WHY WORDPRESS IS THE RIGHT PLATFORM FOR YOUR BLOG

WHY WORDPRESS IS THE RIGHT PLATFORM FOR YOUR BLOG

This month I received several emails asking me about why I have chosen WordPress as my go-to platform for blogging and digital shop.

I emailed back saying how I wanted to choose Squarespace in the first place but found it to be too expensive at that time for me and so the next best thing was WordPress.

why wordpress is the right platform for your blog

I have worked on many websites, many different blogs, many shops and online stores, and I will tell you why I remained faithful to this platform:

WordPress is the most Affordable.

I had to start with this one as this is the most asked question I get over email and twitter DMs.

You can easily setup your WordPress website with a budget of $100 or less. My personal recommendation is purchasing your domain through SiteGround (around $12-$15 depending on the domain name), hosting through the same company SiteGround (around $3.45 a month for shared WordPress hosting + you will get a FREE domain name renewal every year if you renew your hosting plan with them), and blog theme ($29 – $79 from the Shop).

With less than $100, you have a beautiful, responsive website for your blog or business.

Each year, you will have to renew your domain and hosting – $50-60, but your blog theme is a one-time purchase (and there are also free options).

Search Engine Friendly.

I cannot stress this enough: WordPress is great for SEO. You have the option (it is kind of mandatory too) to install the YOAST plugin who helps you with everything you need to setup the SEO for every blog post/product you are putting live on your website.

You don’t have to be a SEO expert, Yoast will guide through everything.

One click Install, Easy to Manage and Easy to Update.

This one was one of the most important things for me when I first started designing. I had no idea what CMSs were, I had no plans on ever learning to code (oh how life changes sometimes) – all I wanted was a one click install platform that allowed me to create and play around with options.

WordPress did just that for me.

Most hosting companies offer their clients one-click installs. Nothing is being downloaded to your computer. You get to setup a username and password and you have a very customizable dashboard right at your fingertips.

Open-source anyone?

When I first googled “wordpress vs. [insert any other platform here]” I read a lot of comments about this platform being an open-source CMS. I had no idea what that was. And I’m sure most of us didn’t knew about this term when we first started building our first websites.

Open-source means that there are thousands of WordPress developers all around the world working day and night to improve the system. And none of what they do costs you a penny. Free security and feature updates, every quarter? You bet. Can you say that about your CMS provider? (text credit goes to mooveagency.com)

My favorite: Highly Customizable.

WordPress is popular because it meets the demand of many users with its flexible framework to allow designers and developers to create and modify layouts and applications.

Remember no. 3 in the list? How I said I did not plan on ever learning to code? 🙂

The WordPress community is so great and filled with infinite information ready to be absorbed by anyone wanting to know and apply more to their own website.

This community has thought me so much! I remember bookmarking and saving every single piece of information I could find so I would never lose anything if the internet suddenly went armageddon on us (I lived under a rock for quite awhile so don’t judge) and started applying different customizations to my then lifestyle blog.

Even today, I create affordable and highly customizable WordPress templates for my clients because WordPress created this space for me to learn, grow and develop something that I now call my business.

Talk soon!

Hi! I’m Natalie, web designer, developer, and founder of Natalie’s Box.

This blog is a mix of business and fun – full of helpful tutorials and inspiration.

flower-icon-2

Natalie

Owner of Natalie's Box, NataliesBox.com

5 INSTAGRAM TIPS FOR PRODUCT – BASED BUSINESSES

5 INSTAGRAM TIPS FOR PRODUCT – BASED BUSINESSES

Let’s all agree on something here: Instagram is the social media platform you need to be on right now – especially if you are a product – based business.

It is the easiest and cheapest (free!) way to market to your target audience and ideal clients. However, you still want to make sure you are using Instagram effectively and efficiently in order to utilize its benefits accordingly.

instagram tips for product - based businesses | nataliesbox.com

Today I thought about putting together 5 tips or suggestion for you to take into account when using Instagram for your business.

1. You need to comment back to your audience.

We all want engagement, we as humans need connecting with other… humans. We want to feel heard, appreciated, and known. This means that your audience wants to feel noticed and heard by you – they want to know that you notice their voice (comments). The easiest way to do this is by commenting back to the people who comment on your photos. This creates a conversation and makes you seem more human to your audience. This connection will increase the likelihood of your audience purchasing something that you offer. They will view you as a person, not just a transaction. I know that as a business you have a tempting offer to automate your response on all your social media accounts – unless you run a 100+ product – based business, I suggest you don’t use this type of softwares.

2. Do not follow too many people in the same industry / niche as yours.

You should reach out and try to connect to people who want and need your services. Finding your ideal client can be a challenge, but it is very important to find the right audience. Create your posts in a way that speaks to the people who need your product. Think about your client’s needs and how your products meet those needs they have!

Furthermore, if you are only following the people doing the same thing as you, you are bound to fall into the comparison trap. And today – nobody has time for that!

Start following people who inspire creativity, confidence, and authenticity, while also making you feeling empowered. It will help you keep a healthy perspective and mindset while using Instagram to grow your business.

3. Choose your hashtags carefully.

Hashtags are an incredible way to get your photos and your products or services into the eyes of your ideal clients and followers. There are several free resources about the most used hashtags that you can easily find by searching on Google, but I will say this: think about what someone looking for your product would search. If you are selling your art work, put yourself in the shoes of someone looking for your product. Then, utilize those hashtags to increase potential views of your photo. In addition, take advantage of the most used hashtags on Instagram. It will help others find your incredible work and talent, and eventually turn followers into customers!

4. Date and time of posting are crucial.

First of all – your audience likes consistency so please make sure you post regularly. It builds trust. Next, find the BEST time of day for YOUR audience.

If you didn’t knew this one before, one little trick is to do a little bit of Google searching to find what times are best to post on Instagram and you could start from here then customize your dates and times according to your exact audience. Search online for infographics – these will help you a lot in learning what works and what doesn’t when it comes to social media posting.

After you get comfortable with posting regularly and at appropriate times, you will need to do a little case study in order to gather the information you need to post for your audience. Spend one week posting at different times of day. Then go back and see what posts had the most engagement. Moving forward, do the majority of your posting during those times of day.

5. You need to use Instagram Stories.

Ok, I have to say this: I am not a fan of Snapchat. I read too many blog posts about how Snapchat can benefit your business and I can’t do it. To many social media accounts, too much scheduling, too much of the same content spread all across these platforms BUT when Instagram Stories was introduced, I was actually excited. 

And you know why? Because my audience and I’m sure yours as well, would like to see behind your neatly crafted instagram feed, behind the pretty curated photos. They want to see behind the scenes work, sneak peeks, coming soon projects and so many other things related to you as a human being.

Another unique aspect of Instagram Stories, one aspect that Snapchat failed at in my opinion is the ability to comment privately on the Story. Ever since Instagram Stories came out I have been getting DMs from people with whom I have never interacted before.

I truly hope that these 5 suggestions helped you a little bit in your day-to-day business. Just remember that you are already doing a great job, and you will only get better and better at using Instagram!

Until next time, see you on Instagram!

blog-post-signature

Hi! I’m Natalie, web designer, developer, and founder of Natalie’s Box.

This blog is a mix of business and fun – full of helpful tutorials and inspiration.

flower-icon-2

Natalie

Owner of Natalie's Box, NataliesBox.com

How To Install Google Analytics On Your Blog

How To Install Google Analytics On Your Blog

While designing old and new websites and also doing a lot of SEO for different clients in various niches, I found myself installing Google Analytics on websites – more times than I can remember at this point.

I then realized that so many people don’t even know or understand what Google Analytics is and therefore see no use in using it at all.

What is Google Analytics?

Google Analytics is a free web analytics service that gives you statistics about your website’s audience, traffic, and demographics. You can understand who your visitors are, what they do when they visit your site, and what referrals sites they used.

Why do you need it?

In short concise sentence: it’s not only free and the best, but it’s also the industry standard. I do want to mention this though: both WordPress and Blogger platforms have “trackers” available on their site, but its nowhere near Google Analytics, seo speaking. What Google Analytics does is it measures your website’s traffic in great details. This is important to have especially if you are a blogger running a specific blog (fashion/interior design, food blog etc) – some brands will ask you for screenshots of your metrics to verify your stats. Therefore, it is important that you have it installed on your website.

How to install Google Analytics?

First, sign-up for an account. Go to Google Analytics I recommend that you sign-up for an account with the same email you use for your blog.

WordPress

1. In your website’s dashboard, go to PLUGINS < ADD NEW.

Search for a plugin called GOOGLE ANALYTICS BY YOAST. I prefer this plugin because it syncs with your account quickly.

2. Select Install, and activate the plugin.

3. Go to ANALYTICS < SETTINGS, select “Authenticate with your Google account”.

A code will come up that you need to copy into the new window. Press SAVE.

4. Now under “Authenticate with your Google account”, you should see your account tracking code in the dropdown.

Select that code and press SAVE CHANGES. You should be all set.

Blogger

  1. In your Google Analytics settings, copy your tracking code. It begins with a U.
  2. Then go to your blogger dashboard. Under SETTINGS < OTHER, you will see an area where you can add your Google Analytics code.
  3. Paste in your code and select SAVE. Google Analytics is now installed on your Blogger site!

 

Hope you found this helpful! Until next time, stay productive!

 

facebook | twitter | instagram | pinterest

 

Hi! I’m Natalie, web designer, developer, and founder of Natalie’s Box.

This blog is a mix of business and fun – full of helpful tutorials and inspiration.

flower-icon-2

Natalie

Owner of Natalie's Box, NataliesBox.com

WE ARE LIVE AND OPEN FOR BUSINESS!

WE ARE LIVE AND OPEN FOR BUSINESS!

 

 

Wheeewww. WE ARE LIVE!

I am so humbled by all the interest and support I have received regarding this little labor of love. I have been thinking about this business for quite some time now and I am excited (and nervous) to see how it will be received now that it’s been unveiled.

For the past few months I have been working behind the scenes to make this dream a reality and I am so excited to announce that Natalie’s Box is now officially open for business!

ABOUT NATALIE’S BOX

Natalie’s Box specializes in Branding, Web Design, and full Search Engine Optimization Services for small businesses and creative entrepreneurs. Through a collaborative process, I identify your key business goals and then create custom design solutions + SEO strategies to help you achieve those goals. Whether you are just starting out or are ready to take your business to the next level, Natalie’s Box is here to help.

ABOUT THE BLOG

Natalie’s Box mission and overall goal are to make great design accessible to all people, and also offer the best SEO services on the market; whether that means delivering complete solutions to my clients or lending a helping hand to other entrepreneurs.

On the blog, I will be sharing tips on the design process, running a business, and so much more! I will be posting new content every week, so be sure to check back or follow along in your favorite feed reader. If you enjoy the blog, then be sure to subscribe to my monthly email newsletter for early access to my best tips & tricks and other exclusive content.

For Natalie’s Box behind-the-brand images, follow me on Instagram @NataliesBox and Pinterest @NataliesBox

P.S.: If you are looking for a beautiful solution for your business or website, feel free to get in touch with me at natalie@nataliesbox.com