But there is a downside – you don’t own your content that you post to YouTube.  That’s right, many companies are discovering that their YouTube channel is not their asset, but YouTube’s. In fact, I had a friend that was recently banned from YouTube. He was posting content that YouTube deemed to be too similar, with the direct intention of “driving people away from YouTube and onto another website,” so they banned him from posting. The amazing this was, he was providing valuable content – it was not spam. He appealled his case to YouTube and was denied.

The technique I described in last week’s article of course is meant to do exactly that: create similar videos all with the intent of driving traffic to your website. What this means is that it coudlget you banned from YouTube.  So should you still do this? The answer of course is yes, but you may need to do it slowly so as to not raise any red flags with YouTube’s AI (artificial intelligence) bots. But remember, you don’t own your YouTube channel and therefore, you cannot rely on it for hosting important content.

This goes for all social media, podcasts, websites and any place you put content on. When you don’t own the asset, you can’t call the shots, and any income stream derived from those places that you have content on could at anytime pull the plug without warning and kill your livelihood. If you want to control your own content you need your own platform. That is why…

[…]

The problem with SEO (and what to do about it)

One of the first things Google looks at in a search is if the search term matches the URL you are looking for. If you are searching for “Gregs Gourmet Goodies”, Google looks to see if there is a domain name names “GregsGourmetGoodies.com”. But, unless you are a recognized brand, most people are not searching for your business name. They are looking for what you have to offer, such as “gourmet cheese dip.” Of course, you might be able to buy the domain name, “gourmetcheesedip.cooking” or gourmetcheesedip.party”, and you could do this for every one of your products, and then re-direct that new domain name to the page on your website where you sell gourmet cheese dip. this helps, especially because Google actually indexes every single page, not just your home page.

The next thing most small businesses worry about is whether or not their page is optimized for search engines, in part because there are SEO companies out there scaring them into buying their services. What these companies typically do is look at what is called on-site factors, and they make sure that your page titles, contain the search term you are trying to rank for and that you use that search term in the content of the page. For example, if we are trying to rank for the search term, “gourmet cheese dip” we would title our page “Gourmet Cheese Dip”, we would include “Gourmet Cheese Dip” in the heading tags, and we would write our copy to include that keyword phrase multiple times in the description, such as “Greg’s Gourmet Goodies offers the best packaged gourmet cheese dip available anywhere. using our gourmet cheese dip, you can mix this with your favourite cream cheese and create the most delicious gourmet cheese dip anywhere. Your guests will still be talking about the great gourmet cheese dip you served them for days. so if you are looking for the finest gourmet cheese dip, look no further than Greg’s Gourmet Goodies.”

But here’s the thing: there are 19,000,000 results returned by Google for “gourmet cheese dip”. The likelihood of you being listed on page 1 of Google is  1 in 1.9 billion, even if you do the on-site optimization I just talked about. Plus, your cheese dip mix is only one of about a hundred products you offer. There has to be a better way. And there is… […]

Using Instagram to Grow Your Business

I messed up. Each week, I write a blog post, which becomes the basis of my newsletter. The newsletter is generated automatically, assuming I check the category box “newsletter.” Last week I forgot to check that box, so the newsletter didn’t go out. I also updated my email program, which meant you didn’t hear from me, so I’m trying again. In case you missed it, here is the link:

https://webstoresltd.com/2018/03/14/top-podcasts/

That blog post was all about the most recent top podcast episodes I’ve done. This week, I could easily add another: my interview with Mitch Russo, the past CEO of Tony Robbins. Check that one out here: 20 Minutes of Influence

What does this have to do with Instagram? Simple – I did post this to Instagram, as I do daily. Instagram has become the social media platform of choice for influencer marketing. While well established (and owned by Facebook), growing a following for your business on Instagram is perhaps easier than other social media platforms. The reason is people follow hashtags, and Instagram is the master of hastags. You can include up to 30 hastags with each post. A hashtag is simply the # symbol, followed by a word or phrase (as a single word). For example, #influencerbusiness.

When building your Instagram account, is is a good idea to […]

Top Podcasts

Earlier this year I started a pocast called “20 Minutes of Influence.” The idea was simple: engage with other industry experts, online influencers, and social media rockstars to bring you actionable information. The results have been incredible. I’ve already produced over 20 episodes and have had some amazing guests. You can check them all out at 20minutesofinfluence.com, but I wanted to highlight a few of these and really recommend that you listen to these great ideas on how you can get others to market and sell on your behalf.

And this week, I’m featuring Anthony Prichard as we discuss the importance of videos.

If these are the only episodes you listen to, it will take less than 2 hours combined and be well worth your time. […]