Organizing Your Digital Photo Collection to Increase Usability

How to Organize All Those Photos
How to Organize Your Digital Photos


Pictures aren’t just worth a thousand words, they’re beginning to replace them. Thanks to the ubiquity of the cell phone camera, the rise of the Internet and social media, our fascination with emojis, and our shortened attention spans, more and more communications are exchanged through visual images.

You’ve probably taken thousands of photos that you could be using on websites, Instagram, emails, texts, signage, etc. to communicate with your customers. If you’re like most people, however, your photos are on your phone, laptop, social media sites, old hard drives, and who knows where.

Wouldn’t it be great to have them all stored in once place and organized by topic, so you can find what you want instantly? Well, you can!

Continue reading Organizing Your Digital Photo Collection to Increase Usability

Using Google Search Console Analytics Reports to Get Found on the Web

Illustration of bee attracted to a plant

Trying to attract more visitors to your website? Using Google Search Console can help you understand what specific keywords or phrases are getting people to click through to your site. Continue reading Using Google Search Console Analytics Reports to Get Found on the Web

SEO for Reluctant Small Business Owners

Title image for article on SEO for Reluctant Small Business Owners

Common Sense SEO
If you’re like most small business owners, you’re reluctant to spend $500+ a month to hire a Search Engine Optimization (SEO) agency.

Reputable SEO firms provide a host of useful services that can benefit your business, but unless you’re relying on web traffic to woo customers, you probably don’t need to hire an expert to get found on the web.

Here are three “common sense” SEO practices that you can do on your own.  Continue reading SEO for Reluctant Small Business Owners

How to Increase Repeat Business

Header Image for How to Increase Repeat Business Article

Inspiring a Second Purchase

Which is more important, a customer’s first purchase or their second?

While obviously a customer has to try—and like–your product or service once before they’ll buy it a second time, the second encounter is crucial for developing loyal customers. By the time a customer has made that second purchase, they’re well on their way to becoming a regular.

Here are some ways to encourage that second sale and establish a devoted customer base.

Continue reading How to Increase Repeat Business

DIY Market Research

Cover slide image for DIY Market Research

Market research is simply the process of finding answers to your questions about the market, your customers, and your competitors. Whether you’re launching a new business or growing an existing one, you can use Do-It-Yourself (DIY) market research to answer key questions, such as:

  • What trends are on the horizon? How can I use them to help me create or improve my products?
  • Are there people who want to buy my product or service, and if so, what’s the best way to reach them?
  • How many potential customers can I attract?
  • Who’s my competition?
  • Who are my current customers? How do they like what I offer?

Market research firms can provide the information you need or research it for you, BUT they usually charge thousands of dollars. Here are some free and low-cost tools you can use for Do-It-Yourself (DIY) market research. Continue reading DIY Market Research

Google Analytics: Get MORE From Your Website

Title image for Good Egg Marketing article on Google Analytics Basics

Every small business and organization should have at least a basic website. Even if you mostly talk to your customers on social media, you need a digital location where you can control how you present your business and where you store your digital content. (Don’t have a site yet? Here are some tips about using “Do-It-Yourself” website builders.)

Just having a website, however, isn’t good enough; your site should help you achieve your goals. Whether your primary goal is to attract customers, get newsletter subscribers, or let people know about your sales or daily specials, you need to know if your website is delivering for you.

In addition, you should be able to assess how well your site is working. Are online searches driving traffic to your site? Once visitors get to your site, are they spending time exploring your content? Is your site as easy to use on a cellphone as it is on a desktop?

So how do you know if you have an effective website? Enter Google Analytics.

What is Google Analytics?

Google Analytics (GA) is a Google Analytics Logofree program that enables you to track and measure whether your website is achieving your goals. It provides you with information that will help you tweak your site to grow your business. If you’re not using GA (or a comparable program), you’re missing out on an incredibly valuable tool.

Unfortunately, many small businesses and nonprofits aren’t taking advantage of GA because they think it’s too complicated. While GA does have sophisticated capabilities that take time to learn, the basic tools are helpful and relatively easy to use. This is the first article in a short series that will help you take advantage of GA.

Let’s start from the very beginning: the Google Analytics Home Page. Google recently rolled out a new landing page that provides helpful data that anyone can use, even if you know nothing about the program.

If you have GA already installed, open it up so you can follow along as I review the features of the new home page. (If you need to install it, here are instructions. You’ll have to install a snippet of code on your website, so if you’re not comfortable with that, you may need help for this piece. I promise–this is the only technical bit in this article.)

A Guide to the New Google Analytics Homepage

When you open your Google Analytics page, 10 Basic Reports will automatically upload with the latest data. These Basic Reports are designed to help you give you quick insights to help you understand your business. While you can customize them a little, you’ll want to look at the Full Reports that GA offers if you want to dig deeper,

There’s a link on the bottom right of each chart is to go to the full Google Analytics report. If you want to know more about that topic, click on that link. Take a look! You can get a lot more information from looking at the full report, even if you don’t do any customizing. To go back to the landing page, just click Home in the left hand navigation menu.

Key terms for using google analytics- Good Egg Marketing

Customizing the Date Range in Basic Charts

In the bottom left of most charts, there’s a drop down menu that lets you change the time period for the data. The default is 7 days, but you can choose from time ranges on the list—such as the last 90 days or last year—or set your own custom range.
How to change date range in Google Analytics
The rest of the data can’t be customized directly in this Home Page view. You will have to visit the Full Report in order to adjust other types of data you want to view.

Key Analytics Concepts

Google has a precise way of calculating each metric, but most of us don’t need to know the details. Here’s a simplified explanation of the terms used in Basic Reports.

Key analytics concepts by Good Egg Marketing

The Top 3 Charts for New GA Users

Audience Overview

Audience Overview is one of the most valuable of the Basic reports. In addition to providing you with the total number of Users and Sessions during your chosen time period, it tells you the bounce rate and average session duration.  An arrow with a percentage below each number tells you whether the number has increase or decreased over the time period.

At the bottom of this chart is a graph that maps the number of website visitors who used the site each day.

In the example to the rImage of Audience Overview on Google Analyticsight, a dark blue line shows how the daily website traffic to Good Egg Marketing varied over the past 30 days.  The light blue dotted line shows the daily traffic over the previous 30 days. There’s no obvious pattern in either month, but if I were comparing year-over-year visits, for example, I’d be able to tell whether visits typically go down or up during the summer.

This default chart shows the graph for Users.  If you click on one of the other data choices at the top of the chart (Users, Sessions, Bounce Rate, or Session Duration), a blue line will appear over that word to indicate that you are in that tab. The chart will shift to show a graphic of the daily statistics for that data during the current and previous time period.

Sessions by Device

I really like the “Sessions by device chart,” because I like Image of Google Analytics "Sessions by Device" chartknowing how many of my visitors are viewing the site from a cell phone. Although the majority are still desktop users, that number is going down, so I must make sure my site is easy to navigate on mobile devices. Some business should put more emphasis on mobile views than others. For example, if you’re a casual restaurant in an area with a lot of tourist traffic, mobile views are more important for your business than if you offer a gardening service that someone is more likely to research on their desktop than on their phone.

Customer Acquisition Report

This report packs a lot of information. Like the Audience Overview Chart, it has three tabs, so be sure to visit all of them.

Google Analytics User Aquisition Report

1. Traffic Channel: A traffic channel refers to the source or means by which you’re attracting people to your website.  GA has four default channels in this Basic Report: Direct, Organic, Referral and Other.

The Chart above is set for a 7 day period.  The dark blue color gives me a visual idea of how much traffic came from organic search each day.  As you can see, it fluctuated quite a bit. (I may want to drill down later to see if I can figure out why.) The Direct Traffic (slightly lighter blue) also varied, but not quite as much.

Traffic terms for google analytics by Good Egg Marketing

2. Source/Medium: The first term (Source) in Source/Medium refers to the channel that the traffic is coming from; the second term (Medium) refers to the type of category that the channel belongs to. For example, your source/medium could be google/organic (unpaid) or google/paid. If you’re running paid ads, you’d want to know how much traffic is coming from the paid ads versus the free listings.

The reason why this chart is useful is that instead of just telling you how much of your traffic (the Source) is organic, it can show you how much of that organic traffic is coming from Google vs. Bing (the Medium). If you notice that your traffic from Bing is increasing, for example, you may start paying more attention to Bing.

3. Referrals: This tab will show you which sites generated the most referrals during the designated  time period. If you notice that a particular website seems to have provided a lot of referrals, find out whether it’s a positive referral or potentially a spam site. If you go to that URL and like how they’re listing you, you may want to contact them and build a relationship.

You Can Do It!

Now, even if you do nothing more than look at your Google Analytics home page once a month, you’ll be able to get some interesting information. For those of you just starting out with Google Analytics, this will hopefully whet your appetite for doing more.

How to Get More from Twitter

How to Get More from twitter title image

Facebook is the undisputed social media king and Instagram is the new queen, but Twitter is a quick, easy-to-master marketing tool for many small businesses, nonprofits, and consultants. It can help you increase your visibility, drive web traffic, build relationships with customers and prospects, position yourself as a thought leader, or just keep up with trends.

This article is written for existing Twitter users, but if you can text, you can Tweet. Here’s a guide to get started on Twitter. (And even advanced users might find this Hootsuite Guide to Twitter Marketing helpful.)

Stupid Twitter Twicks

Want to get more from Twitter? Aside from the most obvious things (use popular hashtags); include a photo in your profile; and promote your Twitter page from your email signature, website and other social media), here are the tactics I’ve found most successful.

Tweeting while you’re attending an event (using the conference or event hashtag) is a surefire way to attract new followers and gain attention. (screen shot of you live tweeting magnified to circle the hashtags and user handles)

  • Announce that you’re attending the event and will be live tweeting, listen for pithy quotes from the speakers, summarize or comment on what’s going on, and share any useful or fun tidbits you can.
  • Quote the speakers by name, Twitter handle, and/or hashtag if you can, and they’re likely to retweet you.

Example of Myrna Greenfield live tweeting

  • Research the conference hashtag and the speakers’ Twitter handles in advance, so you don’t have to waste time during the event.
  • Follow the conference hashtag to see who else is tweeting and retweet as much as you can.
  • DM other people tweeting from the conference and meet them for coffee. I’ve met some great people and even gotten some business from connecting with other Tweeters at events.

Tweet Smarter

  • Check your analytics to see Screen shot of tweet deckwhich days/times you posted your most successful Tweets. The best times to Tweet differ for everyone –it depends on your followers.
  • Tweet frequently to increase the chance that your followers will see (and engage with) your Tweets. The most important thing to know is that the average life of a Tweet is about 18-24 minutes. After about three hours, your followers are unlikely to see your latest Tweet.
  • Write Twitter posts at night and schedule them to go up at your chosen time, if you find it hard to Tweet while you’re busy doing other things. You can schedule Tweets using social media engagement tool, like Hootsuite or TweetDeck. You can also schedule Tweets using Twitter. (screen show of tweet deck or just the image with a link)
  • Check Twitter several times a day so you can engage and respond to commenters and new followers. Take a few minutes to scan your feed and look for interesting Tweets you can like, retweet, mention, or comment on.

Use Lists

Hardly anyone seems to bother with Twitter lists, but they’re a useful way to keep track of the people you’re following and can help you attract followers and influencers.

  • Set up a list for each category of Example of Myrna Greenfield's twitter listspeople you follow. You can make your lists public or private (I keep most of mine public). Every time you follow someone new, add them to a relevant list. The people you add get a notification, which may motivate them to check you out and follow you.
  • Utilize lists to find relevant content. If you’re short on time or focused on a particular topic, you can just click on a list to just see Tweets from the people in that group. It’s also a good way to keep track of what your clients, your competitors, and influencers are saying.
    • Speaking of competitors, if you don’t want them to know you’re following them, you can add them to a private list without officially “following” them.
  • Subscribe to other people’s Twitter lists. This is a great way to find new people worth following.

By the way, if your Twitter lists are public, anyone can subscribe to them. So if you own an ice cream shop, you could create a list titled “Best Ice Cream in Boston” and include your business! Twitter lists show up in search engines, so if someone Googles “best ice cream boston twitter,” they will see your list in the search results and may check you out.

Include Images and Videos in your posts

  • Communicate with visual symbols whenever you can. Visual symbols are one of the most effective tools you can use to convey a message in a limited space. Tweets with images receive 150% more retweets than those without images. So use images with your Tweets whenever you can. You can include up to 4 photos in a Tweet.
  • Add some emotion or humor to your Tweets with Twitter’s animated GIFs Tap the icon to compose a Tweet and then tap the GIF logo at the bottom of the screen to look for the right GIF. (You can also include your own GIFs by clicking the photo icon.)
    • What’s better than a photo or GIF? A video!
  • Go live! Don’t have any premade videos? You can create a live video on Twitter. Give your followers a behind the scenes look at your business or offer tips.

Use Twitter Analytics (screen shot analytics)

  • Use the insights to figure out what topics (and style of posts) are most appealing to your followers and use that to plan your content. For example, I assumed that most of my followers would be foodies, but they’re even more obsessed with politics and current events.
    • To access your analytics, click on your image icon in the top right (Profile and Settings). Click on Profile & Settings and click on Analytics from the drop down menu.
    • Click each of the tabs in the top navigation menu for fascinating tidbits about your top Tweets, your followers and their interests, your profile visits, and more. Be sure to check out the submenus; for example, under the Audiences menu, click on Demographics to find out the region, age, sex, income level, and other info.
  • Screen shot of twitter analyticsShape content around Events. Click on the Events tab in Analytics, then check out the hashtags for upcoming events and recurrent trends (like #WellnessWednesday or #TB (Throwback Thursday)

How to Promote Your Local Business

Graphic for how to promote your local businessSmall, locally-owned, independent businesses continue to struggle as more consumers purchase products and services online, but here are three ways that business owners can succeed in our ever-changing environment.

1) Leverage the “Buy Local” Advantage

A growing number of US consumers are choosing to buy from locally-owned stores, services and producers, with over a third (39.3%) of US consumers saying that they prefer to buy local whenever possible.[i]

Studies show that consumers buy local for a variety of reasons:

  • They feel that local businesses provide better and more personalized customer service than national chains.[ii]
  • They believe that locally produced products are higher quality.
  • They want to support local vendors,[iii] help the economy, and help the environment.

Chart showing why people buy local

In other words, you have a significant advantage over national chains and giant ecommerce stores, because a significant number of customers already understand and prefer the value and values that you offer. But in order to leverage this advantage, you must make it easy for “buy local” customers to find you.

Who are these target customers? They’re like to be established homeowners with strong ties to their community and an interest in health and the environment.[iv] To help these customers find and remember you, strive to be as visible as possible in your community, communicate about what you offer and have an active local presence, both in-person and online.

2) Offer a Superior Experience

Of course, giant online businesses and big box stores have many of their own advantages, so you have to find other ways to compete. The behemoths can usually offer bigger product selections, lower prices, and greater convenience than locally-owned businesses. They also use sophisticated marketing techniques to collect data about your interests and behavior, so they can send you “personalized” ads and messages enticing you to buy.

Woman at farmers market
Creative Commons, USDA

In contrast to this type of virtual personalization, with its creepy Big Brother feel, small locally-owned businesses can offer a more authentic and valued method of personalization. You can recognize—or at least personally greet–each customer. You should know who your best customers are and reward them with offers or services that make them feel special.

Customers look to small businesses for their taste, expertise and advice. If customers need assistance, you can help them figure out what they need, and recommend the best product. And if you can’t provide it, you can send them somewhere that can.

You can also offer a superior experience by offering free samples, demos, live entertainment, and other activities that make customers look forward to patronizing your business.

3) Make the Most of Your Online Presence

The Internet has been a mixed bag for small, locally-owned businesses. While ecommerce has helped put some brick-and-mortar retailers out of businesses, having an online presence has helped many small businesses attract customers who would otherwise never have found them.

Online search has become an essential part of the shopping experience, even for dedicated “buy local” shoppers, with majority of searches taking place on smartphones and tablets. Three-quarters (76%) of people who do a local search on their smartphone visit a store within 24 hours and 28% of those searches result in a purchase.[v]

Consumers frequently use a mixture of online and in-store activities to research and purchase products and services. While some shoppers visit stores and then buy online because it’s cheaper or the selection is better, the reverse is also true. In fact, a higher percentage of shoppers actually research online and then come to stores to make a purchase than vice versa.[vi]

You can increase the likelihood that customers will come into your store to buy by spotlighting the products or services you offer on your website, reviews sites, or social media, even if you don’t enable people to order or book online. Providing information and photos, showcasing the quality of your work, sharing customer reviews and testimonials, and highlighting your values and commitment to the community will all help bring them in.

It’s no longer optional: All businesses need an online presence if they want to survive.

Search engines actually provide an advantage to local businesses. Because so many people are searching for products and businesses via their smartphones, Google and other search engines have changed the way that search engine results appear. When someone does a local search, such as “clothing stores near me,” Google highlights the three local businesses that are the most relevant to the user on a Google map, with links to the businesses’ websites and directions.

graphic showing google local searchGoogle uses many criteria to determine which sites get highlighted, but taking steps to “optimize your website for local search,” is a must. In addition, your website must be “mobile-friendly,” meaning that it’s easy to read and use on a smartphone and that the pages load fast. (Google has a free test you can use to determine whether it considers your site mobile-friendly.)

Google also likes to highlight websites that have claimed their free “Google My Business” listing. But you should also look for other online business directories and review sites where you can promote your business. In addition, solicit online reviews and try to be active on at least one or two social media channels.

Final note: As important as all these strategies are, most small businesses still attract the majority of their customers the old-fashioned way: A personal recommendation from someone that your prospective customer already knows and trusts. Great “Word of Mouth” will always be a competitive advantage.


[i] “Buying Local” – Survey by AYTM

[ii]Yodle Insights: What Consumers Want from Local Businesses

[iii] “How to Succeed in (Small) Business” – Toluda “QuickSurvey”

[iv] “Buying Local” – Survey by AYTM

[v] “I-Want-To-Buy-It Moments: Mobile’s Growing Role in a Shopper’s Purchase Decision” – Think With Google article

[vi] State of Retail 2017 Report – TimeTrade Survey

Relaunching my Website: Lessons Learned

Relaunching my Website: Lessons Learned

Good Egg Marketing specializes in building websites, so when I wanted to create a new site for our own business, I figured it’d be a snap.

If I’d just wanted to give the site a facelift, but keep the same content, it would have been simple. But I was determined to create an easy-to-navigate site with lots of useful stuff and a fun, distinctive look.

Admittedly, I was busy running my business, so I wasn’t working on the site all the time. But all in all, it took over two years to complete!

Whether you’re starting a new website from scratch or building a new one, here are a few tips on how to create or relaunch a site, based on my lessons learned.

Start with Your Goals

I was really clear about what I wanted the new site to achieve and that helped me stay true to my vision throughout the process. Here are my three goals:

  1. Drive traffic to the site by providing useful content that people find on Google and other search engines. Yoast logoOver the years, I’ve written dozen of articles on a variety of business and marketing topics, but I never paid much attention to search engine optimization (SEO). This time, I used Yoast SEO to help ensure that each article focused on a specific topic and keyword.
  2. Encourage people to spend time exploring the website by making it easy to navigate. The content on my old site wasTools and Resources page from Good Egg Marketing Website grouped by date and format—articles, newsletters, and presentations—rather than by topic. The site organization made sense to me—and no one else. The new site organizes content by topic and by audience, so visitors can find what they need faster.
  3. Encourage people to hire us by showcasing our past work. When most people visit the Good Egg Marketing site, they’re already interested in us, but need to be convinced that we can help them. I included testimonials, case studies, and a list of our speaking engagementsTestimonial from Good Egg Marketing Website and clients. The content showcases our expertise; our client roster demonstrates that people have confidence in our work.

As I look at the analytics to see how people are using the site each month, I’ll be able to tweak it to achieve my goals.

Focus on Your Customers

As a marketer, I’m always telling clients to put themselves in their customers’ shoes  and address their needs.

The websites for many marketing company websites lead with who they are, what they do, and how they do it. All important stuff to include, Homepage from Good Egg Marketing Websitebut not at the top of your home page.

Our new site directly addresses frazzled business owners who feel overwhelmed by all their marketing choices.  A series of rotating marketing tips complements a short video that expands on that advice in a friendly, informal style.

Get the Visuals Right

The biggest challenge for the redesign was coming up with a distinctive look. Since marketing services are intangible, it’s hard to find an image that expresses what marketing is. I didn’t want to be yet another site featuring a photo of a flower or a mountain.

After playing with a variety of concepts, including a recreation of my desktop strewn with tools of the marketing trade, I was at my wit’s end.

General layout for Good Egg Marketing WebsiteI finally went to a graphic designer I’d worked with many years ago and started with a clean slate.  She interviewed me about my vision and ideas for over an hour. Ultimately, she came up with a dramatic, abstracted version of the Good Egg Marketing logo–a green egg!–that sets the tone for the site through shapes and colors.

Once she created the basic look for the home page, I was able to write headlines and text that complemented those images and she created additional pages that built on the same format. My web developer was able to turn her images into a flexible WordPress design and everything else fell into place.

Bake Mobile into Your Site from the Start

I knew all along that my website needed to look good, load quickly, and be easy to use on a mobile device. These days, Google and other search engines penalize you if your site isn’t mobile-friendl­y. Unfortunately, I didn’t put enough thought into how the images would work on mobile when we developed the site. Mobile version of Good Egg Marketing Website

We created the desktop site first, meticulously tweaking it to get it to look just right. But when we looked at the site on a cell phone, many of the graphics didn’t line up correctly. We were using a mobile responsive design, but the graphics needed extra tweaking. Ultimately, we were able to create an acceptable mobile version, but it required additional time and expense.

If you look at the analytics for your current site, you can see what proportion of your visitors are viewing your site on a desktop versus a mobile device. Even if you don’t have a lot of mobile visitors now, mobile will eventually take over, so you should bake mobile design into your site from the start.

It Takes a Team

Good Egg Marketing Website TeamJust need a simple site with basic information about who you are, what you offer, and why you’re in business? If you have good computer skills and the time, you can probably create a website singlehandedly. There are plenty of free or inexpensive website builder programs that let you DIY (do it yourself) pretty easily. If you want to create a unique looking site or organize lots of content, however, don’t try this on your own!

I managed the project and wrote the copy, but over the two years, I worked with two graphic designers, three assistants, a web developer/videographer, and a search optimization expert. Instead of bringing these talented people together as a team, I worked with them individually and sequentially. It seemed more efficient at the time, but in retrospect, putting a team together from the start would have saved time and money in the long run.

If I were starting over again, I would also decide which project management, storage, and communications tools I wanted the team to use.  We shared and stored some of our work on Google Drive and Dropbox, but we didn’t use them as consistently or effectively as we could have. In the future, I plan to use Trello and Dropbox for my personal projects, as well as with clients.

Final Thoughts

A good website isn’t static, like a printed brochure. It’s a living thing that you need to keep feeding and buying new clothes.

If you have a well-planned site, you should be able to adjust it as needed without needing a full redesign every six months. But, like fashion, web technology and design move so quickly that it’s inevitable that I’ll crave a new look eventually. When it comes time to build the new site, I plan to reread this article and take my own advice.