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Zeald CMS : Security

Written by Sarah Gleeson on April 10th, 2014.      0 comments

In the last few days articles highlighting cyber security breaches have been hitting the media. While these security threats are good to know about, it is also important to remember that the media can blow these threats out of proportion.

At Zeald, we have a team who constantly updates and improves our CMS. The sole aim of this is to ensure we provide our customers with the safest, strongest software available. This means that they are continuously looking at the security of our CMS, and applying patches.

In the latest article from the Sydney Morning Herald, they discuss the new website threat ‘Heartbleed’.

“…Google security engineer and some other researchers published information indicating they had discovered a serious flaw, dubbed "Heartbleed", in numerous but not all versions of the OpenSSL cryptographic software library, which is used to secure millions of websites.”

"This ... means that the little lock icon (HTTPS) we all trusted to keep our passwords, personal emails, and credit cards safe, was actually making all that private information accessible to anyone who knew about the exploit."

At Zeald, our R&D team had already applied a security patch to prevent our clients websites being affected. We have also ensured the front end servers which run this software don't have access to any private data as part of our server structure. 

Closer to home, Stuff posted an article this morning about ransomware.

“...mid-last year, crypto-locker ransomware emerged which encrypts the files on victims' computers and gives them a deadline to pay up before the key to decrypt the files is destroyed.”

“Netsafe advises people to regularly back up their files and store them safely offline, which would reduce the likely impact of crypto-locker attacks.”

Anyone who wants to gain access to someones computer needs to be let in by the owner, usually via malware, which can come through via attachments & downloads. These most frequently come in through emails, or hacked open source websites which masquerade the infected files as legitimate downloads, using the hacked company's credibility to build trust with the user.

At Zeald, we have a filter which filters out most malware based emails for customers that use our email system. We also scan our web servers for any malware uploaded by clients to their websites which can happen if the clients computer is infected with viruses and malware.

For anyone interested in reading more on how to protect yourself on the internet, please read our article, ‘Online threats- is your website at risk’

In the meantime, here are a few quick tips on general internet security:

  • Have a complicated password that is not guessed easily. It's best to have a mixture of letters, capitals, and numbers. Stay away from 'qwerty' or your date of birth.
  • Change your passwords every now and again.
  • Have different passwords- most people have one password for most of their accounts, this means that if someone gets one, they get them all!
  • Do not open any email that looks like spam. If you receive an email from someone you never talk to with an odd subject line, avoid opening it as their email account may have been hacked.
  • If you do open an email that seems like spam, do not download any attachments.
  • Avoid clicking on any dodgy looking pop-up windows. 
  • Do not buy from sites that you don’t trust. A good idea is to check the credentials of the website. Does it have a PayPal logo? Have you read their security and pay information?
 

Why does my “Search Phrase” report have odd words or letters in it?

Written by Ann Simpson on April 4th, 2014.      0 comments

Late last year, Google stopped providing outsiders with the information that tells website owners what search phrases were used to find your website

They made this change for security reasons (Google Official Blog, 21/05/10). Mainly to protect website users’ search behaviour from being watched by third parties.

Prior to this change, when a user performed a Google search using a phrase such as “Auckland Plumber” and the user clicked on your search result, Google, would pass these search phrases to your website. Through your reports you could learn what search phrases people used to find your website.

As of September 2013 this information was encrypted and no longer accessible to website owners.

The below example shows a Search Phrase as an ‘h’.

exampleletters-Google
 

This information provides valuable marketing insight. It is a shame to lose it, but not all hope is lost... We can source most of this information using Google Webmaster Tools and Google Adwords.

Using Webmaster Tools search queries report

The Search Queries report  shows what keyword searches your site is ranking for and what keywords have generated traffic to your website. See below.

SearchQueries Google

Let’s have a look at the top phrase used by people to find the above listed site which is ‘Plumbers Christchurch’. It has 77 Impressions which means 77 users have used this search phrase to search in Google and have seen your website link in the search results.

SearchQueries  Ann blog(copy)

Clicks means 63 people that have clicked the listing in the search results. Click Through Rate (CTR) means 82% of the 77 impressions clicked on your link to your site. This information is extremely valuable and helps you to determine if your keywords will drive targeted traffic to your website to buy or enquire about your products and/or services.

Learn more about Google Webmaster tools.

Using Google Adwords keyword planner

The Keyword Planner is a free tool that enables you to identify and analyse potential keywords that can be used to direct traffic to your website through Google Adword Campaigns. With this tool you can see exact traffic numbers for Advertisements that are associated with specific keywords.

keywordplannerex1Google
Please note to access the keywords in the Keyword Planner, you do not need to fund your account, you only need to sign up for Google Adwords.

In this example you can see information based on the keywords for ‘plumbing Christchurch’. If you were to run a campaign that targeted the search terms ‘plumbing Christchurch’. You can see that approximately 0 - 1.54 clicks per day can be predicted for those find the site with the keywords plumbing Christchurch. It also predicts that 15.8 to 80.1 users might see the site’s Adword campaign on a daily basis depending on the budget. This tool is useful to experiment with your keywords, to see the approximate Cost Per Click (CPC) on your keywords, and to see local search trends to name a few. Click here for help with the Keyword Tool.

Webmaster Tools and the Keyword Planner provide excellent assistance with identifying and utilizing highly targeted, planned keywords to drive traffic to your site and to find out how users are accessing it. Please contact Zeald Support for more information.

Want help


 
Topics: Google
 

Keeping your website up to date

Written by Sarah Gleeson on April 3rd, 2014.      0 comments

Zeald is a full service website company. This means that we can help you with a variety of services in addition to your base website. Some of these include:

  • Adwords/ Pay Per Click management
  • Copywriting 
  • Search Engine Optimisation
  • Email marketing
  • Blogs
  • Website optimisation
  • Usability testing

If you are struggling to get the results you are after or feel like it's time to refresh the look of your website, then someone at Zeald would love to help. Click here, fill out the form and someone will be in touch. We can discuss what improvements you would like to see, and run you through different ways to make that happen. 

One of the great benefits of having a Zeald website is that the platform is solid, secure and up-to-date even if the design looks a little dated. The good news is that you don't need to start from scratch. With Zeald you can redesign your website for a fraction of the cost of a new website and with a fraction of the effort.

Take a look at other Zeald companies that have redesigned their websites and hear from Annah Stretton, why she wanted a redesign.  




Click here to see Annah Stretton's design, as well as other Zeald clients. 

echo-chic- redesign

Click here to see more redesigns. 



Want help
Topics: Redesign
 

Unleashed : What can it do for your business?

Written by Sarah Gleeson on April 3rd, 2014.      0 comments

Integrating with Unleashed can be a  huge benefit to ecommerce businesses that need to keep track of stock. In  this article we will walk you through what Unleashed is, and what are  the advantages to integrating with your Zeald website.   

  unleashed blogg

What is Unleashed?

Unleashed is an online inventory management system which allows you to manage your suppliers, purchasers, shipments, consignment stock locations, warehouses, productions (BOM), and sales through multiple channels. Your stock on your Zeald website will be kept up to date in real time so both you and your customers know exactly what is available.

What are the benefits of Unleashed?

  • Real time stock levels shown on your Zeald website
  • Update your stock information in one place and have those changes reflected across all of your stock locations. This means no re-keying or double handling
  • Set up minimum and maximum stock levels for each product. This will give you alerts for over and under stocks for urgent action.
  • Invoice, quote or park your orders offers great flexibility in managing your sales processes. Simply create an invoice or quote and email it instantly from Unleashed in one easy step.
  • Custom Document Designer to personalise the look and feel of purchase orders you send to your suppliers
  • Late purchase alerts, let you know when to chase up suppliers on any late deliveries.
  • Multi-currency and conversion options
  • Stock and value adjustments

Who is Unleashed suitable for?

Zeald ecommerce customers who want to more effectively manage their stock levels via their website.

Want to know more?

Click the image below to email us about integrating with Unleashed.


Want help

 

App of the month: Google Keep

Written by Emily Wilson on March 13th, 2014.      0 comments

keep-appAt Zeald we are avid users of Google Drive. It is a great tool for business collaboration. Google Keep is an app that lets you quickly take and save notes, photos, voice memos, and checklists to Google Drive, and then access them again on your other devices via the web.

If you are out and about when inspiration strikes or you see something that sparks an idea – you can quickly take a snap, jot down a note, or compile a to-do list all in one place. Google Keep gives you the opportunity to save what’s on your mind.

The layout of Google Keep is colourful and grid-like, reminiscent of a stack of post-it notes, colour co-ordinated so you can quickly and visually arrange your notes by subject, project, or client. The ability to arrange such notes all in one place can boost productivity alone, even without added features like voice memos.

Notable features of Google Keep:

  • The home screen allows you to see your notes at a glance.
  • Easy to add notes with a simple tap – great for quickly taking down a phone number at a networking event!
  • Voice notes are a breeze – the app also converts your speech to text – great for when you are commuting or interviewing.
  • It syncs with Google Drive – your data is easily accessible, and it yours to keep.
  • Similar to Gmail, Keep has a search function and an archive – making organisation that much easier
  • You can add hashtags to categorise your notes.

A negative is that you can’t share the notes directly from the app; you have to send a copy of the note via an email. (A great app for note sharing in real-time is simplenote, you can add items to a shopping list from home while your partner is out purchasing the items.)

Overall, if you're looking for a syncing note-taking app, you are on Android, and use Google Drive and Chrome; Keep could be the productivity and organisational tool for you.

Available on Android

Topics: app
 

meet the experts: part two with Loretta Jean, Website Designer

Written by on March 3rd, 2014.      0 comments

In 'meet the experts' part one, Loretta walked us through her predictions for web design in 2014. This time, Loretta shares her views on typography, scrolling websites, user experience, and how to know when your website needs a redesign.

Typography 

Typography put simply is the arrangement of type on a website. From far away it looks like blocks of content, but up close you can see the intricate detail and thought behind the type. There are some great examples out there of websites that use typography in place of images. Generally, we choose typography when imagery in the field is overused. Loretta believes that the use of quality type can add a “clean and slick effect to the overall look”. When asked why typography has seen a boost in popularity, Loretta says, “I think there is a general trend toward type in a lot of things, I instantly think of those ‘Keep Calm and Carry On’ posters everywhere”.

Looking to the year ahead, Loretta hopes that more businesses start to see the appeal of typography, "it is a great way to get across your message quickly, without cluttering up too much space."
 

Natural-Flow typography

Scrolling websites

Scrolling websites, also known as long form design are a great way to establish a hierarchy through your landing page. By doing this, you are creating a clear pathway, guiding your customers past specific content so they will click through to the next page. This is also a great way to answer any unasked questions as they scroll.
  
An added benefit of using a long form design is that your content is better able to breathe, and stand out. This is a great opportunity to show off images, and play around with different type and blocks of content.  
 
Loretta says that while she hopes more people will consider using a long form design in 2014, she hopes they also begin to merge with the Windows grid look. Loretta’s final thought on scrolling websites; “Overall, it’s a relatively versatile structure that is clean and modern”. 

Italy Mask Redesign

User Experience

User experience is one of the most important factors a web designer and client have to discuss when designing a new website. “It's really easy to get caught up in a pretty design, but like any creative work, there will be someone interacting with it on the other end- if you don't factor your target customer in, then I think the design loses its purpose. People will most likely just shut down if things are a bit too out-there.” 

Redesigns 

When it comes to your website, what looked great 5 years ago may look dated today. Because most people view their website on a day to day basis, it can be hard to review it with fresh eyes. Loretta suggests viewing other websites in your industry, taking special note of widths and lengths of the sites, and the amount of copy vs. images. Does your website stand out in comparison? Does it make enough of an impact to make a customer want to come back? Is it memorable? 
 
The impact of having an out of date website can be huge. Many customers may give up if it takes too long to load, or if it is hard to navigate. Loretta states, if the content has not been changed up in awhile, or the testimonials have not been refreshed, it can make the customer “question the credibility of your business”. 
 
What a redesign can do for a website is to give it a new fresh feel. You wouldn’t wear the same clothes for 10 years, so why should your website have to? Advances in technology and design continuously push the envelope in website design, “What can be achieved today is much different from 4-5 years ago”. You want your website to stand out, be memorable, and to keep people coming back. When customers are scrolling through multiple websites at a time, it can be hard to capture their attention. A redesign can help your website achieve that point of difference that will end the customers search.

ecochic


 
 

Third time’s a charm

Written by Emily Wilson on February 21st, 2014.      0 comments

netguide 2013

New Zealand website company, Zeald, received the Best Web Developer award for the third year in a row at the ESET NetGuide Web Awards 2013.

The awards were held last evening at the Hilton Hotel in Auckland, and were presented by popular comedian Urzila Carlson (7 Days), who kept the crowd entertained with her laugh-out-loud humour and quick wit.

Following on from their win in 2011 and 2012, the team at Zeald couldn’t be happier to be publicly voted the best web developer again for 2013.

A HUGE thank you to everyone who got behind Zeald in the NetGuide awards! Last night we won the NetGuide Best Web Developer and we couldn't be happier. Thanks again!”

Now in its 15th ceremony, the NetGuide Web Awards involves 27 categories in which you can vote for New Zealand’s best website. This year NetGuide received over 290,000 public votes.

The 27 categories range from Best Social Networking Page to Best PC Manufacturer, catering for all and covering a wide spectrum of Kiwi talent online.

The winners in all categories were:

Overall: Grabone.co.nz
Best Real Estate Site: Trademe.co.nz
Best Financial Site: kiwibank.co.nz
Best Entertainment Site: tvnz.co.nz/video
Best Employment Site:Seek.co.nz
Best Blog: Whaleoil.co.nz
Best Mobile App: BNZ Mobile App
Best News Site: Stuff.co.nz
Best Site for Gamers: Mightyape.co.nz
Best Web Developers: Zeald
NZ's Favourite Social Networking Page: GayNZ
Best Online Forum: Geekzone.co.nz
Best Site for Small Business: Xero.com
Best Trading Site: Trademe.co.nz
Best Sports & Recreation Site: AllBlacks.com
Best ISP: Vodafone
Best Lifestyle site: NZDating.com
Best Shopping Site: Grabone.co.nz
Best Online Fundraising Initiative: givealittle.co.nz
Best Mobile Network: 2Degrees
Best PC Manufacturer: HP
Best Site for Students: studyit.org.nz
Best New Launch, Relaunch or Innovation: GoBook.co.nz
Best Site for Families: WhatNow.tv
Best Government Site: ird.govt.nz
Best Site for Travellers: Grabone.co.nz
Best Homepage: google.co.nz

Topics: Zeald News
 

A picture paints a thousand words

Written by Sarah Gleeson on February 19th, 2014.      0 comments

The utilisation of beautiful imagery can really bring the wow factor to any website. Images are being used more and more as a communication tool to the audience. Instead of using a lot of text which the reader may glaze over, the use of images helps to break up the text. Not only that but images can be used to bring across a strong message which may be difficult to communicate with just text. For example, what better way to show you have unique, beautiful wedding dresses, then to show it? 

Our web designers have commented that 2014 is the year that big, stunning images will be favoured over text as the preferred choice of content. So we have put together a few examples of websites that use stunning imagery. 


Jessica Bridal shows us the impact of a truly beautiful image. This understated look communicates the effortless elegance every woman wants to feel on her big day. 

Jessica Bridal website by Zeald

This look from Herbsonline is spectacular. Food is an experience for the senses, these images feed the reader the idea that what looks great will taste amazing. 

Herbsonline

Zlato Jewellers is another great example of a website that communicates its excellence in design and beauty, by showing instead of telling. Buying an expensive piece is an experience, and that experience needs to be there from the start.  

Zlato

Ecochic lets the customer envisage the products in their own home. By showing good quality, beautiful images, the customer gets a good feel for the potential new look their own home could have.

ecochic website design by Zeald
 

App of the week: Pocket

Written by Emily Wilson on February 7th, 2014.      0 comments

pocket-appImagine a world of websites, online articles and other tidbits that it tailored to what you want to read, free of other clutter and distractions such as banner ads. You don’t have to imagine it, there’s an app for it!

Pocket (formerly Read It Later) lets you bookmark websites, article, twitter posts and even videos, so you can read or watch it later at your leisure.  Great for when you a researching a blog article! You no longer have to clutter your bookmarks tab or try to remember where you saw that product you want to buy.

There are other apps on the market that provide a similar service to Pocket; Instapaper was one of the first to do this. Where Pocket excels is the design and layout of the articles; clean and simple with eye-catching images to identify your article. Think of it more like your own curated magazine, rather than a newspaper.

Content you “put in your pocket” is available on your phone, tablet or computer. Plus, once saved to Pocket, you don’t even need an internet connection to catch up the latest news.

Download it free from iTunes or Google Play.

Topics: app
 

meet the experts: website design with loretta jean

Written by Sarah Gleeson on January 29th, 2014.      0 comments

part one of two: web designs in 2014. zeald designer, loretta jean, talks about her expectations of the year ahead as part of our meet the experts series.

Loretta webdesigner

Loretta Jean, has always been drawn to creative pursuits throughout her life. Studying in both New Zealand and Hawaii, she was lucky enough to be amongst inspiring landscapes, cultures, and people. Becoming a web designer was a natural path for Loretta, she loves being able to receive a logo from a client, and turn it into a website.

Looking back on the past year, Loretta talks about web design as being clever, “…the designs and functionality are getting more and more detailed, yet often look simple and clean”.

2014 looks to be a great year for new exciting web design trends blending with classic favourite concepts. Loretta looks forward to the year ahead, declaring: “everything in a website is getting bigger! Big juicy images, big chunky font, and big white spaces that allow the content to breathe”. Responsive Design also looks to be growing in popularity with more and more people choosing their phone after a long day sitting at a desktop.

responsive design = better results

responsive designResponsive design is often more minimal or slick in its design than other desktop websites. The design is also more functional as loading time is optimised and the design does not include any non-mobile phone compatible effects. All in all, it is a design that encourages minimal effort from the user, who is still able to gather the same amount of information as if they were on a computer, they are not left frustrated, which leads to greater engagement. The fact that anyone, anywhere at anytime can find your website, only improves results.

Results driven design is something which Zeald focuses on heavily. "We pride ourselves on delivering beautiful websites that generate results for our clients", Loretta declares. In terms of design, this can mean having the important components that people expect to see in web pages, actually there. Take for example a site that is built for mobile only where the expected header or footer is removed, this can leave your user frustrated and “severely impact on results”.

On top of having a great looking website that produces results, it is important to make sure the website is unique, and not similar to everything else out there, “a good designer will take into account the audience, the users, and push the boundaries where they ought to”. Being able to produce a website like this, the Zeald team follows standard web practice and keeps up with the latest design trends. This means keeping an eye on web design publications, and continuously looking for new inspiration to keep designs looking unique and fresh.

keeping it simple

Quality content is the cornerstone on which Zeald build websites. Things have changed since content was merely text on a screen; Loretta believes the best way to get a message across is through great imagery. However, she warns people off using cliche stock photos as they can look both contrived, and you run the risk of the image being on your competitors site too; “when users see the same image on your site that is on your competitors, it doesn’t make your site look unique or different”.

The Windows grid look is one of the key trends hitting 2014. This look comes from the Windows programs which show blocks with different content or links. The purpose of this design trend is to create a clean look which holds all the content in its own component. We often hear web designers talking about simple designs; to the uninitiated, simple can sometimes suggest a plain design. Plain is more often a lack of details on the website itself, leading to a boring end finish, “a white site with boring font and blocky images, … a non-memorable site”. In contrast, a simple design creates a user friendly atmosphere so the content can stand out. 


While Loretta loves this trend from a design perspective, she is wary about its crossover with Long Form design. In Long Form Design, the website encourages customers to keep scrolling down a page, to find out more information. So while Loretta gives long form the thumbs up, she encourages clients to proceed with caution when making changes; “It’s a look that often needs a designer to keep the website looking good”. 

Stay tuned for part two, where Loretta talks more about new design trends, and how to know when your website needs a makeover.

 

The importance of directory listings

Written by Sarah Gleeson on January 15th, 2014.      0 comments

Directory listings are a great way to improve your SEO and enable people to find your business.

What is a relatively painless task to complete, can work wonders on your Google ranking. Google likes when your website links to other quality websites, such as a Localist page, and as such boosts your ranking.

A few things to keep in mind when creating your directory listing:

  • Make sure everything you write is correct. If you forget a number in your phone number, how will customers contact you?

  • Put your physical address before your P.O. Box address

  • If a map shows your location, make sure the map marker is visible and in the right place

  • Include your open hours

  • Add an email address that is the best for someone contacting you, and will be checked regularly.

  • Add pictures of your shop, or products to stand out

  • Make sure you add your logo to the listing

    What you need in your directory listing

Reviews are available on most listings. These can be both a blessing and sometimes a bit of trouble. Reviews can be great at boosting your listing in the directory and in search engines. With Google, just 10 reviews that improve the rank of your listing in search results. However, if a customer had a bad experience and gives you a bad review, it can be hard or impossible to remove. In this case, make sure your next customer who reviews your business had a more positive experience, and try to make that negative an anomaly.

Consistency is important across your directory listings. If one listing says one phone number, but another says something different, not only will this hinder your customers reaching you, but can also affect your ranking in Google. So make sure you have someone on your team who will systematically go through your listings every 3-6 months to check they are all correct.

When it comes to directory listings, the more quality directories you are in, the better. That way you have made sure no matter where your customer looks, you are most likely in there.

Directories I would recommend:

Topics: Directories, Google
 

Scan your documents on the go

Written by Emily Wilson on December 11th, 2013.      1 comments

tinyscan-images-on-the-go

Have you ever been on the road and needed to send a document back to the office, and know you'll never make it before closing time? Perhaps you need to make a copy of an important document for your records or the kids need their permission slips sent immediately to the school? 

TinyScan is a great little app that can solve all these problems daily, for both business and personal use. It turns your Smartphone or Tablet into a mini scanner for documents, photos, receipts and other text. You just scan your document with your device and store or email as a PDF file. You can even upload to Google Drive or Dropbox at a touch of a button. And if you are too lazy to walk a document across the office, you can share using WiFi!

The app lets you export your documents in different pages sizes, such as A4, B5, letter etc. Your PDF files are high quality, and there are multiple scanning modes; black & white, grayscale &colour, depending on your original documents. The scanner is really simple to use, with the app automatically detecting your page borders. 

Frequently receiving 5/5 star ratings across the internet, we agree that TinyScan is a great little app that you'll actually use.

Available on Google Play and iTunes for free.

Topics: app
 

Makeover your website this Christmas

Written by Sarah Gleeson on November 29th, 2013.      1 comments

A lot of people will be venturing to the internet this holiday season to track down the best deals. Just like putting up the tree and stringing up lights, you can give your website a festive vibe to get your online shoppers full of Christmas cheer.

You can choose to either go all out or just a quick makeover, it is completely up to you. Even a few changes can make all the difference to the shopping and browsing experience of your customer.

Here at Zeald, we make our own Christmas advent calendar that we share with our customers. While we have some fun making it, we hope that they enjoy it too and choose to visit more often. 

A Christmas quick fix

  • Add a Christmas vibe to some of your main images. This can be as simple as changing out a few images to include your products or models wearing Christmas hats. Have a look at PicMonkey for a few ideas, you can add in a Christmas feel to any image!
  • Change your display picture or cover photo on Facebook or Twitter to include a festive image. Anything that helps attract attention to your brand helps!

A more intensive Christmas do over

  • Change the colour scheme of your website home page to include green and red. People will quickly get the idea that your business is celebrating the approaching holiday.
  • christmas profile
  • Dress up your logo with a Christmas theme. Add some fairy lights to your logo, or a gift box. It may seem silly, but it will help your logo stand out from your competitors.
  • Add some Christmas specials. A ‘Christmas only’ deal creates urgency, and people feel like they are getting a good holiday bargain. People often look for Christmas deals around the big day, as financial pressure mounts; so make sure you can ease this burden for your customers.
  • Add a countdown to Christmas on your home page. People love a good countdown, it also helps to add a bit of urgency to their shopping. If you have deals going, a countdown could be just the thing to help move a stuborn customer along. 
  • Send out an email marketing campaign. You can center this around wishing your clients a Merry Christmas, and add in some of your one-off deals.
 

Instagram as a recommendation tool

Written by Sarah Gleeson on November 5th, 2013.      0 comments

If you own a restaurant or sell any food related goodies, Instagram is the place to be. I’m sure everyone has seen people taking more and more photos of their food as of late. So why not make the most of this, instead of thinking it is weird. Encourage people to take photos of your food and drinks!

What better way to get it out there that you make the best chocolate mud cake, than have someone post it on Instagram with your company tagged in it. Not only will it just go onto Instagram, but it has the potential to make its way to Facebook and Twitter as well.

Of course this is not just for café, restaurant, and bar owers; but anyone with a product that can be dressed up. While this may not be a strategy for plumbers, Instagram is a great platform for getting beautiful images of your product out in the public in a natural way. This also acts as a testimonial of sorts, as customers are recommending your product or service to people like them.

foodieinstagram furnitureinstagram-as-recommendation-tool

                    

So what are my tips to get your customers snap happy?

  • Pay attention to the details. Instagram is all about looks, it may be the best cake in the world, but if it doesn’t look nice, chances are that it won’t make it to Instagram.
  • Set the scene. Put some nice decorations on the café table, or set up your store so it looks like stepping into a magazine. People will be only too happy to start snapping away.
  • Create your own #hashtag. This could be something like #Coffeekickstart@Jennys,  #Notguiltydessert, #cutestbabyclothes. It should be something short and memorable so that everyone knows that it is your company. Preferably, something that can also be spelled right. 
  • Let people know your shop is Insta-friendly. Put up signs with your Instagram name, and hashtag.

Businesses that should be on Instagram (in my opinion at least)

  • Cafes, restaurants, bars
  • Homeware 
  • Furniture 
  • Jewellery/ accessory 
  • Clothing and shoes
  • Stationary and craft 
  • Gifts
  • Beauty
  • Design
  • Athletic and sporting goods
  • The entire travel industry
  • Charities 
  • Plants and outdoors
  • Music & Arts
  • Entertainment
  • Wedding
  • Builders (photos of the great houses you have built!)
 

Kick start a contest in the build up to Christmas

Written by Sarah Gleeson on November 5th, 2013.      0 comments

 As people begin their Christmas present hunt, you want to showcase how you can meet their needs and now.  A great way to get your name circulating is to set up a contest. People are always looking for ways to tighten the belt around Christmas, so a contest that saves some money will always be a winner.

As Facebook changed its rules on contests lately, this would be a great medium to generate hype around your contest. Have a good read of the rules first!

 What's in it for me?

  • Sales
  • Leads
  • Referrals
  • Social media ‘likes’ or followers
  • Increase of social media presence (i.e. more people interacting with your page/profile)

Vital information:

  • Where is the contest being held? I.e. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest
  • Start date and end date
  • What people actually have to do to enter? Buy your product, spend a certain amount, like your page, comment on a post, retweet, pin, submit a photo or post to your page
  • Contest conditions
  • How winner will be drawn
  • How and when winner will be notified by
  • What happens if winner is not able to be reached
  • How long will the prize last for? - is there an expiry date?
  • What your prize is- your product/service, or a product/ service that you don’t sell i.e. overseas trip or car

Once you have these sorted out, get your best copywriter to come up with an amazing spiel that will capture your audience’s attention. You really want to sell your idea and business, while also getting people excited. Linking the contest to your website is also a great way to create a flow on effect from the contest, to your website.

After kick starting your contest, it is important to keep the buzz up- remind people that it is going on, and what they can do to enter. Social media is great for this, as people interacting with the post or your page, will keep your page at the top of other people’s timelines. 

When the contest draws to a close, make sure to make a big deal out of the end result- this is your last contest post that *hopefully* a lot of people have become invested in, so make the drum roll a good one!

After the contest is over, don’t go quiet on the social media platform, hopefully you have got some more likes, so keep people talking by continually posting new things to bring people back.

Topics: Contests
 

About Zeald

Zeald was formed in late 2000 by three young guys from the small New Zealand town of Mangawhai Heads. 12 years later, Zeald is one of the largest and fastest growing website design and e-business consultancy companies in New Zealand. This is the Zeald story …


Contact us

New Zealand

0508 932 748

Australia

1800 224 032

Zeald, 42 Tawa Dr, Albany, Auckland 0632

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