Have you noticed the shift in the brick and mortar retail business?  These days it’s not just about offering stuff to buy; it’s about creating an experience for the consumer.  Shops are creating atmospheres that are distinctive and consistent in order to attract a defined audience.  Restaurants, libraries, retail… it’s all becoming an entertainment business.

How can we transfer this trend into our web pages?

Websites and blogs have long offered a way to create an online presence –a  clean, helpful, organized, intelligent, and visually appealing online presence that creates an authentic atmosphere is a must for the work from home professional.  Whether it’s a site that sells you or your product and or services you need to stand out in an ever growing web of sameness.

A good example of presence without uniqueness the MLM replicated sites.  These are great tools for closing a sale, but they do not help you stand out or create an experience for your customer.  Think of your favorite restaurant.  What makes that restaurant stand out for you and then ask yourself how you can project a similar experience… beyond the food, how is the service, the atmosphere, how do you feel spending money there???

I love checking out musician/artist sites.  They’re not worried about turning away certain people that stubble upon their site because they know they’re not for everyone.  Most play their music on the front page and offer various ways to purchase it.  You can do something similar. Companies like reverbnation allow you to place widgets of bands you like onto your site and the “plays” from your site are recorded on the band’s page – giving them more exposure.  There are sites offering royalty free music in which you can download (usually for a fee) and have that music playing in the background of your site.

Pictures and video are another great way to not only drive traffic, but to have a site that stands out.  The Flip has made it easier than ever to record a quick video, edit and upload within minutes.  Anything from how to guides to favorite things and offering insight into your local town can create a distinct atmosphere for your business.  Creating slideshows with photos can show a progression of your business and can be easily incorporated into your website using tools like flickr.

Adding these ideas to a website creates a site that offers more than information and a place to check out; it offers an experience!

To Your Finanical Health!

Tami Ross

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