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Week 12 Reflection

In week 12 we talked about social media and learned about what our Google Ad Campaigns indicated. Mostly, this has encouraged me to change up my website a bit so that the content is organized and built for my specific clientele and also it has encouraged me to start building content for specific social media platforms that I think will benefit my company the best.

In choosing Pinterest to host the majority of my business’ social media presence, I’ve also given myself a guide for how to build the content I want to share outside of my website. The main element should be the visual interest.

I also want to focus a little more on community through my website, seeing as I’m not interesting enough to hold the focus on myself and expect people to follow my site. Therefore, if I make a place where other people can talk about their projects, people will know that they can come to my website to see a variety of content.

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Week 11 Reflection

I was really excited to learn about SEO this week because I have assumed for a long time that my SEO isn’t up to snuff and that’s why my online business hasn’t done well for the past 6 months. It turns out that it’s a bit more complicated than that. The most important thing for me to focus on at the moment, while I’m not getting a lot of traffic to my site, is to make sure the content that my visitors land on is content that provides the information or service they were looking for when Google dropped them off at my door.

I have several things to change, which is exciting for me, but I’m also really excited to start adding more content to my page that will keep my visitors interested and coming back. I don’t even mind that it will probably take some months to build up to where I want it because that time is an investment in the future of my business.

Week 10 Reflection

This week was thanksgiving, so naturally I didn’t do any of my homework and am now turning it in late. Silly me. Unfortunately, I didn’t get my campaign fully up and running until a week later, so I don’t have the data I actually need to really report on my campaign’s progress. This is of course disappointing, but it’s up and running now and I should begin to see results in a day or so. Other than that, I tweaked my keywords a little bit.

Week 9 Reflection

This week took us a long way towards actually working with our websites and our ad campaigns. I’m actually very anxious to get the data collection and analysis under way so that I can finally understand why my website isn’t attracting any traffic.

As far as why we’re doing what we’re doing, I think it’s fairly easy to understand. The more information we have on who is visiting our sites and what their experience is like while they’re, the more we can understand what our website is lacking. Then we just have to fix the things that are getting in the way of us making money. It sounds both easy and complicated, but I don’t think it will seem that way once I get into the middle of it. There are always improvements to be made and doing it all at once is not necessary. It will be a long process, but I will find satisfaction in doing it.

Week 8 Reflection

This week we learned more about writing ads for our online businesses. I learned a lot from the material, but the main three things I took away from it were including keywords in the ad, targeting specific audiences, and using a call to action in the ad.

For some reason, it didn’t occur to me to include some of my keywords in my ad, but if my keyword tags are what leads a person to my ad, then they should see a reflection of their search in my ad. If they typed in a specific thing to Google, then seeing what they typed in an ad would be a good indication that they can find what they’re looking for there.

I’ve identified three main audiences or customer groups that I want to target with my ad campaign: nerds, cosplayers, and people who like to be cozy. When I wrote my three ads, I wrote each one to target one of those groups.

It also just occurred to me that I might want to include search terms that are specific to people who are trying to shop for their friends and family but don’t know exactly what to get them. I’ll just write that down here so that I can remember it later.

Anyway, the third thing I took from the reading this week was to use a call to action in the ad, which I tried to do with each ad.

Week 7 Reflection

One of my main concerns about my online business as I prepared to take this class on building a web business was my SEO. I’ve had the website up for almost 6 months now and haven’t seen any traffic going to it. Either there is too much saturation in my market or I don’t have a good base for keywords.

In writing down a bunch of keywords on paper, I really only could tell what my intentions to sell were. I targeted a very specific market, the same one I always have, but when I used the tools provided by Google Ads, it suggested to me a whole new set of keywords that I hadn’t considered. Just the fact that I tend to say “hat” instead of “beanie” was limiting me in a big way.

I’m really excited to try to find alternative ways to label my products so that people who don’t phrase or name things the same as me will be included when I cast my advertising net.

Week 6 Reflection

This week I was able to register my business with the state of Utah. It wasn’t particularly hard, so I’m not sure why I was hesitating to do so for so long (since the beginning of the year). I am reminded that for this business to succeed, no one else has to do anything other than me. It’s my business and if I want to be successful, I have to put in the hours. Up until now, I haven’t been willing to do that, but this class is showing me that there are a lot of ways to make the system work for me. I’m really excited to start advertising for my business. One thing that I’ve always been willing to do is the actual production. I love knitting hats and that’s why I wanted to make myself a business. It’s something that I can do that I love and I’m ready to start doing it to earn money for my family.

Week 5 Reflection

This week we learned a lot about the design trends and guidelines for websites in this time period. I found it interesting to visit the websites that I normally would. For example, I’m on Amazon probably once a week… and their website is really hard to look at. They cram so much stuff into that initial page. I find the app much easier to use, but the sheer amount of options for navigation on Amazon is overwhelming.

When I designed my website, I wanted something very minimalist. Not only is it my personal style, but it’s much easier to figure out what you want to do. I have four navigation options and there is only a white background with very little happening on it. I really love how sophisticated it looks.

Week 4 Reflection

Choosing where to build and host my website were things I wasn’t too worried about because I had already done those things for my business. However, the end of this lesson hinted that we would be using Google Analytics to assess how our website is doing. This is really important for me, seeing as almost 6 months of having my business hosted on its own website has yielded nothing for me. Of course, I haven’t don’t much social media promotion or perhaps worked hard enough to get things going, but that’s what I’m in school for.

Once I can optimize my keywords and get my content on the website, finding traffic and a customer base should happen organically. I’m really excited for this next phase in the business creation process.

Week 3 Reflection

This week I really considered monetizing my blog. I thought about it a long time ago when I was actually blogging regularly, but this week, learning about affiliate marketing, I realized that it might be actually pretty easy to do, though I would have to focus a lot on driving traffic to my blog seeing as it isn’t viewed much.

As for the company we are making pretend decisions for, I didn’t like either of our options between affiliate marketing and drop shipping. I don’t like the idea of drop shipping in general because I don’t like the idea of paying someone to do something I could easily do myself. It just seems a little strange to me.

Affiliate marketing doesn’t make sense for the company because they aren’t content creators, but as someone who both deals with inventory for my own business and who enjoys creating content, the information I got about these types of monitization were really useful for me. Maybe things I’ll file away for later use, but in the meantime, they were interesting to write pros and cons for because I kept changing my mind about which one I preferred.