Why should every Small Business adopt Business Intelligence?

Every business has the need for analyzing data to ascertain their current condition and procrastinate future endeavors. Most business decisions lie on analyzing the Big Data which helps to make important decision to minimize loss and increase profit and growth in the long run.

Small businesses have yet to leverage the power of big data the way their large counterparts do.

Business Intelligence (BI) or more commonly referred to as Business Analytics is a technology-driven process for analyzing data and presenting information to the respective stakeholders. Most complex data which may range from past records, individual customer data, transaction history, individual transaction, financial records, sales, ROI, and expenditure etc. Analyzing these into an actionable information requires a sound professional or tools.

The larger benefits of adopting business intelligence include accelerating and improving decision-making, optimizing internal processes, increasing operational efficiency, driving new sales and gaining a competitive advantage over other. It also helps the business identify market trends and spot problems that need to be addressed.

Essentials of Business Intelligence

Data Analysis

Fundamentally, Business Intelligence is about using data to make a better decision. A BI professional or BI tools must be good at examining many different sources of data and making accurate conclusions about them.

Problem-solving

The best advantage of using BI is that it helps to solve greater problems. BI isn’t just about analyzing data. It’s also about creating business strategies and solving real-life problems.

Specific industry knowledge

Every data is industry specific. BI can be adopted by any industry and used to analyze specific data to drive conclusions. BI helps to tackle the industry dynamics. It can be used for smaller or bigger business purposes.

Communication skills

BI helps in communicating between different departments or internally and externally to various parties. If you work in front-end part of the business, it becomes essential to inform your non-technical clients about the technical data. With the help of BI, you can easily inform your clients.

The use of BI Tool

The benefits of business intelligence tool far outweigh the investments it entails. It can help businesses gain valuable insights to access growth, resolve urgent concerns, collate marketing data, provide a real-time view of the organization and allow for the procrastination of future outcome using predictive analytics and forecasting.

How can Searchable Design help?

Searchable Design is a group of experienced Tech professionals helping business adopt and acquire technology-related information, tools, and more. We can help design a custom BI tool to expedite your business processes at a reasonable rate.

Why use Graphics in your website?

The audience is more likely to indulge in images and graphics than a bland page full of text and white space.

According to the Social Science Research Network, 65% of the audience are visual learners, meaning relying on images or graphics to communicate or comprehend information.

A graphic may include graphical images, interactive images, textual images, animation, or videos.  Graphics offer a versatility that photos simply can’t provide. It adds visual/aesthetic appeal to the information on the web page, helping to maintain viewer interest and attention.

Few Guidelines for using Graphics in a website

  1. Graphics should perfectly fit in with the purpose, composition, and style of the page. They should enhance the overall design, structure, or information on the web page. The idea is not to overdo it. You should give a thought about what sort of graphics and color will go with your website and design the graphics afterward.
  2. Always avoid using graphics with large file sizes. Large file sizes add to the load time of the webpage which may discourage website visitors to take any further action in the website. Consider the webpage size and graphics file size. Excessive “page weight” caused by poor image use can result in slow load times for pages.
  3. Graphics should help to guide the visitor's focus to the important content or section of the webpage and help to drive their interest from the overall to the specific. Graphics must be strong and to the point, otherwise irrelevant graphics will distract the user.
  4. Avoid the use of loud graphics or overly bright and obnoxious images on the webpage. These types of graphics. These types of "eye-catching" images are attractive but wear off too soon if the content of the web page isn’t strong enough.
  5. Avoid using graphics as the alternative to textual content information. Textual content is likely to be indexed by the search engine for SEO ranking and other benefits. However, only adding a graphic or image won’t complete the purpose. One big disadvantage is that the Images of text can't be resized like true text, so users with poor vision are unable to resize it to meet their visual needs.
  6. Provide textual equivalent alternatives for graphic content. Do remember that not all website visitors are able to comprehend the images on your web page. Whenever images are used, it is important to provide equivalent descriptive content or information of the image in a textual format. The most common way this is done is to provide descriptive text using the ALT attribute.
  7. When using text in graphics, make sure there is sufficient contrast between the text and the background color. Design graphic elements so that users can easily distinguish the text from its background. Also, be sure to avoid color combinations.

There are many ways to use graphics on your website and for other advertising or marketing purpose. You should be careful while using the graphics to convey information.

How to effectively use Linkedin for Business?

With over 500million users, Linkedin has already proved to be a pivotal social networking site. Targeted for businesses and Business professionals, Linkedin has mostly been eclipsed by Twitter and Facebook in recent years. However, there are still a greater amount of users or audience in Linkedin which makes it a thriving website for businesses.

Starting a business page in Linkedin is the first step of marketing. However, this isn't all.

Here are some of the tips for promoting your business in Linkedin

Create a Company Page

The first step in sending a word out to the world is to create a company page. Without a company or business page, your marketing approach will be very limited to only a few. It helps you separate your individual profile from your business by creating a page that includes essential information about your business, its whereabouts, principles, services etc.

2. Use LinkedIn Polls

Online polls are one great way to entice the audience into offering their choices which can prove to be useful for your marketing, sales or development goals. LinkedIn Polls lets you create polls and distribute them to your networks you want to hear from. You can view and analyze the results.

3. Answer a Question

Q&A forum is another great way to indulge your audience or potential customers into interactive feedback. You can also share your knowledge or expertise. Share your business knowledge and expertise, and help others find solutions to their problems.

4. Join Groups

Joining groups help to find a niche group for your business on Linkedin. You can leverage your membership by participating in discussions and indulge in finding more ways to share your voice. Each time you participate, your basic bio is shared with other members of the group.

5. Create a Group

Create a company-branded group for your clients and/or colleagues to facilitate discussion about your industry. A collaboration-based group, created and managed by your company, can be an excellent way to get your company name out there and recognizable.

6. Post Status or Updates

You can freely use the status updates to post your thoughts, views, news and useful posts with your followers. This helps to send out the word to the mass.

7. Ask for Recommendations

You can ask your users to drop in their recommendations or testimonials. These reviews help to highlight your business profile to target new audiences. Recommendations can be a great “proof of excellence” tool.

8. Advertise

One essential Linkedin tool is advertising. You can target niche audience by promoting advertisements which help to attract their attention. You can target your ads based on geography, job function and seniority, industry and company size, and gender and age.

9. Post Job Opportunities

You can fill in positions by hiring professionals through Linkedin. It is a goldmine of potential professionals which helps to cut cost on finding or hiring talents.

There are many other great ways to use Linkedin to fulfill your business need. The possibilities are endless.

Benefits of Implementing Software Architecture

Software architecture is basically used when designing or redesigning a software. It comprises high-level structures of a software system and the discipline of creating such structures and systems. These structures carry various software elements, relation, and properties.

Most people are unaware of why it is built in the first place? And, what is its actual use? Hence, they believe it isn’t for them. Anyone looking to build a software for their business must understand software architecture and its benefits.

What is Software Architecture?

Alike engineering architecture, Software architecture acts as a blueprint for the software system and the project. The architectural elements comprise of the work assignments that must be carried out. It also acts an information layout to describe the software and its properties to the stakeholders (Designers, marketers, customer etc.)  It helps to bring uniformity in information sharing and bring everyone on the same table.

Benefits of using Software Architecture

Software architecture is actually built to give information to non-tech people about the overall of the software they wish to own. There are many benefits to implementing software architecture.

Analysis of Software

It gives an overall analysis of software design, implementation and behavior before the system is actually built.  The proper analysis verifies that the software being built meets the stakeholder’s requirement. It also helps to save time and cost on building a prototype.

Scalable

Software architecture offers complete scalability of software development. Every step in designing a software can be scaled for measuring the productivity, practicability, issues, and for compiling the report to submit to the stakeholders.

Design Decision

You can actually decide about the design without building a prototype. Each element in the software architecture is laid out to help decide the end product. A software architect sees the bigger picture. As it offers the complete software development lifecycle, a person can track the entire evolvement of the software.

Risk Management

Software architecture helps to mitigate risks in the development process. It facilitates communication with stakeholders at each step. Communicating helps to solve any possible errors or mismanagement to prevent risk in the future. Architecture gives the ability to communicate about design decisions before the system is implemented when they are still relatively easy to adapt.

Cost Reduction

The best advantage of building software architecture is that it minimizes the cost. With the help of software architecture, you need not build any demo or prototype to present to the stakeholders. Also, the well-designed software helps to minimize the operational and other associated costs of the business. The software can also be reused or recycled. For instance, the architecture may show that multiple database systems could be changed so only one product is used, reducing software and support costs.

5 Ways to Improve User Experience

A guest waiting to be served for over 30 minutes in a diner is likely to walk out even when the diner offers great service afterwards. Retaining the customer is a confluence of both art and science. Serving the right product at right time and in the right manner is a must.

Usability deals with the overall user experience in a website. The ease in searching for desired products, alternatives, information to back the product and accessible purchasing or ordering options determine the user experience.

Usability and Aesthetics goes hand in hand. Aesthetics helps in appealing the customer and user experience will help retain them for a longer period of time. To ensure lesser bounce rate (Website abandonment), higher conversion or turn-outs and retaining, you must focus equally on aesthetics and usability of a website.

Landing Page

Over 75% of visitors search for website through Search Engine.

Over the time, the taste of visitors have changed from casually surfing website to finding a niche website to buy product or services.

The page referred by Search Engine primarily goes to your website’s landing page. Landing page is a web page which serves as the entry point for a website or a particular section of a website created specifically for the purposes of a marketing or advertising campaign.

The landing page must be relevant to the product or service advertised. A poor landing page can overturn the visitor’s interest and instead increase the bounce rate.

UI/Design

User interface (UI) in web design covers the overall aspect maximizing usability through better user interaction. The basic website UI elements include tables, buttons, dialogs, and others.

The goal of user interface design is to produce better results through easy, efficient, and user-friendly operation of website and it’s components. To increase user experience, a website must provide minimal input to achieve the desired output. This helps to retain interest of the website visitors.

Load time

From the time a user inserts the website address in the browser’s address bar and until the server receives the request and loads up the website in user’s browser is basically called load time, server load time or website load time.

With the better internet connection lately, the load time has decreased exponentially. However, the users with slower internet connection still have to face the issue of high load time for the websites that hasn’t yet adopted responsive or user-friendly design.

CTA

CTA or Call to Action is a direct-response advertising messages designed to envoke visitors to take certain action. For websites, CTA can range from a banner, button, or some type of graphic or text meant to prompt a user to click it, and continue down a conversion funnel for lead generation, downloads, sales or inquiry.

"Call now", "Find out more" or "Visit a store today" are few of the most used CTAs in any website. However, only adding CTA won’t be enough to nurture visitors into lead. The smart use of design and relevance of content along with CTA inserted to help a visitor take prompt action is important.

Content

Content is a copy of text or information in a website added to provide insight on the business, products or services. An enticing copy or content is the major determinant for establishing the relevance or authority of any website.

The content is always targeted to an end-user, which helps to provide them information on the product or services they’re seeking to purchase or use.


Learn more about smart web designing process to build a great website.

5 New Digital Trendsetters

The digital landscape is ever changing. The advent of World Wide Web in 1990s gave way to the untapped digital resource, sharing of information and virtual reality. The possibilities for an individual and business widened to unimaginable length. Today, if we are to leave the digital-scape, the world may look bland.

People keep inventing newer ideas, however, only few ever catch up with the audience. Here are some of those digital trends which set a landmark.


Augmented Reality

Augmented Reality is a technology that superimposes a digitally-generated image as a composite image. The digital image becomes the new reality of the user. When compared to other reality technologies, augmented reality lies in the middle of the mixed reality spectrum; between the real world and the virtual world.

Pokemon Go is probably the best and the most popular example of augmented reality. Today, it is used not only in gaming but also in medical and scientific sectors.

The origin of the word augmented is augment, which means to add or enhance something. In the case of Augmented Reality (also called AR), graphics, sounds, and touch feedback are added into our natural world to create an enhanced user experience.

Bitcoin

Bitcoin is probably the best example of how a digital commodity can exchange the real commodity.

Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency or a form of electronic money. Cryptocurrency can exist only digitally. It is a decentralized digital currency without any regulation from bank or monetary institution. They can be sent from user-to-user on the peer-to-peer bitcoin network without the need for intermediaries. The bitcoin transactions are verified by network nodes through cryptography and recorded in a public distributed ledger called a blockchain.

DID YOU KNOW? The first known exchange of bitcoin took place to buy a Pizza.

Virtual Reality

Virtual Reality (VR) specifies an artificial environment that is computer-generated and presented to the user in such a way that it intercepts with the reality. On a computer screen, virtual reality is primarily experienced through two of the five senses: sight and sound. There are two types of VR

  • The simulation of a real environment for training and education.
  • The development of an imagined environment for a game or interactive story.

This interactive environment is more of an augmented reality that can be similar to the real world or as per the user’s interest or need.

Automation

Automation basically stands for a mechanical process dictated by repeated operation of certain task. The automation was largely used for the operation of equipment in a manufacturing plant. Today, automation is used in medical, science and digital processes. Automation in digital world mainly works in various processes, such as; sales, marketing, production, supply chain, inventory control, administration, IT and management.

Artificial intelligence and machines will soon become ubiquitous in the professional world. Though humans are indispensable in certain fields, there are many points of optimization that we can fully automate with embedded technology.

Data Science

Data science deals with scientific methods, processes, algorithms and systems to extract knowledge and insights from data in various forms, both structured and unstructured. The data is mostly in digital form, however in some cases, the data be physical too.

Data science is the study of where information comes from, what it represents and how it can be turned into a valuable resource in the creation of business and IT strategies. The digital landscape is controlled by the inflow of data, without it, most processes cease to exist.

What is an SEO Friendly Page?

SEO or Search Engine Optimization is a commonly referred name in the digital world. Every business seems to be chasing the SEO to fulfill their business mission through their website.

But what is a SEO friendly page? How can it affect a website’s presence in the Google? And, how can it help bring in the much needed customer or revenue?

SEO is the process of maximizing the number of visitors to a particular website by ensuring that the site appears high on the list of results returned by a search engine. But how do you make your website a search engine friendly, so you can maximize the number of visitors into your website?

An SEO friendly page basically means a web page which complies with the criteria of a web-page design relevant to Google’s algorithm or the web page ranking formula. Also known as the ‘organic method,’ SEO helps website to become more user friendly which in return brings in better presence in Google.


Here are few of the essentials of an SEO Friendly Page

An Accessible URL

The first thing that determines your SEO approach is the accessibility of URL. Specifically, that’s a URL that Google’s bots can easily reach and crawl. A website must be accessible for the Google bot to reach and read the content, which requires a simple URL which hasn’t been restricted in anyway.

To ensure that, you can consider adding robots.txt file that basically informs Google and other bots where to look for in a website. Similarly, a sitemap informs Google what to look for.

Page Speed (Including Mobile Page Speed)

Although the improving internet connection around the world allows a user to access a webpage at no time, Google still considers this an important factor in judging whether a web page meets the SEO guidelines. Page speed has been cited as one of the main SEO ranking factors for years. A fast loading web page doesn’t only help the search engine but generic users too who are the prime audience of any website.

Mobile Friendliness

Over 70% of total web searches is generated through mobile phones or cellular devices. The need for a website which caters every single device is a necessity. Mobile friendliness or responsive website is the major factor determining the ranking in Google as well as generic users.

Google’s mobile-first index is now a reality, which means it’s drawing its results from mobile-optimized sites first, rather than sites geared to desktop computers.

Domain Age, URL and Authority

The authority of any website also comes from the age of domain. Did you know that nearly 60% of the sites that have a top ten Google search ranking are three years old or more? The younger the domain, the more it needs SEO.

Similarly, the domain should always be generic to avoid any penalty from Google.

Optimized Content

“Content is the King!” Indeed, content is the king when it comes to determining best websites. Content is the valuable portion of any website which delivers the information to users. In return, it helps a website to rank in the Google. The use of keyword is possible through the content. The content may include website information, blogs, images, graphics, videos etc.

However, you must be certain that the content you have generated isn’t a duplicate content. Plagiarism is highly penalized by Google. One negative SEO ranking factor to be aware of is duplicate content. For SEO, fresh, original content is always best.

These are the most important factors in determine a SEO friendly web page. Other important SEO factors are User Experience (RankBrain), Links, Social Signals, and Real Business Information.

6 Essentials of Email Newsletter

An Email-newsletter is a digital marketing tool designed for sending news, product launch, marketing goodies and reports to users online. A newsletter has transpired from written to digital form for covering various aspects of the business or entity to inform its members, customers, employees or people, who are interested in.

E-newsletters are delivered electronically via emails. Most marketing related emails tend to land in Spam or Junk folder of the user if e-mail marketing is sent unsolicited.

Here are 6 essential aspect of designing any email Newsletter.

1. Creative and Simple Subject Lines

Most emails tend to land in Junk or go unnoticed by the user because the subject is too promotional in nature or is outright bland and irrelevant. Most of the email recipients do a quick scan by just reading your subject line. If you wish to increase CTR (click through rate) or open rate of your email then try to offer more enticing and creative subjects for your email.

2. Segment Your Audience

It’s important to know your audience. Sending out materials to irrelevant audience can render in loss of time and resources. It also increases bounce rate of emails. Understand your market and audience’s taste before deciding an audience-segment to target your email strategy. The success of any email campaigns highly depends how well you have understood your audience and their needs.

Email personalisation is another way of making your email more enticing to your audience, with message directed in-person.

3. Continuous Conversation

Email newsletter helps to capture your customer or audience’s attention for a long time. For any business, retaining old customers and keeping in touch plays an important role. Email marketing does the same by conversing with your customer, so they keep you in their mind.

4. Informative Content

Every email newsletter is driven by the content. If the content of your email doesn’t address the subject is unable to fulfill the need of the reader, there are likely chances that they’ll drop you in the Blocked-List or delete your email right away. Make sure your email campaigns are not full of self-promotion. Keep your readers interested by including informative or entertaining or problem solving content in your email message. Make sure your email message has not more than 10% of promotional content and rest of the 90 % must contain latest news, events, or address their pain points.

5. Design & Layout

Another major aspect of email newsletter is the overall design and layout. A minimalist design works better than the rich designs. Irrespective to whatever email marketing services you use, make sure that you create a template design meeting your business and marketing requirements. The email marketing software allow you to use their pre-formatted templates for your specific needs.

6. Social Media Integration

Most companies choose to integrate social media channels or feed in the newsletter. By including social media icons in your email message, you allow your audience to connect with you. A newsletter can include more than social media channels, your website and blogs can be integrated too.

 

6 Essentials of Website Design

Website is the front desk of any business or individual. Owning a website which serves the purpose of bring a business to the forefront and serving the customers is essential.

Here are 6 essential of website design every website owner must adhere to ensure success in the long-term.

A Strong, but Limited, Color Palette

Digital color is generally distinguished into RGB. The RGB color model is an additive color model in which red, green and blue light are added together in various ways to reproduce a broad array of colors. A website needs to look enticing, for this it requires the strong use of limited color which speaks the purpose of the website or business.

This might sound boring, but color schemes palettes are very important when it comes to website design. Using too much color can create distraction for the viewers.

Plenty of White Space

White space is a digital term used for the amount of "empty" space that acts as a buffer between all the elements on your page. Too much content into a web page can make it look cluttered. White space helps to prevent this by offering enough empty space to create a balance for the eye.

Designing your website with balanced used of white space makes for a clean design that is easily digestible and organized and gives an impression of a minimalist style.

Relevant Calls-to-Action

Conversion is essential for any website with a purpose of bringing in leads, sales or other actions. It is more than just a medium of information. Websites are meant to connect you with the people who are interested in your content, products, and services.

Some of the common relevant CTAs are email newsletter forms, free downloadable ebooks/whitepapers, contact form, inquiry forms, booking forms etc.

Clean Back-end Coding

What a visitors sees is a front-end of any website. The back-end or codes is the one running the entire website. The usability of any digital product is only possible through coding. A successful website is mix of both visual and functional output.

Most websites fail to launch properly due to errors or problem in the back-end coding. Basically, all the functions of a website is dictated by back-end resources, hence, a clean and proper coding is essential to run a website.

Design for the User First

A website is built for a user. A user comes first when you decide to build a new website.

Responsive web design creates a user-friendly platform. It is a unique concept of designing a website that fits every browser or screen sizes on variety of devices with ease. Responsive websites are built with user response and user experience in mind. The need for ease in access and information made way for websites which are rendered effortlessly in any web browser or devices for the users. As over 90% of online customers own smart phones, building a website which responds to their need is essential.

SEO-Boosting Elements

Today, people search for everything online. Google is the ultimate source of finding anything online. And, to attract the visitors to visit or surf your website you need to be ranked at the top. SEO boosting elements in any website decides if you’ll rank in Google and in what position.

Unique and relevant contents, easy navigation, clean codes, rich-texts, SSL or website security, and use of keywords are few major determinants of any SEO.


Learn more about website design essentials for your business website

Shopping Cart & Types of E-Commerce Website

A shopping cart is a digital shopping feature added to any retailer or seller's website that facilitates the easy purchase of a product or service. Some of the rudimentary features of shopping cart are;

  • It accepts online payment.
  • It facilitates online shopping.
  • It facilitates shipping of the purchased product.
  • It keeps history of sales; individual sale, revenue, date and time etc.
  • It facilitates retailer to manage the Product Catalogs.
  • It lets a customer to sort and select their desired product.
  • It facilitates transaction between B2C and B2B.

E-commerce website stands for a digital platform where commercial transactions are conducted. A website facilitates a retailer to add e-commerce and later shopping cart options to sell their products online.

Some of the common E-commerce platform;

  • Magento
  • Shopify
  • 3dcart
  • WooCommerce
  • PrestaShop
  • BigCommerce

Some of the common E-commerce features;

Payment Options

E-commerce allows easy payment option for the customers. Most online buyers prefer to pay by credit card, which can be facilitated by E-commerce feature. To enable online processing of credit card transactions with a real-time payment gateway, you'll need a merchant account.

E-commerce also allows alternative payment systems for buyers who do not wish to use their credit card online. PayPal, Google Checkout, money orders and wire transfer are few examples of alternative payments which allows buyers to shop safely.

Site Search & Browse

Visitors to online stores have a need for speed - and it starts with time-saving search. Consumers expect online stores to allow them to search for a product and quickly find the product they want. Customers also navigate via categories, along with browsing by price, category and brand distinctions. If your E-commerce shopping cart does not include a search feature for your site, your visitor may simply decide to look elsewhere.

Product Reviews

Over 63% of online customers indicate that they are more likely to buy from a website if it has product ratings and reviews from previous customers. E-commerce enables a feature to add customer review and ratings for individual products, also helping to highlight the ‘popular products’.

Wish List

The ‘Wish list’ option allows customers to save their preferred items at online store and return at a later date to purchase those items. E-commerce shopping lets customers decide when to buy their product, hence, decreasing the chances of cart abandonment rate.

Real-Time Inventory

It's a common problem for most buyers to experience the situation where they place an order for a certain product only to find the purchased item wasn’t in stock. With effective E-commerce system, you can manage real-time inventory for available products.

Express Checkout

Most checkout processes at many online stores or websites can be a lot frustrating. The lengthy check-out leads to cart abandonment in most cases, hence you lose a potential customer. Most modern e-commerce comes with express checkout system. They offer registered users to check-out at a go, which saves time and effort.

Order Tracking

An E-commerce should let the customer track their order, which helps to build their confidence. Automated order confirmation emails and shipping notification keeps your customer informed from the time they buy and until they receive the product.

Special Offers

Season-end Sale, Holiday Offer, Gifts and Discounts are few of the special offers you can post in your website or email newsletter to keep your audience informed. E-commerce helps you promote special offers options to add discount, coupon codes, free shipping and gift cards etc. Most E-commerce comes with CRM facility which allows you to send automated email newsletter to your registered users.

Website Security

It is essential to get your website built-in with SSL data encryption for website security. Online consumers feel safer when dealing with an encrypted website and favor only to pay online through encrypted sites.