Marketing Online Business – Truly Targeted Traffic

Starting and running an online business can prove to be very lucrative for individuals. Many people have started businesses online and had great success with them. They have been able to make money to replace the income they received from day to day jobs, or make extra money to meet certain financial goals. However, one of the biggest challenges is marketing online business to the point where it can become successful. If no one knows about the online business then it will not make any money. Building the business is important, but marketing it is just as important to be successful. The following will highlight some of the ways available in marketing online business.

Marketing Online Business Through SEO

Search engine optimization or SEO is perhaps one of the best ways to promote an online business. It is affordable for businesses just getting started. In fact, it can be free if someone is able to learn the process and do it themselves. Furthermore, it is extremely targeted advertising. An individual can rank their website on certain words and phrases that are conducive to a person buying something or needing an immediate solution to a problem. For example, if a dentist could rank on the phrase “stop tooth pain in Dallas” and someone searches for that they will have put themselves in a good position to get a call or inquiry from that person.

Pay-per-click advertising can also be an excellent way to market an online business. This form of advertising involves the ads you see on the side of search engines, or at the top, whenever you search for something. These ads are smart in that they show relevant ads to the term being searched for. Using the previous example, there is a good chance you will see ads for dentists whenever the search results are shown for that phrase. Again, this is targeted advertising because your ad will only show when people search for terms related to your industry. You will have to pay whenever someone clicks on your ad. However, with proper tweaking of the ad, you will find that the amount of traffic to a site can be worth it if the proper testing is done.

The tactics to market online business are numerous. There are many other options available besides the two mentioned here. The good thing about most of them, however, is that they are targeted. And, targeted advertising is some of the best marketing you can do because you get more bang for your buck. The buying cycle is typically much shorter because the person is usually ready to buy at that moment. They are not just doing research if you target the right words. If you compare this advertising to types like radio, newspapers and television you can really see the difference. Those types of advertising are relying on sheer numbers. Yes, they will bring traffic, but they are much more expensive. And, the return on investment is usually much lower than using the mentioned online marketing techniques.

Retirement Myth 3 – It Will Be Harder On My Business Than On Me

Most executives become business leaders because they have demonstrated a commitment to the values and culture of their organization that makes them, in a sense, the embodiment of that organization. They are key to the vision, mission and progress of the business. Over time the leader and the organization seem synonymous. Although in a sense the leadership forms the organization, the truth is that in the life of a well-functioning organization everyone is replaceable.

For most C-suite executives, the connection to their business is the most important relationship in their lives. They have invested more time and energy at work than anywhere else. The 60-70 hour work weeks have become the norm and essential to building their reputation and career. Their personal identity has been primarily formed by the organization. Their sense of self-worth is rooted in an extrinsic reward system: the recognition of their business peers via promotions, compensation and power. Most business leaders do not even realize how much their sense of self is wrapped up in their business until that identity is stripped from them. Upon leaving the corporation, they have little sense of who they are without the organization, structure, title, authority, perks, staff, and clients. In giving themselves to an organization, there are benefits but those benefits accrue to the organization and the title not to the individual.

Although we treat them as if they are individuals legally, corporations are not people and we cannot develop true relationships with them. An organization does not have a moral or emotional center to which we can form a real attachment. A business has one purpose to make money and provide economic value. When we cease to be the individuals that can best further that objective, we are expendable. Most executives find this a major shock to the system. They have been loyal to the organization and some how expect that loyalty will be returned and rewarded. What they find instead is that the business has a life without them and continues with barely a blip on the radar. And then they find that their business “friends” are really only business focused. Once the opportunity for mutual career benefit is gone the calls stop coming. They no longer get the expense and travel budget, the invitations to speak, and the executive assistant attending to every detail. The framework of their lives is no longer provided for them.

Retiring executives experience significant stress. Strangely enough, it appears to be more stress than they experience in their high-powered careers because of the dramatic change in lifestyle. In order for executives to make the transition to retirement with ease, they must step back and reflect on who they are apart from the business, title and career. The energy they directed into developing business relationships must be directed in other directions and in order to form other interests and connections. New friendships based on other common interests must be formed.

It is critical to have something specific and significant to look forward to prior to leaving work. Hobbies and vacations can only play a small role in a fulfilling retirement. They really only hold interest for a short period of time. The successful retiree shifts their life to focus on intrinsic rewards and the things that give meaning and purpose. Make no mistake, retiring will be harder on you than on your business. It is important to prepare ahead of your retirement date, so that you can have the support and resources to make this shift as smoothly as possible.

Cash Flow Projection – Predicting The Financial Future Of Your Business

Working out an accurate cash flow projection is one of the most fundamental aspects of good business financial management and financial planning.

Why is this activity so important? It can alert the business to possible financial problems on the horizon. While important in any business, the forecasting of potential financial problems is especially critical for small and medium sized businesses that typically do not have cash reserves set aside to weather a financial storm. Since cash flow is the lifeline of every business, even a temporary slowdown of incoming income can spell disaster for the unprepared business.

In forecasting cash flow, it is wise to conservatively estimate the amount of incoming income and accurately record all expected costs. In addition, predicting the future needs of the business that could add to costs is critical if the business is to experience expansion. Nothing stays stable for very long. Expansion and contraction constantly occur. A business that is not expanding will eventually start to contract. Expansion costs money; sometimes a lot of money. The future cash needs of a business must be anticipated to meet future demands and protect the solvency of the business.

A cash flow projection can be particularly useful as an early warning signal that there may be a shortfall of cash in the business. Forewarned is forearmed, and action can be taken to lower costs and beef up advertising and sales activities to avoid the predicted shortfall. This is, perhaps the most important use of the projection. It allows the business owner to look at the debts and upcoming expenses of the business and to take action in anticipation of the shortfall.

It can also help the business owner realize that changes in their financial policies are needed, especially if the business invoices their customers and waits for payment. Careful review of how the company extends credit to customers, and who they extend it to, can lead to some positive changes in getting incoming cash flow in the door at a faster rate. A simple change like demanding an upfront deposit rather than financing the entire purchase, or setting qualification standards for receiving credit can enhance cash flow. These changes in policy can then be incorporated into the estimation of how fast the money will come in on the projection itself.

Building an accurate budget will help tremendously with the cash flow forecast. A budget is the calculation of how much income is needed to run the company and achieve all of its financial goals, including business expansion, and even the eventual retirement of the business owner. Since it is necessary that the financial management team predicts the projected income and expenditures of the business accurately, they must ensure that the business can survive and grow.

Anticipating dangers and planning for them are easier with both a budget and a projection. The financial management team needs to get it right. No guessing is allowed on anticipated receipts of income or on expenses. Especially anticipated increases in costs. The cost of doing business goes up about 8% to 12% a year, so that needs to be taken into consideration. That also means last year’s projection needs to be re-forecast for this year’s anticipated increases.

The cash flow projection is a dynamic, working document. It needs to be evaluated at the end of each quarter and adjusted for changes that happened so that it remains the most accurate forecast possible. Likewise the budget needs to be updated every quarter as well. Waiting till the end of the year, only to realize that the company is in trouble because nobody was paying attention can result in financial catastrophe. With the evolution of technology in the last decade or so, preparing budgets and projections manually is a thing of the past. Using cash flow management software is very popular in terms of producing accurate and dynamic budgets and projections and greatly reducing the time needed to do the job.