How much does it cost to create a website for a small business?

How Much Does It Cost to Create a Website for a Small Business?

Creating a website is essential for any small business that wants to establish a strong online presence. A website can help you reach new customers, promote your brand, and generate leads and sales. However, the cost of creating a website can vary widely depending on several factors, including the type of business, the type of website, and the web development company you choose to work with.

In this blog post, we will explore the various factors that affect the cost of creating a website for a small business and give you a general idea of how much it might cost.

Factors That Affect the Cost of Creating a Website for a Small Business

Business Size

The size of your business is one of the factors that affect the cost of creating a website. A small business with a few employees will generally require a less complex website than a larger business with many employees, which can impact the cost.

Website Type

The type of website you need also affects the cost. For example, a simple website with just a few pages and basic functionality will generally cost less than an e-commerce website with custom features, integrations, and payment gateways.

Design and Development

The design and development of a website are other crucial factors that affect the cost. A custom design with unique graphics, fonts, and colors will generally cost more than a pre-made template. Adding advanced features such as a blog, contact forms, live chat, or social media integration can also increase the overall cost.

Content Creation

Creating high-quality content is an essential aspect of website development. Writing copy, creating images or videos, and other types of media can make your website more engaging and informative for visitors. If you need help creating content for your website, you may need to factor in the cost of hiring a copywriter, photographer, or videographer.

Web Development Company or Freelancer

The cost of creating a website can also depend on the web development company or freelancer you choose to work with. Different companies or freelancers may charge different rates based on their experience, expertise, and location. It’s essential to choose a web development partner that you feel comfortable with and has experience creating websites for small businesses in your industry or niche.

Average Cost of Creating a Website for a Small Business

The cost of creating a website can range widely depending on the factors outlined above. Here are some general guidelines to give you an idea:

DIY Website Builders

If you’re on a tight budget and have the time and skills to create your website yourself, you may be able to use a DIY website builder such as Wix, Squarespace, or WordPress. These website builders offer pre-made templates and drag-and-drop editors that make it easy to create a basic website without any coding experience. The cost of using a DIY website builder can range from $0 to $30 per month, depending on the plan and features you need.


If you need more customization than a DIY website builder can offer, you may consider hiring a freelance web developer or designer. Freelancers typically charge by the hour or project and can cost anywhere from $25 to $150 per hour, depending on their experience and expertise. The cost of creating a website with a freelancer can range from a few hundred dollars for a simple website to several thousand dollars for a more complex website with custom features.

Web Development Companies

Web development companies are another option for small businesses looking to create a professional and customized website. These companies typically charge a flat fee or hourly rate for their services, which can range from $75 to $200 or more per hour, depending on their experience, expertise, and location. The cost of creating a website with a web development company can range from a few thousand dollars for a basic website to tens of thousands of dollars for a complex website with advanced features. While the cost of hiring a web development company may be higher, it often comes with a higher level of expertise, reliability, and support.

Additional Services

Additional services can also impact the cost of creating a website for your small business. For example, you may need to factor in the cost of website hosting, domain registration, website maintenance, and SEO services. These additional services can vary widely in cost depending on the provider and the level of support you require.

How to Choose the Right Web Development Partner

Choosing the right web development partner is crucial to ensuring the success of your website. Here are some tips to help you choose the right partner for your needs:

Look at Their Portfolio

Start by looking at the web development company or freelancer’s portfolio. This will give you a sense of their style and the quality of their work. Look for developers who have experience creating websites for small businesses in your industry or niche.

Check Reviews and Testimonials

Reading reviews and testimonials from previous clients can also give you a sense of the web development partner’s professionalism, communication skills, and ability to deliver on time and on budget. Check out their website, social media, and review sites like Yelp, Google Reviews, or to see what others are saying about them.

Consider Their Experience and Expertise

Consider the web development partner’s experience and expertise in website design and development. Look for developers who have experience with the specific features and integrations you need for your website, whether that’s e-commerce functionality, content management systems, or custom coding.

Get a Detailed Quote

Ask the web development partner for a detailed quote that includes all of the services they will provide, the timeframe for the project, and the cost. Make sure you understand what’s included in the quote and what isn’t, so there are no surprises later on.

Communication and Collaboration

Finally, consider the web development partner’s communication skills and their ability to collaborate with you on the project. Make sure they’re easy to work with, responsive to your needs and questions, and that you feel comfortable communicating with them throughout the project.


In conclusion, the cost of creating a website for a small business can vary widely depending on several factors, including the size and complexity of the website, the design and features, the web development partner you choose, and additional services. It’s essential to choose a web development partner that you feel comfortable with and has experience creating websites for small businesses in your industry or niche. By doing your research and choosing the right web development partner for your project, you can create a website that represents your brand effectively and helps you achieve your goals.

How much does it cost to hire a website designer?

How Much Does it Cost to Hire a Website Designer? A Guide for Small Business Owners

If you’re thinking about creating a website for your business or personal brand, one of the first things you’ll likely consider is hiring a website designer. A website designer can help you create a website that looks great, functions well, and represents your brand effectively. However, the cost of hiring a website designer can vary widely depending on a number of factors. In this blog post, we’ll explore some of these factors and provide you with a general idea of how much it might cost to hire a website designer.

Factors That Affect the Cost of Hiring a Website Designer

  1. Experience and Expertise

The more experienced and skilled the website designer, the more they will typically charge for their services. Website designers who have been in the industry for several years and have a strong portfolio of work to showcase their skills may charge more than those who are just starting out.

  1. Type of Website

The cost of hiring a website designer can also depend on the type of website you want to create. For example, a simple website with just a few pages will likely cost less than a complex website with a lot of pages and features. E-commerce websites or those with custom integrations can also cost more due to the increased complexity of development.

  1. Timeframe

If you need your website designed quickly, you may end up paying more for the services of a website designer. Rushed projects often require more resources and labor, which can drive up the cost.

  1. Location

Where the website designer is located can also affect the cost. In general, website designers based in areas with higher costs of living may charge more for their services than those in areas with a lower cost of living.

  1. Additional Services

Finally, the cost of hiring a website designer may also depend on the additional services they offer. For example, some website designers may include services such as search engine optimization (SEO), content creation, or ongoing maintenance as part of their packages, which can increase the overall cost.

Average Cost of Hiring a Website Designer

So, how much can you expect to pay for a website designer? The cost can vary widely depending on the factors outlined above, but here are some general guidelines to give you an idea:

  1. Hourly Rates

Some website designers charge hourly rates for their services. Hourly rates can range from around $50 per hour for less experienced designers to over $200 per hour for highly skilled designers.

  1. Project-Based Rates

Other website designers may offer project-based rates. This means they will quote you a flat rate for the entire project, regardless of how many hours they spend on it. Project-based rates can range from a few hundred dollars for a simple website to tens of thousands of dollars for a complex website.

  1. Package Rates

Finally, some website designers may offer package rates that include a range of services. For example, they may offer a basic package that includes website design, hosting, and maintenance for a set fee. Package rates can vary widely depending on the services included, but can often be more cost-effective than hourly or project-based rates.

How to Choose the Right Website Designer for Your Needs

When choosing a website designer, it’s important to consider not just the cost, but also the quality of their work, their experience and expertise, and their ability to deliver on your specific needs. Here are some tips to help you choose the right website designer for your project:

  1. Look at Their Portfolio

Start by looking at the website designer’s portfolio. This will give you a sense of their style and the quality of their work. Look for designers who have experience creating websites in your industry or for businesses similar to yours.

  1. Read Reviews and Testimonials

Reading reviews and testimonials from previous clients can also give you a sense of the website designer’s professionalism, communication skills, and ability to deliver on time and on budget. Check out their website, social media, and review sites like Yelp, Google Reviews, or to see what others are saying about them.

  1. Consider Their Experience and Expertise

Consider the website designer’s experience and expertise in website design and development. Look for designers who have experience with the specific features and integrations you need for your website, whether that’s e-commerce functionality, content management systems, or custom coding.

  1. Get a Detailed Quote

Ask the website designer for a detailed quote that includes all of the services they will provide, the timeframe for the project, and the cost. Make sure you understand what’s included in the quote and what isn’t, so there are no surprises later on.

  1. Communication and Collaboration

Finally, consider the website designer’s communication skills and their ability to collaborate with you on the project. Make sure they’re easy to work with, responsive to your needs and questions, and that you feel comfortable communicating with them throughout the project.


In summary, the cost of hiring a website designer can vary widely depending on a number of factors, including the designer’s experience and expertise, the type of website you want to create, the timeframe, the designer’s location, and the additional services they offer. Hourly rates can range from $50 to $200 or more, project-based rates can range from a few hundred dollars to tens of thousands of dollars, and package rates can vary widely depending on the services included. When choosing a website designer, consider their portfolio, reviews and testimonials, experience and expertise, the detailed quote they provide, and their communication and collaboration skills. By doing your research and choosing the right website designer for your needs, you can create a website that represents your brand effectively and helps you achieve your goals.

Your Small Business Works for Your Community

Importance of small businesses

Thinking about starting a business, you might be focusing on earning an income and taking care of your family. But, what you might not have seen just yet is the impact that small, local businesses can have on their communities. Keep reading for more information on how to get started and why it makes sense to keep it in your own hometown.

The Big Impact of Small Businesses

The word small is a bit of a misnomer, as there is nothing small about the impact that local businesses have on the economy. According to American National University, there are more than 56 million people employed by non-corporations, meaning the small businesses are collectively the number one employer in the US. Plus, these “mom-and-pop shops” take up nearly half of all commercial retail space and account for four dollars out of every $10 spent in retail.

As a small business owner, you also have an opportunity to support your local community in ways you may not be able to as an employee. You might, for example, sponsor a children’s softball team or take a day off once each month to deliver meals to the elderly and infirm. You also are in a position to get to know the people that buy from you through things like community events and open houses.

Launching Your Small Business

Like all businesses that have come before, your small business will start with an idea. You also need to identify the things you love and that you’re good at. In our post finding your niche asserts that finding your niche is a matter of knowing what you love, who would value it, and what problems it might solve.

Once you have your business idea in place, you can then work on writing a business plan. This is a crucial step in the formation process that allows you to create a roadmap of sorts that will outline your path toward success. Your business plan will include everything from your company name and marketing strategies to information on how you plan to pull a profit, which is especially important if you want investors down the road.

Something else to consider during the early formation process is establishing an LLC or other business structure. In Tennessee, your LLC can help you keep your personal finances away from your business since it allows you to open a bank account in your business’s name. To get started, register your official company name and appoint a registered agent. They will need to fill out an operating agreement and then file an official certificate of formation. You can use an online service to get this done. Finally, apply for a VIN with the IRS.

You also want to check if you’re required to have a business license or to register with any particular organization. If your business is located within the state, and you make more than $10,000 each year, you will need a license. According to the Tennessee Department of Revenue, this also means you’ll need to pay taxes, which are due within four months of the end of each fiscal year.

Marketing Like A Local

Marketing your business might sound like a huge chore, and it can be. But, once you get the momentum going, it’s much easier. A few things that can help you get your business off the ground in the early days include:

  • A digital presence. Your online digital presence matters more than you might think. Having a website legitimizes your business. It’s also how most people will get in touch with you. Even a simple website can help you stand up against the competition by integrating mobile capabilities, which allow customers to contact or navigate to you with one click or to shop online.
  • An open house. Hosting an open house is a fun and exciting way to engage with your customers and business neighbors. Plan to open after hours to showcase the best of what you have to offer. You might even provide refreshments and give away small tokens of appreciation, such as branded Chapstick, hand sanitizer, or embroidered hats.

While you may start your new business with the primary goal of supporting your family, don’t lose sight of the fact it will also support your community. Not only do you have a chance to create jobs, you can also support causes near and dear to your heart. Getting started takes work, but it’s worth it, and becoming an entrepreneur takes you one step closer to achieving the financial independence you desire.

Get your Quote

Green Thoughts Design offers web design, search engine optimization, and other digital marketing services for businesses throughout the Chattanooga area. For more information, contact 888.263.6626.

Local SEO Can Help Grow Your Business

5 ways seo can help grow your local business

5 Ways Local SEO Can Help Grow Your Local Business

Local Search Engine Optimization (Local SEO) enhances your online search engine outcomes or (SERP) positions on internet search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo!, helping you to grow your local business.

Seems basic, appropriate?

Not always. If you’re still a bit clouded on how exactly Search Engine Optimization can assist you to broaden your business, you’re not alone.

It is just one of the most regularly asked questions we get at Green Thoughts Consulting SEO services business. While many believe SEO is too expensive local SEO packages can be an affordable option for businesses that target a specific area.

To help clear the connection between Search Engine Optimization as well as local business development we have outlined the top 5 ways in which Search Engine Optimization can boost your bottom line:

Organic SEO Traffic increasing over time

1) Local SEO Rises Your Inbound Traffic

As a small company owner, you recognize just how much energy and time it requires to create leads via paid advertisements and also cold-calling, and also the relatively low return-on-investment of those marketing initiatives.

Search Engine Optimization targets leads that are actively looking for the services and products you give, conserving your money on outbound advertising while raising the number of qualified leads that connect with your organization.

With an increase in traffic sometimes you can get traffico anomalo google error that means your traffic is from unknown sources. You can resolve it just by using a VPN or also removing your browser caches.

2) It Gives Your Organization with A Reputation

Customers are conditioned to associate the integrity of a business with their search engine ranking. The usual idea is that the ‘best’ services can be found on the initial web page or 2 of the SERPs, while low-ranking sites have a tendency to generate less-than-positive assumptions from potential and current customers. SEO helps raise your SERP ranking, which in turn plays a huge duty in conversions, sales, as well as brand acknowledgment. Learn more about the customer journey here.

3) Local Search Engine Optimization Provides Long Lasting Results

Unlike a 30-second advertisement placed on the local radio terminal, a time-limited billboard project, or a print ad in the weekend paper.

SEO supplies long-lasting, ongoing advertising and marketing benefits for your local business.

Getting an SEO package will raise your online exposure over time, which helps you maintain a high ranking in the online search engine results.

In the end, it provides you with an excellent ROI on your advertising and marketing budget plan.

4) You Manage The Expenses

When you work with an SEO specialist to improve your online search engine rankings, you’ll know exactly what the services cost upfront, giving you full control over your digital marketing spend.

You can select which Search Engine Optimization solutions make good sense for your local business. Additionally, you can add on other features as your digital advertising and marketing grows and develops over time.

Plans like Backlink Building, Social Media platform publishing (e.g. Pikdo, Facebook, and others) as well as content marketing can all help your small business stick out from your competitors.

Need help building a well-rounded plan for your marketing? Signup up for a coaching session to get your marketing on track today.

5) On Page Local SEO Makes Your Website More User-Friendly

Online search engine formulas, which are known as algorithms determine which websites are presented in what area of the rankings. What place will Google or Bing put your site in? 1st or the dreaded no man land of the 2nd page.

When a user keys in a search term the specific search engine will offer up websites that are user-friendly giving them preferential treatment. In this way, SEO involves improving the overall ‘user experience’ on your small business website.

Elements like how rapidly your site loads (site speed), how very easy it is to browse, and also whether or not your site is ‘mobile friendly’ all effect both your standing in the SERPs as well as the amount of time visitors spend on your website.

In fact, a simple “1-second delay in web page response can result in a 7% decrease in conversions,” per one study cited on

By boosting the customer experience on your small business website, you’ll enjoy greater search engine rankings, attract more visitors, as well as boost your conversion prices.

It’s a win-win for the visitors to your site and your bottom line!

Responsive vs. Mobile-First Design

Responsive vs. Mobile-First Design

Responsive vs. Mobile-First Design: How is One Different from the Other?

Over the years, mobile phone usage has increased dramatically. Case in point: in 2011, more people owned mobile phones than toothbrushes! In 2021, the number of smartphone users has grown to a staggering 3.8 billion. This translates to over 48.20% of the population.

The World Advertising Research Center (WARC) report indicated that close to 2 billion people use their phones to browse the internet. People also use their smartphones to access social media, emails, music, games, and others. By 2025, a projected 72.6% of people will use their phones to access the internet.

The statistics above highlight the importance of creating web pages that function well on mobile devices. Clearly, you need more than just creative web design to ensure your site visitors have a pleasant browsing experience. It’s safe to assume mobile browsing is here to stay. That said, you need to keep mobile users in mind in your web marketing efforts.

Responsive Web Design vs. Mobile-First Design

How is responsive web design different from mobile-first design? Which approach is right for your business? To answer this question, you need to first determine your target audience. You also need to factor in the actions you want them to do and how they access your website.

Are they accessing your site on their desks, or are they on the move? Are they using a 3G connection or WiFi? Once you know the answers to these questions, it’s easier for you to figure out which of the two suits your needs best. Unfortunately, there is a bit of confusion when it comes to these two concepts.

Many assume the two are the same. However, they are two different things. For starters, while a mobile-first website is always responsive, a responsive site is not always mobile-first. Mobile-first is a technical approach, while responsive web design is a deliberate design choice focused on how people interact with mobile devices.

Learn more about our web design services here.

Our team working on a mobile first web design
Our Team Working on Web Design

Responsive Web Design in a Nutshell

Responsive web design will respond to changes in device display sizes. So when your website is displayed on a smartphone, you will see different dimensions compared to when you view the site on your laptop, desktop, or tablet.

You can liken responsive web design to water—it fits into whatever you pour it into. Since it shifts content to fit other devices rather than focus on the visitors’ experience on those devices, the mobile experience is deemed lacking.

A website is of the utmost importance to your business.

Mobile-First Web Design in a Nutshell

On the other hand, mobile-first is considered a proactive approach to web design. It is not only about creating a website that works on mobile devices, it is also about creating a design that’s primarily for users on mobile devices.

Key Features of Mobile-First Design

1. Expandable “Hamburger” Menu

When browsing using your phone, it would be annoying to open multiple tabs. Unfortunately, many responsive websites will require you to click multiple times just to navigate a single interior page. A mobile-first design can improve the navigation process significantly.

For instance, some websites use an accordion-style navigation menu to give visitors a preview of what they can find in each section. It is also more user-friendly since they can simply scan the sections and directly access the information they need.

2.  Larger Buttons

Mobile phone users navigate websites using their thumbs. That said, the mobile-first design pays special attention to anything the visitors are supposed to click. This means hyperlinked sections are larger, buttons are more prominent, and items in a clickable list are spaced further apart.

3.  Consolidated Content

When it comes to the mobile experience, less is more. While responsive websites will condense all content on a desktop, it is not typically conducive to those visitors who use their mobile phones. Mobile-first websites will simplify bulky content and present information in a way mobile users will find engaging.

4. Larger Font Sizes

The text size is also crucial in reading comprehension. To further improve readability on mobile-first websites, font sizes are no smaller than 16 pixels. This is important, so mobile users won’t need to zoom in just to read the content.

When it comes to header texts, going larger is recommended. The bottom line is to make information and content easy to scan to find what they are looking for right away. Large headings can also be used to separate content into scannable sections.

The key differences? Mobile First vs Responsive Design
The key differences? Mobile First vs Responsive Design

Responsive vs. Mobile-First Design: Key Difference

The primary difference between the two is how the designer approaches the website. A mobile-first design is created and executed in tandem with the desktop site. In other words, it involves making proactive changes to the website’s overall design to ensure the mobile experiences can mimic the desktop experience. On the other hand, a responsive design is reactive. This means the design moves fluidly to fit devices.

Need a Quote on a Website that Works? Click here
Need a Quote on a Website that Works? Click here

Final Thought

While both designs can make websites more accessible on various devices, a mobile-first experience is considered better as it provides a more favorable user experience. This can be attributed to the fact that many important factors are considered during the design process, including load time, font size, and the use of white space. If unsure which of the two your site and brand needs more, invest in the services of an expert so you can be guided accordingly.

Build Trust With Good Website Design

build trust with web design

5 Tips to Build Trust With Website Design

Did you know that most people form an opinion of a website within 0.05 seconds (50 milliseconds) of landing on it? With that first glance, people decide whether they can trust you or not — often based on the design of your website alone. A good website design builds trust. That’s why it is so important to focus on building trust when designing your website.

This article will go over five tips to help you build trust with website design.

1. Keep Your Design Professional and Modern

An outdated design immediately brings up feelings of distrust and suspicion. If your website looks like it’s out of the 90s, it’s going to be hard for people to trust it. That’s why you need to get a modern, professional theme that looks great, is easy to navigate, and is clean and professional.

Let’s go over some things to pay attention to in this regard.

First, your website needs to be clean. That means you need to cut down on the number of pop-ups and advertisements on your site. You’re probably only getting a few cents per click from those ads, so ask yourself if they are worth it.

self playing videos are not good for user experience

You also need to avoid self-playing videos, flashy colors, distracting animations, and anything else that adds more clutter than value. Use black text on white background, not white text on black background — the latter is just too hard on the eyes. In general, try to include plenty of white space.

You also need high-quality media. Use professional, premium photos in your posts, and use a great logo. Avoid public domain stock photos you found on the web or Google Images — many bloggers use the same public domain images, and it looks lazy.

Finally, your website needs to be responsive on all devices of all sizes. A mobile-responsive theme is a must. You need to make sure mobile users can access your menu, fill out forms, click call-to-action buttons, and read the text — the text shouldn’t be too wide for the screen.

We specialize in digital marketing, which includes web designs that work and convert. Get a quote below.

2. Build Your Brand

A strong brand helps build trust, and a strong brand requires consistency. While there are many things you should be consistent with, there are two main aspects that will stand out the most: your color palette and your tone of voice.

The colors you use in your branding should be consistent across all branding materials. That includes your:

  • Website
  • Social media profiles
  • Emails
  • Advertisements
  • Offline flyers
  • Television ads
  • And so on

You might not have thought about it much, but there are specific color palettes that you usually associate with particular brands. Let’s go over some examples:

  • Green, lime green, yellow, and white — Sprite
  • Red, blue, and white — after the US flag, you’d probably think of Pepsi
  • Red and yellow — McDonald’s

Of course, context matters. If you are buying a soda in the store, and you see Pepsi’s colors, you’ll automatically think of Pepsi; in another context, you might think of the US flag. The specific shades of those colors matter as well.

Color palettes help increase brand recognition and help people remember you.

You also need a consistent tone of voice. Keep a consistent tone of voice:

  • On your blog
  • On social media
  • In your emails
  • In your messages and conversations with consumers

That way, people will know what to expect from you. They will know you are consistent and stick to a certain set of values.

build social proof to increase website design trust

3. Highlight Social Proofs

Social proof is important when building trust. When people come across a business online, the first thing they often look for is what other people are saying. People trust other people’s opinions online.

One way to highlight social proof is by showing awards or certifications you received. It doesn’t matter if the certification was big or small — most consumers don’t know the difference, and just having a badge affirming your award will often do wonders for your conversion rates.

If you did not receive any awards or certifications, you can always add simple trust badges to your website. Many WordPress plugins will help you do that. For example, you can add a Visa or Mastercard icon, a GoDaddy trust seal if you host on GoDaddy, or a DigiCert Trust badge if you have an SSL certificate from DigiCert.

Testimonials are important too. Try to get a few testimonials from customers and display them on your site. You can make a separate page with testimonials that you link to, or you can display a testimonial or two in your footer or sidebar.

Important: Make sure to include pictures and names with your testimonials, so people feel that the testimonials are coming from real people.

The reason testimonials work so well is that people put a lot of trust in online reviews. Testimonials on your website might seem somewhat less trustworthy, so consider linking to or highlighting reviews you have received on other platforms as well, such as:

  • Google
  • Facebook
  • Yelp

Since those reviews are on third-party platforms that you do not control, people tend to trust them a little more.

In addition to text testimonials, consider embedding a video testimonial. In a video testimonial, the speaker can tell a story and connect with their audience more. Videos by actual people often seem more real than a short paragraph with someone’s picture next to it.

Case studies on results you have achieved for your clients are perfect as well. You can make all kinds of claims and promises, but nothing beats real results, backed up with real data.

4. Make It Easy to Get in Touch

A good website design will make it easy for visitors to get in touch with you will drive more sales, as people will be able to ask questions and relieve common pre-purchase doubts and hesitations.

However, by making it clear how people can get in touch with you, you also help build trust. It shows you are transparent with your customers and that you are ready and willing to answer any questions. It also shows you are confident in the value of what you have to offer.

Some things to highlight on your website include your:

  • Address
  • Email
  • Phone number

Your address is especially important as a local business. Consider also embedding a Google Maps widget, so people can find directions to your location in Google Maps. Need help? Contact us today.

Having an email address is the bare minimum, but having a phone number that people can call to talk with a real person builds even more trust.

You can display your contact information in your header, sidebar, or footer. You can also add a contact page to your sidebar menu, but people shouldn’t have to look around your website for a way to contact you. You want your contact information to be clear and visible from the get-go, as soon as customers land on your site.

Make sure any contact information on your website is consistent with the contact information listed on your local citations.

5. Show Authority

Finally, you need to show that you are an authority in your niche and that you know what you’re doing. If you offer plumbing services, for example, or you are an HVAC technician, how will people know that you are any good at what you do?

A great way to demonstrate your knowledge and expertise is to offer valuable information on your blog. A blog allows you to not only help people but also show that you understand common problems and have the solutions to fix them. You can also talk about common mistakes that people make — including other professionals in your field — so people know you are unique and provide a better service.

Building a social following is another effective way to show authority. That goes back to the social proof aspect we talked about — when a lot of people follow you, it shows that others value your opinions and trust you, which builds trust in new visitors.

It’s not enough to have a lot of followers, however. You need your followers to engage with your content. If you have a lot of followers but no engagement, it will seem as if you bought followers, which is terrible for building trust.

Here are some tips for building up a social following and showing authority on social media:

  • Fill out your bio and upload a professional logo or photo
  • Post helpful content consistently
  • Mix up your content
  • Post images and videos
  • Consider posting helpful links to resources published on other websites (as long as they are not competitor websites)
  • Like and share posts made by others in your niche
  • Encourage discussions and comments
  • Respond to comments

Final Thoughts

At the end of the day, it all boils down to trust. Can consumers trust you enough to give you their money? If you can build trust, you will increase your conversion rates, improve your online brand and reputation, and get more sales. You will also get more word-of-mouth referrals. A good website design will build the needed trust if you follow the steps outlined above.

In addition to these five tips, always provide excellent customer service, both before and after a sale. Providing professional support is an integral part of building trust. Be attentive and make your customers feel heard. Accept feedback, including constructive criticism, and use it to improve your services.

Importance of Web Design To Your Business

importance of web design for business

Importance of Web Design To Your Business

Are you wondering why many businesses are willing to pay top dollar for web design work? Consider this: most consumers nowadays search for product information online before purchasing. This type of consumer behavior highlights the importance of having a content-rich, functional, and modern web design.

With competition becoming increasingly fierce, creating a basic website for your business would no longer suffice. Since it is considered one of your online presence’s critical elements, it must be designed right. If your site leaves much to be desired, you won’t be able to convert potential leads into paying customers.

Why Website Design Matters

Here’s an interesting statistic: A staggering 75 percent of online users make judgments about a company’s credibility based on visual design alone. Understandably, when you come across a website with an outdated design, more often than not, you won’t think highly of the company it represents.

It is possible that you may even question the quality of the products or services they are offering, doubt their legitimacy, or visit a competitor’s website to find what you are looking for. It is important to remember that first impressions are powerful, and their first impression of your site can either make them stay or drive them away.

just how important is web design to your business

The Importance of Web Design for Your Business

While unfortunate to note, poor design will not only hurt your credibility, it can also drive potential customers away. Below are other reasons why you need to make good web design a top priority:

It can help create a favorable first impression.

It takes just a few seconds for visitors to form an impression of your website. That said, you need to ensure you can create a great first impression in the first few seconds your visitors will land on your site. This is something your web design can help you accomplish.

It is also crucial that you update your site when needed to ensure it stays relevant and to guarantee a remarkable user experience. Fortunately, your site does not have to be brought down for updates to be patched. Nowadays, many expert web developers and designers can integrate updates seamlessly.

It can make it easy for visitors to find what they are looking for.

Your web design has a massive impact on how easy it will be for your visitors to find what they are looking for. Some research indicates that 86 percent of site visitors are looking for service or product information, 65 percent are looking for contact information, while 52 percent want to read the About page.

It is recommended that your web design should make finding those crucial elements easy. Otherwise, you can end up frustrating your visitors and, worse, driving them away. In line with this, consider placing primary services in your website’s main navigation. It would also be a good idea to feature the contact number in the upper right-hand corner.

amplify your conversions with a great website for business
amplify your conversions

It can help amplify your conversions.

Want to increase your conversions significantly? Your website design can help! Start by creating a design that highlights calls to action and draws attention to special offers. It is reassuring to know there are various ways you can optimize your web design for maximum conversion. Let us examine two different but equally powerful examples:

One of the foolproof ways you can draw attention toward the desired action is to use open or white space around the call-to-action. One established brand that employs this technique is Apple. The brand is known for its bold images and simple and clean designs surrounded by lots of white space.

On the other side of the spectrum, we have Amazon. While most Amazon pages are crowded with product options and information, one thing always stands out: the yellow Add to Cart button. Even if the page is busy with contrasting colors and different styles, you are still drawn to the ever-important conversion button.

It can make your site look and function on all devices.

Nowadays, most online searches occur on mobile devices, and the trend has no signs of slowing down. With Google now encouraging a mobile-first approach, a web design that’s mobile-friendly is recommended if you want to stay relevant. Many users also think a mobile website design should be just as good as a desktop website design.

Unfortunately, some web designers focus too much on making the website visually appealing that they forget about mobile friendliness. In today’s mobile-friendly world, a superior website design should go beyond a single screen. Ideally, your website should be responsive and should function accordingly on all devices regardless of size.

You can learn more about common web design mistakes here.

It can help strengthen your search engine optimization efforts.

A well-rounded website design is not about the visual elements on the front end alone. However, it is essential to remember that how the design comes together can significantly impact your search engine optimization efforts.

For instance, if your website design has too many large images or loads slowly, it will drive visitors away and impact your SEO efforts negatively.

If you would like a free SEO site audit just message us today to get on the schedule.

user experience is key to making a great website

It is easy to maintain.

While it can be an expensive investment at the beginning, a well-designed website is worth every penny. Aside from the fact that they are way easier to develop, well-designed websites are also straightforward to maintain.

Not only that, maintaining a website that’s properly designed will also cost much less. With less maintenance work and cost, you can focus your time on other aspects of the business that need your immediate attention. We specialize in website design for businesses to get started simply fill out a quote request.


Your website design is one of the most powerful tools you can use to take your business to the next level. That said, it’s safe to assume it is one of those investments that will provide the most bang for your buck.

It is also recommended that you invest in professional help to ensure your website design is optimized accordingly so you can enjoy all the benefits it has to offer.

Award Given to GTC

Award from

Green Thoughts Consulting Awarded

We were happy to see that our agency was awarded one of the best digital marketing agencies in the Chattanooga area by!

Best Digital Marketing Agency in Chattanooga
Awarded best digital marketing agencies in Chattanooga!

Expertise’s Selection Process

They start by identifying a broad pool of active professionals within a given business category and geographical area. Using their custom tools and resources, they analyze only publicly available data.

Next, they verify contact and license information to assure selection candidates are actively doing business and are in good standing in their communities.

Then, they use our in-house software to grade each business across the following selection criteria:

  • Reputation: A history of satisfied customers giving excellent recommendations
  • Qualifications: Established in their industry with licensing, accreditations, and awards
  • Experience: Masters of their craft, based on years of practical experience and education
  • Engagement: Approachable and responsive to clients and available for new business
  • Professionalism: Dedicated to providing consistently quality work and impeccable customer service

Finally, they hand-pick the best. Their team conducts a manual review to verify that each company on their list is truly one of the best. They then write unique and detailed business descriptions for each company.

Click here to learn more about the Expertise selection process.

You can learn more about our award on by clicking the link below.


Local SEO for Your Business

Local SEO for Your Business

Local SEO for Your Business

How Citations Improve your Local Search Rankings

In what follows we will first discuss Local SEO proper and it’s importance for your business.

From this point I’ll discuss how citations fit into that strategy and finally I’ll give you a quick solution for the citation problem. You can jump to the end here.

Let’s talk SEO, search engine optimization, and how to build your local presence on Google and the SERPS.  A big part of off page SEO is still backlinks and it’s important to get some naturally.  Don’t pay for your links this can give you a penalty from Google and cause you to lose rank.  It’s tempting but don’t do it.

New to link building?  Moz has a great beginners guide I don’ t have the time or resources to emulate so here’s the link.

In that article link building is defined as “the process of acquiring hyperlinks from other websites to your own.” That same article goes on to suggest that links are one important way that Google and other Search Engines decide how to rank a site.  Generally, the thought is that more links and better quality links are important for ranking

If you stumble upon this article looking for info on technical SEO Ignite Visibility has a great post on just that. You can read the entire article at your leisure on Technical SEO here.

The importance of Local Citations for your business

Local SEO and the Importance of Citations

I agree that link building and link acquisition is important for business and thus I encourage you as a website owner to work hard to produce content that will be linked. However, today I want to focus on link building for local SEO and namely local citations.

This is a Real non-Rhetorical Question:

Do you ever find yourself wondering about your competitors and why they are ranking for local key words and on Google Maps higher than you? 

If so the quick answer lies in something called a local citation aka a business citation or sometimes called a business directory listing.

Essentially a local citation is made up of one of the following:

  • Company name.
  • Company name & phone number.
  • Company name, phone number, & address.
  • Company name, phone number, address, & website.
  • Company name & website.
  • Company phone number.
  • And so on.

When you think of Local Citations think NAP:

  • Name
  • Address
  • phone number

Darren Shaw of has a nice summary of What a Local Citation is and how to get them.

While we started this local SEO discussion talking about links it’s important to note that a local citation doesn’t need a link to your site to help with your local SEO.  A citation validates and confirms your business is real and valid with or without a link.  Citations help build the following a case for verification, trust and prominence.

Local SEO citations

Why your Business should Care about Local Citations

Google and other Search Engines like Bing “read” these third party business directories and listing sites (the one’s that hold local citations) and take the data into account when determining which business/website to show for Geo-targeted searches. 

Simply put Local Citations will help you to gain ground on your competitors in the Local Rankings.

Local SEO Action Items

The list of local citation and business directories is huge with literally 1000’s of niche directories.  How should you attack the list?

You have two general options: do it yourself or hire someone to do it.

Two General Options

DIY Local SEO Citation Option:

This option is definitely cost effective.  However, it’s like all things that are repetitive and boring—time consuming.  You must ask yourself if your time is worth more to you than the amount of hours it will take to submit individually to each list.

Sure you can hire a virtual assistant or someone online, a college student, etc however, the quality of work is important here too.  Google and the Search Engines do not like it when your NAP doesn’t match.  So make sure that you check the work of VA’s and other low-cost “helpers” before going all-in with them.

Do it Yourself Game Plan?

If you decide to go this Do it Yourself Option I would simply set up a plan to hit 4 to 5 a day for 30 days or 60 or whatever.  Create a scheduled time each day to do the work. Sit back and do it.

In my experience expect each 4 to 5 listings to take around 1 to 2 hours at first.

Hire or Outsource the Local Citations

Here at Green Thoughts Consulting building local citations is part of the Search Engine Optimization we do daily for clients.  

If you are interested discussing that get in touch with us today.

contact us button

Finally, we have put together a list of 150 of the best and highest quality business directory listings for your convenience. Enjoy.

You can find the list here.

Digital Marketing Coach, Benefits

Digital Marketing Coach, the Benefits are Many

With the internet here with us, marketing has evolved and gone digital. While traditional advertising platforms such as newspapers and billboards are still being used, business owners have shifted to digital platforms to reach a wider audience.

Whether you sell products, or you are operating a business in the service industry, one sure way of increasing your visibility is through digital marketing. The challenge for most business owners, especially startups, is that they neglect the marketing aspect of their business or they do not do it right because of lack of expertise.

This is where the services of a professional come in handy.

Benefits of hiring a professional digital marketing coach

Marketing a business on online platforms such as Facebook and Instagram requires tact. With the continuous evolution of technology, new marketing opportunities emerge, and it is only those who take advantage of these tools that adapt and survive the competition. If you do not know the first thing about digital marketing, or you need help improving your marketing strategy, hiring a digital marketing coach will make all the difference. Below are some benefits that come with it.

1.  Mapping out a marketing strategy

One of the benefits of working with a digital marketing coach is that they can help you come up with a marketing strategy for your business from scratch. Most business owners confuse their marketing plan with their business plan when these two are distinct and require equal attention.

With the help of a coach, you can clearly set marketing goals for your business and measure your success based on these. Coming up with realistic and long-term goals pays off in the long run because marketing is a gradual process.

Over the years I’ve developed a series of steps that help cleints move to the promised land. It includes first finding your niche, then understanding your customer journey, building a value ladder, playing with numbers, creating assets, getting traffic and finally reiterating.

When creating a marketing plan, a coach will help you identify areas that need more attention and the marketing tools to use to reach a wider audience.

2.  Learn the ropes from a Digital Marketing Coach

Apart from helping you come up with a marketing strategy for your business, your coach will also give you tools to manage your own marketing for both the short & long-term.

Depending on your needs and budget, your business coach will provide and conduct 1 on 1 training for you and your employees on how to manage your digital marketing platforms.

These can range from areas such as your website and social media pages to getting traffic and efficiently nurturing leads with content. Most small businesses that do not have a lot of resources to work with usually prefer learning the ropes and handling their digital marketing needs in-house.

Some choose to hire in-house experts to handle this aspect of the business or outsource digital marketing services from elsewhere.

However, it can be far more cost effective to outsource this help. The cost of a full time employee or dividing an employees time can be counterproductive and more than hiring a digital marketing coach to help.

Whichever option you choose, your coach will analyze with you the pros and cons and help you choose a budget-friendly yet efficient option for your business.

3.  Digital Marketing Coach will help you improve existing marketing strategies

If your business is neither attracting customers nor making profits yet and you are using digital marketing techniques, chances are that you are doing something wrong.

Sometimes, the problem may simply be with your website design. If you own a website, this is the hub for all your other digital marketing activities. It feeds into secondary sites such as social media with a good content strategy.

After following the path noted above from finding your niche to reiteration your digital marketing coach will address secondary issues.

One of these issues your coach will try to resolve maybe your website, its design, content, and functionality. If the design is off, chances are that potential customers will not visit it or share its content with their networks.

Website responsiveness is also crucial because a website that takes time to load content can be repulsive to users. When churning out content on your website, your marketing coach will advise that you consider putting up quality content which is optimized for search engines such as Google.

Because web design and content development can be too technical for business owners, your coach may recommend the services of professional digital marketing companies to help you revamp your platforms.

Take Action

Finding the best digital marketing strategy may be as easy as choosing the right coach to help you figure it all out.

Applying the strategies that you come up with is also another challenge that you can easily overcome if you put in the work. Not only does a sound marketing strategy help you stay on top of your game in your niche, but it also helps you adapt to an ever-changing digital environment.

Learn more about our 1 on 1 coaching.

Is Your DIY Website Design Causing You Problems with SEO?

SEO Hero

Is Your DIY Website Design Causing You Problems with SEO?

The most commonly discussed element in SEO is backlinks. For a long time, backlinks were the central feature of SEO, determining whether your website design would achieve top rankings. Backlinks are still a crucial factor in the process, but there are other parts that play a key role. How does a DYI Website Design stand up against a Custom Web Design?

On-page optimization has grown in importance in recent years, with a negative user experience damaging any chances of long-term success. If your website has not been optimized properly, Google can detect this both through their crawling and the response of searchers who visit your pages. So, what are the website factors you need to consider for effective SEO?  Want more info on On-Page Optimization?


Website loading speed is not as commonly discussed as it should be. The time it takes for a page to load has a huge impact on reported user experience, with a matter of seconds between a positive and negative impression. Google have a page speed tool for testing loading times, while there are additional alternatives helping to get a broad picture. In the result of a problem, look at image optimization, quality of hosting, and using a CDN like Cloudflare.

You can check your websites speed over at GTmetrix and then check out the 6 reasons why website speed matters.

Content is King Bill Gates


The content on a page is of great importance, but it doesn’t need to be the same style in every instance. The best type of content for SEO will provide the bulk of searchers with exactly what they are looking for. This concept is called search intent.  For example, some keywords will require a detailed article that goes into a lot of depth or niches only require a step by step guide that can be short and to the point.  At the end of the day what is the traffic to your website looking for in return?  Do they want quick answers?  Or do they want to gain a deeper and thorough understanding of a specific subject.  Get to know your traffic and your target.

Other queries, though, might only require a short answer to satisfy the search query. It is helpful to use your target keyword within the title and copy, while also including related terms. Dwell time is another SEO factor, so elements like video content can help increase the time spent on site.


Mobile First vs Responsive

Google has switched to mobile-first indexing, reacting to the increasing popularity in mobile usage. If your site does not offer an optimal experience for mobile users, you will struggle to maintain a great ranking. Most modern sites will offer responsive design, so they work across all types of devices. It is important to test your site using different devices, though, and run pages through the Google Mobile-Friendly tool. A great mobile experience won’t just replicate the desktop, but will instead be catered to the mobile browsing experience.

Here at Green Thoughts Consulting we find many clients have out dated and non-mobile friendly websites.  Having a website in this state is hurting you more than you know.  It’s simple really.  How much do you make on  your average sale?  If a client ready to buy comes to your site and can’t see it due to issues with mobile etc they bounce or leave and then find a competitor.  If we can redesign your site and get you just 2-5 new customers due to the design changes and optimization what is the worth to you based on your average sale?

Test your websites mobile friendliness with Google’s very own test here.


Social media is a useful tool for promoting your website and blog content. Users might like and share your posts, leading to others seeing your content. This process can lead to greater visibility and engagement, creating backlinks for your site. The importance of social media for SEO is still debated.

However, the level of importance Google places on social links is not worth worrying about as there are plenty of indirect benefits to social promotion. The targeted backlinks you can gain on other platforms like industry blogs, often resulting from social media marketing, will play a huge role in ranking a page.

Nice post on how to use social media to promote your site.

internal and external seo links


The URL structure might seem minor, but it can have a high impact on SEO and click-through rate. Some content management systems use an awkward URL structure that isn’t optimal. These URLs might be long and feature dates or random digits to make them unique. This type of URL can negatively impact click-through rate, with the search engines lowering your ranking as a result. Various tests have shown shorter URLs are most effective, so try to use a keyword phrase that sums up the article content.

Bruce Clay has a classic post on SEO Siloing.  It’s a must read really.


Internal linking helps to pass authority around your site, increasing the rankings of certain pages. Wikipedia is the best known example of effective internal linking, with related pages helping users navigate around the site. This process also helps lower the bounce rate, avoiding a common SEO issue. Outbound links can be used to show the topical relevance of your content, with links typically going to authority sites within your industry.  If you are looking for a great primer on internal linking vs external linking look here.



On-page optimization can play a key role in an SEO campaign. Many site owners focus exclusively on the off-page factors, attempting to gain increased numbers of backlinks. Some quick changes to the way a site is set up, along with adaptations on individual pages, can often be enough to satisfy the search engines and individual visitors. When you can offer an exceptional user experience that satisfies the point of the original search query, you stand a great chance of maintaining top rankings into the future.

More on internal and external link significance for your site and SEO.

If there’s anything we can do to help you out on your journey and increase your Return on Investment reach out to us.

The Customer Journey Prison to Paradise

The Customer Journey

The Customer Journey- Prison to Paradise

What does prison to paradise have to do with buying behavior and the customer journey?

The customer journey begins like many things in life. In life, there exists a spectrum.  A set of polar opposites. We have life and we have death. We have a new year and the end of the year.  There is summer and winter. The poor and the rich. Love and hate. 

This spectrum is not only literal, rather, it can be emotional like the need we all feel to be secure and safe.  The polar opposite of safe is insecure or some such antonym. 

The Yin and Yang exist everywhere. The decision that your clients make in the customer journey is no different.

If we boil it down your client’s journey needs to reach a place where they see you as the one and only person to solve their problem.  You are the only choice for the client and there are no other options. 

This is the customer path you want to put prospects on when you reach them.

The Birth of Great Marketing

Further, in this awareness of the polar opposites, you will find truly great marketing grows and becomes something more than an idea.

What is great life-changing marketing?

Marketing that gives life will describe more than a mere product or service. Rather, it follows how the ideal audience grows and becomes from peril and heartache to triumph and victory.

It is the prison to paradise narrative as I was trained to call it. 

“The goal of the customer journey is to move that prospect from there pain points to the desired outcome that makes them feel relief from that pain point.

Jeff Green

Taking the problem, you solve, or your offer(s), and applying it to the Prison to Paradise model will yield significant positive results in your business and life. 

If you have yet to work through that aspect of your business it’s imperative you solidify and clarify who your ideal audience is and what you provide them with. 

Who are your customers?  What change do you provide to them through your product or service? You can read more about finding your why and getting true clarity here.

Great marketing is about more than just identifying a problem and then selling it. 

At its core, it’s about how the problem makes our potential clients feel, sound, and look

Why? If you were to delve into the psychology of feeling and therapeutic listening you would find that people feel understood when you listen to them.  This is common sense really people love to be heard.  Don’t you?

The best way to let people know you get them is to describe emotively and quite literally what they see, feel, and sound like when they are in prison, or sitting with an unsolved problem.

Jeff Green

In the prison to paradise model of the client journey these concepts come together.

the customer journey is prison to paradise
Prison to Paradise, the Customer Journey by Jeff Green

The Customer Journey: Prison to Paradise

Let me break down the customer journey model as a outline to be followed.

There are two states of being in this model, prison and paradise.  Prison represents the state of existing in a problem.  The problem is unsolved.  The desire to solve it may or may not be known.  There is a particular difference in how one feels, looks, and sounds in this state when compared to its polar opposite. 

The second state of the customer path is paradise wherein the world is right. Your life is in balance.  You experience relief both physically and emotionally in how you feel, look, and sound.  You are in a word happy or relieved that the problem was solved.

The client journey is just this.  A pilgrimage you lead from prison to paradise, problem to solution, frustration to relief.  But to get there one must build a bridge.  This bridge is in essence your offer and the experience one derives from that offer.  This bridge has pillars to hold it up and you would be wise to think of these pillars as stepping stones in the customer journey.  This is essentially the product or service itself.

The above three areas are the core of the prison to paradise model. Get to know them well they will be the core of your business and the customer path. Let’s look at each more closely.

Prison and Paradise

The customer journey from prison

When you’re describing your ideal client, you want to understand how they look, feel, and sound.

  • How do things look to them?
  • How do things sound to them?
  • What words do they use to express themselves?
  • How do they say they feel?
  • What bothers them?
  • Where do they hang out?
  • What concepts and ideas move them?
  • What worries and excites them?

These answers will be on a spectrum like all human behavior, but what needs your attention is the polar opposites.  You must identify the problem state and a state of relief. Prison to Paradise.

You must begin categorizing the look, feel, and sound ideology of our client into two buckets.  The “I have a problem” bucket and the “Wow! My problem is now solved” bucket.

The customer journey across the chasm to paradise

In order to create real movement across this chasm from prison to paradise, you must make the customer feel understood throughout the journey.

How do you do this?  Go where they go and do what they do.

For example, if your clients appear to hang out on Twitter, you should probably start spending time on Twitter. If they are always on the gram, then it’s time to build a presence on Instagram. 

Go native and live among your ideal customer.

At the end of the day, you have to be where your clients are, or you’ll never connect or understand them.  Not to mention you will be guessing how they feel, look, and sound. 

Don’t get stuck thinking your only avenue is social media. You may find your ideal clients on forums, Facebook private groups, Reddit, Quora, or other niche blogs.  Join these groups and live among them.

The great news about this step is that you already know the “who” part regarding your audience from our post on finding your niche.  Finding your niche and getting clarity on that is the first step. 

Now that the target is known you just need to find out where they are online.  Once you find him, you need to begin listening and taking note of how they feel, look, and sound. 

“It’s a good idea to go so far as to create a word bank of usage you see or behavior you experience in your niche audience.  Later in the process using this language reflectively will make the customer journey feel like a place where they are understood and known.”

Jeff Green

An Example of the Customer Journey

For example, let’s say you’re interested in providing stone pottery to people that are collectors of stone pottery, like cups and/or a dinner dish. You need to figure out where these people are and what they’re talking about and who they’re with. How do they look, sound, feel?

This is an ongoing process but I encourage you to start working on it now.  Once you have a word bank and you have begun to understand how your client feels, sounds, and looks, the next step is to infuse those words and terminology into messaging.

Those worries, those frustrations, those negative emotions will be placed into your sales page, your social media messaging, your email outreach, it should be everywhere.

But how do you move them from prison to paradise?  

You build a bridge and the bridge is nothing more than the pillar concepts that the client needs to step upon to get from the place of the problem (prison) to the place of relief from that problem (paradise).

The customer journey in action

John has found his niche by working the 2 Circles exercise.  John knows he is looking to work with creative entrepreneurs that feel stuck and lack clarity in their marketing.  The value he adds is his past experience of being a digital marketing agency owner.

What does prison then look like for these creative entrepreneurs or solopreneurs?  I’ve tipped my hat a bit.  It’s frustrating. Confusing. There is an overall deficit of clarity.  These entrepreneurs run around in circles from one new hot idea in marketing to another tactic.  The customer journey for these creatives has been a story of tail chasing.

The pain points are made worse by the fact that they can see people in the state they want to be in… paradise.  Making money, endless leads, easy subscribes, and high Return on Ad Spend.  At least this is the story these marketers sell to our creative entrepreneurs.

Simply put John needs to figure out through living among and listening to creative entrepreneurs how they express their prison and what paradise looks like.  Once this is accomplished all that is left is to tie that language into sales copy and messaging. 

John’s expertise in marketing helps him build pillar ideas that each customer must touch to get to paradise.  The method is tried and true.  It works.

So he walks them through 4-6 steps that help them get to paradise or at the very least reframe there concept of what that paradise really is or is not.

Another Client Journey

Tim is a financial professional that is desperate to move out of his current position and into a work from home business.  He is saving money for the transition, plans to transition slowly over a 6 to 12-month period. 

He realizes that there will be very busy times during this transition.  Tim has set goals in regard to his income that must be met before he can leave the dreaded day job (it is actually a night job at the end of a 16-hour end of month close).

Tim has completed his 2 Circles exercise and found that although he is awesome at finance and accounting, he hates it.  He realizes he loves writing content for other companies. Tim has been consistently writing on the side, for fun, since he was 23. He loves to write. 

He never thought of making money doing it.  During his finding your why work he realized that his writing is valuable to businesses in the finance and accounting industries because he is a fantastic writer and knows far more than the average bear about finance.  A skilled writer with a niche.

Tim begins taking what he knows about finance and accounting to decision-makers in an effort to understand them better. Further, he begins following a few forums and threads on the internet about marketing and content marketing for financial professions.  He begins haunting a private Facebook group of private CPA firm owners that are trying to learn marketing. 

Tim is growing his list of how this audience will look, feel, and sound.  The nuggets of gold he finds during this process help him craft more meaningful content on his new blog.  He creates a sense of connection with his visitors through his sales pages, lead magnets, email sequences, and social media posts by reflecting back the issues they are dealing with while they lie in prison wasting away. 

He also paints a picture of how it will look, feel, and sound when they are free and in paradise.

His pillars in the client journey are simple and only involve 3 steps.  He delivers the desired outcome all the while helping the niche he serves to feel understood and involved in the process. 

Next Steps to Build your Customer Journey

These are examples.  The big take away is once you know what your niche is and what your reason for being is, you know, your target audience. Once you have your niche and your target, it’s time to begin doing the work of learning how it looks, feels, and sounds for your tribe.  Understanding their natural customer journey and building a model to understand it like prison to paradise will supercharge your marketing and help you grow.

Next up read why you must have a value ladder.

Why you must have a Value Ladder

Why you must have a value ladder

Why you must have a Value Ladder

A value ladder, referred to as a brand ladder or marketing ladder, is a group of offerings that both increase in price and value as you move from left to right. It is usually depicted with a set of stairs.

Image Source:

A value ladder can do so much for you and it’s really a must-have for any business owner.

What can a value ladder do for you?

First, a value ladder meets people where they are this way.  

By implementing a value ladder, you are able to increase a customer’s lifetime value, LTV.  Providing lower-cost items that build in value as cost increases allow you to build trust with your audience early in the customer journey and still make some money along the way. 

Additionally, you’re still meeting the customer needs and adding value, even at the lower level offers. Most value ladders work best when immense value is given even in the early steps. This allows you to show your worth to clients and build trust.

But let’s dive in a little more.

A value ladder is not about squeezing money from people and helping them max out a credit card to two. That’s not the point of a value ladder, even though a lot of marketing “experts” out there will tell you, it is.

If you’ve read any of my other blog posts on finding your why (where you identify your niche) or how to take your clients on a journey from prison to paradise. You know that my model of work is very client-centric. That’s not going to change in regard to a value ladder.

It’s all about maximizing the number of customers and providing value commensurate with that cost all the while building trust as they move through the different phases of the client journey.

Jeff Green
Value Ladder Template

Do you want a Value Ladder Template? Just fill out the form below.

So, you need a value ladder because it will increase the number of clients and the lifetime value of the average customer.  It’ll also help you produce happy customers.

Second, a value ladder helps you produce happy customers.

Throughout that client journey, “clients to be” will touch various parts of your value ladder steps required to move them from prison to paradise

This is an important point, as what your audience and the ideal client really desire is to find internal relief from the problem they are experiencing.  Even if and when your customers show up with an external problem, which they will, the underlying problem you need to meet is internal and is found in the look, sound, and feel of your audience.

Why do you need a value ladder?

As I noted above a value ladder or brand ladder increases the lifetime value of clients. It’s really that simple. Anything that produces an increase in revenue is a must.

For example, how would you like to take your business from where it is and increase your revenue by 30%, 80%, or even 200% by adding value through multiple offerings at different levels?

It can happen. I’ve seen it happen over and over. Take, for instance, John.   

John has a business where he provides $750 a month search engine optimization for X, Y, and Z ideal customers. The problem is John gets a lot of leads that say they don’t have $750 to spend or perhaps they don’t trust John enough to spend $750.

If John provided a free offer at the beginning, such as a one-on-one SEO audit with a zoom chat alongside help to the client, that would build a lot of trusts.

Then perhaps that client was given the option to take a $67 interactive online course of John’s creation that would teach said customer to do SEO on their own. Then the outcome would be two-fold. 

Increased trust is built at each step.  Additionally, the client get’s more comfortable with John with each interaction, which moves the client journey along. 

However, that’s not where this story ends. 

On the client-side, they also receive loads more value than the free 45-minute SEO audit.  They are learning to do SEO themselves with John’s online course.

Each client gets to spend hours listening to John. 

In John’s business he makes a little money on the sale he would have otherwise not made if he only offered the $750 price point.

But there’s more, what if John then offered an upgrade to the SEO course, perhaps it is $97 a month, where the customer receives one-on-one access to John for a limited amount of time each month.  

Maybe John decides to provide help for 90-minute group calls to those in this upgrade twice a month.  This increases customer perceived value as they now have direct access to John.  It also increases the lifetime value of each customer as there are points on the ladder below $750 for each customer. 

value ladder bulls-eye offer
Bulls-eye offers are your goal!

I think you get the picture at the end of the customer journey. The final step in the value ladder is John’s bullseye offer, which is his $750 a month SEO package. When John only offered the bullseye he was leaving a lot of money on the table and lowering his potential customer reach.  Don’t do this.

Plus, this is very important, John has now built trust with his prospects under multiple touchpoints, which makes it far easier to sell the bullseye offer.

The scenario above alone paints an all-in picture of why you need a value ladder in your business. But what are the other reasons to implement a value ladder?

Why else do you need a value ladder?

As I said, multiple times throughout that illustration, it builds trust. This really can’t be overlooked.

The Psychology of buying and customer behavior

The psychology of buying and customer behavior is a quite an interesting field, but not in the ballpark of this discussion. However, it’s been shown that to get a customer, to pay top dollar (your bullseye or top-of-the-ladder offer) there must be trust.

In other words, people vote with their money.

If they’re not paying you, they’re not ready to vote or they vote against you. You have to put customers in a situation where they feel comfortable spending money because spending money leads to spending more money, which leads to two things.

And this is important.

It leads to a better outcome for your client in the end, because there’s more value as they spend money. Your free offer will never help them to the same extent that a paid bulldog offer will help them. You know, this and deep down inside, they know this, but part of the customer journey is walking through the process of understanding this

Source: Simplified marketing funnel example from

The Value Ladder helps organize the customer journey.

You’re able to meet people where there are if you’ve ever seen conceptualizations of the marketing funnel, there’s a whole slew of different versions. Most will look something like the picture above.

Most marketing funnels will be broken into at least three parts. Awareness or some other word like that depicts a similar concept. Next, you have consideration and research. And finally, a decision is made by your customer.

With a value ladder, you create offers at different levels, which help the buyer journey along.


Awareness in the value ladder is akin to something like a free offer


Consideration on the other, hand might be a low price offer, or maybe it’s another free offer.


Research is your lead offer or a mid-tier offer on your value ladder.

It’s when they’re testing the waters and trying to find it, if you’re the real deal or not.


And finally, the bullseye offer is the conversion part of the funnel. It’s where your potential customer is ready to pay top dollar. Why? Because they know through your messaging that you are the only person that can satisfy their needs.

You’re the only person that can do it the way they need it done. And therefore they’re willing to pay you more than they want to pay you to remove the pain that they feel.

Therein is an important point. Having tiered offers in the value ladder allows people to jump in or to taste the product. At a minimum cost or investment to themselves, in the end, this helps move potential clients through the customer journey.

One thing that’s interesting about the funnel image provided above is if you turn it on its side, you can build a value ladder out of it. As shown below.

value ladder meets the Marketing funnel
Value Ladder meets a Funnel By Green Thoughts Consulting

Value Ladder Examples & Thoughts

I wanted to uncover a few final points to note regarding the value ladder and common mistakes.

You should focus on an internal problem that your audience has.

I’ve written about this extensively in my prison to paradise and finding your why articles. It’s foundational to understanding the inner life of a value ladder and in my humble opinion must-read material.

Often of times what people really need and what they think they need are incongruent. For example, a client may believe they need you to fix their website copy, but in all honesty, the internal problem that they’re struggling with is that they need to make more money or get more leads.

You will want to sell them on the emotional problem. This is discussed in depth within the must-read article on the customer journey. Then and only then can you give them the external solution that they need. This is what creates a happy customer and in doing so, it changes the way they think about themself and the experience itself.

“You need to design offers and copy that meet and focus on the internal outcome rather than what your client thinks they need or the external outcome.”

Jeff Green

If you found the problem you solve through finding your niche and then learned to move customers from prison to paradise, this will get you there. Well, let’s walk through a few examples of a value ladder that someone like yourself might try to build. And some of the hotspots throughout that can cause problems.

Ready to get your value ladder template? Just fill out the form below.

Example 1- The Accountants Value Ladder

First, what problem does an accountant solve? Fairly simple. They provide financial support to individuals and businesses. Hopefully, if you are Jim, our accountant, you have worked through finding your niche and you are more specific in your answer.

Jim takes care of bookkeeping and the accounting for artists that sell products online. He has worked through the ins and outs of his specific ideal customer journey. His value ladder looks something like the below.

Free Offer(s)– Jim has 14 free offers for potential clients. They range from checklists for the end of year to tutorials and eBooks on how to setup Freshbooks for your accounting.

Low Tier Offer– The businesses offers a 47 dollar set of accounting templates for those interested in keeping their own books.

Mid Tier Offer(s)– Jim has 2 courses that you can get for $247. One is a course that teaches you to do bookkeeping using Freshbooks. It contains worksheets, homework, actionable items, and over 17 hours of video learning. He has another course that provides similar value on a different topic.

Mid Tier Offer(s)– Jim also provides a 1 on 1 upgrade with each of his courses that are priced at $197 for two 90 minute group Q&A sessions every two weeks.

Bulls-eye Offer– Finally the accounting firm provides both monthly subscriptions for bookkeeping services and the filing of business taxes. The cost varies based on the complexity of the business, however, rates start at 247 per month for bookkeeping and 497 for base business taxes.

Example 2: Online Coaches Value Ladder

Nicole is an online business coach who was struggling in business prior to creating a value ladder and niching down. Her business has never been better after implementing our must-read articles on finding your why, the customer journey, and implementing a value ladder.

Nicole works with solopreneurs, entrepreneurs that work alone, specifically she works with solopreneurs in engineering vertical.

Free Offer(s)– Nicole has built, through a commitment to a creative mindset, 21 “lead magnets”. These allow potential clients to get help for free and likewise get to experience Nicole’s expertise.

Low Tier Offer– Nicole is an author and has written a book about finding your ideal clients on LinkedIn. She sells the book to prospects in exchange for an email and $7.

Mid Tier Offer A- Online classes on how to improve your lead generation and marketing for consultants in the engineering vertical. It sells for $397 per month and includes all 9 of Nicole’s courses on the subject.

Mid Tier Offer-At this level the value increases and Nicole provides a 4-hour package where she helps engineering solpreneurs (usually consultants) learn to market themselves more effectively. The cost of these 4 hour in-person or zoom sessions is $997.

Bulls-eye Offer– This ongoing marketing and coaching help is done with you. The packages start with a 90-day package that auto-renews without cancellation. It includes Nicole’s proven system to move you from prison to paradise and up to 8 hours of 1 on 1 work per month. The cost is $4947 for 90 days.

value ladder success involves action

Take Action- Build a Value Ladder

Okay. Don’t just let this sit as knowledge in your head. My, I would encourage you to download my value ladder, worksheet, and tutorial to help you walk through this process. And what do you know? It’s free.

Get your free VALUE LADDER template today. Just fill out the form below.

Finding Your Niche

Find Your Niche

Finding Your Niche

Getting clarity and finding your niche is often one of the first steps to building a successful online business that thrives. The level of clarity needed to build that thriving business is not as easy to come by as one might think.  So what does it even really mean to get business clarity, and find your niche?

A lot of blogs and digital marketers out there are peddling some snake oil niche lists.  These are merely a list of sweet spot products and industries.  The posts are often all the same.  They are long laundry lists of profitable industries, upsells, or requests for an email address to “get the 50 hottest niches”. 

These lists will undoubtedly include such areas as fitness, health, self-improvement, etc.  There are so many of these lists that claim to help you get clarity on the concept of how to find your niche, but most just fall flat. 

These articles miss the core issues around niching down and finding your niche.

A quick google search and you’ll find tons of these types of articles. You’ll find people trying to sell you, emphasis on trying, on the idea of using Amazon to find your niche based on demand. I think that’s backward, to be honest.  If you want to build something worthy of building you need to start with a firm foundation that will not sway through the years.

I think when you’re looking for your niche and trying to glean some level of clarity on the subject there are several imperative questions you must answer. But before I get there, why do you even need a niche?

Why Find Your Niche?

Well, it’s simple really.  You need to niche down because it’s in the niche that you make money. If your audience is too broad, it’s hard to speak to them in a way where they actually feel known by you.

That’s the very simple answer to it. But that’s only half the story.  The other half is all about you.  You must take into account your specific gifts, expertise, personality, “what you’re good at” to start off on the right foot and avoid burnout.

If you attempt to sell widgets in blue, red, and green you will burn out.  Why?  Because who is passionate about a product that just sells. 

Sure it’s nice to make money, but money doesn’t answer the why and purpose of being.  That purpose will sustain you.  It will connect you on a transcendent level with others. Set out to find your why and in doing so you will find your niche.

My purpose drives me.  I live to help small business owners and entrepreneurs grow and make a new life building businesses that thrive.  It excites me.

People spend hours, days, weeks, months, and even years attempting to get clarity and purpose.  I once had a kind soul sit across the screen from me and tell me they had been trying to find the right niche for 6 plus years.  Yikes.  In order to find your niche, there are three simple and powerful questions.

Three Questions to Find your Niche

Three Questions to Find Your Niche

What are you good at?

First and foremost, what are you good at? There’s a lot we could say about that, but what areas in life are you an expert? Are you an expert with journal entries? Are you an expert at working through a balance sheet?  Is your expertise in Excel or SQL databases?  There are thousands of things out there you could be good at and have brilliant expertise in, but that’s not all of it.

I’m actually an excel ninja. 

I can slice and dice when it comes to any dataset.  I can build lovely dashboards for the C suite.  I can automate tasks with visual basic and macros.  But I hate this work.

So don’t get locked into the concept of expertise as a function of your previous or current work or career. Rather, I encourage you to think about expertise much more broadly.

Ask what can you do well AND you enjoy.

Perhaps you enjoy woodworking more than you enjoy your investment banking work or that analysis job. Maybe you enjoy making stone pottery, rather than working through the anxiety, another sales call that just feels wrong and cold always wondering if things will balance and it’ll be a short few days.

So that’s the first question have to answer.

What are you good at? And what do you enjoy that you’re good at? Don’t forget to add that part. It’s elemental and life giving as well as life changing.

Who would value that?

The second question you need to ask is who would value that? What people out there in the world would value the expertise you just noted. So in the case of stone pottery, you might say people that collect handcrafted pottery will value my work.

It doesn’t have to be completely different than what you do at work now though.  Let’s say in the first step you said I really love doing work in financial databases but I hate working for “the man”.  Maybe you start a consulting gig instead of working for the man that’s more niched down and focused.

Ask the questions who would value financial database work? 

There are far too many people to name so you will need to drill down a bit more.  Perhaps the answer is business owners or decision-makers with or in a company with less than 50 employees that don’t have or “don’t want to” use cash to hire an FTE to dedicate to that.  So those people will really value you and especially when they don’t have to pay you those benefits and entire FTE to do some work.

This question of who will value your offer is key, but a deeper line of questioning lingers. You can’t just create products because you see them selling. Rather, you need an offer that solves a problem. If you don’t, it’s going to be darn hard to sell that offer.

Once you have these two fundamental questions answered, the “what your good at” and the “who values it”.  Then you need to drill down into what problem does it actually solve for them?

The Sweet Spot – Solve that Problem

An offer without a problem to solve is a waste of time. 

If your offer doesn’t solve a real-life problem you’re destined to fail and you can expect to sell little along the way. 

So what problem is your offer, or better yet offers, going to solve for those people? You must have a value ladder with multiple offers.  But that’s another discussion altogether.

find your niche, find your why
This is the exercise you should do to find your niche and find your why.

I’m sure you know what a Venn diagram is from your days in school.  

In the image above the Venn diagram, you see the “what you’re good at” and the “who values that”.  Now it’s time to actually find your niche and start living your purpose.  Each step in this process is a piece in the puzzle of finding a profitable niche, understanding your why, and finding meaning in your life.

I’m a firm believer that through understanding what we are and who needs that we find deep and meaningful, dare I say life-changing purpose.

Let’s face it you are here because you’re dissatisfied with your current job, your business, your meaning, and purpose.  You hate the lack of clarity and can’t figure out why nothing seems to work.  You are tired of missing out when the gang heads out.  Getting home after dark regularly is the worst.  It isn’t life giving.  But finding your purpose and helping others solve a real problem will drive you.

“You will find your niche in the connection point on the Venn Diagram. What are you great at? And who wants and needs that? The overlap of that area is where you find your niche and audience!”

Jeff Green

Take Action to Find Your Niche

That’s right take action.  Don’t just sit there and wait on it to come to you.

Get out a piece of paper or a spreadsheet and create the two main areas (three on a spreadsheet). One, should be labeled “what I am good at”.  The second area should be labeled “who would value that?” 

The point of intersection in the middle, or middle column of a spreadsheet, is where you find your niche.

This area of intersection where both your what and the who out there coexist is where you need to be playing to thrive in business. 

If you find it clarity has arrived alongside meaningful purpose in life.   Further, it’s the thing that will drive you to get up every morning and create something new for your audience.

Don’t confuse this point. Your niche is not your audience. Your niche is the problem(s) you solve for that audience.

At the end of the day, people don’t care about you per se. They don’t care about you great skill nor how you do it. In the end, they care about you helping them solve problems.

Solving problems for people is something people will pay you for over and over again.

SEO for Artists

SEO for Artists

Intro to SEO for Artists

SEO for artists is for the most part very similar to Search Engine Optimization in general.  However, it’s been my personal experience having worked with artists on web design and SEO projects that there are a few particulars to keep in mind.

On Page SEO Definition

On page SEO is simply put the process of optimizing your website and individual website pages for search engine optimization.  First, this involves site speed which is made up of image compression or serving the correct size for speed and quality, SSL validation or the presences of https, and running the right type of website and using a decent host. 

Further, it involves using the right keywords and doing keyword research to understand and maximize value and traffic.  You will use these all-important keywords to maximize the SEO title, SEO meta-descriptions, URL, and SEO header tags (h1-h6). 

Setting up your artwork and site for success means following the process mentioned below so you “score” well with on page SEO.

Off Page SEO Definition

Off Page SEO is the set of factors that help your site rank that is not on your actual website.  These include link related issues and non-link related issues.

The link related issues involve the number of domains that link to your site.  The quality of these domains in terms of links that site has, the relevancy of that site to yours (niche).  It also matters how those links are technically linked, are they dofollow or “nofollow” links?  Further, on page SEO involves something called anchor text, which is the text you see when you click on a link.

The non-linking related issues involve your brand mentions, NAP (Name Address Phone) mentions, social signals (people sharing your content), and finally Google My Business existence for your business.

Both on page and off page search engine optimization are important for artist websites just like any other site.  Let’s dive into the specific factors in more detail.  But first, it’s important to start with an audit.

SEO Audit for Artists

As with any project that includes SEO you should start with a website audit.

A technical website audit will provide you with the details and underlying information to make decisions that will actually move the needle for your site in a quantitative manner.

An SEO audit should include on page SEO factors such as site speed measurement, SSL validation, on page factors such as title, meta descriptions, and header tags (H1-H6). 

Let’s work through a few of these and make comments both generally and specifically as it applies to SEO for artists.

On Page SEO factors listed

On Page SEO for Artists

Site Speed for Artist Websites

This is becoming a larger force in the search engine ranking world. Google announced in May 2020 that it would begin including several site speed factors in it’s ranking algorithm for sites.

Namely, it refers to these as Core Web Vitals.  These include how fast your website “paints” for the users and measures perceived load time or speed.  There are some other technical factors that I could mention here but won’t as it’s essentially about the speed of the site.

The best place to check your site speed is Pingdom and GTMetrix.

Pingdom Speed Test Tool image capture

As for metrics, Google is looking to have your site load in under 2.5 seconds and I would shoot for under 2 if it were me.  This can be a real issue for artists as their specific sites tend to be loaded with high-resolution images. 

No doubt this is an issue.  It simply means you need to build your site and specifically the images in a way that allows them to load as quickly as possible.  Don’t sacrifice quality for speed. 

As an artist one should not gut the quality of images in order to significantly increase page speed.  Rather, you should optimize these images so they are sized correctly.  Perhaps no bigger than the resolution of an average desktop.

If you are using WordPress there are several plugins available for this purpose. 

image compression example

Image Compression Plugins for WordPress

ShortPixel is the go-to WordPress image compression plugin for those looking to speed up a site. It is free to use, but only allows 100 image compressions per month. I advise you to spend the extra cash the first month or so and get your images compressed.

If you just aren’t feeling ShortPixel here’s a great blog post that will give you other options. For an artist, image compression is a must.

Use it regularly and run it after each post or update.  As an artist, the speed of your site will depend to an extent on your image compression.  Just keep balancing this with quality. Quality first when it comes to images and SEO for artists.

Alt Text example for an image in WordPress

Alt-Text for Images

Aside from the issue of image size all images have something called an Alt-text. I find like header tags the average bear that builds its own website is missing lots of alt-text.

For an artist that is showing their product, this is a no-no. You MUST include your Alt Text for each and every image.

If you think about it a robot, even a smart ai robot, can’t read an image. So what is it to do with all those images on artist websites?

Enter Alt-text or Alt Descriptions. Alt-text is associated with one per image. In WordPress, there is a box when you upload the picture that says “alt text (alternative text)”. Inside this box, you describe for the bots what the picture is of or representing.

As you may have guessed it’s a good idea to get your keyword, words, or lexically similar keywords into the alt text. However, don’t overdo it. If you over-optimize every area for your keyword in every image, every header tag it will look like it was written for a bot first and foremost.

Don’t do that. Do however put an alt text on every image. Do let most images on a post or page have the exact or a similar description to that of the main keyword.

Just fill out the form below to get our Free SEO Checklist

SSL Validation

SSL validation relates to whether or not a website has secure socket layers. This merely means is your site secured or not.  For the most part, this is free on the better website hosting companies. My favorite hosting providers are SiteGround or BluehostIt is non-negotiable for artist sites and non-artist sites.  Get the SSL certificate.

This is a binary question.  You either have it or you don’t.  If you don’t have it you need it.

You will know you have it if your website starts with https:// at the beginning of your website address, rather than just http://.

SEO keyword research is the key

Keywords & SEO for Artists

Writing for the benefit of both readers and SEO is important.  When you sit down to write a post or blog about a finished piece of art do some keyword research first.  It will help a ton.

When it comes to SEO keyword research is where it’s at. Learn to do it.

Keyword research means understanding what real people are actually searching for in the area of your art.  You may think to yourself it’s obvious my piece is a 24×24 Stripes and Butterflies Acrylic Gesso.  But is that what people are searching for? 

Many of us in a particular field or niche use technical language within our area of expertise. However, people don’t search for “stuff” that way.

Often a keyword you as an expert feels is the right one to use in a technical sense will only yield 10 to 50 searches per month, which is low volume. This is a fail.

On the other hand, a formal SEO keyword search will yield the actual volume or number of searches per month on given words and phrases.

At the end of the day to achieve good SEO on an artist’s website it is a good idea to provide category headings that hit large volume keywords such as “Nature Paintings” or “Lifescape Photography” and then on individual piece pages use longer tail keywords like “dark purple nature paintings during dawn” or “lifescape photography in the western USA of cacti ”.

What’s a good keyword volume? It depends. 

Generally, you need some keywords with 500 plus visits a month and then many with 10 to 100 visits per month.  Remember you won’t get all of these searches because others will be ranking for each keyword too.

If you need help with Keyword research just let me know.

SEO Title Tags for Artists

SEO Titles

Title tags or SEO Titles are important to your SEO efforts.  Missing, duplicate, or poorly constructed title tags for SEO are damaging to your SEO efforts.

Instead, focus first on actually having an SEO title tag that contains the primary keyword for that article or page.  For example, utilize a category page that contains a keyword that has search intent and volume that is around 250 to 500+ for a small site.   Look for keywords with lower keyword difficulty.

Keyword difficulty is simply put how difficult it is to rank for that keyword.  It is a subjective measure to an extent as different SEO Keyword sites provide differing Keyword Difficulty metrics.  I prefer the KD of or Keyword Difficulty under 20 is a safe starting point for new sites.

At the end of the day write an SEO title for humans that has the keyword you are optimizing that page for.

Meta Descriptions for Artists

Meta descriptions are important for SEO as well. They achieve several purposes.

First, meta descriptions provide an overview or blurb about what your post or page is about to a searcher.  When you search you see the Title of the Page and a short paragraph about the page. 

meta descriptions & seo title tags for artists

Secondly, the meta description can help increase click-through rate and make your page get clicked on more than another search result that may be boring or just wrong for the search intent.

If you don’t create meta descriptions for your site the individual search engine will choose one for you.  This is to be avoided.  Do you want a robot describing your art to a searcher?

Rather, you should craft the meta description to be informational, contain the actual keyword you are ranking for on that post/page.

Like most on page SEO items, none in and of itself will change your traffic dramatically.  However, each item ads a synergy to the total rank algorithm. 

SEO Header Tags (H1-H6)

It amazes me how many websites I run across that don’t have proper header tags setup.  I’ve found many people that build their own website believe header tags are just differing sizes for fonts within a text. No.

header tags and font sizes

While the aforementioned is true the point of a header tag is entirely different that font size.  Header tags allow search engine robots, or “bots”, to understand the structure of your post or article.  They create structure.

Every page must have an H1, every single one. Every page must have only one H1, every single one. Not two, only one.

An H1 header tag is the main or overarching idea of the article.  For example, this post has an H1 of SEO for Artists because that’s what the article is all about. 

Digging a little deeper after the one and only H1 on a page you should try to break down your text into a few H2 or subheadings and if it’s a particularly long and wordy post it will help to use H3 tags as well.  These tags are crouched within each other as below:

SEO Header tag structure diagram

Notice in this example that one of the h2 tags “Best Season to Grow tomatoes” has not subheadings.  This is ok.  What isn’t ok is to have two H1.  Don’t stress about this structure there is no true right or wrong it’s about providing clear headings so the robots can understand what you are saying and “follow” the conversation.

What should you worry about then?

It’s becoming a refrain.  Get your page or post Keyword in *some* of these headers.  Do it naturally.  Don’t force a keyword where it doesn’t belong.  Use semantically similar keywords, which means words with similar meanings. 

Search engines have a robust artificial intelligence.  So, use the words you would when you are talking to someone.  Always remember you are writing for the people and search engines.

Practically speaking, artists should use keywords in there header tags that describe what one might search for when looking for that item.  Don’t forget your specific name for an item may have very low search and therefore require you to utilize a term that is broader which does receive search volume.

Use categories and locations to start with.  So try things like “Chattanooga TN flower paintings” or “paintings of flowers” instead of more detailed descriptions.

The aforementioned will work better and get seen more searchers eyeballs than Polka-dot with Blue and Yellow Spill Spot Dress made with re-engineered rawhide (or some super-specific name.

URL breakdown image Domain, TLD, URL slug

URLs for SEO

When you create a new page or post on your website it’s important to build a URL that includes the keyword you are targeting

For example, you could use the standard WordPress linking mechanism of https://your or

But it’s far better for SEO to use a something like latter allows you to have your keyword in your URL, which studies have shown to help your SEO.

Off Page SEO for Artists

Off Page SEO for Artists

Link-related off-page factors

Number of referring domains

This indicator is rather simple to explain.  It is merely a count of the number of domains (other websites) that link to your domain.  To be clear a domain is the main root path of your website. 

For example,  in this domain the root domain is “”.  So you are counting how many different root domains link to you.

There is no good number here.  It is all relative. However, as you will see below under relevancy it’s important to have domains that are related to your area of interst.

Link Authority picture

Link authority

Dofollow vs. “Nofollow” Links

In the technical SEO space, there is an HTML coding mechanism that essentially states how someone is linking to another site.  This has been complicated in recent years by a few other technical SEO linking tags, but I’m going to make this simple for my artist friends.

In the HTML world, it looks like a snippet of code or tag like rel=”nofollow”.  There is also code nomenclature like UGC and Sponsored links too.  I wouldn’t worry much about these.  You want Dofollow links on your site. Why?

Google doesn’t transfer PageRank across nofollow links (i.e., links with a rel=“nofollow” tag), so it pays to prioritize the building of followed (dofollow) links.  Simply put you want to gain or get dofollow links because this will pass more authority to your site.

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I should note there is still value in nofollow links.  It can help with referral traffic.  Some large website providers and forums will “nofollow” all links, but the value of having a link on these sites overshadows this fact as far as the volume of traffic you get from that referral.

If you are getting links naturally or building natural looking links you will not have any control over the type of relationship your link has so it’s better to relax and not stress over this point.

Anchor Text example

Anchor text

The anchor text is the clickable visible part of a link.  So if there’s a link that says Green Thoughts Consulting then “Green Thoughts Consulting” is the anchor text.  If the link reads SEO for Artists then “SEO for Artists” is the anchor text.  Note that the link is the same in both cases. 

Anchor text is all about the text people see when they click the link.

One very important note.  You need natural anchor text throughout all your links.

Why because an “abnormal” anchor text profile is consistent with poor SEO practices that are called “Black Hat SEO” and can lead to a Google penalty on your site or de-indexation.  De-indexation means Google no longer shows your site at all. It’s a death knell for SEO.

It’s really all about the percentage at which types of anchor text occur. So what percentages do you want as artists?

Generally speaking, the anchor text should be your Brand or website address.

At the end of the day, you don’t have a lot of control over this.  Others are linking to you as they wish and you don’t control those links. 

Paying for links or having agencies build links for your site that are highly phrase, partial or exact is a dangerous business practice that will result in a Google Penalty.  Let it happen naturally.

Here’s the break down recommended by myself and Gotch SEO.

Here’s a great blog post on Anchor Text from Gotch SEO if this is a subject you enjoy check it out.


I mentioned relevancy above and it’s really important to any site.  When people link to you they are effectively voting that your site is the best ideal of what they are looking to link to because if it wasn’t they would link elsewhere.

However, getting votes that are more relevant to your niche or subject is huge. Relevant links will move the SEO needle more for your site.

Here’s an example: if you have a site that focuses on sculptures and you live in Dallas Texas.  Your relevancy would boost the most by getting links from sites that are art-related, sculpture related, fine art related, gallery related, art collector related etcetera.

However, if that same site had links from restaurants, engineering websites, business websites or sports websites the relevancy would be much lower.  You want links from relevant niches.

NAP for SEO name address phone number

Non-link-related off-page factors

NAP citations

NAP stands for Name, Address, Phone.  These are usually directories on the internet or forums that have lists of people in the industry

Citations of this sort are one of the top local SEO ranking factors and are very important if your business is trying to get clients in a specific area or region.

It’s also important that your NAP information is as consistent as possible between citations, as this allows Google to effectively tie those citations together as part of your online profile. Local and area service businesses underestimate this issue with divergent NAP information.  It’s very important.

You should have this on your contact page or in the footer too.  Check out a post on where you can post general submissions of NAP.

Free Search Engine Optimization Checklist below. Just fill out the form.

Brand mentions

There is little mystery here it simply means you get bonus points in the rankings when your art or name (read “brand”) is mentioned.  This mentioning can be an actual link (hyperlink) to your website or an unlinked mention.

For example:

Linked: John Doe Art is having a sale this week. 

Unlinked: John Doe Art is having a sale this week.

So, you want to be on social media and forums so you can get mentioned by other brands.  Being mentioned by others is looked at as a vote by Google.

Some examples of ways to get mentions include: get on podcasts, other video creators YouTube channel, guest post on other blogs, social media likes, shares, created posts from others about you.  The list can go on and on but the idea is to get your brand and name out there.

Google my business image

Google My Business

If you are in business you MUST have a Google My Business page.  You can build one easily.  The optimization of a GMB page is a subject in and of itself that you can read about here, however, it will benefit small local businesses the most.  But just because it benefits local doesn’t mean you should ignore it.

It allows you to have a “service area” this area can effectively be the USA or a State you sell in primarily.  You should go set one up today if you don’t have one but remember the NAP (name, address, phone) needs to match your website and be consistent across all platforms.

You can set one up here

Here’s a great guide on the subject of Google My Business by Search Engine Journal

Google Reviews Image


Another off page ranking factor that will apply to SEO for artists is that of Reviews.  Specifically, we are talking about positive reviews. There are many types of review software helpers out there but I’m not going to dive into that. If your interested check out this review of your options.

The best practice is to get a link to Google My Business Reviews and/or Links to another site that holds reviews and add this to your new customer process.

For example, let say Suzie Q purchases a custom tapestry from you.  When she clicks complete purchase she gets a tracking email and a receipt for her purchase.  A few days after your average delivery time and no more than approximately 14 days after purchase give or take Suzie Q needs to receive an automated request to review the artwork

This could be a direct link to the review page with an email request.  It could also be an online survey that first asks if she is happy with the product on a scale of 1 to 5.  If Suzie Q rates you a 4 or 5 she is sent to the review link if not she is given the opportunity to email you about it.  This way you minimize the impact of negative reviews while automating the process of getting reviews.

In my opinion, businesses should ask for reviews from customers in an automated fashion with logical forwarding based on their response as noted above.  Most if not all of your business online tasks as far as emails or interaction after purchase should be automated so you can focus on what you love creating great art.

Wrapping Up SEO for Artists

There are a few particulars that artists doing SEO need to keep in mind however, for the most part, SEO is SEO.  It can be a dry technical subject for some but it has a huge impact on your business.

Download our checklist for free which will guide you step by step with a practical video walkthrough for that list.  Tackle one or two items a week and ask for help when you need it.  The most important thing is that you are making progress and creating every day.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this post so please post below.

Dumbest excuse SMBs use to avoid blogging

Content Marketing

The Dumbest Excuse SMBs Use to Avoid Blogging

Small and Midsized Businesses, SMB for short, are notorious for having “good reasons” not for blogging and avoiding content marketing. These excuses range from no interest in writing, not enough time in the day, no internal writing talent, lack of technical skill to build or design a blog (CMS issues). 

While there are some legitimate excuses in the above, in the end, the need to blog or create content far outweighs the excuses put forth.  Thus I dub them dumb excuses. 

Don’t be one of those companies.  You must create content to support your business marketing efforts. It is vital to the top end of the marketing funnel, which will then, necessarily, feed the bottom of your funnel and result in leads and paying clients.

Marketing Funnel

Why do you need a funnel? 

Simply put because the excuses will cost you money or at least leave it on the table.  It’s short-sighted at this point and lacks a nuanced understanding of Search Engine Optimization and it’s the deep relationship to content

In this post, I’ll be shedding light on the “mother of non-blogging excuses”… not enough time.

The Mother of Non-Blogging Excuses

There is a lot that can be said regarding the lack of time.  As an SMB owner, I am always short on time and therefore I must outsource particular tasks or multiple myself.  Specifically, this should be done in an area of need that is NOT my expertise. Let others deal with the stuff you don’t love.


You are an accountant and you need good content regularly posted on your blog to move people to signup so that they can get into your nurture sequences so that you can book a Zoom chat or call with them so that you can close that sale. 

By the way, you really need to build a sales funnel that can do the above. If you don’t have one or understand please make this a priority and book a free call with me and let me help you with your marketing funnel.

That being said you must make time for the activity of blogging and creating content. 

In reading back over this during the editorial phase I realized… wow Jeff you sound insistent and belligerent about people blogging. I concluded that it’s only a necessity if you want to increase your leads and grow your business.

So let’s look more closely at the inner workings of the excuse “I don’t have enough time” and in doing so uncover underlying fallacies. 

Old School and New School

The SMB Owners Mind- Conditioning

Most old school SMB owners and managers I’ve run across, which is a large portion of you, have a background in direct marketing. 

Including and often emphasizing knocking on doors, cold calls in bulk, conferences, and events, spending time sitting across from another business owner and “shaking hands”, eating together, etc.  These organizations often spend large amounts of time on these activities due to there underlying belief system about those events.

“Today, that is known as swimming upstream, the stream being the Internet. Studies consistently demonstrate that the majority (70% or more) of the modern sales process takes place behind the scenes, meaning consumers and businesses alike are out there searching, surfing, browsing, and listening long before deciding on the products and services they want. (Think of a retail clothing or automobile customer who steadfastly avoids the sales reps until he or she has decided to try on an item or test-drive the car.)”

Doug Rekenthaler,  A now dead link that is the inspiration of this article.

What this means is clear.  By the time the direct sales process actually happens the potential client is far enough down the proverbial marketing funnel that they have already made their choice as to the problem they are looking to solve and who is going to solve it

So, you must have content online before a prospect gets to this point or you will not even be in the discussion.  Namely, blogging and providing a newsletter or such via email allows your prospects to get to know you over time, which builds trust and develops a sense of relationship

"I don't have time"

Who has the Time to do this work?

Everyone has the time. It’s about priorities. Let’s be honest if you are outsourcing this task it’s about money not time.

Plus if you aren’t creating content for the top of your marketing funnel you will need to figure out a way to reach out to prospects cold and take your chances with that method, by the way, your odds will be poor in that regard. 

The question is who has time to do all this content work, build nurture sequences before you get on a sales call?

a better way is always available
Things change, technology moves, so should your marketing.

A Better Way to Get Leads and Clients

I call this the speak when spoken to method. P.s. it’s not really “my method”.

My experience is that SMB owners, executives, and entrepreneurs like yourself tend to be evangelists and outspoken about their brand.  Owners and the like love sales pitches, cold calling, and giving sales presentations. 

The extrovert in them is excited by the whole experience.  The company’s content production aside from sales presentations, pitches, et al is limited to the proposals and closing contracts at the bottom of the funnel. 

Nowadays prospects educate themselves online by reading articles and blog posts before these sales pitches and calls, even get close. 

They want to read about your company and they want to see your expertise demonstrated. Further, they will compare your content to your competitors.  Once potential clients go through this “getting to know you” or “reading you” then and only then will they allow you the privilege of being heard.

In other words, the old way of doing marketing and sales has been turned around and SMBs that are looking for leads and sales will only find them if they have content on the web via blog posts or articles that feed the top of the marketing funnel.  This in turn will feed your sales cycle and create an environment of hot leads rather than cold

If I’m being honest and blunt ignoring this advice will doom you and at the very least triple or more your cost to acquire each lead.

slow and stead marketing path wins the race

The Slow and Steady Marketing Path

I never like to speak in generalities, but the average SMB manager, owner, startup, entrepreneur I run into are addicted to instant gratification. They love the excitement of the lunch meet and greet with a handshake and commitment at the end

The thrill of closing the deal themselves, having the “right” answers for each objection.  Being able to close the deal is what makes most tick.

The problem with creating content is that it takes time to see results. You will not get instant gratification.  Rather, it will take time to build the right audience, and when I say time I mean months.  Think months of blogging. 

This lack of instant gratification makes the aforementioned SMB owner feel it is a waste of time or not worth the energy.

As an analogy I’ve read in the past blogging is like farming while direct marketing is like hunting.  These are two different modes of being. Blogging is like sowing seed that will be reaped in the future, read as months, on the other hand, the old way, direct marketing, is going in for the kill repeated daily.

The issue isn’t necessarily the method, content marketing (blogging), or direct marketing. The analogy of a sower and hunter may seem harsh, but the issue underlying all of this is that the same measuring stick is being used for both methods.

In doing so, using the same measuring stick, you are not comparing apples to apples.  It’s more like apples to steak.

How do we measure the effectiveness of these two sales methods? That isn’t really the point of this discussion but rather to discuss the relationship of the method to time and getting leads.

Time is on your side with Content Marketing

Content Creation Puts Time on Your Side

You could discuss the pros and cons of the way things are now vs how they once were.  However, digital marketing, or current marketing, isn’t like the old way of marketing.  Most of the underlying principles are the same no doubt but the game has changed overall. 

This is actually a good thing.  As an SMB creating content, blogging, or writing articles, allows you to put yourself out there in front of potential clients

If you just have a homepage, about page, services page, the standard business brochure website, then you will not get “seen” in the search rankings. Further, you will be competing against the big boys that rank for these terms too. 

Blogging, articles, and content creation will give your organization the opportunity to expose potential clients to more of you and to be “seen” in their searches.

Regular content creation will create longtail keywords that you rank for around a topic and build relevancy and authority in your space (if you don’t know about longtail keywords ask me about it). Meaning you will get seen more often and in more searches.

Content creation will give you the control you would otherwise not have.  By nurturing an audience that reads your stuff you will get to understand your clients. Further, your strengths and weaknesses as seen by them will become clear. Your competitor’s strengths and weaknesses will become clear through gaps in there content creation.

In the end, you will create a relationship with readers. Which will in turn provide the information future clients need to make you the only real solution for their problem.

Also, the sales cycle is shorter with content marketing because these potential clients have already journeyed down the funnel. They are now sure you are the right choice for them when they pick up the phone or directly book a Zoom.  By the time the buyer gets there they are pre-qualified.

This process is now easier.  You can call a pre-qualified lead and close faster.

In order to get there, you must create content that answers specific questions that your potential clients have to solve their problems. 

Doing so in a steady and nuanced way, listening to what these prospects and clients say about the problem, informing them of solutions, and essentially guiding them to the answer … you. 

Top 112 Blog Submission Sites

Top 112 Blog Submission Sites

Top 112 Blog Submission Sites

By submitting your blog to free blog submission sites you can increase your exposure to visitors that frequent those sites. This is a “no brainier” way to get more traffic to your site by taking advantage of these blog submission sites.

I recommend that bloggers and business owners with a blog submit regularly to these blogs until the entire list of blog submission sites has been worked through.

You can also check out our list of the top 150 citations for SEO, which is another great way to increase your visibility.

One can tackle this list in chunks by simply scheduling an hour or 30 minutes per day to make submissions to blogs.

The easiest way to chunk this list is to create a template for submissions that will be used to readily grab information from by users.

You can take the time to create a blog submission template checklist or simply download ours for ease of.

Blog Submission Site Checklist

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    Creating your own Submission Checklist

    Start by identifying an email address to use for submission.

    It’s a best practice, in my opinion, to create one just for this purpose. Keep in mind some sites will not allow a simple Gmail or yahoo email address.

    I usually just create an email address at my domain like

    Another best practice is to keep a copy and paste information log for the submission so you don’t have to create it each time.

    I find following and tracking my submissions to be helpful.

    It’s encouraging and motivating as you can see you are knocking out the list over time.

    I find it best to put this in excel and save it for reference when I’m ready to work on the blog submission sites list every few days.

    I’m always for saving money during particular phases of growth, therefore, I blog regularly about affordability in web design.

    You can learn more about those options by reading our article on the 3 Best Affordable Web Design Options.

    You can make one of these checklists yourself or simply download it below.

    Get our Blog Submission Site Checklist for Free

    Checklist with easy to use step by step instructions to get started right away. Get started in the next 5 minutes!

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      SitePage RankDomain Authority

      I encourage you to work on submitting your blog to these in order to build your community and list. If you would like help with the submission process simply reach out to us.

      150 Local Citations for SEO

      Top 150 Local citation directories

      150 Local Citations for SEO

      Note: Updated on 12/29/2019

      We’ve put together a ready to use list of 150 local citations for SEO complete with sources and directories that we use for our clients. Work your way through the list, using the same information about your business at each listing location.

      For those looking for blog submission sites you can follow this link to Top 112 Blog Submission Sites post.

      Allow 1-2 hours per 5 listing at the beginning and then things will pickup. If this time commitment is unreasonable or not cost effective for you we can do this work for you

      Directory Submission Checklist

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        If you would like to learn more about the importance of Local citations for Local SEO read here.

        In addition to this list, it is also a great idea to get your name and information listed in local directories, industry specific directories, with local newspapers, with local chambers, and with local or regional blogs and websites.

        Local Citation Pro Tips:

        Some of these listing sites will give you ton of “almost spam” in your inbox after you get the listing confirmed. My professional suggestion is to create another email address for these listings. Something like a simple yahoo or gmail address will not work.

        Also you don’t have to and shouldn’t post in every one of these. If you are not a hotel business then don’t post on

        Top 150 Local Citation Directories

        2Bing Places for Business
        4Yahoo Directory
        5Yahoo Local
        6AOL Yellow Pages
        22Price Line
        25Yello Wikis Wikia
        28Virtual Tourist
        31Insider Pages
        34Thumb Tack
        45Best of the Web Local
        47True Local
        49Zoom Info
        52Wedding Channel
        54Judy’s Book
        55Project Wedding
        56Zaba Search
        64Local Yodle
        66Dealer Rater
        68For Rent
        71Mac Raes Blue Book
        74Party Pop
        83Gathering Guide
        86City Squares
        87Check Book
        88Express Update Usa
        93Biz Hwy
        95All Menus
        99EZ Local
        101Biz Wiki
        103Page Insider
        105Directory M
        108City Grid
        110eLocal Listing
        111Local Search
        112My Huckle Berry
        113Universal Business Listing
        116We Go Places
        117City Star
        119Find It Now
        123Yello Yello
        124Rate My Area
        128Hello Metro
        130Yellow Assistance
        131Zip Leaf
        132Bola List
        134Citi Servi
        137Rank Sphere
        138Best Service Place
        139Local Search Light
        141My Sheriff
        144Shop Locally
        146Home Owners Circle
        147I Got Biz

        150 local SEO citation sites can be overwhelming at first, however we’ve made it easy for you by sorting the list based on Authority

        If you would like help with creating a checklist to get all of these submitted you can signup below.

        Get our Directory Checklist for Free

        Checklist with easy to use step by step instructions to get started right away. Get started in the next 5 minutes!

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          If you’re interested in professional help with your search results for Local Listings and personalized search engine optimization check out our Local SEO Service or Talk to Us about your challenges and business goals.

          High Converting Landing Page Design

          high Converting Landing pages

          High Converting Landing Page Design

          Landing Page Design Introduction

          A best practices landing page design can greatly increase conversions for your business’s lead generation campaigns. High converting landing pages are an extension of your online marketing campaigns and to maximize conversions, landing pages should be geared to the reason the person has clicked-through. Here are the four key elements of a successful landing page.

          Above the Fold

          Above the fold refers to the part of the page that a visitor will see when the “land” on the page from another source.  When traffic first land without scrolling that’s the above the fold area under discussion. This area will change depending on the device the individual is using, such as cellphone, iPad, desktop etc.

          The average person spends only about 15 seconds on a landing page before leaving it.  This means you have just a few seconds to get your point across. Due to this fact clean and simple information is imperative above the fold.  Keep this in mind as you design or communicate with your designer.


          Typically, I recommend a clear Call to Action with a big ass button that says what you want the user to do along with a clear Value Proposition and quick subheading to give some detail. Here’s a great example from HubSpot.

          landing page design

          The High Converting Call to Action (CTA)

          Before you begin to draft the design of your landing page, determine what you want visitors to your site to do. Depending on your online marketing goals, you need to create expectations and a method for measuring results. Are you trying to increase newsletter subscribers? Do you want them to test-run your service with a free trial?

          Speaking of methods for measuring results on your website this is imperative for you to get setup with NOW.  I’ve worked with far too many website redesigns that have no Analytics and no Tracking.  At a bare minimum you need Google Analytics, Facebook Pixel, LinkedIn Insight Tag, and Google Search ConsoleIf you need or want help setting these up reach out to us.

          Your actual call to action should be directly tied to your goals.

          It may seem obvious, but some businesses forget to ask for what it is they want. If you want someone to download a program you offer, having a download button is necessary to a successful landing page. Keep it simple but let people know exactly what they are downloading, subscribing to, etc.

          This discussion of goals being tied to design is very important.  It means that your business needs to be clear about where it’s going, how it wants to go there, who it is targeting and how to best do that BEFORE designing.  A discovery session or a call with a consultant can help clarify this so you aren’t constantly requesting website and design changes unnecessarily. A qualified landing page design agency can take your site to the next level and protect your asset.

          Call to Action for landing page design agency

          A call to action by itself isn’t enough if people don’t know what they are getting from entering their information. You should usually only ask for the vitals; otherwise, too many fields may scare off potential conversions. Vitals might include only an email address or name at the top of your funnel.  However, to qualify leads and when quoting it is often better to add requests such as budget, phone # etc.  This can impact your conversion rate tremendously and save your sales force time and money.

          Landing Page Design and Your Content

          “Clear, concise and persuasive” should be your mantra for landing pages. Provide enough information so that people who have never heard of your company, or are unsure of what you offer, can get a handle on just how much your product will benefit them.  This is where the Value Proposition I mentioned in the opening fits in and really helps your landing page shine.

          How long should the Value Proposition be? It depends. While a single sentence or two may work for some; it doesn’t work for all. You want to provide enough interesting information to warm up visitors and encourage them to continue in the direction you want, following the CTA. Always have at least one picture for eye-catching appeal. If possible, have a below the fold video.  I don’t recommend video or sliders on landing pages as they slow load times and just mess up the user experience.  However, a well done and professional video can work, but this isn’t something a DIY web design can pull off in my opinion.  You really need a custom designer working on this.


          However, if you just don’t see yourself as a web designer that’s ok too.  We can provide you with help and many of the website builders are great at helping a newbie design site. One popular builder is Beaver Builder and iThemes has designed a course just for those looking to build there own website with the builder.

          landing page design agency Steve Jobs

          Design that Works: Landing Page 101

          Design is very important when it comes to landing pages. Too much noise in the way of images, wording and such in the design can feel overwhelming and unclear. However, a page without enough elements can bore visitors. Keep your landing pages consistent with the design of the email or PPC marketing campaigns that led the visitor there; this includes fonts and colors. Studies have shown that single, centered-column landing page is the most effective, but you can test out other layouts to match your marketing campaigns.

          Keep in mind where the page fold occurs. Have your call to action clearly stated and above the line. Of course, you don’t want to lose people who scroll down so scattering your calls to action is beneficial as well.

          Provide the essential information above the fold, and if you need a longer page, include additional information below the fold. Making sure your call to action is a flattering, color contrast to the rest of the page is a great way to draw attention to that section of the page.


          Simple, well-designed landing pages can increase your conversions from marketing campaigns but remember that testing is the key.  I believe that businesses should be A/B Testing landing pages and the source of these landing pages regularly. Be consistent with the design that has led people to the page and make the call to action clear.

          High converting landing pages are about extending marketing campaigns, and in order to have a successful conversion rate, these pages should provide just enough interesting and informational content to show the visitor just how this product/service can benefit them. Pay attention to your CTA, content, and design to improve your landing pages and boost conversions.

          Green Thoughts Consulting Gives Back

          Green Thoughts Consulting Volunteer Work

          Green Thoughts Consulting Gives Back

          A few of our staff at Green Thoughts Consulting had the opportunity to give back to a pet and veterinarian rescue in Puerto Vallarta Mexico. We were out of the country on both business and pleasure and took an afternoon to bring over 3 full bags of dog and cat supplies along with vet supplies to a local charity in the area.

          We visited Las Animas Dog Rescue in Puerto Vallarta, which houses around 45 dogs presently. There is a huge problem in most countries including the United States when it comes to stray animals that are abandoned by there owners. The Las Animas Dog Rescue was happy to have us visit for the afternoon and drop off supplies.

          We also offered our services for an updated or redesigned website. More to come on that soon enough.

          For now enjoy these pictures of Green Thoughts Consulting giving back.

          It was a heart warming and heart wrenching expericne for many of us. The younger kids in our group were hit especially hard by the reality of life in a third world country. While the care at Las Animas Dog Rescue was spot on the overall cleanliness and tidiness of the landscape, yards, ans surrounding areas were an eye opener for the kids. We all noticed strays at a greater rate once leaving the facility and moving about the city.

          It’s good to give back and good to be grateful for what we have.