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10 common pitfalls to avoid in a small business e-commerce website

10 common pitfalls to avoid in a small business e-commerce website

There are estimated to be over 2.14 billion online customers and buyers in 2021. This amounts to 30% of the earth’s population! E-commerce capabilities for small business websites present a tremendous opportunity for you if you get it right.

Running a small business e-commerce website is a challenging task at the best of times, but during the Covid-19 pandemic, almost all businesses have had to move online to survive. This has meant that competition for mindshare in the online space has reached a feverish pitch during these last couple of years. Here are 10 of the most common pitfalls that plague most small business e-commerce websites.

Pitfall #1: Poor Visual Design

There is a vast difference between the websites of 1994 and websites in 2021. Long gone are the days of just having three CTA buttons added to your small business e-commerce website and calling it a day.

Today, you need to have an attractive, elegant, and functional visual design and User Interface (UI) not only to attract customers and gain traffic but also to increase your website’s SEO rank organically.

Your small business e-commerce website needs to be intuitive and easy to use, as well as aesthetically pleasing. Navigation needs to be simple and the overall layout should be neat, clutter-free, and sophisticated. An important rule-of-thumb is to ensure that users reach their destination in under three clicks.

It is good practice to avoid automatic pop-up windows as well as video or audio files that play automatically without giving a user an option to pause them. Atula has a great team of Visual Design, Usability, and User Experience experts that can help design a visually fantastic yet intuitively functional website.
Pitfall #2: A Slow e-commerce Website

47% of your online buyers expect your small business e-commerce website to load within 2 seconds or else they leave! Even a one-second delay in loading results in massive abandonment at your e-commerce website.

Gone are the days of using simple hosting and putting up an e-commerce website. The choice of server location, server performance, the volume of HTTP requests, the number of JavaScript files, images, CSS, and videos have a huge impact on your website loading speeds. Additionally, great caching with a state of the art Content Delivery Network (CDN) matters tremendously for your small business e-commerce website performance.

This is no longer a game for DIY enthusiasts and home-brewed solutions. Getting professional help can mean the difference between your e-commerce site being a huge revenue generator and simply being consigned to the cyber dust-heap.

Pitfall #3: Insufficient User Personalisation

On a small business e-commerce website, personalising a customer’s experience can be a huge help with customer acquisition and retention.

74% of businesses believe that user experience is one of the most important factors for generating sales and conversions. Implementing customisation and personalisation options for your e-commerce website gives buyers a sense of control and a great experience.

Standard personalisation approaches include prioritising product categories based on the customer’s interests, targeting specific personalised products, implementing easy options like “one-click buy”, and auto-fill options for pre-existing customers.

Birthday discount schemes, personalised Call To Action (CTA) buttons, greeting the customer by name on a landing page, and adding personalised blog posts also helps generate traffic to your website.

Pitfall #4: Inadequate Product Information

Your small business e-commerce website is the bridge between an in-store experience and an online one. However, one key difference between a physical and a virtual experience is the absence of a store assistant to help and guide customers, providing them with relevant information needed to help them to make buying decisions. Your e-commerce website must have all the relevant information about products as well as your brand easily accessible to buyers. This includes descriptive as well as technical information about your products.

Tip: Keep technical information available at the click of a button but not directly visible to avoid clutter while giving users the option to go deeper if they wish! Additionally, avoid using generic content provided by manufacturers, since google immediately penalises such duplicate content. Get a writing team to craft excellent product write-ups that are unique.

Pitfall #5: Unnecessarily Complicated Checkout Process

The average abandonment rate at the shopping cart stage is 69.75% for Desktop users and goes as high as 85.65% and 80.74% for mobile and tablet users respectively.

The checkout is the most important step in the sales process on your e-commerce website. All the effort and money spent may result in nothing if this aspect isn’t executed correctly.

Ensure that your e-commerce website’s design uses clear indicative icons and graphics, includes a progress bar as well as a fully functional back button at

each stage of the checkout process and provides live chat support for buyers that need help.

For unregistered users, the registration process causes the most friction between a customer and a sale. It is a good practice to get a buyer to register towards the payment stage of checkout.

creative
However, it is wise to collect a prospect’s email early on so that an abandoned shopping cart can be saved and a customer can receive an email gently nudging them to complete a sale. There are over 30 strategies used by Atula’s team of experts to optimise your checkout page alone!
Pitfall #6: Not having a responsive website

57% of users will not recommend a brand with a poor, non-responsive mobile website. This is significant, given that as of Feb 2021, 55.65% of web traffic comes from mobile users!

Therefore, it is really important to have a small business e-commerce website that is optimised to work on any browser and device.

A responsive web design uses HTML and CSS to automatically resize your e-commerce website to perfectly fit a variety of browsers, devices, and device sizes. The tech team needs to set appropriate responsive breakpoints, use a fluid grid, and make sure that images, videos, and typography in your small business e-commerce website are responsive.

Atula has deep expertise in developing responsive e-commerce websites for multiple customers and we bring all that learning and expertise to your e-commerce website!

Pitfall #7: Minimal SEO implemented poorly

You can either spend most of your capital on advertisements and paid promotions or smartly optimise your small business e-commerce website to secure a top rank on Google’s search results organically.

Google uses over 200 ranking factors in its algorithm to assign a Search Engine Result Page (SERP) rank to a website. Your e-commerce implementation team needs to be familiar with these variables and find ways to optimise them in your e-commerce website.

However, not all factors contribute equally to your e-commerce website’s SERP rank. Some factors like mobile usability, page speed, keywords, security contribute more than others like keywords in the domain name, domain expiration date, Adsense, or H1 tag rule.

Additionally, using meta no-index tags, canonical tags, keyword stuffing, rich snippet spam and similar black hat SEO techniques can negatively impact your e-commerce site’s rank. SEO is a complex and specialised game, given Google’s propensity towards whimsical and abrupt changes in the rules. Smart business owners will get help from a team of SEO experts like Atula to help them stay ahead of the Darwinian game of SEO hide and seek.

Pitfall #8: Using Outdated Tech leading to Technical Glitches

Retail site owners do not realise the losses they incur due to faulty e-commerce websites. 52% of online shoppers abandon a website and visit a competitor’s website!

Technology is the fuel and the grease that keeps the e-commerce engine running. Your launch page, checkout page, and everything in between should be free of technical glitches. Layout bugs, faulty interactive features, page errors, and site maintenance are enough to frustrate the most loyal customers.

Having your e-commerce website built using modern technologies is a critical aspect of the smooth running of your online business. For instance, 59% of online shoppers claim that Artificial Intelligence (AI) based user experiences influence their buying decisions. AI can help user personalisation, improve recommendations, and initiate automated campaigns to increase reach and generate leads.

Additionally, using chatbots provides 24/7 assistance to consumers and sends shipping and tracking information to them. Using a cloud CDN can improve content delivery speeds and make your e-store more adaptable.

Assistive technology and audio commerce can take your business to new audiences like the youth and the visually impaired demographics.

For instance, implementing speech-to-text technology in your search bar can enhance the usability of your e-commerce website. All this, in turn, adds to your business’ growth. Here again, it pays to hire experts to help you deliver a state-of-the-art, world-class experience based on cutting edge technology while you get freed to focus on the business side of things.

Pitfall #9: Lack of Social Proof

In 2021, the lack of social proof on your small business e-commerce website is a big no-no. Your prospects need to know what your existing customers and buyers feel about your products and your brand.

Social proof is based on normative social influence factors of social psychology. For example, positive customer testimonials and reviews dramatically enhance your brand’s image among prospective customers.

Using positive social media posts of your products from Twitter, Facebook and Instagram helps build confidence in your prospects. Adding factual data about your brand like sales volumes, social media followers, and the number of positive reviews helps to build a bond between your brand and your buyers.

Active, implied, and story-telling social proof techniques are some unique ways to help your prospects and customers convert. Needless to say, getting a team of boss-level technology savants like Atula is critical to taking your business to the next level.

Pitfall #10: Underestimating the value of PPC campaigns

American online retailers spend up to 76% of their ad budget on Google’s Pay Per Click (PPC) ad campaigns. This number acts as a vote of confidence in PPC campaigns by business owners.

Google uses an auction-based bidding mechanism to rank ads and position them before organic search results. This means that with a PPC campaign, you can get to the top of the search page! Social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter also offer highly targeted PPC campaigns.

Social media PPC campaigns offer unmatched audience refinement capabilities for highly specific targeting. You may choose an audience from a specific demographic, location, age, gender, and relevant interests while planning your PPC campaign.

The ROI on PPC campaigns is quite amazing. PPC audiences are 50% more likely to buy your product as compared to organic visitors, because the buying intent is higher among those who click an ad.

The challenge, in this case, is that your e-commerce marketing team must strategise these campaigns down to every single detail such as goal, target audience, and the landing page of your e-commerce website. Also, each platform has its magic incantations that must be used to make the most of them. Get Atula’s team of marketing and advertising magicians and soothsayers to help you extract every ounce of juice from your PPC ad campaigns.

Conclusion
  • Thinking of implementing a new small business e-commerce website for your business?
  • Tired of your glitchy, outdated small business e-commerce website that gives zero results?
  • Want to get a highly trustworthy and competent team to leverage technology that delivers results?

Give us a call on 0207 101 4351, send us an email on enquiries@atulatech.com, or contact us on our website and we’ll be happy to provide you with a free consultation on building an elegant, world-class e-commerce website that delivers results and lives up to its full potential. At Atulatech.com, we have enough experience to understand your exact needs. We can design an e-commerce solution tailored specifically for your success.

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Contactless solutions for great guest experience.

Contactless solutions for great guest experience.

The global travel, hotel, and hospitality industries have borne the major brunt of the Covid-19 pandemic that began in early 2020. In the UK alone, international, and local travel restrictions, reduced occupancy, as well as social distancing rules have hammered business turnover in the hospitality industry. Simultaneously, fixed costs along with debt have stayed where they are, leading to a massive downward spiral impacting over 1.6 million jobs at their peak. In 2020, hospitality businesses that have halted operation number at 55% compared to the industry average of 24%. 2021 promises to be different: with vaccinations at 90% of the adult population with the first dose and 70% with both doses, a major turnaround is already underway.

This is the right time for hospitality businesses to kick into high gear and get ready to take advantage of the current summer surge as well as the long-term uptick as everything goes back to business as usual.

The price of doing nothing could be extremely high, given that there is a way to use technology to dramatically enhance your guest experience. Using a Contactless Guest Experience Management App like EZStay™ can help you dramatically enhance your business and the guest experience, reduce costs, and increase customer satisfaction while seamlessly dealing with social distancing restrictions

What is Contactless Guest Experience?

Simply put, Contactless Guest Experience is using software technology to help customers access all your hospitality services through their smartphones while maintaining social distancing norms. Typically, since guests access hotel Wi-Fi anyway, they simply use a Contactless Guest Experience solution like EZStay™ to check-in to your hotel, request room service, book appointments at your restaurants, spas, or other facilities, and finally pay and check out of your establishment, all without any direct human contact! EZStay™ is Atula’s unique contribution the hospitality Industry. While Contactless Guest Experience solutions have been around for a few years, Covid-19 restrictions have catapulted this approach to the forefront, making it a great solution to several challenges posed by the pandemic. Contactless Guest Experience solutions like EZStay™ can help your hospitality business achieve greater efficiencies while simultaneously greatly enhancing a customer’s experience of your hotel, resort, or spa.

Features of a Great Contactless Guest Experience Solution

Any Good Contactless Guest Experience Solutions should provide these features at a bare minimum

Online check-in and check-out are a primary, must-have feature of any contactless guest experience solution worth its salt. For guests, there is a dual advantage – the convenience of check-in or checkout and payments, as well as safety in terms of social distancing for Covid-19.

Any good solution will have a room service feature where customers can access all room service options on the smartphone device itself. This dramatically increases the convenience factor for customers while reducing the support load on your hotel.

Since the hotel or resort room was itself booked online in all probability, it is a simple extension of that to have customers book a restaurant, salon, spa, or any other facility directly from their smartphone using the contactless solution, rather than having to call a service desk.

Payment integration is a critical, must-have feature of any Contactless Guest Experience Solution. Typically, check-in, check-out, facilities, or room service would be integrated with a payment gateway so that customers can pay on the go. This way, the entire process of dealing with financial transactions can be handled automatically.

A good Contactless solution will be able to integrate well with your existing software systems, ensuring that your investments are protected and that you don’t need to rip and replace them..

EZStay™ can be seamlessly integrated with your existing hotel management or ERP systems ensuring that your customer facing systems are modernised and upgraded, while protecting your backend systems of records. You can continue to use your existing backend systems which also eliminates the need to re-train employees on a new backend system!

Today, chat as a service is so ubiquitous and customers’ preference to use text chat for any kind of interaction is so high that it makes complete sense for any decent Contactless Guest Experience Solution to incorporate live concierge chat in multiple languages.

Any Contactless Guest Experience Solution needs the ability to add or build any custom features that a business may require. For example, Digital Door Keyless Entry is one such optional feature that hospitality businesses can use. In the case of a Contactless Guest Experience Management App like EZStay™, you can integrate your check-in and payment features so that a customer can access their room using the Digital Door Keyless Entry option. This eliminates the need for cumbersome key management which requires in-person dealings with the customer.

Strictly speaking, security is not a “feature” in that it is not optional. An insecure Contactless Solution is no solution at all. Any robust Contactless Guest Experience Solution needs to have security baked into all its features and functions. For instance, at check-in time there needs to be a secure but user-friendly option to authenticate customers and provide access to the right set of facilities.

Again, having an intuitive user-centric design as well as a personalised experience must be built into a Contactless Guest Experience Solution. User experience matters because a good, intuitive user interface means that everything works seamlessly, and guests can use the app without having to figure it out. This way, guests can focus on what they are there for: to enjoy your hospitality experience.

Additionally, the app needs to be personalised for each guest based on their room type, personal preferences, and special requirements. Customers will remember a great personalised experience, especially if the app remembers their choices and makes appropriate recommendations. For a hotel, this is an opportunity to upsell or cross-sell services that a customer would like.

Benefits of contactless hotel solutions

There are several benefits of Contactless Guest Experience Solutions to both customers as well as hotels, resorts, and spas.

Contactless Guest Experience Solutions like EZStay™ can be highly customised to meet your hotel’s exacting needs. Your logo as well as brand guidelines, colours, and visuals are used to create a branded customer experience for your customers. Additionally, EZStay™ can be set up to use customised workflows to map to your hotel’s processes for everything from check-in and check-out to room service and concierge.

EZStay™ has been designed by user experience experts and is both easy to use and intuitive for even first-time users. This way, customers have a seamless experience and focus on having a great time at your hotel.

Since the hospitality industry is still reeling from the impact of Covid-19, EZStay™ is available with flexible and innovative payment options to meet your exact financial needs. There is a Perpetual License option where you pay a one-time lump-sum fee, along with a small annual maintenance charge for updates and upgrades. Another option is a monthly subscription model where you optimise your hotel’s operational expenses by making a monthly payment.

Benefits to your hotel

Contactless Guest Experience Solutions like EZStay™ offer several benefits to your hotel, resort, or spa.

Simply announcing to potential customers that your business offers a 100% Contactless Guest Experience will attract many more customers leading to both greater occupancy and revenue, with positive revenue streams.

Greater occupancy will directly lead to greater revenues, with a direct positive impact on your RevPAR. Additionally, all the upsell and cross-sell options available in EZStay™ will again help increase customer spend on your property. A customer survey shows that up to 50% of customers would order more room service if they had that option on their smartphone.

Given that social distancing norms seem to be here to stay with us for a while, it is safe to say that your establishment will comply with government health safety and social distance norms that are in force.

Benefits to your customer

There are several benefits of Contactless Guest Experience Solutions to both customers as well as hotels, resorts, and spas.

Most customers will be happy that they and their loved ones can adhere to social distancing norms for everyone’s benefit. Contactless solutions offer exactly this benefit

Today’s digital natives are very comfortable with technology and surveys show that 75% of guests would be happy to use a Contactless Guest Experience Solution like EZStay™ from a pure convenience perspective. After all, there would be no need to carry door keys, remember room service, concierge, or reception desk numbers and they could make reservations at a spa or a lounge bar from anywhere

Technology and the future of contactless solutions

Contactless experiences have been possible primarily due to the rise of smartphones along with the internet. Although at the back-end there are large and complex technology platforms doing all the heavy lifting, as far as your customers or your employees are concerned, all they need to do is access their respective applications either on a smartphone or a workstation.

A PwC survey shows that implementing new technology solutions has led to a 135% increase in revenues, a 71% reduction in customer complaints, and a 19% increase in ratings. There can be no better evidence that technology is having a lasting, real positive impact on the hospitality industry.

In the meanwhile, technology is also rendering the traditional concierge obsolete with the rise of text-based support options that are the go-to communication channel for today’s digital natives.

The future of contactless

Contactless Guest Experience Technology and Solutions are growing in leaps and bounds. In the future, those who do not adopt this approach will be rendered obsolete very quickly. Additionally, powerful analytics tools, as well as Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning algorithms, are quickly adding tremendous benefits to customer acquisition, service, pricing, revenue, and profitability for hotel businesses.

Conclusion

Contactless Guest Experience Solutions like EZStay™ are here to stay and the only question is when (not if) hotel businesses like yours choose to adopt this approach towards better profitability and customer satisfaction. We at EZStay™ Solutions will be at Stand 362 at the Hotel360 Expo being held on 28 – 29 September 2021 at ExCeL, London. Make sure you visit us at Stand 362 to get a live demo of our EZStay™ Contactless Guest Experience Solution and learn how you can exploit EZStay™ to increase your occupancy, revenues, and customer satisfaction ratings while lowering expenses and effort.

Call us for a free 30 minute consultation

Thinking of implementing a Contactless Guest Experience Solution for your business? Want to find out how EZStay™ Solutions can help you increase revenues, occupancy, and customer ratings? Give us a call on 02071014351, send us an email on enquiries@atulatech.com, or contact us on via website and we’ll be happy to provide you with a free consultation on how to leverage EZStay™ Contactless Guest Experience Solution to its full potential! [a]Assure them that this does not mean dumping their existing investments in Hotel ER.
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7 Things your Small Business Website MUST have.

7 Things your Small Business Website MUST have

Today, 4.66 billion people worldwide have access to the internet. This constitutes around 60% of the global population, who access over 1.5 billion websites on the internet today. Almost every activity these days requires a website – from grocery shopping to banking to finding anything about anything!

Long gone are the days of the static, half-dead brochure websites. For instance, e-commerce sales by the end of 2021 are estimated to add up to around USD 5 trillion! We were tempted to use a capital T, but a love of good grammar prevailed…

If you’re setting up a small business or even if you are looking for a small business website redesign, you need to know that a website is a lot more today. It may be

Let’s take a look at the 7 Must Haves that every small business should consider

MUST-HAVE # 1 : A great domain name

Believe it or not, a great domain name matters. Especially today with the internet being as crowded as it is, a short, sweet, memorable domain name can mean the difference between great website traffic and good website traffic. This is because the domain adds a lot of authority to your small business website’s content and purpose not just for your visitors, readers and customers, but also for search engines (Cough – google – Cough!)

www.mysmallbusinessname.com

MUST-HAVE #2: Small business website design and structure

Great website design matters. Visitors love aesthetically pleasing small business websites. But that’s not all. You need to make sure that the visual design aids and enhances a great user experience. For this reason alone, it may be worth getting the help of website design experts to get a great website design for your new website.

Even if you are looking for a website redesign, then it is even more important to get someone who is really good at small business website redesign to help you create a great visual experience as well as a great user interface for your visitors as well as prospects.

Website design is greatly enhanced by having the right website structure. Your small business website must have the following pages to be effective:

MUST-HAVE #3: Great technology under the hood

Today’s high-tech small business websites have a lot going on under the hood to ensure maximum visitor retention. For instance, even a tiny 2-second delay in website loading time results in 87% of folks abandoning a shopping cart! Therefore, getting experts to ensure that your website is finely and optimally tuned to generate maximum business is absolutely essential!

Here’s what you need to keep that website engine roaring smoothly and efficiently:

Fast loading pages:

Ensure that your small business website is super fast and has load times below 1 second with an outer limit of 2 seconds. Websites with a top ranking on google have load times of less than 2 seconds.

Mobile-friendly small business websites:

Over 55% of all web traffic comes from mobile devices. Therefore, having a mobile-friendly website is a top priority. As the largest search-engine, and with 80% of online browses using mobile to browse the internet – Google recommends a mobile-first approach to all businesses that need a greater visibility. In order to achieve the kind of speed needed, Google has Accelerated Mobile Pages – a framework that helps in developing your website optimised for Mobile and Tablet devices with great speed and user experience.

Additionally, there are multiple browsers like Chrome, Firefox, Edge, with multiple devices and platforms like Android and iOS, each with its own versions! All this means that ensuring a uniform website experience across platforms is no longer an amateur’s game. Get professional help with this, and you won’t regret it!

Content Management Systems (CMS):

Gone are the days of plain, simple HTML websites. Today’s complex websites require to be CMS driven with many, many moving parts. The CMS space is also crowded with options of both proprietary and open source like WordPress, Joomla and Drupal.

Add to that the free website builder options like Wix and WordPress.com and you could have a mountain-sized headache just selecting the right option, let alone having the time, energy, and technical expertise to do a great job with those tools!

The right small business website tools:

As if life were not complicated enough, there is a lot more tech needed to help your website succeed. You need to ensure that you have a superb array of tools like E-commerce plugins, shopping cart options, payment gateways, newsletter automation tools, CRM connectors, website analytics and usage statistics, site security, and so on. Importantly, you might get away with creating a new website for yourself, but think about how will you manage and support it in a sustainable way.

MUST-HAVE #4 Traffic Generation & Marketing Systems

Okay, so you’ve sweated blood and tears – or maybe taken the smart, time-saving route of getting an expert – to build the perfect, super-fast, mobile-friendly, tool-laden, ecommerce ready, secure website. That is just the beginning: You now need to pay attention to the whole point of having a website: traffic and visitors! Here are the most crucial aspects of getting traffic that you need to ensure: Search Engine Optimization (SEO): Search engines – or more specifically the 800-pound gorilla called Google – determines the amount of organic traffic coming to your website. And Google is a fickle mistress: she demands that every word on your website be organized just so, else she’ll ignore it completely.Search engine optimization is the process of writing and organizing all your website content to give you the best chance to appear on google’s search results when a prospect searches for a company providing a service or product like yours.

SEO is a highly specialised operation that requires consistent and persistent effort to use unique keywords that have high search volume and low difficulty and cost per click. This is a long-term strategy for your website to be ranking in the top 5 or 10, in search results for you to stand out from other competitive websites. So ideally you need to look for someone providing Small Business SEO Services who are experts at optimizing your small business website.

Ad Landing Pages:

While Google will give you organic traffic, you can rig the game by advertising on Google, Facebook, Instagram, or any other publication to generate traffic to your website. All that traffic then needs an Ad Landing Page on your site to access your offer

MUST-HAVE #5 Credentials and Customer Testimonials

Once a prospect lands on your site, it is time for your content to work its magic and win them over as customers. Everything on your site must work towards that one end: getting a new customer. Towards this end, you need to ensure that all your credentials, certifications, and testimonials are accessible to customers

Customer list and Customer Testimonials:

The biggest credential for most of your prospects will be a list of customers and glowing testimonials from your best customers. We, humans, are huge fans of social proof so testimonials are among the list of must-haves on your website. Govt Licences & Certification, and Industry Body Affiliations: These need not be shoved into the face of a prospect, but do make it easy for them to find it if they need it.

MUST-HAVE #6: Set-up Analytics and invest in Digital Marketing

Ultimately, unless you are Jeff Bezos and you have money to throw around, you want a website with a single purpose: To attract more customers, directly or indirectly. Here are a few steps you can take in that direction:

STEP 1: Boldly display your Value Proposition: Why you?

Don’t be shy. Let your prospects know immediately why they should consider you to buy your latest product or service. Tell them in no uncertain terms why you are the best option for them in terms of price, quality, durability, and customer support.                                                                 

STEP 2: Guide a prospect through the decision-making process

Don’t imagine that prospects will spend a lot of time and energy to figure out your website. Guide them and help them in that direction. For instance, you could have a simple Quiz to determine their needs and then point out the right product or service for them. Additionally, ensure that you use techniques like a sitemap and navigational tools like breadcrumbs to help them move around on your website easily.

STEP 3: Have a Clear, Compelling Call-to-action (CTA) “

Ask and you shall receive”. We’re consistently amazed at how many websites fail to simply ASK their prospects to sign up, call, phone, or email. Prospects are not mind readers and in this day and age of ultra-high distraction, without a clear and compelling Call-To-Action, you may well be wasting a lot of your time, money, and effort with a website.

MUST-HAVE #7: Consistently updated, well-written blogs

Visitors to websites still love to read blogs even though there are over 2 billion blog posts published annually. Most importantly, companies with regularly updated, compelling blogs generate 67% more leads than those who do not! This one statistic alone should convince you that having a blog is a sound financial deal. Blogs are one of the best ways to keep prospects engaged and warm. With a regular blog post -weekly or twice a month – you can convince them that your organization, along with its products and services is the right one for them. Over time, you can win them over with your expertise and experience, through blog posts. Best part? You don’t have to do this overtly, in an in-your-face manner!

Conclusion

Owning, managing, and operating a small business website today is no longer a trivial affair. It is time consuming, and requires expertise in visual design, user experience, technology and software programming, digital marketing, ad campaigns, SEO, and hosting just to name a few. It makes little sense for any business owner or small business website manager to get into the nitty gritty of website redesign or development. You would be well advised to focus on your core business and get someone to really do a great job so that you can laugh all the way to the bank! Call us for a free 30-minute consultation

Give us a call on 04402071014351, send us an email on enquiries@atulatech.com, or contact us on our website and we’ll be happy to provide you with a free consultation on building an elegant, world-class website that delivers results and lives up to its full potential. At Atulatech.com, we have enough experience to understand your exact needs and we can design a website solution tailored specifically for your success.

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Why business sense trumps financial sense… every time!

Why business sense trumps financial sense every time

A business thought experiment:

You are the owner of an established business that generates a million £ in revenue. In your industry the profit margins are well-known, and you hit your numbers regularly. While planning for the next year, your marketing team advises:

“Invest 100K in additional marketing and increase revenue to 1.5 million.”

In the meanwhile, your accounting team comes up with a different plan:

“Save 100K by reducing the marketing budget, keeping your revenue at 1 million”

What would you do and why?

This is a dilemma that every business owner faces. Cut costs or invest on growth? Let’s now add another variable to this – we’re presented with a pandemic and a prolonged lock-down, that has made everything even more unpredictable.

We could take a lesson from the following facts:

Kellogg v/s Post. The cereal war:

Kellogg and Post were two companies competing for the brand-new, ready-to-eat cereal market when the Great Depression of 1920’s hit. Their responses to this challenge were completely different.

Kellogg doubled its marketing budget and began radio advertising to promote its brand new product. On the other hand, Post cut back on all expenses including its marketing budget. Consequently, by 1933 Kellogg became the market leader and increased its profits by nearly 30% while the rest of the economy took a nose dive!

While it may seem prudent to take a conservative approach and reduce costs to gain better control when times are tough, it might actually be a much wiser decision to invest in growth that could sustain the costs.There is plenty evidence to prove that not cutting back marketing budgets, or even boosting them during tough times is a better approach to ensure growth, resilience and profits in the long term.

One of the biggest advantages of business in current times has got to be digital marketing. With the ability to target your exact customer segment, this could be the one easy way to please both – your accountants and the marketing team.

Business sense beats financial sense every time!

It is easy for a business to be so focused on reducing expenses that they forget that there is a better option available. Good financial sense may save you money in the immediate, but good business sense will give you growth in times to come. The growth approach will triumph over the cost-cutting approach every time!

Get in touch with us at AtulaTM Technologies Ltd to find out how we can help you grow by increasing your revenues, with a thought-through prudent approach. A clear middle-ground balance between business and financial sense!

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Application Software – Perpetual Licensing vs Subscription

Application Software - Perpetual Licensing vs Subscription Which is better?

Until the late 80’s, high-end software was sold on a term or perpetual license basis. While a term license was granted for a specific period of 3-5 years as stipulated in the end-user license agreement, perpetual license was offered for a one-time lump-sum price. For this fixed price, businesses had an unlimited use of the software even as they grew in staff numbers or across geographies. The software came with updates, new features, support and annual maintenance as a % of the price. It had to be installed on premise based on the specifications suggested by the software manufacturer, which came at an additional cost. With this model, software companies soon realised that it took more effort to look for new customers as the current revenue streams were limited. That’s when introducing a software as a subscription began.

In the early days of the subscription model, software was delivered using the vendor’s own existing infrastructure connected by a VPN (Virtual Private Network). Having access to the software without the capital expense was definitely a win-win situation.

In today’s world, a perpetual license is almost non-existent. All software vendors use cloud computing power from Google, AWS, Azure or any of the other options. Updates, maintenance, new features, bug-fixes, software upgrades etc., are all delivered to the customer seamlessly, at no extra cost. So, with the existing benefit of reduced capital expense, organisations now have the added benefit of having their software as an operational expense, with greater monetisation.

Is one better than the other?

Well, this largely depends on what term/duration you are looking for, the current phase of growth in your company and your cash flow projections. A business enterprise purchasing a software on a perpetual license basis, is essentially front-loading costs. This might be suitable for growing businesses have cash to negotiate and want a good deal from the software vendor for their software and annual maintenance. The fact that the price paid can be spread over 5-10 years, possibly with incremental users is a key consideration for many businesses.

On the other hand, for a business that has stabilised its operations and is keen to exercise control over its cash flows, purchasing cloud-based subscription software on a per user per month basis, might find it more suitable. Apart from having the predictability of costs, this model offers flexibility to expand or contract the usage and even easy exit options.

In both cases, creating a cost-model over a 5-year horizon with the current staff and future staff would give a clear indicator of which one is more cost-efficient. If any software is still available on a perpetual license basis, with simple math, you’d find it saves you money over the long term. Subscription software tends to be at least 30-40% more expensive for the same duration.

What is the way of the future?

At Atula™, we offer you the flexibility of choosing the option that is right for you. Not just by providing the right digital solution to address your unique needs, but also by making it an economically viable to your business context. Because we believe in delivering exceptional value to every customer. Speak to us for a no obligation 30-minute free consultation.