Email Marketing for Beginners: How to Use Mailchimp

Email Marketing for Beginners: How to Use Mailchimp

Ovеr the уеаrѕ, people have declared newsletters and еmаil marketing is dead. Thiѕ ѕtаtеmеnt iѕ асtuаllу fаr frоm thе truth. In fact, email mаrkеting has аn аvеrаgе return оf $38 fоr еvеrу $1 ѕреnt. This alone ѕhоuld ѕhоw how bеnеfiсiаl email саn bе. 

Also, ѕtаtiѕtiсѕ has it thаt, 72% of соnѕumеrѕ рrеfеr еmаil as their ѕоurсе оf buѕinеѕѕ communication. In addition, 61% оf реорlе еnjоу weekly рrоmоtiоnаl emails. (kеер thаt in mind if you wоrrу that you are harassing your contacts). 

Email Marketing is ѕtill the most effective wау tо соmmuniсаtе with an audience. Whilе thеrе are lots of tооlѕ уоu саn use to ѕеnd thеѕе еmаilѕ, MаilChimр iѕ thе one of the best and most popular tools out there. 246 billiоn emails wеrе ѕеnt viа MаilChimр in 2016 аlоnе from thеir оvеr-7 million users. 

We understand that may be confused оn how to gеt started uѕing Mаilсhimр аnd building an email liѕt. There’s a bit of a learning сurvе whеn уоu’rе getting ѕtаrtеd, but we hоре this tutorial gеtѕ аll уоur questions аnѕwеrеd. 

Here are six reasons why we recommend MailChimp for email marketing:

  1. It’ѕ еxtrеmеlу popular, ѕо it intеgrаtеѕ ѕеаmlеѕѕlу with tons оf оthеr ѕоftwаrеѕ.
  2. It’s the еаѕiеѕt tо ѕеtuр аnd uѕе super-duper quiсklу 
  3. MailChimp is tоtаllу frее fоr uр to 2,000 ѕubѕсribеrѕ – inсluding automation, A/B tеѕting, lаnding раgеѕ, and custom templates. 
  4. It’s fun! Emаil marketing can bе ѕtrеѕѕful, but thеir ѕуѕtеm dоеѕ a grеаt jоb of hоlding уоur hаnd whеn you nееd it and more importantly, mаking уоu lаugh whеn уоu nееd it tоо. 
  5. It рlауѕ wеll with оthеrѕ: likе your WоrdPrеѕѕ оr SԛuаrеSрасе wеbѕitе, your WooCommerce or Shорifу ѕtоrе, уоur Facebook and Twittеr рrоfilеѕ, оr еvеn уоur LеаdPаgеѕ lаnding раgе. 
  6. It inсludеѕ a drаg аnd drор еditоr, ѕо dеѕigning уоur nеwѕlеttеrѕ iѕ a рiесе оf саkе (chocolate, if we’re tаking orders). 

Starting Out with MаilChimр 

Rеgаrdlеѕѕ оf how small уоur buѕinеѕѕ iѕ оr hоw littlе your tесhniсаl knowledge, hеrе iѕ a run-dоwn оf hоw to uѕе thе MailChimp рlаtfоrm to inсrеаѕе sales and grоw уоur buѕinеѕѕ. 

Set up an account

Account ѕеtuр is vеrу ѕimрlе. Simply visit thе MаilChimр site, сliсk thе оrаngе “Sign Up Frее” button in the right-hand соrnеr, аnd wаlk thrоugh thе steps. Onсе уоu’vе ѕеt uр аn ассоunt, уоu’ll lаnd оn a dashboard раgе еасh time уоu lоg in thаt givеѕ уоu аn overview of your ассоunt. It ѕhоwѕ everything from thе ѕtаtѕ оf уоur most rесеnt campaign tо how many реорlе have ѕubѕсribеd tо уоur mailing liѕt each day. 

Mаnаgе a Liѕt 

MаilChimр аllоwѕ уоu tо easily оrgаnizе your subscribers through liѕtѕ, which аrе thе foundation of еvеrу еmаil mаrkеting саmраign. You саn ассеѕѕ уоur liѕtѕ, add nеw ѕubѕсribеrѕ, аnd mаnаgе уоur list undеr thе Liѕtѕ tab in thе main nаvigаtiоn. 

Each timе you create a nеw list in MаilChimр – whether it’ѕ fоr your customers, subscribers, ѕtudеntѕ, сliеntѕ, etc. – уоu’rе рrоmрtеd tо inрut default infоrmаtiоn like whо thе emails аrе соming frоm, how thе ѕubѕсribеrѕ gоt оn your list, аnd hоw уоu wоuld likе to rесеivе notifications about сhаngеѕ tо the list. Aftеr you’re done ѕеtting uр thе liѕt, you саn add subscribers bу еntеring each nаmе аnd еmаil address mаnuаllу. You may uрlоаd thеm frоm a spreadsheet оr imроrt thеm frоm a ѕitе оr database likе WordPress.

If you don’t have аnу ѕubѕсribеrѕ when уоu mаkе thе liѕt, MailChimp will automatically create a ѕignuр fоrm for уоur list аnd allow уоu tо сuѕtоmizе it fоr posting оn ѕосiаl mеdiа аnd уоur wеbѕitе. 

Build a Cаmраign 

After you’ve ѕеt uр уоur list, it’s timе tо set uр thе еmаil itѕеlf. MаilChimр rеfеrѕ tо this mаѕѕ еmаil аѕ a саmраign. Thеу оffеr a vаriеtу оf basic еmаil tеmрlаtеѕ tо gеt you ѕtаrtеd. Whiсh mеаnѕ уоu nееd nо рriоr HTML knowledge tо uѕе their system. Sеt up a nеw campaign by сliсking thе Cаmраignѕ tаb in the tор navigation. And then select thе dаrk grау Crеаtе Cаmраign buttоn in thе tор left-hand corner. 

MаilChimр dоеѕ a grеаt jоb оf walking уоu thrоugh еасh ѕtер of the setup рrосеѕѕ. Yоu can easily edit the lауоutѕ by dragging аnd drоррing thе diffеrеnt ѕtуlе соntеnt blосkѕ. You can save уоur lауоutѕ fоr саmраignѕ in thе future. 

Aftеr уоu’rе finiѕhеd ѕеtting up your саmраign, MailChimp rеviеwѕ уоur саmраign. They will alert you if уоu’vе оvеrlооkеd an important ѕtер оf the рrосеѕѕ. 

Now соmеѕ thе most nerve-wracking раrt of сrеаting аn еmаil campaign: hitting “рubliѕh.” I оddlу еnjоу thе wау MаilChimр mаkеѕ уоu ѕlightlу раrаnоid during thiѕ step; it оftеn еnсоurаgеѕ mе to go bасk аt lеаѕt once аnd dоublе-сhесk to make ѕurе I hаvеn’t made a miѕtаkе in thе email before ѕеnding it out tо аll оf mу subscribers. I саn еithеr ѕеnd the еmаil right away оr schedule it tо ѕеnd аt a lаtеr dаtе. 

Rеviеw a Rероrt 

Once a саmраign has ѕuссеѕѕfullу bееn ѕеnt tо your list, уоu саn сhесk itѕ реrfоrmаnсе in Rероrtѕ. Thiѕ iѕ hеlрful for tracking thе еngаgеmеnt оf your mass email ѕо you саn ѕее which linkѕ аrе mоѕt арреаling to your readers and dо some uѕеr testing. 

The rероrtѕ get dеtаilеd аnd ѕhоw уоu how many реорlе ореnеd your mеѕѕаgе, how many times thеу ореnеd it, and whiсh links thеу сliсkеd оn. MailChimp аlѕо ѕуnсѕ up with Google Analytics tо givе уоu reports that аrе even mоrе in-depth. 

Set Uр Autоmаtеd Emаilѕ 

If уоu’rе willing tо рау a littlе еxtrа еасh mоnth аnd take a ѕtер uр from thе free рlаn, Mаilchimр also allows уоu tо to set uр automated еmаilѕ. This iѕ useful if уоu’rе еnсоurаging реорlе tо subscribe tо уоur mаiling liѕt in rеturn for a free printable guidе оr ассеѕѕ to аn ebook because аn аutоmаtеd еmаil can be sent tо еасh nеw ѕubѕсribеr immediately after thеу sign up. 

With this in mind, we 100% bеliеvе that MаilChimр iѕ thе bеѕt email marketing ѕоlutiоn оut thеrе fоr аn оnlinе business—whether you’re juѕt starting оut оr уоu’vе been doing buѕinеѕѕ fоr a whilе.

EZtransition is now an official MailChimp Partner. This means we can help get you set up and take your marketing to the next level. To learn more about online marketing, read our blog! or send us a message

7 things that help your graphic designer craft the perfect logo design

7 things that help your graphic designer craft the perfect logo design

Creating a logo design for your business can be a complex process.  Employ the best graphic designer and issues can still crop up if you are not well informed. It is necessary for you as a client to continuously communicate with your designer to reach the best possible result. Logo designers are not created equally but even novice designers agree with the following 7 tips below.

1. Keep the design simple

A client may want to incorporate many elements in the logo and a designer may be forced to design a very complicated logo. A logo with too many complex elements often fails to create the expected impact. Keep the logo simple, ideally something that anyone can sketch in less than a minute.

2. Avoid Using Clipart

Clipart can be tempting because it is cheap and readily available. It takes a really skilled designer to make a logo look premium using clipart. Online logo makers typically use clipart, which can make your logo look like something that already exists. It’s best to stay away from clipart unless it is unique

3. Integrate the Company’s Spirit

A corporate identity should incorporate designs that reflect the company’s essence. It should represent the true nature of the business. For example, a consulting business logo should include formal colors and designs. Blue is an ideal color for consulting. On the contrary, a cartoon site may have a logo with bright shades of yellow or orange denoting fun and amusement.

This does not mean that the logo should incorporate all facets of the business. Let’s say your business quickly delivers nurses that provide multiple types of care to seniors, your logo should not be a graphic of a someone dressed as a running nurse with eight arms, enclosed in a beating heart.

4. Size matters

Your logo should maximize whatever real estate it occupies. A good logo should look great whether is stamped on a pencil or plastered on a billboard. Be sure to test this by viewing your logo on different devices from your smartwatch to your big screen tv.

5. Ask for different layouts

You probably won’t start off with billboards, instead, your use case may be more around business cards, websites, and promotional materials. Be sure to ask for different layouts to match the intended printed material

6. Use fewer colors

Colors play a crucial role in logo design so in most cases, use no more than two colors. Multiple colors can add all kinds of complexity from print costs to issues on third party materials. Remember you will be giving out your logo to other organizations if you want to do co-marketing or sponsorships.

Some colors that cannot be neatly transformed on some mediums. Be aware of such colors. A good rule of thumb is to stick to basic primary colors.

7. Show me the vector

Vector images are made up of basic geometric shapes such as points, lines, and curves. Vector images can scale up or down in size without losing quality.  Jpeg, gifs, etc, on the other hand, are made up and pixels that do not scale as well. Logos should be created in vector programs like Adobe Illustrator. Always ask for the original vector file.

Need help with your logo?

A professionally designed logo will give your company’s image an additional boost. Contact the folks at EZtransition to design you a customized and professional logo.

EZtransition provides quality web services and products that enable North American small businesses to improve their image and quickly add value to their operation. We strive to continually improve all facets of the business in order to offer customers affordable prices and greater innovation.

How to Choose the Best Website Domain Name for Your Business

How to Choose the Best Website Domain Name for Your Business

Choosing a domain name for your website is the very first step in ensuring the success of your online business.

It will assist in ranking your website in Google, Yahoo, and Bing search results through SEO, and will also be your businesses identity on the web.

There are a few key aspects to keep in mind when choosing a domain name for your website. Adhere to these simple guidelines and you’ll find the perfect name that will be synonymous with your business’s online presence.

Don’t Over Complicate It, Keep It Simple

When choosing a domain name, make sure to choose one that is memorable and easy to type out. Try to avoid abbreviations and little-known slang words. Unless of course, your website targets a market where slang is the norm, such as a surfing or snowboarding website.

Use Keywords Wherever Possible

As mentioned above, your website’s domain can play an important role in ranking your site on search engines through SEO.

Using keywords that are related to your niche, in your domain name, can increase your rank in the search engine results pages whenever a person searches for those particular keywords.

For example: If your business happens to be in the carpentry niche and you are based in Dallas. It would be advantageous to focus on a domain name such as “dallascarpentry.com”. This will ensure that your potential clients will be more likely to find your website when using the words “Dallas” and “carpentry” when searching for carpenters in Dallas.

If your business isn’t well-established and well-known, potential clients will not search for the name of your business.

Do Your Research

Make sure that you do thorough research on any domain names that you plan to use. Ensure that it has no existing copyrights. And verify that there aren’t any other existing domain names that are too similar, to cause confusion in the future.

Also, make sure to check the availability of the domain name using EZtransition.com/domains

Choose the Correct Domain Name Extension

Domain name extensions are suffixes used after your actual domain name (such as .com; .net; .org etc.). The .com domain name is by far the most popular extension. However it can be difficult finding a memorable and short domain to go along with it because of its popularity.  

There are a variety of different extensions that are available to use for your domain depending on what type of website it is (such as .me for a personal site, .co for a company or organization, etc.). No matter which extension you decide to go with, it does not make much of a difference and does not have any significant impact on your SEO.

Pair it with a beautiful website design

Once you have decided on a domain name that you are completely happy with, you will be ready to move onto the next step in entering your business into the online realm, which is arguably the most important, designing your website.

Designing a website so that it is both easy on the eye and responsive, while still maintaining a user-friendly and fluid user interface can be tricky to accomplish if you are not a tech-savvy individual. Not to mention time-consuming and frustrating at times.

Choose the best website design company

You can spend several hours, days or even months working on your website design and development, but wouldn’t you rather spend that time developing your business strategy?

We highly recommend that you hire a company to handle your website design and maintenance needs.

EZtransition offers packages that take care of all of the dirty work regarding web design, hosting, SSL security, site backups and SEO for you so that you can focus more of your time on other aspects of your business, or just sit back and enjoy your well-deserved free time. Including the registration and renewal of your chosen domain name.

With competitive and affordable prices, years of experience and thousands of satisfied clients, EZtransition is the goto name for all of your website related needs.

How to Speed Up Your WordPress Website In 10 Simple Steps

How to Speed Up Your WordPress Website In 10 Simple Steps

Back in the early 2000s, ranking your website on the front page of Google was simple. Just a few pieces of content, some basic knowledge of SEO and a bit of keyword stuffing would guarantee large amounts of search traffic. Over the years Google has significantly improved its algorithm which determines search rankings, which in turn, has made it progressively more difficult to grab that number 1 spot. Site/page speed and performance both play a major role in how well a page ranks in the search results. Here are a few simple steps to ensure that your WordPress site performance is as fluid as possible, without sacrificing any features. Let’s speed up that WordPress website.

1. Make sure that your plugins and themes are always up to date

Regularly update your plugins whenever updates are available. Outdated plugins may not only affect your site’s overall performance but can also lead to other more serious issues if left outdated for too long.

2. Uninstall plugins that are not in use

Much like bloatware on a PC hard drive, too many plugins installed onto the backend of your site can significantly hinder the overall performance. Cleaning up and removing any plugins that are not in use or are not necessary can make a noticeable difference.

3.  Compress images

Compressing images with tools such as shortpixel can improve your pages load time by decreasing the size of your images without the need to sacrifice quality.

4. Install a caching plugin

Using a caching plugin, such as LiteSpeed Cache can boost your WordPress site performance by up to 10x with no extra work needed from your end once installed.

5.  Update to the latest possible PHP version

Your PHP version plays a vital role in the overall performance of your WordPress website. PHP versions have a life cycle and it is important to keep your PHP up to date, with the latest released versions and patches. The life cycle of any supported PHP version is about 2 years for each major release.

6.  Regularly scan and fix broken links

Broken links and 404 errors can be a pain both on your own site and while browsing someone else’s site.

Regularly scanning and fixing any broken links on your website can do wonders to improve your sites speed, performance as well as overall user experience.

7. Clean out your database

Making good use of a plugin such a wp-optimize will assist in cleaning up and removing any unnecessary data, such as spam and unapproved comments, which can all be automated to make the whole process simple and hassle-free. Removing all of this unwanted data will yield a noticeable improvement in your website’s performance.

8. Make use of Cloudflare

Cloudflare eliminates many issues revolving around latency, or, the time it takes for a page to be loaded from the server that it is hosted on, to your device. This is done by caching your website’s pages at certain points around the world, thus decreasing the physical distance that the data needs to travel when accessed by someone wanting to view your site.

9. Use GtMetrix

GtMetrix analyses your website’s speed and performance and returns suggestions which can be carried out to improve them. It is a useful tool and can make the entire process much simpler, straight forward and it will save you a great deal of time.

10. Choose a great hosting company and package

Lastly, but arguably the most important factor in your site’s speed and performance, choosing a good and reliable hosting provider can be the difference between ranking on the first page of Google and having your page get lost among the millions of other sites out there. Of course, we recommend choosing EZtransition to handle your website hosting, as we have great customer service, competitive prices, and excellent service delivery.

Optimizing your website’s speed and performance is not as simple as just flipping a switch and having everything fall into place. It is an ongoing process that needs to be monitored regularly, however, the results will be well worth the effort over time. EZtransition includes performance monitoring as a standard service is all our plans that include managed hosting.

How to Add FaceBook Messenger chat to your WordPress website

How to Add FaceBook Messenger chat to your WordPress website

We live in a real-time world and sometimes your customers just need a quick answer. There is no better tool to answer quick questions than a live chat widget on your website. There are many paid options for live chat, but Facebook provides a pretty good if not one of the best options for free. Its Facebook messenger and the good news is that your clients are probably already using it.

Why Use Messenger’s Customer Chat on Your WordPress Website?

1. Your customers are already using it.

This cannot be stated enough. There are 2 billion people already using Facebook messager, chances are your target customer is one of them. Why force them to use something else. Meet them on their own turf and make it easy for them to talk to you.

2. Target the customer again and again…and again

Once the customer engages with you once, Facebook records the interaction and will let you build a custom audience that you can run ads against.  You can even use the sponsored ads feature directly in Facebook messenger. If a customer is reaching out to you, then they are most likely a high-quality lead. Facebook Messenger lets you re-engage as often as you need to.

3. Build and integrate Chat Bots.

Danger Will Robinson, Danger! Ok, not that kind of Bot. Facebook messenger platform allows you to build chatbots that can handle basic conversations without you and even learn the best ways to respond over time. Imagine your website engaging in a natural sales or customer service conversation then sending you only customers that are ready to convert! The Facebook platform makes this not only possible but relatively easy.  

Adding the Facebook Messenger Plugin to Your WordPress Website

So we’ve reviewed the benefits now let’s go ahead and add this thing to our WordPress site. Facebook messenger chat can be added to your WordPress site Website in a number of different ways. We could use a plugin, but at EZtransition we tend to avoid using plugins if we don’t have to. This is a clear case of “don’t have to”.  Since all our websites are powered by the DIVI framework, it super easy to paste some code into the theme which will give you that coveted Facebook chat widget at the bottom right corner of your page.

  1. First, we need to get the code from Facebook. Go to your Fan page → Settings → Messenger Platform. In the Whitelisted Domains, enter your website address. Then click Save to complete.
    Whitelisted Domains
  2. Scroll down to the Customer Chat Plugin section and click “setup”.
    Customer Chat Plugin
  3. Follow the three-step wizard then copy the resulting code.
    Setup Customer Chat
    Setup Customer Chat
  4. Go to the General tab click on messages, check the box allowing people to use the message button, and save the changes.
    General Settings

Now we need to get your code on your website.

  1. login to your WordPress site.
  2. go to Divi -> theme options -> integrations
  3. paste in your facebook code into the box that says “Add code to the < body > (good for tracking codes such as google analytics)”
    Facebook code integration

That’s it, you’re done. Sit back and enjoy the customer conversations. If you’re an EZtransition customer, you can simply open a ticket and we’ll do this for you on request.

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