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Manage Small Business Email Marketing

Setting up, Managing & Optimizing Small Business Email Marketing

Revenue from email marketing has increased by 28% from 2013-2014, having an outstanding ROI of 4300% (econsultancy); making email marketing a priority when looking into cost effective digital marketing options. The goal of this post is to get small businesses headed in the right direction, with as little cost to the business as possible.

Taking advantage of email marketing is not difficult when using mailing list management software such as http://mailchimp.com/. It is also free to create an account. This software allows you to arrange and refine email lists, track user behavior and create professional appearing emails. The software provides you the freedom to update and prioritize your contacts according to their interests or participation level. It is important to have an active list, meaning, only sending emails to those reading and interested in your content otherwise you run the risk of being labeled as spam, which will be addressed later.

E-consultancy’s survey has shown that only 7% of businesses find email marketing to be not effective. A 93% approval rating for those who implement an email marketing strategy should make reading and sharing this post an easy choice. We are going to cover how to set up an emailing list management account, keys to optimizing your email campaigns and the benefits email marketing brings to your small business.

How To Setup Your Emailing List Management Account

Setting up a mailing list management account can be done in just 4 simple steps. We suggest using Mail Chimp for 2 reasons: it is free to create an account, and it is easy to use. You can open a second browser window and follow the steps below as an easy-to-follow guide.

The first step is to go to Mail Chimp’s home page. Up at the top right corner of Mail Chimp’s website is their sign up button. Go ahead and click on that button to get the whole process started.

setting up email marketing management for small business

The first thing Mail Chimp will prompt you for is your email. Make sure you list your primary email for the best communication line between you and Mail Chimp. Next, create a username and password. Once you have those two filled in, click on the “create my account” button.

signing up for email marketing management

Mail Chimp runs what’s called a double opt-in procedure. What this means is they will send you an email asking you to verify that you indeed want to use Mail Chimp’s services. We mention this here because this is a strategy that you should use when developing your mailing lists in the future. You want relevant contacts. It is better to have a list of 100 readers, than 2,500 that will never open your email.

creating a mail chimp account

After going to your email and confirming with Mail Chimp, they will redirect you to this page here. Make sure to fill in the entire form then click to finish generating your account.

email marketing opt-in page

After finishing the preliminary admin work, you will be taken to this screen. You can set up an email campaign from here, create a list, start building your audience and even invite your colleagues.

last step in creating a email marketing management account

 

How to Optimize Your Emails

Now that you have an account set up and created a list (or imported a list of contacts you already had – you can import from excel), it is time to create a campaign. There are several ways that we have found to optimize your emails for a higher ROI.

Write Attention Grabbing Subject Lines That Offer A Clear Benefit

Think about how much your email is bombarded with advertisements. Then think about how many emails you delete without opening them. This is why it is so important to have a subject line that screams “OPEN ME!” You know your customers and what is important to them. Use this knowledge as a point of reference, if you are having trouble coming up with an attention grabbing subject line I suggest visiting Marketing Profs blog.

Email Marketing Attention Grabbing Subject Line Example

If you were a machine shop owner your clients (or email list) would be interested in you purchasing a new machine that is faster, allowing you to complete work cheaper than before. You need to make sure the subject line gets that information across as concisely as possible.

“Saving You Money With New Additions To Our Company,” would be a great subject line.

 

Provide A Clear Call-To-Action In Your Email Marketing

Whether a customer is buying your latest widget, or reading your latest post, your call-to-action needs to be clearly shown in your email. The digital marketing team at KriXis Consulting has found opening and ending with the same call-to-action yields the best results. Additionally, we have also found putting the ending call-to-action on its own line receives more clicks.

You need to provide direction to your audience.

Below are two examples of clear call-to-actions perfect for small business email marketing:

 

“If you like what you read share this with your co-workers, and check out our post on responsive websites.”

 

“Reply with this code XXXXX and receive a 15% discount on your next order.”

 

Use Appealing Graphics/ Visuals In Emails

 

Words alone will not grab attention. Human beings are visually stimulated; use this to your advantage. You will want to find something that is both attention grabbing and relevant. Pixabay is a great place to find professional images for free if you do not have your own. The image below is a great example for advertising this blog post through email marketing.

 

Segment Your Email List

 

Your email list is not just one giant collection of contacts. Each of those contacts falls into different sub categories that can boost targeting.

 

Segmenting Scenario For Email Marketing Campaigns

 

You have three types of buyers: steel, aluminum and copper. You purchased the new machine mentioned above in the subject line section, and it can be used for all metals; you may want to email all three groups. A week later you discover a new use for copper. In this case it would be best to only email the copper buyers.

 

Incorporate Social Media

 

This promotes social sharing of your email, and allows those reading your email to connect with you on other platforms. Your business will be rewarded on Google’s search engine results as more social media signals are pointing back to your website.

 

business social media promotion in email

Focus on Formatting Your Campaigns

 

The days of only checking email on your computer are gone. Smart phones allow your contacts to check their email anywhere, and you need to tailor your emails to this. Mail Chimp allows you to send test emails before messaging your entire list. We suggest emailing yourself the test and opening it on your phone. You may be surprised and find out what looked great on your computer, looks awful on mobile.

 

It is also equally important to use a format that makes sense, here is a logically formatted email: title, attention, call-to-action, grabbing phrase, body and call-to-action. This is basic, but works. Simple and easy to follow emails provide the best user-experience.

Prevent Spam Complaints

 

You can get penalized from too many spam complaints. The penalty is having your emails filtered as spam by those who have not even reported your message as spam. The best way to avoid this is to make sure the “unsubscribe” button is big and clearly visible in your emails. Losing one subscriber is way less of an impact than having dozens of people on your list not see your latest promotion because it was marked as spam. For more information on how spam affects your email I suggest reading this post by Search CRM.

 

Small Business Email Marketing Allows For Tests and Tracking

 

Email marketing requires analyzing the data and making adjustments. It is a constantly evolving process and needs to be evaluated regularly to make sure the practices you are using are indeed being effective. Mail Chimp is a great tool, since it gathers all of this information for you. Professional help is available, KriXis Consulting offers email management services, allowing you to focus on your business, while we track the data and make adjustments.

Benefits of Using Mailing List Platforms

 

Email Marketing Reduces Time And Effort For Small Businesses

Storing all of your customer’s information in one place makes life easy. Two major benefits are:

1. You can group contacts based on industry or interests

 

2. You can access this information from anywhere with an Internet connection

Typing in multiple emails into an address bar is a thing of the past. One click composes a personalized email (based on their name and information you have stored) to a small target group, or your entire emailing list. Mail Chimp also has premade templates, allowing you to focus on the message and not the layout.

More Frequent Communication With Current And Potential Customers

Mailing List Marketing will give you the opportunity to stay more connected with your customer base. It is important to note that emailing once per week is considered best practice.

email marketing technology advances improve b2c communication

Test Email Marketing Messages

Many people never think about how an email is going to appear on someone’s phone. Using an email management system will let you view the message from a mobile device before you send it to your list.

Bonus Information Spreading For Small Businesses

The great thing about email is the ability to forward messages. The creation of a successful email campaign increases the chances of your message being shared.

Low Cost Of Email Marketing

The monetary cost associated with beginning an Email Marketing Campaign are very low. The management tool is free (unless you have enormous email lists or want more than basic features), and you can take the time to manage everything yourself. However, as with everything time related there is an opportunity cost, which is why mailing list management is one of our digital marketing services growing in popularity for small businesses.

Exponentially Better Ability To Track Sales And User Engagement

Mailing List Marketing Software tracks the following data: how many people opened an email, how many people clicked a link in email, which specific link within an email was clicked, how many people complained that an email was spam or unsubscribed and whether your email made it to the inbox of your subscribers. You get the feedback that matters instantly.

email management allows small businesses to track data

Small Business Email Marketing Conclusion

Effective marketing campaigns can transform a business. Becoming an early adopter to technology puts you ahead of everything else. You should now be able to open a mailing list management account, understand the basics of how to use it and see the benefits it has for your business.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. We always appreciate sharing our content as well. If you have any further questions, please comment below.

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Top 15 Reasons Your Business Needs Responsive Website Design

Top 15 Reasons Your Business Needs Responsive Website Design

What is a responsive website?

Responsive websites are designed for optimum viewing on different devices. They are just as easy to navigate on a smartphone or other device as they are on a desktop.

Many websites are great on computers, but look awful from a phone or tablet. Here is an example of a website that is not responsive:

Desktop View

not responsive website design example | desktop

 Mobile View

mobile site view of not responsive design

As you can see this is not friendly at all for the potential customer. This type of website will be quickly left. Below is a responsive example found at KriXis Consulting’s responsive website design page.

 Desktop Viewresponsive website | desktop view

 Mobile View

responsive website example | mobile view

The difference is night and day. Before you continue reading I encourage you to look at your own website on your phone or tablet. You will immediately see if you have a responsive website or not.

This post highlights the top 15 reasons your website should be responsive. After reading, the decision to make the change to responsive website design should be easy.

 The Reasons For Responsive Website Design

  1. User-Experience (UX) Is Best On Responsive

If a customer is on your website via mobile the last thing you want is for them to leave immediately because the screen is impossible to read. Maybe they were just on your website at the office, but had a doctor appointment. While in the waiting room they wanted to learn more about your services. However, your website is impossible to navigate from their phone. That lead leaves your website and finds a company with similar services that is mobile-friendly. Creating a responsive website ensures that the user-experience is the same on all devices.

  1. Life Becomes Easier

It is not uncommon for web developers to create multiple versions of your website. For example, your website may be http://xyz.com; but a http://mobile.xyz.com may have been created separately. This practice helped make non-responsive websites mobile-friendly, or at least appear to be. The downfall arises with the maintenance and upkeep of two different websites, not even thinking about the possibility of new devices for searching the web being created in the future.

  1. Search Engines Want Responsive Website Design

Google likes responsive website design. Why would you want to go against the company that controls where you appear? Google not only recommends responsive website design as the best way to target mobile and tablet users, it also favors mobile-optimized sites when presenting results for searches made on a mobile device. Yahoo and Bing state the same. This should be reason enough to make the change.

  1. Increasing Number Of Mobile Users

More and more people are getting away from accessing the Internet through a desktop. Google searches done on mobile devices have actually been surpassed by searches done via desktop. This trend is not going to change, and the gap between mobile v. desktop will continue to expand as more people utilize their smart phones to their capacity. In fact, 61% of people have a better opinion of a brand based on their mobile website. Are you ready to make a responsive website with KriXis Consulting?

  1. Customer Trends Show An Increase Of Shopping Online

We all know that shopping online is easier than driving to the store. In many cases it is cheaper as well. Studies show that out of those who shop online 80% have bought something through their mobile device. A responsive website design gets your business a piece of that large influx in sales.

mobile-friendly shopping | starbuck mobile

  1. Staying Ahead Of Your Competition

Every leading business is developing a way to easily make purchases on mobile devices. They are developing responsive website design to make these transactions as simple as possible. As a business owner you should pick up on this trend since it works. This is an opportunity to get ahead of your competition, or a chance for your competition to get ahead of you.

  1. Major Platforms Support Responsive Designs

If you are reading this I am sure that you have heard of CMS’s (content management systems) such as WordPress. These CMS now have theme options that allow for a responsive website design. Going responsive also provides the perfect opportunity and reason for you to change over to one of these CMS. They make your online life much easier, we suggest going with WordPress and I’m sure most would agree.

  1. Responsive Website Design Is Cost Effective

Responsive websites may cost more to initially have designed and built. However, this investment requires less maintenance cost in the long run, since the responsive website will automatically adapt to every device. Making them considered one of the most cost effective and time saving development options available today. Our price is set to get you started towards a responsive design today.

  1. SEO And Marketing Benefits

As stated before many businesses have different websites for different devices. Search engines such as Google prefer using just one URL, hence providing an SEO boost. Also, Google uses a separate algorithm for mobile devices; this algorithm marks some websites as mobile-friendly. A responsive website design will make your website mobile-friendly. Notice the gray ‘mobile-friendly’ tags in the image below.

Search Results Page | Mobile-Friendly Tags

  1. Benefits On Pay-Per-Click Advertising

Pay-Per-Click advertising can benefit your business by allowing you to specifically target a customer based on location and search terms. Google Adwords has the feature ‘enhanced campaigns’, which now allows you to target customers by device. Having a responsive website design adds to the flexibility and specificity of your paid marketing campaigns.

  1. Keeping People On Your Website

Bounce rate refers to people heading to your website and leaving before checking out other pages. You want to have a lower bounce rate. As more people visit websites on their phones, they will expect to be visiting an operable website. If your website looks awful on mobile, customers will leave. Responsive website design guarantees the same functionality as they would have on a desktop.

  1. Social Media Brings Mobile Traffic

As a business owner you should have Google Analytics attached to your website. Google Analytics allows you to track where traffic to your website is coming from and what pages people are landing on when they do arrive. Most inbound marketing strategies include social media and blogging. ComScore has recently completed a study that shows 55% of social media usage is mobile. As you change to responsive website design you would be able to see in Google Analytics that customers being funneled to your website from social media are staying longer. Our approach towards digital marketing begins with a responsive foundation, but then attached all the tools needed to collect and record data.

  1. Internet Devices In The Future

The original iPhone was released in June 2007. The iPad was released in September 2010. These devices completely changed the way people use and connect to the Internet. New devices will emerge, and a responsive website design will adapt to that device.

  1. Americans Use Their Phone In The Bathroom

75% of Americans are using their phones while in the bathroom. They are taking this time to catch up with social media or look for things online. Responsive website design will give customers a positive web experience during this time.

  1. Fresh Presence For Your Business

Everyone has been to websites that are impressive. People have also gone to websites that appear old, cluttered and lousy. How do you want your business to appear? Our small business digital marketing page is a sleek, clean and up-to-date look, which was built with responsive website design.

small business marketing responsive web design

Process Of Making The Change

 

There are a few factors you need to consider after deciding to go with a responsive website design.

 Summing Up Responsive Website Design

The reasons above should motivate you towards responsive website design. Adjusting to what your customers are doing is necessary for all businesses to succeed. Thank you for taking the time to read this post, we greatly appreciate all social media sharing, as well as sharing this information directly with friends and colleagues. You can click here to learn more on how KriXis Consulting can begin the responsive website design process with your business.

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7 Reasons Your Online Efforts Failed

Your Online Efforts Failed, Here’s 7 Common Reasons

Manufacturing and machine shop owners regularly say, “I tried the Internet, and it did not work.” Many of you reading this have said the same. However, that is outlandish to say; the Internet and digital marketing is the present and future. It is the tool used by businesses to grab more market share, especially from those neglecting an online presence. You can either work with technology or fail attempting to work against it.

 

KriXis Consulting would like to focus on manufacturing and machine shop owners who have failed using the Internet. We are going to address seven reasons many decision-makers feel this way, and bulk them into two major categories: strategy and underestimation. This short article will improve your future decision-making, and should open your eyes as to why your previous efforts let you down.

 

Lack Of Strategy

 

As with almost all business decisions you need to have a strategy, digital marketing is no exception. As an owner you can either develop this on your own, work with a professional, or outsource the work entirely. Working with an expert makes the most sense, however, no matter which approach you decide to take the below points should be taken into consideration.

 

Perfect Customer

 

You know your business better than anyone else, and I’m sure you know your perfect customer. You know his/her personality, likes and dislikes, and even their favorite pair of jeans. Locally this perfect-customer is currently a paying client. Outside of your area, he/she has never heard of your business.

 

The Internet allows you to instantly be on a global scale. You are no longer limited to those select few perfect customers in the surrounding area. Knowing your perfect-customer right off the bat will allow you to start a strategy to only attract business from those who fit the criteria of exactly what you work best with. Taking this approach allows you to attract these individuals from all across the country. Building the profile helps a web developer build a website geared towards this individual.

 

SWOT

 

Strengths-Weaknesses-Opportunities-Threats (SWOT) is an easy to use, and highly effective tool when developing all strategies. The image below shows the simple setup for the analysis.

 

use a SWOT to improve your marketing efforts

 

Taking the time to have a few brainstorm sessions to fill out this chart will allow your manufacturing or machine shop to have a clear picture of what you excel at, along with visualizing areas you lack in.

 

Online Goals

 

Business owner’s fail online, or think they fail due to setting unrealistic goals. Marketers sometimes promise the world in their pitch, but you need to stay grounded.

 

After understanding your perfect client and creating a SWOT analysis, you will have a better understanding of what is realistic. Anyone working with your machine shop should also have the above two categories covered. The scenario below should simply put this into perspective:

 

3,000 people are searching for “cnc machine shop” within your state.

 

  • 1,000 people are looking for new employment.

 

  • 1,000 people are looking to sign a contract within the next year.

 

  • 500 people are looking for a service that you are not capable of.

 

This leaves 500 people ready to looking for your services and ready to do business, but . . .

 

  • Only 100 people are actually making that search, they just average searching 5 times during the month.

 

You are now left with a market of 100 potential customers.

 

  • The numbers 1 & 2 spots on Google are going to receive over 30% of that 100, at least for initial traffic. Reaching number 1 can take over 6-months of services to reach.

 

  • If you are not on the first page of the search results, only 16% of searchers will find your manufacturing or machine shop.

 

facts on search engine traffic

 

That initial 3,000-person pool is now down to 16. Of that 16 maybe 3-4 are the customer you want to work with. For the first 5-months you may only be looking at 3-4 leads per month from your online marketing. Your digital marketing goals need to be long-term.

 

Creating a Minimum Viable Product (MVP)

 

Many manufacturing or machine shop owners are sold by the “bells and whistles” that marketers have to offer. You need to remove this train of thought from your initial digital marketing ideas, and focus on creating an MVP.

 

The initial design for your online efforts should be investing as little time and money as needed in order to create a campaign that is effective. You need to understand how people will move through your website, and how to get them to act on your call-to-action.

 

Once an effective minimum viable product is created you can add the bells and whistles which can now add more value to your machine shop marketing. Here’s an easy way to look at this:

 

You and another manufacturing business owner are about to drag race. You’re building a 700-hp hotrod, the transmission can’t handle the power, but you do not know this yet. Your competition pulls up in a base model Chevrolet Cobalt. The light goes green, your transmission snaps and the Cobalt slowly, but easily won. You need to go back to the drawing board, but now the Cobalt can add a supercharger, bells and whistles, knowing they built something that works.

 

Underestimating The Work

 

Some people think having a website, and posting a few pictures here and there is all they need. Then call the Internet a hoax when people aren’t beating down their door for business. Others are somehow still oblivious to the entire digital world, and figure in time if they need to that they can quickly make the change. Both of these thoughts are destined for absolute failure, which is why you need to understand time needed to be invested for results and the different potential strategies.

 

Time Invested

 

There is no overnight success in digital marketing. Your manufacturing or machine shop will not appear at the top of the first page of Google for quite some time, especially if you are just making a website for the first time. Do not convince yourself or be convinced otherwise.

 

Search engines, such as Google, look at the age of your website’s address, so if you are just starting out it can take up to 6-months alone for Google to consider you a credible website.

 

You also need to factor in creating a website that search engines (and customers) find useful. People have templates and general layouts, but being like everyone else will not put you ahead. Taking the time to develop your own effective and unique layout and content will require a combined effort from your marketer and yourself.

 

Bright Local polled digital marketers and search engine specialists to gather information on timetables for seeing results:

 

bright local - competitive seo marketing

 

Our research has shown that within the machining and manufacturing industries broad terms such as “CNC machining” and “machine shop” would be considered competitive. However, we aim to market our clients towards a niche since these are more likely to convert into customers. The image below shows the data regarding less competitive sectors.

 

non-competitive seo sectors by bright local

 

Bright Local’s research has shown that businesses with some optimization lessen this timeline, while businesses with poor optimization adds to this timeline.

 

Different Strategies

 

Digital marketers are equipped with a wide-array of strategies to help you reach your online goals. Each have pros and cons, and some work better in certain combinations. Marketing budgets, short-term and long-term goals, and commitment level play a role in what strategies are best for your manufacturing or machine shop.

 

Many business owners jump at the first strategy they encounter before fully understanding their options, or what to expect from the particular strategy they chose. The list below briefly touches on common strategies:

 

  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – A term many are familiar with, but do not understand that this is a more long-term investment. On-page (website) SEO work can help give a quick boost in rankings, however, many other factors are a part of long-term rising in the rankings, and they need to be working together.

 

  • Local Search Engine Optimization (Local SEO) – This strategy focuses on having your business appear in the search results for a particular geographical area. This is great for the increase in individuals searching on mobile, but relates back to knowing what your perfect customer. Local SEO also has an impact on your overall SEO.

 

  • Pay-Per-Click Campaigns (PPC Campaigns) – These automatically have you show up on the first page, but as an ad. You are charged each time that they are clicked, with prices based on the competitiveness of that particular word or phrase searched. These need to be carefully worded and targeted since they can quickly eat up a budget without showing an ROI. PPC also requires landing pages to be created specifically for the ad being clicked, a step that cannot be left out.

 

 

Each of the four common strategies is attached to links if you are looking for more information. Lack of knowledge is a reason for failure in many aspects of life, showcasing your business online is no different.

 

Knowing A “Family Friend”

 

This is perhaps the biggest pitfall that I hear of. People know someone in the family or close to the family that is good with computers.

 

These people are cheaper or willing to just help out, that should be a red flag, you get what you pay for. They can do more harm than good to your business.

 

Do you want to have your company not shown in the best possible light?

 

Do you want someone that is teaching himself or herself on the fly?

 

You did not see any results from their work, but you need to ask yourself, were you really expecting to?

 

Reasons For Failure Overview

 

If online efforts for your manufacturing or machine shop have appeared to fail, review these above common reasons. If you are looking to launch your first digital marketing campaign I would suggest using the above information as a checklist to help ensure success.

 

You may have additional questions and concerns regarding marketing your business online, and we would be happy to answer them. You can look at the complete list of services offered by KriXis Consulting and contact us in order to help create a plan best suited for your needs and budget.

 

Thank you for taking the time to read this, you can sign-up to be the first to receive our newest articles or share this sign-up page with others who would be interested. Your comments regarding this post are welcomed and encouraged.

 

 

 

Save Time And Make More Money With CRM

Customer Relationship Management (CRM)

Many of you may be asking, what is CRM? CRM is a system for managing a company’s interactions with current and future customers. It often involves using technology to organize, automate and synchronize sales, marketing, customer service, and technical support (Wikipedia). CRM has been developed to better organize your business, which saves time and as we all know time is money.

The following research has been broken down into three main categories of benefits: administration, customer service, and sales improvements. This should take 10-minutes to read and afterwards you will have a grasp on what CRM technology brings to your business.

 

Administration Work

 

machine shop crm administrative benefits

 

Data & Analytics

CRM allows you to track purchasing, find out where customers are purchasing from (website pages), measure how long the sales process takes, and see where each current project is throughout your sales and work pipeline. The information is visible throughout your entire organization. This allows you to break down each portion of your sales funnel, and track your strong points along with problem areas. Additionally, all of your current information regarding present and past clients can be added to the CRM (this includes their order history, contact info, relationships and all interactions with your business).

Real-Time Updates

Based on the information that is tracked above, you as the business owner can immediately make updates to optimize each portion of your sales funnel. CRM delivers these results immediately, allowing no time to be wasted.

Customer Insight

CRM tracking benefits allow you to see exactly what buying or non-buying inquires are doing. You can track the entire buying process; for example, how are customers finding you, what website pages are being viewed most prior to customers taking action; the list of possibilities is endless. This gives you cues as to whether a deal is likely to close, or how long until it does. All of this information can also be tracked on an individual basis, with personal updates for each interaction.

Data Organization

It is not uncommon to have a Rolodex or countless excel spreadsheets; containing information on customers, their orders, sales team efforts, etc. CRM allows all of this information to be stored in one place, which is accessible by any device connected to the Internet.

Performance Tracking

Information can easily be lost or misinterpreted through the sales and production processes. CRM ensures that all information is organized and tracked with reminders and notes are input at each point of customer contact, along with each step taken by employees.

Full Organization Insight

CRM promotes all divisions of your business to work together, since everyone is on the same page. You can see everything that your sales team is doing, and your sales team can see everything that your production is accomplishing. Allowing you to accurately relay this information to customers. As a business owner you can permit or limit individuals access to certain information within your organization.

 

Customer Service

 

customer relationship management statistics for customers

 

Efficiency

All information is gathered and are input into the CRM, which allows for less time to be wasted during customer contact sessions, since all knowledge regarding that particular customer is in one place, at your fingertips.

Optimization

The gathered information can help profile your most profitable customers, allowing you to target those similar. With all this information known it then becomes easier to cross-sell between like customers, and even up-sell, by utilizing the trends found in the collected data. This information works together to help you manage customer cycles as well.

Service Excellence

More information allows you to deliver better customer service. Specifically, you can manage each customer on a case-by-case basis. The CRM allows you to deliver quality customer service from any location, since the information can be accessed digitally from any device connected to the Internet.

Communication Ease

Keeping up with follow-ups in a timely manner can be a difficult task to manage. CRM provides automated notifications for all service calls and points of contact. After contacting customers this information is placed in the history of your CRM, providing you with a report of all interactions. Tracking also provides feedback on what email is being opened and even clicked.

Client Insight

Understanding what clients are doing with presented information can ease the creation of producing compelling content. A CRM collects this feedback. This allows you to manage your service goals, along with track your audits.

Information Accessibility

Centralizing all of the collected information saves you time. As stated before CRM provides easily accessible information for all of your client history, project management and order transactions. You no longer need to be at the office or in front of your computer.

 

Sales Improvements

 

statistics for sales teams on crm

Improved Teamwork

Sales teams can overlap efforts by performing the same tasks as other team members; CRM corrects this. Salesmen have the ability to update accounts as they make contact with potential customers. These updates are then visible in real-time to your entire organization. A more in-depth analysis of visibility shows that CRM saves salesmen time through: territory management, calendar integration, assigning sales tasks and automatic notifications similar to those of administrative duties.

Increase Client Account Value

CRM increases account values by letting the sales team view similar accounts to compare cross-sales and potential up-sells.

On a personal level, since all information regarding customers has been tracked, salesmen can now create personalized messages to each client they seek to interact with.

Adding New Customers

Based on the information that can be collected mentioned in the above processes, CRM can help you create a customized deal stage list, informing you what actions to take that have previously yielded the best results with existing customers.

Reaching Growth Goals

CRM tracks where each lead is coming from, therefore, you now have a scoring system for each marketing/sales method. This allows for simplified management of your goals, since the data is being reported in an easy-to-follow manner. CRM analyzes which of those leads converts into a sale. This eases the job for you, when it comes time to make decisions regarding your budget.

Sales Effectiveness

Tools CRM provides promote effectiveness and efficiency for your sales team. Salesmen can now: track emails (when they are opened, how often they have been opened and whether the customer interacted with the email), easily manage quotes, share activity throughout the team openly, more accurately measure sales forecasts and access this information anywhere, even from their phone. Less time spent on the above, is more time spent selling.

Greater Lead Generation

CRM setup seems overwhelming. However, you now have the opportunity to import all of the data you have placed in various locations over a period of years all into one place. This alone shows enough value to get started.

 

Applying CRM To Your Business

 

Every business is different. Some may have a large sales team; others may rely on the owners to handle all of the sales. Sales are just one aspect where CRM can help your business grow, but the point is in order for CRM to be effective, you must have it tailored to your needs. There is not a one-size-fits-all CRM plan. Speaking with a business that implements and manages CRM, should help guide you in determining what is right for you. We offer these consultations for free.

Click here to set up a free consultation with the KriXis team.

Full Integration

 

We consider CRM to be back-end, while all marketing efforts are front-end. A properly set up CRM will capture all leads and information coming from your front-end efforts. This collected information will be organized, and provide measurable data.

This is full integration of your entire sales funnel and pipeline, all being tracked in one location, without any extra effort at all, and it happens automatically. This is the beauty of CRM working with your other efforts. Value of back-end and front-end alone can help your business, however, the value of each exponentially increases as they both work together.

Click here for more information on the integration of services.

 

Bringing CRM Together

 

Thank you for taking the time to read through this article. It was lengthy, but we wanted to ensure an understanding of what new technologies can bring to your business.

We encourage you to share this with other business owners, and welcome any comments or questions that you may have. If you are realizing it is time to explore options we encourage you to click here to begin our next article, or click here to set up a free consultation to uncover the best-suited options for your business.

 

 

 

Independent Small Machine Shop Wake Up Call

On August 6, 1991 the Internet first went public; we are quickly approaching the 25th anniversary. It has changed every aspect of our life. At this point it is impossible to imagine life without it. However, small independent machine shops are just coming to the realization that their Internet presence is terrible. You can frequently find smaller machine shops with websites that haven’t been updated since the mid-1900s. Owners of these shops are finally seeing that their businesses first impression is embarrassing. As a small machine shop you should have specific thoughts regarding your website and ways to guarantee its effectiveness.

4 thoughts a small machine shop owner should have

small machine shop website thoughts

  1. Best Employee

 

Your website is available for customers at all times, it works for you 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. Your website works for your machine shop as hard as you allow it to. It allows customers to find you through search engine tactics such as search engine optimization (SEO), pay-per-click campaigns (PPC), and ultimately give you leads leading to sales, which can be optimized by conversion rate optimization (CRO) practices.

 

  1. First Impression

 

The Internet is how people find businesses with today’s technology. Your shops website is the first impression that a potential client will have of your business. This can go one of two ways. You can either “wow” them or be terrible as mentioned above. Providing the “wow’ factor will peak interest, and have the potential customer looking further into your machine shop. Being terrible will have someone quickly exiting your page.

 

  1. Edge Development

 

Small independent machine shops tend to specialize in a particular niche. This niche allows you to stay in business while competing with bigger shops. Your website showcases this edge. Your machine shop will also reap the benefits of more online traffic (SEO) as you focus the websites content towards this specific niche. These visitors finding your niche are more likely to convert into customers due to the specifics of their search.

 

  1. Expansion Possibilities

 

As a smaller machine shop you more than likely conduct most of your business within the local geographic area. The Internet allows this barrier to be broken. You can promote your small machine shop on a National level; your local niche can now be visible across the country.

 


 

In order for a website to be effective for your small machine shop it must bring the right people to it and actually be working for you.

6 elements needed to generate the two positive effects

website elements for small machine shops

  1. Showcase Work

 

People are visual. The addition of pictures of your machine shops work eases the transition from website visitor to paying customer.

 

  1. Highlight Specialties

 

Focusing on your niche has been previously mentioned, however, it is important enough to mention twice. More focus on your specialty will increase traffic of those interested in the specialty you provide.

 

  1. Identify Capabilities

 

Customers will want to know if you can handle the workload that they are looking for. Making it important to display everything that your shop can manufacture.

 

  1. Industries Served

 

This will benefit your machine shop in a few ways. First, industry focus will drive traffic for a particular industry to your website. Second, a list of industries served builds to your machine shops credibility.

 

  1. Non-threatening Communication

 

People do business with businesses they like. It is important that your website expresses some human-like personality in a non-pushy way. People are more likely to convert to customers if they are comfortable as they scan your website.

 

  1. Address Fundamental Issues

 

This is the last element, but it may be the most important in creating a successful website for your shop. Each of the following issues must be addressed, and if they are, you will see business booming via online. Customers need to find out who you are, have trust based on what they read, see your track record, know what you are going to do for them, understand costs, know that their investment is protected, and know that your machine shop has the resources to deliver.

 

Overview For Small Independent Machine Shops

 

The Internet is here to stay and here to help you grow your machine shop. Following what has been mentioned above will put you on the path for success. As a small business owner you need to create an advantage for yourself, and this can be done online efficiently. This is a budget friendly solution that will provide plenty of ROI, and as technology usage continues to increase the time to migrate efforts online is now.

Why Are You Losing Business

Machining in the United States

Manufacturing is returning to the United States. The Washington Post has even claimed, “The U.S. is poised to be a rising star in manufacturing.” However, losing business continues for your machine shop. You have been doing what worked for years, but the results continually worsen. Losing business is a difficult question to face, but the sooner you do the better off you will be.

Looking at the numbers the machining industry has had an annual growth of 8.7% from 2010-2015. This growth is expected to continue for products produced by milling, turning, grinding, EDM and ECM. With a constant increase proven by nationally collected data, why are you losing business?

Machine shop owners should not be losing business

American business owner statistics

To answer this let’s take a look at the ownership of these rapidly growing machine shops, as well as the ownership of companies they provide services for. According to the census only 11% of business owners are over 65, and 53% are between the ages of 34-54. These owners are also highly educated with 64% of them having some college education. Numbers are great, but here is what they mean.

First we need to break machine shop owners and other business owners into separate categories:

Machine shop owners

  • Tend to be on the older end of that spectrum. Many are set in their ways that once yielded tremendous results, and opposed to change, or taking risks. Even though they believe they are not taking risks they are still losing business. Not changing is arguably the greatest risk that they take.

Other business owners

  • Tend to have the majority of the higher education. Generally speaking they are also younger, and more willing to take risks, and less set in their ways. Lastly, the youngest working generation is known for entrepreneurship, many opening up shops according to their learned trade.

Understanding your client

As a machine shop owner you need to market yourself in front of the right audience, the right way. This is common sense, but not executing this is why you are losing business. Younger generations had an easier time adapting to technology. Their higher education also forced them to become efficient with it. These owners are not getting news from the paper, nor reading the classifieds, they are using their smartphone. News is just the tip of the iceberg. They are finding everything via the Internet, and increasingly less by desktop computer. As younger and younger business owners emerge, the rate of technological fluency drastically increases.

Connecting with the new ownership

For simplicity purposes lets say John Smith loves to work on cars. He is 28-years-old and wants to focus primarily on custom work so he starts his own business. John Smith tells all of his friends on Facebook about his business, and they are all supportive.

When was the last time your machine shop gained this type of support on Facebook?

When was the last time your machine shop did any marketing on Facebook?

The late Steve Jobs gave a fantastic 6-minute presentation that should be used to guide your marketing efforts. His talk is especially applicable to your online efforts.

John Smith is now building a drag car; he needs to have his flywheel machined. John Smith is not going to look in the Yellow Pages or the local newspaper. John Smith immediately turns to the Internet, and finds exactly what he is looking for locally.

Would you have been his search result?

Lets call the Internet present machine shop “shop X” and the traditional machine shop “shop Y.” Shop X decided a while back that traditional methods of marketing were going to be revolutionized by the Internet. They embraced technology early and continually built upon their initial investment. Shop Y has been losing business even though the industry has been growing year-after-year. This has allowed companies like Shop X to grow exponentially faster than the market.

Turning the tables

I’m sure that you know a competitor that grew faster than everyone else, or it may have even been your own machine shop. However, if you are the shop losing business refocusing your marketing efforts digitally will make all the difference. The machining industry is going to continue to grow in the United States, make sure you are getting your piece of the pie.

How-To Get Your Machine Shop Started In Social Media

social media growth - machine shop marketing

 

Social media is a term familiar by everyone in today’s technological age. I’m sure you have utilized it to reconnect with old friends and update loved ones with what’s new in your life. However, social media also has business application, even in the machining industry. Unlocking these capabilities for your machine shop requires effort and a well-thought strategy.

After reading this post you will have a better grasp on the most applicable platforms for social media, and how to properly use social media for your machine shop marketing. You will also learn 3 benefits social media can provide for your machine shop marketing.

 

Best Social Media Platforms For A Successful Machine Shop Marketing Campaign

 

I am a firm believer in simplicity, and social media should not add complications to your machine shops marketing. Saying this, I am going to suggest limiting your social media efforts to 2 platforms, LinkedIn and Google+. It is easy to get lost and spend too much time attempting to master and get the most out of social media, be time conscience of your efforts. Before I go into more detail on why just these 2 it is important to address that social media adds to the foundation that your machine shop marketing campaign has already built. The base of this foundation being your website. It is key to remember that social media is a funnel that leads potential customers to your website. Therefore, without a website that showcases your machine shop and your capabilities, you are setting yourself up for failure. You can learn more of the importance of web-design by reading our previous post.

 

Social Media Machine Shop Marketing Essential – LinkedIn

 

LinkedIn is the social media platform for professionals. This is where you can connect and meet with others within your industry or those looking for your machine shop services. Below is a screenshot of my personal LinkedIn profile; you can click the image as well for an opportunity to connect with me.

 

matthew borza - machine shop marketing president

 

You can also create a LinkedIn page for your machine shop. The below screenshot displays KriXis Consulting’s page, clicking it takes you to our profile as well.

 

machine shop marketing - KriXis

 

Now that you have a visual, let’s cover why LinkedIn is essential for your machine shop marketing.

 

  1. You are able to search other connections by industry. This can be useful in multiple ways.

 

First, you can connect with those within your own industry. Contracting and Sub-Contracting is a common practice within machining services, the more connections you have within your industry, the more likely someone is going to reach out to you regarding potential business.

Second, you can search by industry in which you specialize or wish to penetrate. Lets say that aerospace is your specialty. You can search companies or leaders of companies within that industry and connect with those individuals or organizations. At this point you as the machine shop owner have a few options; you can message them directly using “InMail” or actively comment on posts by those individuals or organizations. This interaction will move you from a random person online into a category of person of interest, you can continue to build this relationship, and nurture it into what matters, business.

 

  1. You can showcase your machine shop work or services.

 

Say you finished a big contract for GE; you took pictures of the work for your own portfolio and moved on. However, you were seconds away from letting the entire LinkedIn community know just how great your machine shop is. All you need to do is upload the pictures and a brief description and click post, results from this would not be immediate but I can assure you that people will take notice if you continuously post superb machining work.

 

Machine Shop Marketing Social Media Underdog – Google+

 

This may be a bit surprising since Google+ is not used by most people, nor nearly as popular as platforms such as Facebook or Twitter. However, Google is where most people are searching for everything, and although not disclosed by Google, a reasonable person would assume that using a Google social media service would positively affect the search results that Google provides.

The boost in search results ultimately provides your business with more visibility. More visibility equals more traffic to your foundation. A pristine foundation equals more business. Therefore, Google+ equal more business for your machine shop in the long-term.

Below is a screenshot of KriXis’s Google+ profile, we invite you to click and connect with us.

 

social media profile for machine shop marketing

 

As you can see you can post updates, just as you can with LinkedIn. Machine shop marketing should focus primarily on posts that can be placed in each of their social media platforms, allowing one piece of work maximum exposure, increasing the likeliness of conversions. This is known as leveraging your content.

There are a ton of options for social media platforms usable for your machine shop, I suggesting making a start with just these two. However, once you get a handle on these and if you have the time, I suggest exploring other options. Feel free to contact us if you have any other questions as well.

 

Importance of machine shop social media

 

How Social Media Should Be Used For Your Machine Shop Marketing

 

So you now know what platforms to start with, but the question remains of “what do I post on these platforms?” The question is easily answered by looking at what you are already using personal social media for, which is to become updated with those that you care about.

The individuals that you are currently following are not trying to sell you anything by any means. If your cousin, the car salesman, is constantly posting car prices and deals you would more than likely consider “unfriending” him. It would be annoying and clutter the things that you actually want to see. Your machine shops goal should be to avoid being the clutter, and become the “want to see” material, and that’s the key to success, simple as that.

Lets begin with “if your machine shop had a face.” What would you want this face to look like? The slick-backed-hair used car salesman, or the uncle who always told the best stories?

I’m guessing you chose the latter. Here are 3 tips your machine shop can use on social media to avoid being clutter:

 

  1. Take out a piece of paper and brainstorm ideas on the following, “what are my customers asking?” You know your niche better than anyone else, and I am sure you have been asked a ton of questions by potential clients. Use social media to answer these questions that have been asked. You can also think of questions that you might be asked and answer them. This builds credibility, and keeps people interested in what you are saying.

 

  1. As stated above, post your work. Your machine shop completed a big project; share it via social media. Be sure to include pictures as well.

 

  1. Strike up a conversation. You want people to be engaged with your machine shop’s social media platforms. Commenting on posts by others can start this; eventually they will reciprocate with your machine shop. Social media takes time and patience, but you will see results.

 

These are just a few examples of how social media can be utilized for your machine shop marketing. The more your machine shop becomes involved, the easier social media engagement will become.

 

3 Practical Benefits Social Media Has For Your Machine Shop

 

social media platforms - for machine shop marketing

 

So you now have an understanding of how your machine shop can use social media, and what platforms could be utilized. However, I want to provide you with 3 benefits that I consider the most important when integrating social media into your machine shop marketing campaign.

 

Building Relationships For Your Machine Shop

 

Lets take a look at all relationships. The more time you spend keeping up to date with someone, the stronger the bond. This translates to social media as well. If you are engaging regularly with potential customers, you are building a relationship. This relationship will lead to more work for your machine shop and potential referrals from those you frequently engage with.

 

Building Lists For Your Machine Shop

 

As you follow the above plans regarding social media you will gain followers within targeted industries. You can take these followers or those you are engaging with and put them in a list for future business for your machine shop. After sometime you can choose to call them or reach out to them outside of social media. They are no longer a “cold call” but rather someone accustomed to engaging with your machine shop.

 

Your Machine Shop Gains SEO Ground

 

I am assuming that you already have an understanding of SEO. If not you can read how SEO affects your machine shop. Social media is being factored into SEO. The more activity found on your social media accounts, the higher you will rank. SEO is essential for your machine shop marketing, and social media is another boost to help you along the way.

 

Summary Of Social Media Integrated With Your Machine Shop Marketing

 

As you can see there are many benefits for your machine shop when utilizing social media. These benefits vary depending on the amount of effort that you are willing to put in. I want you to keep in mind that social media posts are visible to everyone. These posts will have a reflection on your machine shop, and I’m sure that you want that to be positive. This is why I suggest you, the machine shop owner, look over all posts before they are submitted, and give access to these accounts to someone that you trust. This should be fun, and show you results, and I look forward to hearing stories of your success.

We are giving away a free consultation to those who read our posts; it is our way of saying thank you for your time. As always, we hope that this was beneficial to your machine shop, and look forward to sharing again with you soon.

Turning A Higher Profit With A PPC Campaign

PPC may be something that you have never heard of, but it will generate your machine shop more business if done correctly. After reading this you will have an understanding of what PPC is, and how it can affect your machine shop.

What Is PPC

PPC stands for Pay-Per-Click advertising, meaning you pay a small fee each time someone clicks on your machine shops ad. The image below is a screenshot of what Google found for the search query cnc precision machine shop.

machine shop search query

Note the top three results, and the two on the right hand side. These are the results of a PPC campaign. You can also see bolded words within the appearing PPC ads matching my search terms, and that they all contain each of the words I searched. This exact keyword matching is what will allow your machine shop to specifically target a niche. More specific niche searches are more likely to convert to customers rather than someone searching a broad term for informative purposes.

Keyword planning is the most important factor when creating a successful PPC campaign for your machine shop. Google provides tools to allow you to view the frequency of searched terms and phrases. I suggest hiring an expert to develop a keyword plan with you, but if you want to try for yourself Google Adwords is where to begin. I suggest following the acronym – CNC – for your research.

C

Constantly refine, research and update your search keywords. Put yourself in the customer’s shoes and think about what they would be searching for prior to making a purchase.

N

Not only niche, meaning, less common searched for terms could still be effective and prevents your machine shop from leaving money on the table.

C

Cost, Google charges you based on the competition for a particular word or phrase. You may want to make some adjustments to like terms, which in turn allows for more clicks for your budget, and more clicks equals more sales.

I also want you to look over the wording and appearance of each ad from the above search query. Determine which machine shop looks most fitting based on what I searched for. This PPC ad setup and layout is something I suggest leaving to an expert, getting serious buyers to click is what matters most.

The video below provides further explanation of PPC if necessary.

They Clicked The PPC Ad, Now What

Your machine shop was spotted by your exact target customer, they clicked your PPC ad, but what happens next? Based on the above search I decided to click on an ad, the image below shows where this led me.

PPC landing page machine shop

This is called a landing page. Notice how this page is setup with basic information pertaining to my search, while including a call to action that gives this machining company a direct warm lead to a client whom is looking for a quote.

These landing pages are another essential piece of the successful PPC campaign pie. They are the difference between gaining a customer and having an individual exit your website.

3 Important Reasons Your Machine Shop Needs PPC

1. Niche customers ready to buy will see you at the top of Google. They know what they are looking for, and your machine shop matched their search exactly. Sale complete, and both parties are happy.

2. You can create multiple campaigns to match multiple specialties and the industries they service. Each ad is custom tailored to a particular need and a landing page can be made for each as well. This level of professionalism sets you apart, sale complete, and both parties are happy.

3. Easiest way to measure ROI. You set your budget, which determines the amount of clicks, not appearances (these appearances even if not clicked, build your machine shops brand). You can track or have your outside help track how many leads are coming from each campaign. This allows for agile investing into effective PPC campaigns.

Summary

I want you to keep in mind that all strategies should be focused on gaining a greater profit for your machine shop. Many people get lost in just seeing an increase in traffic to their website. A PPC campaign is one of the most effective strategies, and possibly the most effective as you begin your digital efforts. This is due to its immediate effect, while SEO takes time. If you are interested in launching a complete long-term campaign, click here; but if you would like to start smaller, click here. Thank you for your time and I hope you gained a better understanding of this strategy and its importance.

Machine Shop Customers First Stop, Your Website

These days everyone has a website, however, the quality ranges drastically between them. Many people believe having a family friend or creating the website themselves is a viable option. Yes, this is cost-effective, but the hidden and often undiscovered opportunity costs far outweigh the initial investment. Your machine shops website should have 3 main goals: first impression, functionality and being up-to-date. Each is essential to having your website be your shops best employee.

 

Your Machine Shops First Impression

 

There is an age old saying that you should never judge a book by its cover; this never happens and your machine shop will be judged entirely by your websites appearance. Studies show that 75% of machine shop website opinionInternet users admit to making credibility judgments based on design, and that first impressions lead to higher customer satisfaction. Lets further break this down into credibility of the business and of the business owner.

 

Machine Shop Credibility

 

Here are two examples of machine shop websites, one with a great design, the other poor on a good day.

 

good example - machine shop - capabilities
Poor Example - machine shop - capabilities

Both of these examples have been created to provide customers with the machine shops capabilities. The difference is obvious. Who would you rather do business with? 

 

Machine Shop Owner Credibility

 

Based on what was seen above how do you envision each owner?

 

Lets start with the poor website, assumptions of the machine shop owner include he/she . . .

 

. . . is technologically backwards . . .

. . . does not care what others think . . .

. . . is alright with advertising themselves poorly, imagine what their product is like.

 

As for the second example, one would assume he/she . . .

 

. . . realizes times are changing, and strives to be one step ahead . . .

. . . puts extra effort into something most others avoid, imagine what he/she will do for a customer . . .

. . . does not cut corners, and is proud of his/her brand.

 

These are just to name a few, but I am sure that you get the picture. You can see that appearance is important, but it isn’t everything, your machine shops website needs to function as well.

 

Functionality Of Your Machine Shops Website

 

Time and time again people look at a website as just something to “check-off” from a list of necessities. Nothing could be further from the truth. Your website is potentially the best employee you could ever hire. 24/7 your website will be working for your machine shop. It never gets tired, never takes a day off, nor slacks on work. However, your website is only capable of delivering results that you have prepared it for.

 

You may have never looked at your shops website from this angle and I hope a light bulb is turning on for you.

 

The website should be funneling you sales at a very minimum. Pictures of your team, and the history of your machine shop are great, but is that what generates you business? Absolutely not, people want to know if your machine shop can deliver the results they are looking for, which takes planning. It would be best to put yourself in the shoes of your target customer, and brainstorm questions that your target market would be asking. If you are able to pinpoint these questions, and answer them correctly, business for your machine shop will flourish.

 

I also suggest checking out our previous post, which sheds light on other aspects required to create a functioning website, you can click here to get there.

 

Making Sure Your Website Is Up-To-Date

 

People no matter what industry or business find new methods of marketing and move on from the old. Many people, especially machine shop owners, once began strong online, but allowed their efforts to fizzle out. It is key to remember the Internet is not for overnight success, it takes effort and patience.

 

old machine shop website

 

As you can see this has not been updated in quite sometime. I can assure you that potential customers for this shop have noticed this as well.

 

The above example is obvious since it is dated, but customers also look at content that is found on a website. These customers will notice old content. This is likely to deter them from coming back frequently; nobody wants to see the same thing over and over again. Frequent visitation keeps your machine shop on their mind. You being on their mind will bring your machine shop more business.

 

Ingredients For A Successful Machine Shop Website

 

It is best to start simple, which is why I am providing basic elements to a successful website.

 

  1. Show your business in the best light.

 

You should do your homework and look at your competitors. See who has created the most professional appearing websites, and determine what they have done to achieve this. I suggest doing the same for determining trustworthy websites as well.

 

  1. Ensure your website is easy to navigate.

 

We have all struggled to find what we are looking for online. Make sure your website provides navigation with ease. Keep it simple and to the point.

 

  1. Re-enforce your brand.

 

Do this as often as possible. Place your business name throughout the website frequently and make sure that it stands out, just don’t go overboard. A good rule of thumb is to keep all branding placement natural sounding if you were to read it aloud.

 

  1. Keep your website updated.

 

This has been mentioned twice now for a reason. Not only will it benefit you in acquiring customers, but it will make your website more search engine friendly, since search engines such as Google look for freshly updated websites. If you are struggling with this pictures of recent machining and descriptions is a great place to start.

 

Summary

 

The Internet is the future of advertising. This makes your website the future of acquiring new business. Don’t believe me? Up to 83% of people are visiting a companies website prior to making a purchase. Take your time with this, and be just as proud of your website as you are of the products you produce.

 

Thank you for reading. We look forward to sharing again next week.

Why SEO Works For Your Machine Shop

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) may or may not be a term that you are familiar with. Those who have heard of it may believe it to be something they do not need, and to those whom never heard of SEO may think that they have not for a reason. However, a few minutes of your time will change your outlook and can have a significant impact on what matters to you, your bottom-line, if you don’t believe me after you finish click here for Modern Machine Shops advice. Before I dive into explaining the 3 reasons SEO will work for your machine shop, an understanding of what SEO is will build the needed foundation.

What Is SEO?

Search Engine Optimization is the process of increasing your website being found by potential customers for searched SEO - Definition of SEO - Optimizationkeywords. If someone searches CNC machine shops, they receive a list of results. SEO is the strategic tool that puts your shop at the top of that list. The higher your machine shop is on that list, the more likely a customer will click onto your website. I will provide an easy to follow example below.

The Dilemma:

You are a CNC machine shop in Dallas, TX. You have just hired a professional to build you a website to showcase your 5-axis capabilities, and the website looks great. You wait for new customers to contact you. A week goes by, and then months, and you are starting to feel like you wasted your money, and now believe that the Internet is a terrible investment.

This is the kind of story every real digital solutions provider dreads to hear, and here is why. You were just handed a 1967 Shelby Mustang GT-500, and it is a thing of beauty. You jump in the drivers seat, put the key in the ignition, turn it, but nothing happens. Confused you pop the hood, and are shocked to see that there is no engine. You cannot believe you just bought what looked to be a pristine car, but soon realize it is worthless.

Let me connect the dots. The car represents your top-of-the-line website, and the engine represents SEO.

Without the engine the car/website is . . .

  • Strictly for your viewing pleasure only, or
  • Reserved for those you personally invite

With the engine your car/website . . .

  • Is shared with more people than you realize, and
  • While you are driving more people are turning their heads and noticing

The video below is another easy to follow explanation of SEO incase you still need some clarification. Found Here.

 

 

Now that you have an understanding of SEO, it is equally important to see how SEO will affect your machine shop. Here are 3 key reasons SEO will be important to your machining business.

  1. Getting Buyers To You.

Whether you have or have not embraced technology, your customers have, and that is what matters most. If you have embraced technology I want you to think about this. You and your significant other are on a trip to the Florida Keys, after exploring for the day you are both famished and looking for the best seafood option to cap off an amazing day. You pull out your iPhone and search “best seafood restaurants.” Google knows where you are located and immediately delivers results for you to select from. Being hungry you click the first option after noticing good reviews, obtain the address, and you are on your way.

You were just SEOed. That restaurant was not at the top by accident, a professional got them to that position. You were SEO - Research looking for a specific type of restaurant, and Google knew this based on what you were searching. The SEO specialist knew that searches for that particular phrase indicate a true buyer, and based off that knowledge he/she needed to get his/her client to be at the top for that word.

This is called inbound marketing. This means that you are only being marketed to the people that matter. As a comparison, lets look at placing an ad for your machine shop in the local paper. Say 50,000 people monthly are reading the paper, but only 2,000 look into the classifieds, and 5 people might care about machining, but those 5 are already in the machining industry, and 4 of those 5 are your relatives. However, SEO allows you to have everyone who sees your ad actually be interested in your ad. My research shows that per NTMA chapter area 110 searches for machine shops are being conducted.

Below is an example graph of the information that can be found on Google Keywords:

 

SEO - Keyword research - machining new mexico

  1. Make Your Shop The Authority.

Seeing the importance of ranking for a particular keyword or keyword phrase should be starting to become clearer. The second reason we at KriXis Consulting have selected is just as important as the first.

The word “authority” is more than likely throwing you off, but there are plenty of different versions of authority, ranging from the local police to the President of the United States. Looking at both examples, and all other examples you can think of regarding authority, a common trait is respect for what is asked for. Being the top spot of Google for a given search is website authority, as long as you are commanding for it, SEO triggers this.

Google has placed a particular website above the others due to Google’s belief in that website being exactly what a customer is looking for when searching for certain words. People making these searches trust Google as well, and believe that Google’s selection is the best option for them.

SEO is asking for the top spot on Google, and a professionally optimized website gives you this, leading to your machine shop becoming the authority.

  1. Look At The Numbers.

The above graph shows how many searches on average are done per NTMA chapter area per month. If your website is not at or near that top you are invisible to those perspective customers.

Below is a table, which shows a study by Google on how often your page is getting clicked according to where it appears on the rankings:

 

Search Engine Optimization - Google SERP

 

It is easy to see that being in the top three is essential, and being in the top ten is vital to being seen at all.

You may be saying to yourself, “how many of those searches are actual buyers,” and this is a legitimate concern for anyone contemplating hiring SEO services for their shop. I want you to think about this though. I have regularly built Mercedes AMGs on the local dealerships website, but I have never had intent to make the purchase. This may be a strange comparison, but think about the difference between the Mercedes AMG and a CNC machine shop. People always search cars for fun, but people are not searching machine shops. The only reason someone is searching for a machine shop is if the individual is a machinist looking for work or looking for machining services.

Having that cleared up look at the number of searches and multiply that by the percentage of your desired rank on Google. To make this easy lets say your machine shop is number 1 on the search results and 100 people searched that month, that is a total of 36 customers going to your website. To play it safe lets say 2/3 of those heading to your website are looking for work. This leaves you with 12 potential customers for that month. We can again play it safe and say 1/3 of those potentials become customers, giving you 4 new customers for that one month. All you need to do now is simple math to determine if: (average profit margin per customer) X 4 > (cost of SEO fees). This should be a no-brainer either way.

Summary

Our integrity at KriXis Consulting means everything to us. Saying that, it is only right to tell you that SEO is not an immediate fix; it is a process that takes time to achieve. However, when combined with other solutions, all of which included in our phase 1 package, this process is sped up and will show better results.

The purpose of this article was to show you how important SEO is in order to grow your business, especially in today’s technological era. If you are currently advertising in the newspaper and/or Yellow Pages I’m sure you have been seeing less and less of a return on your investment; this is due to people going digital to find what they are looking for.

Lastly, from my experience within machining I have realized that the business is heavily referral based, and you are probably saying to yourself that all of my business comes from referrals, and you may even be saying that you cannot handle anymore business. So let me end it with these two points:

  1. Those long-time referrals are selling their businesses and new ownership is coming into effect. These new owners are looking online for machine shops to work with; you are only lying to yourself about this and it will only hurt in the long run.
  1. How many hours a day are mills and laves sitting idle, they can always work; I don’t know a single owner who doesn’t want to run multiple shifts.

Thank you for taking the time to read this, and I look forward to sharing with you again next week, more of our work regarding SEO can be found by clicking here as well. Feel free to comment below, we would appreciate all comments and would be happy to clear up any questions.