The digital screen on my bathroom scale has been on the fritz more and more every day, and I finally decided to do something about it today. I've owned different wearable devices over the past 7 years to monitor my health and daily activity, but I didn't yet have a smart bathroom scale to monitor my BMI or other health factors. Today was the day I would finally get one.
I contemplated buying one off Amazon.com but decided that I'd rather compare models ... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
I recently came across a seminar titled "How to Promote Your Online Store In A Cost-Effective Manner" and thought it was an extremely misleading headline. Whenever business owners ask me about cost effective online advertising, they usually mean "least expensive" rather than asking me how to achieve the best ROI with their online ads.
I've also found that many business owners believe that online marketing is simple, and that anyone can do it. Preying upon this belief, there are ad a... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
I recently had a few meetings with a French tourism company that needed help figuring out how to build traffic to their website. Their website wasn't anything special; honestly, it was just another directory website. Directory websites are a very common business model that range from large sites like CitySearch.com to local Chamber of Commerce websites. Niche focused directory websites can usually better serve their community than the larger sites.
No one ever wants to write a business plan for their new business or new business venture. Most people feel that a business plan is especially needed when you want to raise startup capital, which while true, a business plan helps you create focus.
Many business owners have great ideas that they feel they can accomplish without writing the ideas down on paper. I started my first business in 1994 with just vague ideas and didn't write my first plan until 2 years later after suffering several slow starts.
It's the hope of every business that they will build a website that helps make them a lot of money, but few websites ever achieve that goal. Turning a website into a money making machine won't happen overnight, and it won't magically happen without a lot of help from employees and the business owner.
Most small businesses don't know how to update their websites once they are launched; indeed, many will continually pay for website updates even though they can edit the website on ... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
I have met and helped many different entrepreneurs during my time as a volunteer business coach for my local chapter of SCORE, a division of the U.S. Gov. S.B.A. While I've helped them make their businesses better, I've also learned that most entrepreneurs of all ages share several similar personality characteristics and daily practices.
Life of an entrepreneur
Most entrepreneurs start out small and quickly learn all the jobs needed to make their business run. If you're a small business owner, then you are probably the best s... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
For several years and through a lot of tough competition, Facebook has managed to maintain its status as the most popular social media network, although there seems to be an evolutionary shift of people away from Facebook and on to other networks like Instagram and Snapchat. Some organizations, groups, and communities are using Facebook's Group feature to create a community messaging board, while other organizations have migrated to networks like Telegram. For the moment, Facebook is still the network to use, but Instagram is growing quick... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Your website is the cornerstone of all your online marketing; it's what people find when they search for a local business type or a specific product by name or by model number. People go to Google with an instigated need for an immediate purchase, when they need a specific service, or when they need to start research on a longer term decision making process. Those with immediate needs will take action based on what they see on your website or your social accounts. Those looking for an immediate purchase will look for an onlin... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Retail is being redefined every day. Everyone still looks at their bottom line sales, but it doesn't matter anymore if the sales are from foot traffic through the front door or via shipping boxes out the back. While most retail businesses are still struggling to figure out how to bring foot traffic back in the front door, I submit that it's probably easier to learn what it takes to build your ecommerce business and increase the flow of shipped product instead.
MySpace used to be a fun social network. You had complete freedom to change your profile any way you wanted by adding music, changing colors, and customizing your background. Anyone with a working knowledge of HTML could customize the look of their page and turn it into their online bastion of delight. I remember when being on social media was nothing more than a fun competition of making your profile page look better than your friend's profile, then tease each other about it. ... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
We each have our own set of specializations and talents. Someone in your family is probably better at cooking than all the others, while someone else is a better writer, carpenter, or a musician. The world would be a very boring place if we all had the same level of skill and proficiency in everything.
The Entrepreneurial Journey
At some point, you probably got the idea that you could make your favorite baubles or provide a service better than others you'd seen, and so you launched a business o... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Over the last 6 years, I've subscribed to more jewelry email lists than I can remember. Whenever I do a website review, I look for the newsletter signup and add myself to their list. Most of the time, I never hear from those retail jewelers because they don't follow through with their email list.
Amidon Jewelers, in New Hampshire, is one of the few independent retail jewelers that I know that has consistently sent me emails since I signed up to their list way back in 2012. Years ago, they were sendi... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
The internet of things (IoT) now connects so much of daily life it's hard to remember what things were like 23 years ago when it was just in its infancy. New internet connected devices are announced every day that will undoubtedly shape our futures of personal life and how we reach customers and conduct business. Although there are plenty of new tech toys announced every week, it's the smartphone which has changed how we manage our daily lives.
Can you learn from someone else's mistakes? That's exactly what I hope you'll get out of this Friday Flop Fix. This week, I'm venturing over to Tupelo, MS in search of a retail jeweler that might be making a mistake with their online presence.
This is the result I saw when searching for "jewelers tupelo ms" in Google:
Welcome to my weekly website review. Every Friday, I randomly look for a jewelry store website that has a few problems, that I call flops, and then I suggest ways to fix them. These short website reviews are not meant for the store itself but rather you, the reader. My hope is that you will discover something here that you also need to fix on your own site.
This week I used the phrase "jewelers Newport, RI" to search for my review candidate. Instead of choosing a jewelry store from the first page of the Google res... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Over the last 6 months I've been writing a lot about the importance of associating all of your marketing channels together. Your website is the cornerstone of your marketing because that's where you can fully control the user experience, but social networks, offline ads, and online ads should now tie together to create a road of intriguing discovery for your customers.
While I've been following the ins and outs of exactly how to build that path of discovery, and explained it to you, I've not been following that path myself. Since July 27, 2010 I'v... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Every week, usually on Friday, I write a website review. This week, I'm publishing my review a couple days early because I have something special planned for Friday. The goal of my website reviews is to dissect the online efforts for a random local retail jeweler. I don't bother reviewing the websites for chain stores because I want to illustrate how a local jeweler can improve a similar site like their own.
I find my website candidates by searching Google using the Chrome browser set to incognito mode. Incognito mode is good to use whe... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Back when jWAG was formed in 2010, the common mantra touted by many online marketers was that "the money is in the list." The list, at the time, was a reference to the number of people on your email list. Since then, we now have the ability to reach customers through many other list methods, including Facebook retargeting lists, Google AdWords remarketing lists, and even push notifications through custom apps that people download. So many online marketing opportunities exist now tha... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
The axiom of search engine optimization is that your website will only rank for words that search engines can find on your website. If you learn nothing else about search engine optimization you must learn that one point. If you have learned that already; good, you don't have to read today, but before you go consider that many people aware of that axiom are still not applying.
When it comes to social media photographs, it's easy to forget that every person has a legal right to prevent you from posting a photo of their face online. Paid photographers and media companies are very aware of your legal rights, and they require people to sign a model release form.
Those release forms grant ownership and permission to use the photos for any purpose, even to sell the photos or use in promotions to sell a product. A quick Google search for "sample mode... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
This is the #FridayFlopFix edition of the Daily Golden Nugget. Each week, I find a random retail jewelry stores and review their website in hopes that we'll be able to learn something from the process. I call this a "Flop Fix" because I specifically look for websites that are making mistakes, i.e. flops, so I can suggest fixes.
Here's the search results I saw this week when I searched Google for "jewelry stores Elko, NV":
There was a lot of marketing buzz around QR codes when they appeared in the USA in 2009 and 2010. Marketers thought they would be a hot sensation for smartphone users and started slapping them on all their ads. Even though QR codes began to appear everywhere, their usefulness and marketing success rates were small. What marketers didn't realize was that QR codes must be utilitarian, but most were gimmicky. I wrote this Nugget about... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Your success on social media is related to the amount of time you spend engaging with your customers. I like to think of social media as the online version of a business networking event. Plenty of people attend business networking events with grand notions of meeting new business partners only to get there and stand on the sidelines, or quietly sit at a table without working the room.
Within the jewelry industry, I often hear about jewelry designers who take a break and put their business on hold while they reconsider their artistic direction or go back to school for additional training. Although it might seem like a simple idea to put a business on hold, how you present yourself online during your hiatus could have positive or negative ramifications on your future livelihood.
Social media is required for business--all businesses. It ties all your other advertising together: every ad you place in your local community, whether it's on TV, radio, on billboards, in all of your direct mail, for newspaper ads, or everything else you do on other social networks. Social media ties all your marketing together in such a way to support your customer life cycle.
The last seven days have been quite interesting, and fulfilling for me. In addition to the photography demo booth at MJSA Expo in New York City, I also presented three seminars/training classes, one of which was at MJSA this past Monday.
An interesting topic about marketing budgets and social media organically emerged during my training sessions last week, which I then added to my MJSA seminar at the last minute, and I want to share with y... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
It seems like only yesterday when it was thought that email addresses would become more important than telephone numbers, and now a website address is more important than both a telephone number and a physical address. A website is the most important representation of your business, yet most jewelers don't treat it that way, and many still view it as an online brochure that needs to be made once, and then forgotten about.
The local retail jeweler is losing a lot of business to the internet. The younger gen... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
In preparation for this weekend's MJSA and JA Expo at the Jacob Javits center in NYC, I'm jumping way, way back to my fifth Daily Golden Nugget from July 30, 2010 about photography. I've written about photography many times since then, written product reviews about the VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Entrepreneurs face many challenges when they first open their business. Frequently, business owners don't even know how to get started with registering their business on a local, county, state, or federal level. During my time as a business mentor with SCORE, I've been surprised by the number of aspiring entrepreneurs who come in asking for legal and accounting advice to help them get through their initial start-up peri... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
I have this love/hate relationship with the words "branding" and "brand." When I became an entrepreneur and started studying different marketing approaches, I still remember my initial confusion of seeing those words used in connection with advertising. Up until then, I only knew of branding as a method of marking livestock, such as cows. The origin of the word brand, in fact, has Germanic origins relating to burning an identification mark into ... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Bloggers have an unyielding passion to write and share their expertise with the world. Unlike a freelance writer for hire that is paid to create an editorial, most passionate bloggers write because they care greatly about the topic, and many do it for free. Those of us who write for free are often disappointed by posts that don't get the attention we wish they did; after all our blog posts are our children and we want our children to grow up and be successful and not unacknowledged misfits.
Don't want to read? This week you can also watch the video recording of this review here!
This is the #FridayFlopFix website review edition of the Daily Golden Nugget. This week I've randomly chosen Santa Clarita, CA as the city to search for my review candidate. When I searched Google for the phrase "jewelers Santa Clarita, CA," I saw these three Google business listings:
In this edition of #ThrowbackThursday, I'm jumping way back to September 2010 to the topic of landing page planning, although I didn't specifically call it landing page planning back then.
Planning your landing page long before you need to use it is an important part of a successful online marketing strategy, but before I get in too deep of how to help with the success, let me just briefly explain what a landing page is.
Throughout the past month, I analyzed different sets of keywords that I collected during the 2015 holiday season. Most of that research focused on overall analysis of the keyword data without breaking it down into the desktop, mobile, or tablet categories of devices. I chose that approach to save time, and quite frankly, so as not to bore everyone with too much similar information.
That said, in this edition, I am splitting apart the results to show you how the u... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Welcome to the #ThrowbackThursday edition of the Daily Golden Nugget. Today, I'm jumping back to one of my early posts about location based services and checking-in on Facebook.
It was all the rage during the summer of 2010 to have a check-in app on your smartphone check-in everywhere. Gowalla, Foursquare, Whrrl, and Loopt were competing heavily when Facebook tried getting into the game. Facebook's initial eff... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
If technology and website design are not your cup of tea, you might want to skip this one. On the other hand, if you're a business owner who wants to understand the future of how to make your mobile customers happy, and want to learn some advanced concepts that will help with the future of customer detection and personalization, read on.
There are a lot of mobile devices out there. The data I analyzed while writing my latest VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
It all started six years ago; that's right, we're celebrating the jWAG's 6th anniversary today with the ambitious and philanthropic mission to surface our research about the internet and how the jewelry industry could best use technology to improve their business.
When my business partner and I launched the Jeweler Website Advisory Group (jWAG), we never expected it to blossom into the resource that is now referenced by so many people, even outside the jewe... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
With the 2015 Holiday Season at an end, let's take a look at some website tracking results from the Thanksgiving week through Christmas.
I have a lot of data to from various retail jeweler websites. The set of data I'm referencing below was recorded across retail jewelry websites that have been active with updating their website regularly over the last 12 months. These same websites are also mobile friendly. This includes a combination of retail jewelers and ecommerce sites. Remember, the results show... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Coincidently, this is the final Daily Golden Nugget for 2015 and it falls on a #ThrowbackThursday, giving me the perfect opportunity to check back in on my 2015 predictions from last year this time. Was I right, or very wrong? Let's find out...
Content Marketing Will Become More Important
My specific prediction was that the word "blogging" would be replaced with the phrase "content marketing" by the end of 2016... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
The year 2015 is about to come to a close, but before it does, I'm venturing out on a limb to give you my forecast insights for 2016. This year, I'm referring to these as "insights" and not necessarily as "predictions" because these things are what I already see happening in a small way, and steadily growing. They are in no particular order...
Social Media Change with the Young Generation
The current teenage generation is struggling to hide from their parents online. Many of them want nothing to do with Facebook because the grown-... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
I enjoy all the feedback and questions I receive from my readers. Last week, I received a question about RSS feeds which I'll address today. This is a higher level topic that I last mentioned in my Nugget from December 16, 2010, but have never explained in full detail. The detail I'll cover today might be of some interest to those of you who blog on a regular basis, and... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
This is a special Christmas edition of the Daily Golden Nugget. Each and every Friday, I write some type of website critique or review as an educational case study. For Christmas today, I'm changing it up and reviewing a Christmas-related search engine results page.
As I started my search today by typing out "christmas jewelry ideas," Google offered me the suggestions you see here:
I recently did a comparison of the total user sessions between November 2014 and 2015 including a breakdown of usage on mobile, desktops, and tablets.
I'm continuing my analysis of the same data as measured across retail jeweler websites; this time I'm comparing the increase or decrease of new users between November 2014 and 2015.<... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Do you have a specific question about your website or want more details about something I've previously written about? Don't be afraid to write in and ask; you might just see your question in an upcoming Daily Golden Nugget.
Reports from the first weekend of the big holiday season in the U.S. are in, and they are quite mixed.
Businesses both large and small tried to get a jump on the Black Friday specials this year by advertising "Black Friday" discounts throughout the four weeks leading up to Thanksgiving. Early in November, a blog post on C|Net speculated that VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Internet technology and search engine optimization changes continue to affect small businesses and the marketing methods they use. Google forced everyone to think seriously about their mobile website in April 2015 with #mobilegeddon, creating a surge in businesses that finally took mobile websites seriously.
Welcome to the #FridayFlopFix edition of the Daily Golden Nugget, and it's also Black Friday in the U.S., the largest retail shopping day of the year for U.S. retailers.
The goal of these weekly flop fixes is to identify something on a retail jeweler's website that should be fixed. My suggestions are based on my previous experience and research. In honor of the upcoming Cyber Monday, I decided to specifically look for a retail jeweler with an e-commerce website to find some flops that need fixing. I made my search f... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Today is Thanksgiving Day in the U.S., the only national holiday that transcends all races and religions. The holiday is typically celebrated by gathering together with friends and family and enjoying an elaborate meal. The next few weeks will see huge spikes in retail store sales, and today is probably the last day off most retail store owners in the U.S. will have until Christmas Day.
I'm mentioning this because a recent review of my own Google Analytics revealed that 47% of... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Today is the eve of the official start of the "holiday season" in the U.S. Retail businesses have been preparing their inventory, ads, and employees for the last few months in hopes to really boost sales this year.
In a perfect world, most holiday season ads are already finalized and scheduled, but there's always the opportunity for retailers to gain a little extra publicity every day through different types of engagements with their customers.
Every business experiences some type of growing pains; these usually have something to do with lack of time, hiring the right employees, and supply and demand of products, but there's also a website growing pain that's very real.
There are a lot of easy ways for business owners to build their first website. WordPress is a good option for businesses that just want to put information online, and Shopify is a good option for those hoping to sell online quickly. Both of these systems offer out-of-the-box templates and setups to get your website live in just a few days. GoDaddy also runs a marketing campaign to convince the new business owner that building a website overnight is the right thing to do.
For today's #ThrowbackThursday, I'm jumping to the topic of buying your friends, or more specifically, not buying them.
Buying Website Links
There are plenty of online services offering to increase the traffic to your website, increase the number of links pointing to you website, increasing the number of Twitter followers you have, and increasing the number of people who like your Facebook page. More often than not, these services ... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
One month ago today, I introduced the 2015 Holiday Run-Up with the premise that this year you could create several specialized marketing campaigns, or micro-campaigns, focused on singles products or groupings of products. Implementing the micro campaigns would require lots of product photography, correctly targeting your customers, writing lots of product content, sharing that product content to social media, coordinating... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
It's #ThrowbackThursday, and it's also the 19th installment of my special 2015 Holiday Run-Up series. Over the last 30 days, I've written out holiday marketing steps for Pinterest, Google+, VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
As I write this, I'm indulging in a very large pumpkin muffin. It will quite possibly be my lunch for today even though I know it's just a quick fix of food and not the type that could sustain me for more than a few hours.
Our lives are filled with quick fixes of one type or another. Many advertising tactics feed into the need to satisfy the human nature for a quick fix. In the website and e-commerce realm, we of... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
The time needed to manage social media can easily eat up most of your day. Over the last few weeks, I've detailed a lot of social media tactics in this 2015 Holiday Run-Up series. If you've missed out on the discussion so far, then go back to the beginning here and catch up.
It's Friday. Every Friday, I start out by saying "This is the Friday website review edition of the Daily Golden Nugget." I'm sure you guys are tired of reading that. Anyone want to suggest a hashtag that alliterates with Friday? Send your suggestions to me on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, or just email them to me.
So it is Friday, and it's review day. The goal is learn something from a random website of a random retail jeweler chosen from a random city somewhere in the U.S. This week that random somewhere is Raynham,... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
In today's #ThrowbackThursday, I'm jumping back to January 2014 to my directions on how to post to Google+. This is also a continuation of my special 2015 Holiday Run-Up series giving you the tactics you need to help boost your sales this upcoming season.
I've covered topics of Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram so far in this Run-Up to the 2015 Holiday season. This is my 14th installment in this special Daily Golden Nugget series to help you boost your 2015 holiday sales.
If you're just joining in for the first time, then you should review the outline of this series I explained here. I'... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
This is the continuation of my annual Daily Golden Nugget "Holiday Run-Up" series loaded up with step-by-step explanations of how to make the most of your holiday season advertising. The focus of this Run-Up is how to make the most of your product advertising to attract customers through multiple media methods. This is the 13th installment of the Run-Up, and this series still has a few more days before I finish all the topics that should make a positive impact on ... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
This is Part 11 of my annual special Daily Golden Nugget "Holiday Run-Up" series packed with tactics to help you during November and December this year. I started this series 3 weeks ago with directions for all the initial steps needed to prepare for the information you'll find in these last few run-up days. The initial marketing strategies overview is here.... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
This is Part 9 of my annual special Daily Golden Nugget "Holiday Run-Up" series packed with tactics to help you during November and December this year. I started this series with an overview of the marketing strategies that have worked over the last 12 months and have been expanding on each idea every day since.
This is Part 8 of my annual special Daily Golden Nugget "Holiday Run-Up" series packed with tactics to help you during November and December this year. I started this series with an overview of the marketing strategies that have worked over the last 12 months and have been expanding on each idea every day since.
This is Part 4 of a multi-day Daily Golden Nugget series packed with tactics to help you in your 2015 holiday marketing. The series started with the overview of 2015 holiday marketing strategies. Today I'm specifically covering the topic of...
This is Part 3 of a multi-day Daily Golden Nugget series packed with tactics to help you in your 2015 holiday marketing. The series started with the overview of 2015 holiday marketing strategies. Today I'm specifically covering the topic of...
This is Part 2 of a multi-day Daily Golden Nugget series packed with tactics to help you in your 2015 holiday marketing. The series started yesterday with the overview of 2015 holiday marketing strategies. I'm breaking down each section of that overview into a more detailed Daily Nugget.
Another summer has come to a close and the holiday season is almost here. No matter what the financial forecasts say, I want to give you some current ideas to improve your marketing methods, and hopefully your sales, through the end of this year.
Create a Uniform Branding With Your Ads
I'd like to start with a suggestion for you to review the ads you are already planning for this season. Instead of running standalone ads this year, you can use all the potential advertising methods... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
The holiday season is quickly approaching and you need to consider how you will be spending your advertising dollars. Will you hold an event promoted with post cards and phone calls? Will you have a Black Friday sale promoted in the local newspaper? What medium will you use for your weekly ads for the holiday season?
There are a lot more choices now than just newspapers, post cards, billboards, TV, and radio. VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Last week I explained what I've been seeing with regard to mobile trends and your business future. Because of those trends, I strongly urge all businesses to start migrating their approach of reaching customers using the internet from a desktop computer point of view to a smartphone point of view. Doing so will be a complete shift in how you think, and what you... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
When it comes time to consider a new jewelry designer for your store, you have an extra tool at your fingertips to help decide if you should buy into the line or not. However you evaluate a new line, you can also use Google Trends to help you decide. <... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
While there's a lot of chatter about TV cord-cutting, I'm starting to see the another type of cable being cut: the ethernet cable.
Although the majority of my reporting is based on measured data, I also feel it's important to report on the unscientifically tracked trends that I observe in my daily life, trends I notice when interacting with my own customers, and how I obser... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
September has a strange place on my yearly calendar. I view it as a month that tries to maintain a death grip on the hot days of summer while also revealing the temperatures and colors of the fall. I remember how it was to dread the beginning of the school year, and now, even though I'm not a parent myself, I can appreciate how parents feel now to have their children occupied all day again.
This is final part of my 3-part series on Time Management. I realize it's a bit ironic that I've written Daily Golden Nuggets on Time Management and it's taking forever to read through them.
In the first two installments, I explained my methods of how I prioritize time, how I figured out the best time of day for me to work, how I deal with time consuming tasks, the time suck of social media, and how delegating tasks saves me time.
A "conversion" refers to some type of customer interaction that results in the capture of the customer's identity, usually their email address. E-commerce sites also measure conversions according to the number of online sales they have. VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
I recently had someone tell me that they felt it was better to post anything to their business Facebook account than nothing at all. This particular jeweler didn't have anyone in the store willing to manage their Facebook account, yet they felt it was important to be active.
Their solution was to hire a social media management company that didn't know anything about jewelry, and was posting non sequitur information to their account. Although their fan base was slowly increas... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
I was recently asked if I could help evaluate an SEO agency based on their email solicitation. SEO, or search engine optimization, changes so quickly it's difficult to know if an agency will be providing the most up to date services.
Here's the email I was asked to evaluate:
Reminder-SEO starts from just @99 USD per month Hi, First of all thank you for taking the time out of your busy day to read and consider this, We are of... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
That's what I always say when a jeweler wants to ask me a question but starts off saying "I have a stupid question," which happened several times over this past weekend while I was at the RJO show in St. Louis. When it comes to asking me questions though, you have to be aware that I always use the good questions as future Daily Golden Nuggets, like this one.
After my Local Marketing seminar at the RJO show, a jeweler was explaining that they often ask for their customers to write ... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
I'm sitting on a regional jet right now as I write this. I'm heading back to New Jersey after three days with the RJO in St. Louis, Missouri. For me, it was a weekend of discussions about e-commerce, online local marketing, and social networking.
I was very impressed with all the jewelers I spoke to this weekend and I'm starting to think that the need for social media is starting to be understood as a necessity for marketing, even though the results can't be tracked. Many jewelers told me... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
When you consider the time it takes to be involved with Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Google+ and so many social networks, it's no wonder so many people live their lives carrying their smartphone in their hand all day. So many people have traded everyday verbal conversations for terse text conversations and deluges of selfies.
Those who have chosen a smartphone-tethered life, now find it second nature to use social network as a way to keep their friends and family in... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
In this edition of Throwback Thursday, I'm jumping back to September 2011 and the topic of Article Spinning.
To understand what Article Spinning is you must first understand the importance of having a blog on your website. My avid followers will already know that I'm all about the blogging. High value blogging content... High value blog content that you post on your main website!
Did you know that it's possible to track the effectiveness of your offline marketing, as in, print ads, TV commercials, and even billboards? Yep, it's true, and it's simple too... Just use a different domain name on each ad.
Once a week, usually on Friday, I write a website review for a randomly chosen retail jewelry store. This week the review is being moved to Wednesday.
For this week's review, I'm searching for "jewelers in Sedona, AZ" using Google Chrome in incognito mode. The results I saw during last week's review were formatted for a smartphone. This week the results are formatted for a desktop browser again. Oddities like that are usual... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Over the last few days, we've all seen our share of rainbows exploding from our computer screens and smartphones. The Supreme Court of The United States (SCOTUS) ruled that the Fourteenth Amendment requires States to allow same-sex marriage in their State and recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states.
While the legal fight for legal same-sex marriage rights is now over, the personal conflict and religious views will continue for quite a long time to come. Regardl... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
The term Big Data is one of the internet's latest buzz words that everyone is talking about but no one seems to know what it is, why they should care about it, how to collect it, or how to use it.
Put simply, Big Data is the collection of massive amounts of demographic and tracking information you gather about your customers. Once gathered, you then churn that information into reports that help you better plan future marketing and provide interesting insights ... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
It must be summer. That's the only time I ever go to IHOP. In fact, this is the second time this month I've visited this family favorite. I was preoccupied with JCK work during my first visit earlier this month, but this time around I'm able to relax and leisurely enjoy a Saturday morning breakfast.
I always know what to expect when visiting IHOP. The menus always show crystal clear, large photos of mouthwatering stacks... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
This Daily Golden Nugget is my 1,276th in a row. When I started this blogging journey nearly 5 years ago, I never expected where it would take me. Truthfully, every blogger begins their writing journey for personal reasons and we never know where we will end up.
Blogging is huge. The word blog has become the general term to represent all types of content creation that involves written words. When I started writing these Nuggets, I envisioned them only as email newsletters that would be archived online. I... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Jennifer Shaheen, President of Technology Therapy Group was among those speakers chosen to present at the 2015 JCK Las Vegas show. Jennifer and I are industry colleagues and we share 99% of the same point of view about the internet and how retail jewelers should be using it for their marketing.
The internet is a very visual place. Photos, videos, memes, animated graphics, and company logos flood every social network. When used incorrectly, they also create clutter on websites.
One of the methods I use to gauge how often a website is updated is to look at the 3rd party logos used throughout the website. I'm especially critical of search engine optimization companies that tout their modern SEO services next to search engine logos that are more than 10 years old.
I was at a social media marketing meeting in New York City last month when someone asked if they should be posting the same photos and status update to every social network.
That was a good question, and there's no real straightforward answer. In reality, it depends if you have the same audience following you on all the social networks. If the same audience follows you on all networks, then they will get very bored very ... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
This is the Friday website review edition of the Daily Golden Nugget. Usually I choose a random city around the U.S. to find a retail jeweler, and this week, in honor of the Las Vegas jewelry shows, I'll search around Las Vegas, Nevada.
The following is a screen grab when I searched for "jewelers in las vegas." The top listed store is The Jewelers of Las Vegas. They have updated their website since I last re... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
The truth of the matter is that your business will never survive without some type of marketing. Word of mouth marketing is not enough anymore to support your business. Simple posts to social media and meager ads in community newspapers won't support your overhead, or even put food on your table.
Diamonds are supposed to be forever and a girl's best friend, but lately they are a tough sell. While many of my retail jewelry store customers are still looking for ways to increase their wedding and engagement ring sales, there are plenty of other opportunities for with designer lines of jewelry that could attract a new audience to your store.
I'm one of those people. I admit it... I don't turn my cell phone off in a movie theater.
It's not that I want to be rude; I do put it on silent; but I have to keep the vibrate setting on. The nature of my job is such that I'm always on call to monitor a few very important websites for a few of my clients. So I can't be out of touch from those computers and servers. In fact, the only times I'm unplugged is when I'm at 38,000 over the Atlantic. WiFi isn't available on the transatlantic f... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
I remember back in the late 1990s when I was helping people set up their first email addresses and told them that email would eventually be more important than their telephone number. Since then, the internet evolved in ways we never imagined and, although email didn't cause telephone obsolescence, some say that both methods of communication are going away.
Using a contest to promote your company and build awareness is a viable method of marketing for any business.
During the past month, in preparation for Mother's Day, many retail jewelers held jewelry design contests. Typically this type of contest required a sketch of a pendant to be submitted to the jeweler through some method. The winner would have their pendant turned into reality by Mother's Day.
I've been online since 1988 and I began programming websites professionally in 1994. With 29 years experience online, you certainly can say I'm one of the internet "old timers." In the mid 1990s, we had no idea how the internet would transform the world. Indeed, just watch any sci-fi movie from the early 90s and you'll see how their portrayals of the future completely lack the everyday technology we take for granted today.
This is the Friday jewelry website review where I find a random retail jeweler and review their website for design, usability, and SEO. In each one of these reviews, my goal is to show how the information from my other Daily Golden Nuggets can be directly applied to a website.
This week, I'm using the Google Chrome browser in incognito mode to search for "jewelers st joseph mo." Here's a snapshot of the results:
I'm in favor of the entrepreneur that tries to build a business around a perceived need. What make entrepreneurship in the U.S. so exciting is that you potentially make a healthy living off an idea you dream up yourself.
The internet makes those dreams possible.
A few weeks ago, one of my clients brought my attention to the following message that was posted on their Facebook wall.
When I first opened my business in 1994 as a computer consultant, the drivers of new technology were a lot different. In the mid 90s, it was typical to first buy a computer before figuring out what software you could use on it. Many of my customers wanted their own programs written, too. Those were the days of DOS and Windows 3.1, and the options for software were limited to what you could find in your local Egghead Software store, or you ha... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Last week, I was doing a little research into the US census data on this website. The U.S. business census data is captured every 5 years, but there's a delay before the information is published. The 2012 was only recently published.
Shrinking Number of Retail Jewelry Stores
The data shows that there were only 16,847 corporations that classified themselves as "jewelry stores" in 2012, and there were 2... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
A jeweler wrote to me the other day asking for help with their Mother's Day contest promotion. The promotion is being advertised through the local papers but the contest takes place through their website. To enter the contest you need to fill out the online form and agree to sign up for their newsletter.
Because the contest is centered around creating a custom design, this jeweler wants to send out a series of additional custom design em... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
I received an interesting question the other day from Suzie, a jewelry designer. Well, her name wasn't actually Suzie, but let's just say that it was so it makes this story easier to tell.
For several years, Suzie had an Etsy account where she sold a line of baby toe ring jewelry. This was her fist line of jewelry before she started making gemstone jewelry necklaces. Realizing how different these two lines of jewelry are, instead of using Etsy to sell the necklaces, she opened an e-com... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
This is the Friday Jewelry Website Review edition of the Daily Golden Nugget. Every week, I randomly choose and dissect a retail jeweler's website to see what makes it tick. I never know what I'm going to find each week; sometimes it's something new to learn or a refresher on topics I've previously written about.
To find this week's review candidate, I searched Google for "jewelry stores in Bridgeton, New Jersey" and was given this SERP:
Popular pages on your website are often called "Landing Pages." That popularity can be measured as the number of people who click on a page while browsing around your site, or the number of people that Google and Bing send to your site.
When you place an ad in the newspaper or send out a direct mail piece, you usually include a website address on that ad. Most of the time, that website address will just be your domain name, like exampledomain.com, in which case the... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Last week I wrote my weekly jewelry website review while I was waiting for my flight to France in Newark Liberty Airport, in Newark, NJ. Because I was sitting in the airport, I had the opportunity to present that review from the point of view of an actual mobile user.
QR Codes have been a hot topic for several years. In this #ThrowbackThursday Daily Golden Nugget, I'd like to jump all the way back to my second Nugget ever, which was on QR Codes. That was July 27, 2010!
That Nugget was the number one most popular post I had ever made, until I started writing about screen resolution and setup directions for Google M Business. It has since d... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Over the last two weeks, I've been detailing why it's important to have a correctmobile setup for your website. Google's decision to use mobile friendliness as a ranking factor has a lot of people worried that... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Many retail jewelers still struggle managing the time it takes to promote themselves on social media. Unfortunately, even though you can hire an agency to manage your social accounts, the best way to engage your customers is to establish your brand's own online identity.
It's difficult to allocate the time needed to engage on social media amidst the daily routine needed to run a jewelry store. Instead of doing it all yourself, you could allow your employees to engage soc... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Search engine optimization was once a game of pure guesswork. SEO specialists would simply watch their own efforts of what worked and what didn't work, then simply follow the same steps over and over again.
Companies like MOZ.com and SearchEngineLand.com have communities of users always trying to figure out which supposed SEO techniques work, and which don't. Search Engine Land even published their of VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
In this edition of the Daily Golden Nugget, I'll cover one of the nagging mobile website issues that Google doesn't like any more. Well, I don't know if they ever liked it, but in this video they've clearly pointed it out.
It all started a few years ago when people first started dabbling in mobile websites. It's difficult to retrofit a desktop site to include a mobile version, unless you are willing to redesign the entire site again. Setting up a parallel mob... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
A number of years ago, and I was hired to create a website to promote a national marketing campaign for retail jewelers. The website served as the cornerstone for hundreds of jewelers who were using the same set of ads to promote a select number of products that were sold exclusively through those retail jewelry stores.
The goal of the marketing campaign was to establish a nationwide brand identity for the hundreds of participating retail jewelers. Participation in that brand identity woul... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
If you believe the (mostly North American) superstitions, Friday the 13th (today) is supposed to be an unlucky day. Perhaps it will be unlucky for some couples that breakup before tomorrow, Valentine's Day, arrives. I prefer the optimistic point of view and would rather believe that love is in the air today.
This is the Friday website review edition of the Daily Golden Nugget, and to honor Valentine's Day I decided to search for a jewelry store in or near a town with "love" in the name. This was not as easy a... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
What's your favorite type of content? Given that content includes written articles, videos, podcasts, photography, and every other type of creative digital experience. There's a labor cost associated with creating a digital experience for your customers, a cost that's not easily understood by small business owners.
There's also a competing value of the content that swings between the long term value to attract quality customers and the short term value of getting a lot of attention. S... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Welcome to the Friday retail jewelry website review. In this week's review, I'll be searching for a random website candidate to critique in the hopes that we can all learn something useful to implement on our own websites.
To start this week's review I started searching for jewelers in Hudson, NY. Specifically, I used the Google search query "jewelers in Hudson ny."
I'll be the first to admit the website content creation difficultly level is pretty high. Content includes infographics, photos, podcasts, PDFs, videos, testimonials, and, of course, the written word. It takes hours to prepare each of those types of content but the return on that time investment come in the form of several years of attracting customers throu... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
In this edition of the Daily Golden Nugget, I'll provide some research based information about mobile keyword search data collected during the 2014 Holiday Season.
Cross reference your own sales figures and website analytics against this data, and use it to improve your future marketing. The findings here should be useful to you all year long, but especially as you start planning your website content and marketing for the 2015 Holiday Season.
In this edition of the Daily Golden Nugget, I'm exploring keyword data collected between November 1 and December 31, 2014 from many retail jeweler websites.
I collected a large amount of keyword data from people using Google's desktop search, mobile search, and image search. The mobile search data is very interesting. Last week, I presented th... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
When using Google Webmaster Tools, you can view which search queries will trigger your website to appear in search results. In the past when we SEO guys would spew the phrase "search queries" it was just a fancy name for saying "keywords." In fact, you can say "search queries," and "keywords," and "search phrases" and mean the same thing.
Regardless what you called it, all you wanted to do was put the right words on your website that correspond to what people search for in the dif... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Throughout 2014, Google made several advancements in their search engine and gave us some new reports in Google Webmaster Tools to see the results of those advancements.
Specifically, from within Webmaster Tools you can easily see when your website appeared in web search results, images search results, and mobile search results. During the first quarter of 2014, I started noticing retail jewelry websites appearing in image results more than ever before, and the Webmaster Tools ... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
With the 2014 Holiday Season at an end, let's take a look at some website tracking results from the Thanksgiving week through Christmas.
The following data was recorded through more than 100 jewelry related websites. This includes a combination of retail jewelers and e-commerce sites. Results shown here only apply to the jewelry industry.
Holiday 2014 Sessions
Here's a screen shot of my Google Analytics tracking across the retail jewelry websites I'm tracking:
The 2014 Holiday Season has come to a close and it's time to review your marketing strategies and record the results for next year's season.
I've compiled some email details that you can use as a benchmark for your own strategies.
I've subscribed to hundreds of email newsletters from retail jewelry stores, large and small e-commerce jewelry sites, and a few chain stores. This is a graph showing the quantity of emails I received from all those senders from November 1, 2014 through December 26, 2014: ... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
As the final hours of 2014 tick on by, I would like to share some of my predictions for 2015.
1. Content Marketing Will Become More Important for Jewelers
In order to understand why this will be important, you first need to understand what Content Marketing is. "Content" is anything that you publish online with the intention of influencing a customer's buying decisions. Written content is usually absorbed into Google and Bing and returned in search results, while all other content (photos, graphics, videos) are shared socially.
According to this marriage proposal survey 45% of marriage proposals for the year will take place on Christmas Eve (last night) and Christmas Day (today), but as a jeweler you probably already know that.
Can you count how many engagement rings did sell over the last 3 months? How many nervous boyfriends did you help through the process of learning about the 4C's of diamonds and the difference between an SI1 whose inclusion is di... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
'Twas the night before Christmas, and time to close doors after a long four weeks, the time still soars. Did you break record sales with engagement rings sold? Hope she says yes tomorrow; the future's untold!
While it's usually children dreaming the morning's delight; the guys that you helped are filled with horrible fright. You're the town's best jeweler; the men come to you; your jewelry's the best at getting an "I do."
The times, they have changed, and there's much online chatter, you've to to keep up, or else you won't matter. You made mistakes then, when your website used Flash, but you took steps; improvement when sales came to a crash.
Your jewelry designs always win Best in Show, but your website's sad ranking had fallen too slow. With new learning, you hoped an answer'd appear... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
You probably already know that Christmas is the most popular day of the year for a marriage proposal. No doubt you've been helping with the selection process for the past few months leading up to tomorrow's inevitable day of celebration for many couples.
Here are the website tracking statistics from mid-November through mid-December 2014. As usual, these results are pulled from the group of 100+ retail jewelry websites that I monitor and the results might not apply to any other industry.
4-Weeks of Holiday Data
Here's the graphical representation of the sessions I've been tracking:
Managing the online identity for your business is time consuming. Although you might have found the best agency to build your website and help your marketing online, the relationship you have with them probably won't last forever.
Eventually, you will have to divorce your marketing agency.
This is the conclusion of the Daily Golden Nugget I began yesterday detailing how your agency should be setting up your business accounts and what you need to do to guarantee you always have login acce... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
The internet has seen many changes over the last 4 years since I started writing these Daily Golden Nuggets. Undoubtedly, a lot of that change was informed by Google, but really there are a lot of other factors involved.
Through the Great Recession, a lot of easier and less expensive technology emerged that now allows us to access information from anywhere at any time. You could argue that the technology companies forced fancy new mobile devices on us; or you could say that the technology devel... VIEW FULL GOLD NUGGET
Here are the website tracking statistics from Thanksgiving Day through Cyber Monday in 2014. As usual, these results are pulled from the group of 100+ retail jewelry websites that I monitor and the results might not apply to any other industry.
November 2014 Sessions
Let's first take a look at this chart from Google Analytics: