Tue

17

Nov

2015

The 12 Tips of Christmas for Online Stores: Part 2

Last week we started a countdown of 12 store tips that can get you ready for a successful holiday shopping season in no time. We started with your store setup and customer service tips, and today we’ll continue with promotion and sales.

Holiday tips for ecommerce
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Tue

10

Nov

2015

The 12 Tips of Christmas for Online Stores: Part 1

The countdown to Christmas has begun! If it feels like it’s still too soon to start singing Christmas songs and putting on the yule log, just remember that an estimated 40% of consumers start doing their shopping before Halloween (yes, some people are really that organized...)

Get your ecommerce store ready for the holidays
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Tue

27

Oct

2015

Legal Essentials for Starting an Online Store

Today's post is from Leah Hamilton at TermsFeed! This information is meant for general guidance— if you need specific legal advice, we recommend consulting directly with a professional.

 

When you’re starting an online business, there’s a lot to think about—everything from the packaging for your amazing products to the design of your product pages. Do you also have the legal aspects sorted out? Making sure you check all the boxes and have all the right forms might not seem as fun, but it’s an essential part of running a business, and keeping your customers happy.

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Thu

27

Aug

2015

Starting a Blog with Jimdo: Part 2

Promoting blog posts on your website


Earlier this week I talked about how to create each individual blog post using Jimdo. All by themselves, these blog posts are just like standalone pages of your website. Next we need to find a way to get website visitors to find and read the posts and connect each post in a blog roll.

Create a Blog with Jimdo Part 2
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Tue

25

Aug

2015

Starting a Blog with Jimdo: Part 1

Blogging, the act of posting regular updates about a particular topic on a website, is one of the most popular methods of publishing on the internet. By looking at some of the statistics from the largest blogging platforms, we know that there are at least 250 million blogs on the internet today. These range from teenagers ranting about video games in their bedrooms to massive, multi-author sites like Boing Boing or even a site like Huffington Post which demonstrates the blurry lines between a blog and an online newspaper. When it comes to building a blog on your Jimdo website, you’re probably looking for something squarely in the middle of those examples.

Starting a Blog with Jimdo Part 1
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Tue

11

Aug

2015

Got Five Minutes? Try These Easy Website Improvements

With summer in full swing, you may find yourself spending more time perfecting your grilling technique than, say, working on your website. For the record, we heartily approve of this shift in priorities.

Five Minute Website Fixes
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Fri

07

Aug

2015

How I Used My Blog to Travel the World

I’m writing this post on a plane back to Hong Kong. I have just spent two weeks in Bali “working”— I stayed at one of the best spa retreats in Ubud, went diving with manta rays in Nusa Penida, took surf lessons, went for brunch, stayed in hotels and did yoga. All of this travel for free. With the exception of my flights, I didn't pay for any of my activities or accommodations.

 

Use your website to travel the world

 

You see, I am a full-time travel writer now. I review places all over the world and make sure everybody knows the best or worst places to go. Sounds like the perfect job right? And I can’t deny that it really is. On the other hand, there is no off time when you’re a travel writer, and everything you do has to be documented and scrutinised. I can't sleep on a flight or watch movies; I have to be constantly writing and constantly talking to people. But I really wouldn't have it any other way.

 

Everybody asks how I became a travel writer and frankly it all comes down to a small decision to create my own website. At the age of 22, with a mortgage and a job in banking on my shoulders, I decided I was taking life way too seriously. I was living to work and not working to live.

 

So I packed it all in. Goodbye responsibility, hello to the open road. I traveled the world, bit by bit, and then decided that I no longer needed to buy return tickets to the UK. The more people I met and the longer I traveled, people would keep telling me I should write my stories down. I had no background in writing and really didn't think many people would be that interested in my rambles, but I did it anyway—if anything just for something to look back on and smile.

 

Coffee with a Slice of Life Coffee with a Slice of Life

 

I found Jimdo through another travel blogger site and I loved that I could design every little piece myself. It now became less of a writing platform and more of a creative one.

 

But I didn’t have a name for it. I was in Ecuador and I sat down with a piece of paper and pen and wrote down everything I loved. It was a pretty simple list. And quite honestly it looked like something a child had written. ‘Swimming with fishes’ ‘slices of cake’ ‘milkshakes’ and ‘coffee’. But this was a travel website. I couldn't call it fish flavoured milkshake, but I could call it Coffee With A Slice Of Life. And that I did. Without even realising, I picked up my coffee and smiled while seeing my slice of life, the view of an Ecuadorian volcano. My name was created. It fit so perfectly with my newly designed website.
Coffee with a Slice of LIfe website Sarah's website uses Jimdo's template San Francisco.

 

I started to document everything, trips through the Amazon, the way I fell head over heels in love with Colombia, getting sick in Guatemala, and CouchSurfing with beautiful strangers. Mostly it would just be my friends reading it. However, sometimes I would get emails from people I didn’t know telling me how much they enjoyed the site. That gave me so much motivation. I loved knowing people could get inspiration from my journey. For a good year, I wrote at least once a week. I ran the blog because it was a passion, I slowly started getting more readers and then one day a company contacted me and asked me to be a part of their affiliate programme.

 

I didn't even know what that meant.

 

Not to look like a novice, I did my research. I started to realise there were travelers out there that had blogs like mine and were making money from them. I honestly never knew you could realistically use your blog to travel for free. I signed up for the programme and the next month I received my first $100.

 

Coffee with a Slice of Life Coffee with a Slice of Life

 

I would spend hours tweaking my website, uploading photos, changing the font, just playing around and trying to portray my personality as creatively as I could. I got more confident in my writing as I loved how my website looked. Traveling was a constant inspiration.

 

In March this year I moved to Hong Kong. Not on purpose, I accidentally stumbled across it after making my way to Australia. Within a few days, I had met other writers, publishers and bloggers. I talked to everyone, I got business cards printed and I started to tell more people about my travel website. I attended every networking event I could and said yes to absolutely everything. I was here alone after all, and the city had an incredible energy about it. I knew this was where I could find freelance work if I was proactive enough. With 2 years of blogging behind me and endless hours spent on my website, I was proud to show off what I had achieved and decided to take the plunge into full-time freelance writing.

 

I now rent a co-working space in the center of the city and type away on my laptop alongside other creative entrepreneurs. I get to travel while working and am able to share my experiences with the world. And to think it all just started with a small step of creating a website.

 

Coffee with a Slice of Life

 

Tips for aspiring digital nomads


  • Of course number 1 is start a website. Remember it’s not going to happen overnight, but there is no time to start like NOW. Enjoy creating your own platform, and have fun with designing and branding.

  • Stop comparing yourself to others. This is something I try really hard to do. I created my website to reflect my personality, I tried not to look at too many others in my niche as I really wanted to it to be individual.

  • Network like crazy. There’s the old saying “Everyone you will ever meet knows something you don’t.” Don’t be afraid to discuss your ideas and your business. Check out websites like meetup.com and join local Facebook community groups.

  • Add your website to your email signature. Simple, but amazing how many people don’t do this. All those emails going in and out of the world wide web may just land in someone's inbox that could be interested in you.

  • Contribute to other websites that are in the same sector. Offer to write for them, or give them your images in return for a link to your website. Start to create a portfolio of your experiences and get your name out there on search engines.

  • Create social media channels that drive traffic to your website. Post photos and articles that are related to your sector. Above all, be patient. If what you are posting is interesting, you will soon see the followers growing.

  • Have fun. If you're not doing this you may be in the wrong business. I can honestly say being a digital nomad is the best job in the world. For me. I love not knowing what is going to happen tomorrow or what country I will be in next month, but it isn’t for everyone. Money isn't guaranteed, and plans are constantly changing.

 

Any questions about the life of a digital nomad? Let me know in the comments.

 



Sarah Richard of Coffee with a Slice of Life
Sarah Richard runs the Jimdo website www.coffeewithasliceoflife.com. She drinks too much coffee, stays up too late, and would rather spend her time in the ocean than on the land. She has created a website that allows her to travel the world while working and is currently based in Hong Kong. You can reach her at sarah@coffeewithasliceoflife.com
Photos courtesy of Sarah Richard

 

Fri

24

Jul

2015

Jimdo Tip: Adding a New gTLD Domain to Your Website

Sometimes it’s tough to find the right domain name—one that makes sense, is memorable, and still available. When searching for the perfect domain, a lot of people don’t realize that there are more options beyond .com addresses. In fact, Jimdo has more than 300 new generic top level domains (gTLDs) for you to choose from.

 

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What’s a gTLD, and is it right for your website? Read on to learn more.

 

What’s a gTLD?


TLDs stands for Top-Level Domains: .com, .net, .org, .biz—these are all of the TLDs that you’ve come to know and love. Over the years, as more and more businesses get online, the well of .com and .net domains has been slowly drying up, leaving newcomers with few options for choosing the domain they love.

 

To make room for incoming websites, Generic Top-Level Domains (gTLDs) have now been introduced to the public. Gone are the days when you could only choose between a .com or a .biz; you can now choose a .pizza domain for your pizza parlor, a .boutique domain for your local shop, or even a .photos domain to showcase your photography. A full list of available gTLDs is at the bottom of this post.

 

Why choose a gTLD?


The new gTLDs bring some nice potential benefits. For one, domains can now be shorter. Instead of using the domain willmolinaattorney.com, you can save a few characters by registering willmolina.lawyer. Where you previously couldn’t get yourname.com, you now have better odds of finding domains such as janesmith.plumbing or johnsmith.vet. Brand awareness can make or break your company, which is why domains such as .vet, .dentist, and .actor could give your business a boost.

 

However gTLDs are still the new kids on the block, so they have some hurdles to overcome. Right now, consumers still tend to trust websites with traditional domains rather than new, unusual ones. This may evolve over time as people become more accustomed to websites with .dance and .ninja in the names. But for now, it’s probably worth checking to see if a good .com address is available first before diversifying into gTLDs.

 

gTLDs and SEO


Do you get an SEO boost from using a specific keyword-friendly gTLD? Not yet. Right now Matt Cutts, the SEO guru of Google, maintains that no preference is given to any particular TLDs—new and old ones compete on equal footing, and content is still the key to ranking well, no matter what your domain is. This may change in the future, but Cutts says he doubts that it will.

 

Adding a gTLD to your Jimdo website


Jimdo offers domains in three tiers. Each tier has a different price, ranging from $20-$120/year. A full list with prices is available here.

 

When you’re ready to register one of these new domains, log in to your Jimdo site and head over to Upgrade > Add-ons. Here, you’ll be able to search the availability of the domain of your choice and then add it to your account. If you’re just signing up for a website now, simply enter the domain you want into the domain field when you're prompted.

 

Tips for choosing a domain


Even if you already own the .com version of your preferred domain, you can also register one of these new gTLDs—just be sure to follow our best practices for choosing a domain.

 

  • First of all, be sure that your domain is easy to spell, and that it doesn’t replace words with numbers.
  • Secondly, avoid using hyphens, as that only complicates things further.
  • Don’t make your domain too long. williamsbedandbreakfastandpetpalace.vacations may describe your business perfectly, but it’s really hard to read and type into a web browser (or fit on a business card).

Here’s what I recommend instead:

  • Stick to gTLDs that are most relevant and specific to the kind of website you have, like .shoes or .flowers, rather than the more vague .business or .solutions. The more obvious the connection, the easier it will be for people to remember it.
  • Even better is if you can choose a gTLD that’s already part of your business name, like williamsgourmet.pizza or fillmorestreet.coffee.
  • Try a location-specific one, like .nyc or .hamburg. This can indicate to local users that your business might be perfect for them.

Don’t forget that you don’t have to choose just one domain. You can connect multiple domains to your website (you’ll choose one as your “primary”) so you can experiment and see what works best.

 

So if you think a gTLD will be right for you, head on over to your website and you can add one directly. Because gTLDs are still so new, it’s not clear which ones will catch on, and it may take a while for people to become familiar with them. But, chosen wisely, they can be a fun, unique addition to your website.

 

Here is our entire list of domains:


Basic Domains

Basic domains are included with JimdoPro and JimdoBusiness. You can also purchase additional domains from this list for $20/year.

 

com, net, org, biz, info, de, at, ch, fr, eu, nl, com.mx, es, co.uk, it, ru, рф, pl, com.br, be, com.pl

 

Premium Domains, Category 1

 

$60/year

 

ac.nz, academy, ae.org, agency, airforce, ar.com, asia, associates, auction, audio, bargains, bayern, beer, bid, bike, boutique, builders, business, bz, cab, camera, camp, cards, care, cash, cat, catering, cc, center, cheap, christmas, church, city, cleaning, click, clothing, club, co, co.bz, co.in, co.lc, co.nz, coffee, cologne, com.bz, com.co, com.hk, com.ht, com.lc, com.pt, com.so, com.tw, community, company, computer, construction, consulting, contractors, cooking, cool, country, dance, de.com, deals, democrat, diet, digital, direct, directory, discount, domains, education, email, engineer, enterprises, equipment, estate, eu.com, events, exchange, exposed, fail, farm, fi, fin.ec, firm.in, fish, fishing, fitness, florist, forsale, foundation, futbol, gallery, gb.com, geek.nz, gen.in, gen.nz, gift, gifts, gives, glass, gr.com, graphics, gratis, gripe, guide, guitars, guru, haus, help, hiphop, hk, horse, hosting, house, immo, immobilien, in, ind.in, industries, info.ec, institute, international, jetzt, juegos, kaufen, kitchen, koeln, kr.com, land, lc, life, limited, link, lt, lu, management, market, marketing, med.ec, media, mobi, moda, moscow, net.co, net.hk, net.in, net.lc, net.nz, net.so, network, ninja, nom.co, nu, nyc, nz, org.hk, org.in, org.lc, org.nz, org.pt, org.so, org.tw, parts, photo, photography, photos, pics, pictures, place, plumbing, pm, productions, properties, property, pt, pub, pw, qc.com, re, rehab, reisen, rentals, repair, report, reviews, rocks, rodeo, ruhr, saarland, sarl, school.nz, schule, services, sexy, shoes, si, singles, so, social, software, solar, solutions, supplies, supply, support, surf, systems, tattoo, technology, tel, tf, tips, today, tools, town, toys, training, tv, tw, us.com, vacations, vet, vision, vodka, watch, webcam, website, wf, wien, wiki, works, ws, wtf, xyz, yt, zone

 

Premium Domains, Category 2

 

$120/year

 

ac, actor, ae, aero, archi, arts.ro, attorney, bar, berlin, bio, blackfriday, br.com, capital, careers, claims, clinic, cn.com, co.ag, co.gy, codes, com.af, com.ag, com.ec, com.gy, com.ro, com.sb, com.vc, condos, cruises, dating, degree, delivery, dental, dentist, diamonds, ec, engineering, expert, finance, financial, firm.ro, flights, fund, furniture, gb.net, global, gs, gy, hamburg, healthcare, holdings, holiday, hu.com, im, info.ro, insure, io, jp, jpn.com, la, lawyer, lease, limo, london, ltda, maison, menu, mn, mortgage, mu, net.af, net.ag, net.ec, net.gy, net.mu, net.sb, net.vc, no.com, nom.ag, nom.ro, nt.ro, or.mu, org.af, org.ag, org.mu, org.ro, org.sb, org.vc, paris, partners, pizza, press, pro.ec, rec.ro, recipes, rest, restaurant, restaurant, ro, ru.com, sa.com, se.com, se.net, sh, store.ro, surgery, tax, tienda, tm.ro, uk.com, uk.net, university, uy.com, vc, vegas, ventures, viajes, villas, voyage, www.ro, za.com

 


William Molina

William Molina

Customer Support Geek

 

Helping people with their technology needs comes easy to William. He came to Jimdo from EPA.net where he helped local businesses and organizations get online. When he's not answering tech support questions at Jimdo or at home, you might find him playing video games from the comfort of his couch.


Tue

21

Jul

2015

How to Set Up All Your Social Media Profiles in One Day

Whether your business is brand new or you’ve been around the block for decades, social media is a must-have for your online marketing strategy. We get a lot of questions from our readers about how to properly set up their social media business profiles. You asked and we’re here to answer!

 

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Before you get started, I recommend creating a new email account to register all your social channels. You’ll get a lot of emails from these sites and it’s easier to manage and filter from a separate email account. It can be as simple as social@yourbusiness.com. It’s also a good idea to have a separate email in case you ever hire someone to take over your social media accounts. (Email accounts are included with JimdoPro and JimdoBusiness, and you can always add extra accounts right from your Site Admin).

 

If multiple people are contributing to your social channels it’s also a good idea to create a style guide. It’s important to create a consistent voice to have a strong presence on social media.

 

Which social media channels should you use?


The key thing to remember for social media is to do what makes the most sense for your business. Social media is not one size fits all. A major brand like Coca-Cola can afford to hire a team dedicated to social media, invest in advertising, and run elaborate campaigns to increase followers and promote sales. A small local bakery might have a barista double as a social media manager who occasionally shares posts and replies to customer questions online—and this can also work well.

 

You’ll also find that not every social media platform is right for you, and some of that might just be based on your personal preference. You don't need to spread yourself too thin by putting your business on every channel. Start off on a couple and master those before moving onto more.

 

Facebook and Twitter tend to be the most popular. But if your business is highly visual, for example involving interior design, weddings, or photography, it might be better to start off on a platform like Pinterest. If your business is more corporate focused, LinkedIn might be a better place to start. If you’re still not sure, here’s a helpful rundown on the benefits of each social platform.

 

Now, without further ado let’s talk about how to create a business page for each major social media site.

 

1. How to set up your business’s Facebook page


If you don’t already have a personal account with Facebook, create one. You’ll need a personal account to create a business page. Don’t worry! Your name will not be associated with your business’s page unless you want it to be.

 

To begin, watch this helpful video on getting started. Then scroll down this page and click on Create a Page. You can also choose the triangle icon on the top right corner of your personal Facebook account and then select Create a Page.

 

Next, select what type of page you want to create. Are you a local business, artist, philanthropy? Choose the category most closely tied to your business.

 

This is a list of the category options for your Facebook Business Page Select a category that best describes your type of business.

After you pick a category, you’ll be asked to fill out some more basic information for your page.

 

  • Customize the link to your Facebook Page: Try to make this the same name as your business and website URL.
  • Choose a target audience: Choosing a target audience on Facebook means that your content will show up in the newsfeed of the right audience. If you haven’t decided on your target audience yet, you can skip this step. Otherwise, this is a good time to include your audience to start targeting the right people from day one.
  • Design your page: This is the fun part! Your social channels should be a reflection of your website. Use the same colors and images you would use for your site and use your logo as your profile image. For Facebook and other social media channels, refer to this helpful list of image sizes for social media.

If you need help creating a logo and cover image for you site, you can create your own beautiful images with Canva or get help from a professional designer with 99designs.

 

What type of content should you post to Facebook?


The main thing to keep in mind for social media is to post with purpose. It always come back to your audience. What type of content do your followers want? Put yourself in your followers’ shoes and think about what kind of information, images, and content they’d like to see.

 

Develop a strategy to share content that is valuable and isn’t overly promotional. Here are a few ideas to get you started (Note that most of these suggestions will work for other social media platforms and not just Facebook):

 

  • Coupons, sales, and special deals: Did you know that over 74% of Americans rely on Facebook to influence their purchasing decisions? If you have an online shop, use Facebook to showcase your products and offer any coupons or special deals. This will also encourage people to pay attention to your posts because they know they’ll get something good out of it.

Jimdo user Bobsmade offers discounts to customers on its Facebook page.

  • Behind-the-scenes look: Post pictures of your business and staff. For example, if you’re a bakery, show the process of pastries being made. This will help people get to know you and feel more connected.
  • Questions/Fill-in-the-blanks: Ask your followers questions or format it as a fill-in-the-blank.
  • News and updates: Anytime there’s a change in your business that customers would like to know about, share it on Facebook and the other social channels. This can include any reasons to celebrate (you baked your 1000th pie!) or changes to opening hours.
  • Blog posts: If you have a blog, share short excerpts of the most interesting quotes from your post.
  • Customer feedback: Social media is the perfect opportunity to talk directly to your customers and get feedback. For example, Jimdo customer Bobsmade invited customers to offer feedback on one of their designs.

 

This is an example of how your business can ask questions to customers on Facebook Use Facebook as a platform to get feedback from your customers.

 

Regardless of what you share, social media scheduling platform Buffer suggests that the perfect post has a link, image, is 40 or less characters long, and is posted at non-peak hours.

 

Learn more about what it takes to make an awesome Facebook page and to grow your followers.

 

How often should you post to Facebook?


You should post one to two times a day to Facebook. It’s best to post a couple times at different points throughout the day to get the greatest reach. Remember that people have a lot of content in their Facebook Newsfeed so it’s good to post twice a day to make sure your posts are seen.

 

2. How to set up your Google+ business page


To set up your Google+ Business Page, first you need to claim your business on Google, which is an important step to take anyway. Then, simply go here to choose what type of page you are looking to create. If your business doesn’t have a physical location, choose Brand. If your business does have a physical location choose Storefront or Service Area.

 

While Google+ isn’t on everyone’s list of first things to check in the morning, it's still important to your social media strategy. It’s easy to maintain because you can mimic your strategy for Facebook and in the meantime improve your business’s SEO.

 

That’s it! Now you get to design your page and make it your own.

 

What type of content should you post to Google+?


Sharing posts to Google+ is great for SEO. Because your posts will show in search results, you should start every post off with a headline. Videos also perform extremely well on Google+, getting about 28.6% more engagement.

 

It’s also a good idea to share images and links accompanied by text full of (naturally occurring) keywords. You should also add hashtags and target your posts toward different groups on Google+.

 

How often should you post?


Post often on Google+ in order to get the highest level of engagement—you can post up to five times a day without losing followers or over-doing it. If you don’t have the bandwidth to post that frequently, don’t worry. Just get into the habit of cross-posting what you put on Facebook onto Google+ as well (with a bit more content/description added if you have the time).

 

3. How to set up your Twitter business page


Twitter has one of the fastest sign-up processes. Simply go to the signup page and create your account. If the name of your business is already taken, try adding the abbreviation to your city or an abbreviation of your company’s name. For example if you’re a coffee shop in San Francisco your Twitter handle can be @FillmoreCoffeeSF.

 

Like with Facebook, take a moment to come up with a good cover image. You can use a tool like Canva or a professional graphic designer to help.

 

What type of content should you post to Twitter?


Twitter has the most educated audience of all the social platforms. Your posts on Twitter should be professional and concise—you are limited to 140 characters after all! Try to stick to sharing headlines or specific facts and information. People are quickly browsing through their feed and need to be able to digest the information easily.

 

If you have room to share an image or video, do it! Videos and images are a great way to catch the eye of your followers browsing through their feed.

 

Take a look at Jimdo customer Jane Douglas-Jones’ feed; she does a great job of mixing her own content and content of other users on Twitter.

 

This is an example how to successfully add images to your tweets Attract more eyes to your tweets with big and bold images.

Learn more about best practices on Twitter and how to get followers and keep them.

 

How often should you post?


On average, it’s best to post three to five tweets a day. To a small business owner that may seem like a lot, but you can always repost the same content and phrase it in a different way. Remember that people scroll through a lot of content on Twitter. So if you post a tweet at 7:00AM your followers likely won’t see it buried with the rest of the day’s content unless you repost a few times throughout the day.

 

4. How to set up your Pinterest business page


To create a business page on Pinterest, simply signup and start pinning! Follow this guide on how to get your business started with Pinterest. And once you’ve tackled the basics, take a look at these eight things you probably didn’t know about Pinterest that could help with your marketing strategy.

 

What type of content should you post to Pinterest?


Pinterest is the most visual of all the social media platforms. If you have an online shop, Pinterest is a great place to promote your products. Share individual product photos and link them directly to your individual product pages. If your business is more corporate, you can post images from your blog and infographics. You can also show inspiring quotes, funny images, or even video.

 

No matter what type of content you share, be sure to edit the link of the image to drive traffic back to your site.

 

This is an example of how to add a link to your Pinterest posts Always link posts on Pinterest back to your website.

How often should you post?


Try to post a lot of posts at once, like five posts in one day. It will help your content show up in more feeds and increase engagement.

 

What to include on your social media profile pages


Even though each platform is slightly different, you should always include the basics on all of your channels:

 

  • A link to your website: One of the most important aspects of all your social channels is to drive traffic back to your website. Make sure a link to your site is easily accessible and visible to any visitor.

This is an example of how to clearly include your website's link on your business Facebook page See how Jimdo customer Jane-Douglas Jones makes the link to her website easily accessible from her Facebook page.

  • About Us section: Every social channel has a section to fill out a brief description of your company. The length requirements vary, but try to keep your description consistent across all channels.
  • Contact information: If you’re a restaurant, shop owner, or other business, it’s important to include contact information to make it easy for people to reach out to you.

Tools to automate your social media posts


If you don’t have someone dedicated to managing your social channels then all this posting, analyzing, and monitoring might seem like a tall order. But there are tools available so that you can schedule your posts on different channels all at the same time. In other words, you can get your social media posting done in a few minutes at the beginning of each day or week and it will be somewhat automated.

 

  • Buffer makes it really easy to prepare, schedule, and post content. You can also easily repost tweets and Facebook posts that have performed well in the past and quickly edit the teaser text.
  • HootSuite is another great way to track conversations about your business online, schedule posts, and follow others.

Just remember that even when you automate social media, you will need to check in on it a few times throughout the day to answer any customer questions. Today, people expect an answer within 60 minutes of their post.

 

Other social media tips


  • Track your follower count: Perception goes a long way on social media, so it's better to keep your number of followers higher than the number of people you follow. It makes your page look more credible and like you don’t just follow people to get followers back.
  • Customer support: When it comes to customer support, it’s best to be as friendly as possible. Act online as you would in real life. Be incredibly friendly, empathetic, and solution-oriented. Everything on social media is public, so you don’t ever want to look like the bad guy in front of thousands of people.
  • Keep your design fresh: After you’ve had your pages up and running for awhile, remember to keep your cover photo and profile image up-to-date. It’s also fun to switch these up for holidays or special occasions.
  • Don’t be overly promotional: Nobody likes someone who just talks about themselves all the time. 70% of your content should add value for your followers (such as sharing blog posts, coupons, etc.), 20% should be sharing other people’s content (posts from other businesses or highlighting customers), and only 10% should be directly promoting your business (such as "come by our store we have a new shipment of handbags!").
  • Analytics: Be sure to track your follower growth, what type of content performs the best, and how much traffic social media is driving to your website, and leading to sales. You can also measure success based on how often you interact with customers—ideally you'll start to see more engagement over time.

This is how to add social media icons to your Jimdo website.
There you have it! Your all-inclusive guide to getting your business on social media. Feel free to post any questions in the comments section below and good luck!

 




Melissa

Melissa Myers

Content Marketing and PR at Jimdo

 

Melissa joined Jimdo in August 2014 to support social media, public relations, and the blog. She has experience in marketing ranging from event management to content marketing. When Melissa isn’t drafting a blog post, you can find her watching stand-up comedy, attending a concert, or rooting for the Oregon Ducks.


Fri

17

Jul

2015

Expert Tips for the Best Musician and Band Websites

In today’s digital landscape, where social media rules the world, a lot of musicians and artists forget the necessity and the absolute power held in their websites.

 

dos-and-donts-of-music-websites-small
While it may feel as if Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are enough to cut the mustard and garner growth, a website gives you a slew of benefits that your social media accounts simply can’t.

 

A website gives you a sense of professionalism to media, bloggers, fans and even interested labels. A website also gives you free rein to present yourself in a long-form fashion, where social media obviously only gives you insight in a quick, short-form setting. While social media is the go-to spot to show off your personality and the various components to your brand, your website should still serve as the hub of your persona, and act as the one-stop-shop for information on your work.

 

Here are some essential do’s and don’t of musicians' websites.

 

Don’t: Overcomplicate your navigation


Throughout my time working in the music industry, I’ve spent a considerable amount of time working alongside advertising agencies. And what a lot of people don’t know about design is that user flow is a huge component of what ad agencies and web design companies deliver to their clients.

 

Essentially, these companies spend hours assessing where users are more likely to click, and what a perfect navigation would look like. While you obviously can brainstorm this on your own without having to shell out tons of cash to marketing agencies, just know and be aware that a simple and easy-to-use navigation is key to keeping visitors interested.

 

Recent studies have shown that 55% of users spend less than 15 seconds on a website before clicking away. That being said, your site needs to be easy to navigate!

 

Do: Keep it simple


Whether you’re an artist or not, a website is just one arm of your entire digital presence. And while you can be more in-depth on your website then you can on Facebook or Twitter, your website should still be easy to navigate and just have your essential information. Less is more when it comes to your navigation bar.

 

A simple navigation for an artist would look something like this: Home, About, Media, EPK, Contact. Keep it to the bare essentials, no need for fluff.

 

This is an example of a good navigation bar on a band website Omar Alhindi's website has a clean navigation bar that is easy for visitors to use.

 

Don’t: Host your EPK elsewhere


An EPK (electronic press kit) is the online package you send to booking agents, press and other influencers in order to get booked, placed, and shared in the industry. I often see beautifully designed websites that are linked out to horribly designed third party hosted EPK websites.

 

This poses a few problems but two main ones:

 

  1. Now your visitor has left your page! Who wants that? You want visitors to stay on your page and learn more about your music, buy your merch, or book tickets to your shows.
  2. The branded look on your website and EPK are now inconsistent. And an inconsistent brand can hurt your brand recognition and sales.

 

Do: Host your EPK on your website


While many great EPK services do exist (and I use a few), it won’t hurt to designate a new page on your website for your EPK. As long as it has photos, video, and a bio, you can easily host an effective one-page EPK on your website without the hassle of dealing with a third-party service or site.

 

An EPK on an artist website Here's an example of an EPK on musician Sean Carter's website.

 

Don’t: Use cheesy designs


This one’s tough, because that graphic that you made might be the most awe-inspiring, beautiful piece of art to you—but in reality, it may come off as unprofessional to others. If you are second-guessing a graphic that you created or had your friend design for free, it may be best to scrap it all together.

 

What makes a graphic bad? A good rule of thumb is to imagine if a major brand would post something similar. Would Apple or Coke post a photo with bad overlay text? Or would they opt for something more polished?

 

Here is what makes a graphic/design “bad”:

 

  • Bad overlay text: I see a lot of graphics with a white background and a thumbnail of an artist—or a block of black text talking about an album. I’ll talk more about where to create great visuals when we talk about design.
  • Off-colors: If your color scheme on your website is black, white and red, then that bright yellow font on an image might be a bad choice. Remember to stay with one uniform design. Follow this helpful guide to choose the right colors.

 

Do: Use elegant, simple designs (and pay for them if you have to)


Having good design on your page is incredibly important! And while Jimdo makes building a professional website simple, ensure that your graphics are just as professional, too.

 

This could be by taking a few classes on graphic design (free classes exist at Lynda.com and more) or even mastering a free service such as Canva or Pixlr. You can also use a professional service like 99designs for quick design tasks that you don't want to do yourself.

 

Make sure that you look professional and put-together. This is especially important to stand out from the millions of other artists out there. By looking professional you instantly come off as more approachable and established.

 

Don’t: Forget to integrate social media


When media, a label, or even a fan looks at your website, they usually go search for more info on you. Therefore you should always have your social media channels on your website, especially if they have impressive numbers and content. Learn more about adding icons to your website.

 

Do: Show off your entire presence


While your website should be the “long-form” version of your digital presence, make sure you’re showing off your social media outlets, too. Have placement on your website so that folks on your website can get a complete view of who you are.

 

Other key widgets to integrate with your page are:

 

  • Stat Counters/Google Analytics: These help you ensure that your web traffic is up-to-par and that you have a good idea of what pages are working the best, and which ones may need a little boost.
  • SEO: SEO is crucial to your web presence. SEO, or search engine optimization, is what dictates that your post is high up on those Google search results. By utilizing these tricks you can ensure that your posts will be SEO optimized for better visibility.
  • Newsletter Bars or Pop Ups: While “pop up” can be a bad term, they do have their place. On your website if you’d like to utilize a small pop-up promoting your newsletter, it’s a great tool to push to build your list. Or, another less in-your-face route, is to simply utilize a Newsletter widget on your website to catch email addresses. These widgets usually tie-in with MailChimp, Constant Contact or whatever newsletter service you’re using.

These are just a few small ways to improve your online digital presence as a musician. As artists, you have to be constantly aware of what your fans want: to learn more about you, to learn where to see you, and to learn how to interact with you even more!

 

If you’re interested in how your website is holding up (as well as your social channels, EPK and more) I’ll gladly discuss these with you, just head over to my website found in my bio below.


Tyler Allen

Tyler Allen

 

As a music marketing strategist, Tyler Allen works with an extensive array of artists, labels, music tech, and music retail entities. Tyler began his music industry career with Sony Music Entertainment and RED Distribution, as well as the advertising industry. He is dedicated to giving veteran artists the tools to preserve their legacy, and new artists the tools to begin theirs (as well as everything in between). Learn more at wtylerconsulting.com. Follow Tyler on Twitter and Facebook.