Back in October, I wrote a blog post just after I had started using the Google Analytics feature on Zoe's website. It has been incredibly helpful to me to see how many views the site gets a day, how many are from referrals (and from where), and the search words used to find the site.
I had done some Search Engine Optimization with a third party firm beginning last summer but had been dissatisfied with their approach and results and had cancelled the service as soon as was permissible in the contract. With my plans still focused on getting eCommerce started on the site in Q2 of 2012, I knew it was time to start increasing Zoe's visibility on the web.
When I arrived at the store on Tuesday morning, I found a card from Goggle AdWords in Monday's mail. It included $100 worth of free AdWords advertising. When I had a free minute later that day I signed up. The process was simple and the dashboard of data is already providing great information. By the time I have exhausted the $100 credit, I'll have a good idea of whether or not it is something I want to continue and at what levels on a monthly basis.
I'm always looking at what's working/what's not working. During our lunch with Kathlin last Monday in NYC, we talked a lot about the many different social media platforms, how they are used, why people use them, how to interconnect them (or break them apart). People have told me that they like this blog because it gives them insight into the person behind the business. People like Facebook because they can see the new arrivals and events at any time. I've had people tell me that they look at my website and look at the new arrivals there. I have met some people through Twitter who have then shopped in the store or at the Warehouse Sale. It's just figuring out how to use each to reach and satisfy each particular audience. I can't say I have any firm answers (yet) but I'm still analyzing and learning.
One thing I realized last week is that I didn't have a link to Zoe's website on this blog. I made that change and have already seen the results in reviewing the Google Analytics information for the week. Any small thing I can do to continue to get Zoe's name and what we have to offer available to as many people as possible! Stay tuned as I continue the journey on to full blown eCommerce!
On a side note, there are many reasons that people love to patronize small, local businesses. I experienced one of them on Monday. I walked into the company that did Zoe's external signs and "Coming Soon" and "Grand Opening" banners - Affordable Signs and Banners. I wanted to discuss a banner for Zoe's First Birthday (coming up in 1 month!) and a small, portable exterior sign. I said that I was from Zoe Boutique and started talking to her about what I needed. She started writing up a quote request form and said "You're Susan Gerock, aren't you?" I was shocked (and pleased) that she remembered my name, especially since I haven't been in the store for about 11 months! They not only have a great product, but they make me feel special - not just another number or dollar sign.
Next Up: The On-Site Review