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Forum topic by pashley posted 840 days ago 1168 views 1 time favorited 32 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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pashley

957 posts in 2220 days


840 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: website

Soon, my hosted website will be up for renewal, north of $120. I haven’t had sales on it all year, probably due to search engine optimization failure. Maybe it’s product, pricing, or whatever as well. Be that as it may, I’d like to obviously not pay for a site, if I don’t have to.

My thought is to use Wordpress as my business website. I say “business”, but I mean sideline, not mainline. My thought is, that Google more easily scans Wordpress, and hopefully, would rank my site higher. I think I would invest in a nice Wordpress template as well. I have had a blog on my site for some time, and it ranks very high on what is looked at on my website, which I would throw a lot more time at in the coming year.

I’m just wondering if any of you guys had a similar situation, and perhaps did what I’m thinking of doing, and how it worked out. Perhaps you took a different route that worked out well that you’d like to share.

Appreciate any helpful thoughts :)

-- Have a blessed day!


32 replies so far

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Loren

6769 posts in 2150 days


#1 posted 840 days ago

You can host for about $5 a month with hostgator,
but the reason you’re not selling stuff doesn’t have as much to
do with SEO as you are supposing.

More SEO is no panacea for a website that isn’t selling anything,
nor is moving to Wordpress, which does have some good SEO
plugins available. Wordpress is an excellent platform to build
a site on.

If you want to sell stuff, you need to learn about conversion optimization -
and in your case trying to become the digital sort of marketer
may not be your calling. There certainly is a substantial learning
curve to it that represents considerably more of an investment
in time than the $120 per years you’ve invested, valuing your time
at less than $1 per hour. I’m saying internet marketing is nuanced
and there’s a lot to it.

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pashley

957 posts in 2220 days


#2 posted 840 days ago

Loren,

I have to believe my items are at least decent, as I did sell a bunch of stuff 2 years ago after the local newspaper here in Rochester did a blurb on me, being a local artist….so I’m not so sure it’s the product, though I am beginning to believe higher-end clocks aren’t brisk sellers, and I should move on to something more diversified.

I’m certainly not a website newbie, as I did do website design some time ago – albeit design, not marketing or SEO.

I guess I’m just looking for a better solution, both in cost and in SEO, and my guess was Wordpress.

-- Have a blessed day!

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Loren

6769 posts in 2150 days


#3 posted 840 days ago

Then market locally. That tells you something. Promote in print
and in person, driving traffic to your site. Cold search engine traffic
has been shown not to convert to sales, right? Don’t tilt
at windmills – SEO isn’t a good investment in driving targeted
traffic for you – articles and craft shows are. Don’t give up on
the site, but put your energy into targeting the right audience,
eg. the “offline” audience.

You can make a book about how your clocks are made and get
an ISBN, publish on Amazon in Kinlde and/or print format. That
might do something for you.

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pashley

957 posts in 2220 days


#4 posted 839 days ago

Loren,

I’ve looked into local and regional print ads, but it’s expensive, at $500 per ad, in print, for targeted markets, and even newspapers. As I’m sure you know, multiple, successive ads are usually required to saturate the user, to get them to remember you.

The problem with craft shows, unless they are regional high-end shows, is that that market is usually women that want to spend somewhere in the neighborhood of $25 for either jewelry, home or garden decor. Bigger ticket items like mine just won’t move, but cutting boards do.

I’ve even investigated selling on commission with local art shops, but that want upwards of 50%, which is really too much, though I understand their position.

Why I’m targeting internet sales is simply because of the global reach, those of times more exposure than an ad will generate, in my opinion – IF you can get a decent ranking on Google, the king-maker of websites. I’ve heard tales of businesses being wiped-out because Google changed their secret sauce, and bumped them from #1 to say, #7.

Just some thoughts; I appreciate yours :)

-- Have a blessed day!

View Loren's profile (online now)

Loren

6769 posts in 2150 days


#5 posted 839 days ago

Good luck with that SEO strategy. You’d be better off selling
clickbank ebooks for the labor you’ll invest… but handcrafted
clocks are a longshot.

I may be coming off like a jerk… but if you want to capture a
top 10 ranking for “handmade clocks” on Google you’ll probably
make more money selling books on the topic than your own
clocks….. the problem being that wooden clocks are a narrow
niche market.

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pashley

957 posts in 2220 days


#6 posted 839 days ago

“the problem being that wooden clocks are a narrow
niche market.”

It is, so shouldn’t it be easier to rise to the top, if there is less competition?

Books are not my passion; my creations are. This is not a money passion here. I was simply looking for advice on better, economical website solutions, as per my OP.

-- Have a blessed day!

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pashley

957 posts in 2220 days


#7 posted 839 days ago

Interesting….I just checked, for the first time in over 6 months, and for the search term “Mission clocks” on Google, I come up as the 5th result.

Hmmm.

-- Have a blessed day!

View Wood_smith's profile

Wood_smith

251 posts in 1528 days


#8 posted 839 days ago

Pashley, I feel your frustration, but I don’t have the answer for you. My products (weatherproof pouches for building supplies, covers for any type of equipment kept outdoors) are unique, and I thought when I introduced them almost 3 years ago, that the uniqueness alone would sell them for me.
It’s been a long struggle, a lot of late nights and some large expenditures in magazine and internet advertising.
My biggest lesson to date? Magazine ad sellers are good at their jobs and basically full of sh**! That was the worst investment I ever made. Maybe my next door neighbor was right- he bought the woodworking magazine, but never looked at the ads in the back (I couldn’t afford the glitzy quarter or half page ads).
My website visits never went up even 1% the week the new issue came out. When those salespeople call now, I politely say ‘no way, no thanks’. Keep trying, work on the local marketing as well, like Loren says. They say good things come to those who wait.
Good luck.

-- Lloyd Kerry; creator of the Kerry-All Pouch, http://www.kerrywoodworking.com

View Loren's profile (online now)

Loren

6769 posts in 2150 days


#9 posted 839 days ago

Search term has probably has no money in it. If committed to
SEO marketing, choose another phrase to optimize for or
optimize your site to convert to clock sales with current term
(long shot).

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KylesWoodworking

280 posts in 1195 days


#10 posted 839 days ago

I use webs.com to host my website. You can have a website completely free like I do, but it will put ”.webs.com” at the end of your domain name. Like mine: www.KylesWoodworking.webs.com You can pay extra to take it off but it doesn’t bother me much. It’s real easy to make a website and I’ve used it for 2 years and never payed a dime.
Kyle

-- http://www.kyleswoodworking.com http://www.facebook.com/kyleswoodworking

View MrsN's profile

MrsN

930 posts in 2028 days


#11 posted 839 days ago

I am not the kind of person who would drop $500 on a clock, but I do know a few people who would. The problem for you is that the people I know who would spend that on a clock would never do an internet search for handmade clock, or buy a $500 clock online. They would want to see and feel the quality, to know that it really is handmade by the guy in charge, to be able to shake the hand of the artist/craftsman. There is a lot of false information on the internet and it wouldn’t be that hard for someone to buy cheap factory made things, make a cute website and pretend they made the stuff themselves.
I think your best bet would be to exploit your local resources as much as you can and use your website as a medium to your clients out of town friends and the occasional web sale. I don’t know if you need the expensive print adds, and I understand that craft sales don’t have your target market. Restaurants and coffee shops around here have display pieces that are for sale and work as decoration in the place, could you do that in your area? Give a business owner a cut of the sale, and stick some business cards near the clock. Have you talked to every art gallery, and “uppity” boutique. (I am really jealous of you being able to be in an “uppity” boutique so please don’t take offense. We have a couple here that have that kind of stuff. my personal love/hate is the “metal art sculpture” that is car brake drums and rotors welded poorly together and selling for $4,000. I have all the parts in my garage and could do a better welding job, but no one will pay me that price…sorry I got side tracked) find out if they all want 50%, ask what they think the clock could be sold for. Look into where other artists spend their time, I have a feeling that the local strategy might be specific and helpful. Maybe do some research on the other people who were featured artists, what do they do for marketing? Talk to interior designers, tell them what you make, or could make. There must be someone in the state of New York who is redoing their house in a mission style.

Also, the teacher in me has to say double check the grammar on your web page. Also, on my screen there is something funky happening with the tabs at the top of your site, the first few are hidden by your logo even at the smallest font size, the larger sizes some of the options disappear completely.

-- ----- www.KNWoodworking.com ----- --

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Wood_smith

251 posts in 1528 days


#12 posted 839 days ago

MrsN, you have great ideas, to add to the restaurant/coffee shop idea, I’ll add – the lobbies of quality bed and breakfasts, independent hotels, etc. (I doubt if the chains would let you display a clock unless you gave it to them).

-- Lloyd Kerry; creator of the Kerry-All Pouch, http://www.kerrywoodworking.com

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casual1carpenter

353 posts in 978 days


#13 posted 839 days ago

Pashley, I remember a post just a little while back where a guy was talking about a custom bookcase in Brooklyn, or somewhere NY, NY. According to the consensus he got a real good price compared to other areas of the country. Why not try to place your branded, like with an iron, clocks in some “uppity” boutique, at a price you will like and they make what they can. Your product could then sell itself and you. Kind of what MrsN said, “uppity” boutique and all.

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Puzzleman

307 posts in 1447 days


#14 posted 837 days ago

Pashley, I do about 15 – 20 Art and Craft shows per year. My average ticket is about $60. Some of my friends have average tickets of several hundred dollars each.

I agree with Loren above of attending the shows and even if you don’t make sales, interacting with the customers is important. You can learn a lot by just talking with them. If the people recoil when they hear the price, try another show. There are good shows out there but you have to find them. The best way to find them is to ask your current customers how they found you, where they live and do they know of any art shows that you would fit in with.

Also at your shows, you will also need to make sure that your display looks like a $500 per item booth. You need to have handouts with your name, website and phone prominently displayed. This way if people are interested they have a way of getting back in touch when they are ready to purchase.

-- Jim Beachler, Chief Puzzler, http://www.hollowwoodworks.com

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doninvegas

328 posts in 1410 days


#15 posted 836 days ago

Check out iPage. It’s what I use. It’s cheap and realiable. See ngfmc.com

http://www.ipage.com

-- "Courage is being scared to death -- but saddling up anyway."

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