The Internet has created a whole new world. You can be a stay-at-home mom and make everyone believe you are a big-time executive who just can’t wait to get home from work after a busy day of meetings and lunches, and relax by your big-screen TV with a glass of imported wine in your hand.
I am not exactly sure why you would want to do that, but in Internet land, it is possible. That may not be your cup of tea but you might find that boosting your online image can make a big difference in your income.
Do you ever say to yourself, “I’m just a single individual, not a company – why would anyone trust me enough to buy from me?”
You are defeating yourself from the very beginning if you think that way. You ARE a company! If you provide a service or sell a product that others are willing to pay for, then you are a one-person company.
Because you work out of your home office doesn’t make you any less professional than that insurance company owner down the street. Still many people today will not take you seriously if they see you talk from the “first face” (“I” instead of “we”, “mine” instead of “ours”).
There is a remedy for this problem. You can create a professional, more corporate look on your web site using the techniques I will share with you here.
- Create a high quality logo on your web site. If you don’t consider yourself a good graphic designer, hire a professional.
- Make sure that your website design looks professional. If you can’t come up with good design ideas for your web site, consider using high quality web templates. Your website is the same as the entrance to a brick-and mortar store and should look as clean and professional as your store should.
- If you don’t have your own domain name, get one ASAP! There’s no if, ands, or buts about this. You absolutely need one to be considered “in the game”, so to speak. I don’t think I have ever shopped on a site that has an address like “www.giftbaskets.my-shopify.com” or something similar.
- . Once you have your own domain, you can use a “real” business e-mail address. For example, my domain name is ShopCreativeGifts.com. This means that instead of firstname.lastname@example.org I can use email@example.com. Ask your hosting company how you can set your e-mail address up to match your domain name. If you are using any sort of mail service such as mailchimp or aweber, having a real business email address is essential to make sure your emails aren’t blocked.
- Have you ever heard of a catch-all e-mail account? I have one and I absolutely love it! You can use this feature to create different “departments” in your business: service, sales, support, owner, etc. and, when you get an e-mail, you will know exactly who the sender was trying to reach. This also creates an impression of a bigger company.
- Make your web site consistent. Choose a design and use it on every page, along with your logo. Don’t make every page on your site look different like so many personal web sites do. It’s distracting and confusing, and your visitors might not even realize they are still on your site.
- Create a “Testimonial” section on your web site. When you get a positive comment about an order you delivered or sent, ask if you can use their comment on your testimonial page. You can even add it to the product page for that particular product as well.
- Make sure your web site is filled with useful content. Put up a “Frequently Asked Questions” page, gather relevant articles with free reprint rights, as well as your own writings. Post your newsletter archives, tips, business history and owner’s information. Most big corporate web sites have a wealth of helpful information.