Agri Finance – Your Key to Modern Financial Advancement

 

Agri Finance is the most important financial tool for all of us. It helps in managing various types of loans, apart from the regular type of loans, effectively. This type of loan is offered by several banks and financial institutions. This loan is used for various purposes such as purchasing machinery, homes, automobiles, travel and leisure, etc.

Agri finance is one of the largest global players in the finance industry. It offers various types of finance options to a number of corporate clients, which are broadly classified into two segments. These include the core segment and the non-core segment. The core segment mainly caters to small and medium sized businesses. The second segment mainly caters to large businesses and corporates.

These days, many online financial services websites are available. You can search for these on the internet and get a plethora of loan options. Depending upon your choice and requirement, you can apply for the loan. The loan application is processed immediately after the submission. Hence, it is quick and easy process. The application is free of any formality and can be submitted online.

There are various advantages of opting for the agri-finance loan. The loan is suitable for almost all types of businesses. It can cater to the needs of any type of company. These can be private or public limited companies.

The various loans that are offered by this company include the variable rate loans and the fixed rate loans. These are suitable for those who do not want to make their repayments with the interest rates going high. These also come under the secured and unsecured option. The flexible loan is available for those who need some money at short term. This can be availed without any kind of collateral.

Agri finance offers the customers a wide range of facilities. These include facilities related to the credit history. These will help the customer to get the loans easily. This can also be obtained if the customer has a good or bad credit history. The various credit checks and records help in getting the best deal for the finance.

The various branches of the company to help the customer to manage the loan in an easy way. The customer can choose a branch according to his requirements. The various branches of the company include the traditional, direct, indirect and virtual branches. The online facility can also be chosen for the purpose of applying for the loan. This helps the customers to apply from the convenience of their homes.

Agri finance provides loans at competitive rates. This helps in increasing the sales of the business. It helps to maintain the business in the existing conditions. This also provides the business with the required financial backup. The collateral based loan helps in securing the interest rate for the business. The rate of interest is kept low and the repayment duration is long.

There are some formalities that have to be fulfilled by the business. The formalities include the declaration of the identity, the submission of the business and personal details, etc. The process of verification includes the verification of the current credit history of the company. The loan is approved only when the details provided by the customer to satisfy the above mentioned criteria.

The loan is collateralized by the value of the assets owned by the person. The business has the right to sell off these assets and pay off the loan amount in a specified period of time. If the person does not repay the credit finance, then his assets are sold off and other creditors get the money.

The interest rates are very competitive. They are slightly higher than the normal market rates. This makes it easier for the people to avail this facility. The terms and conditions are very flexible. The customer can choose between the fixed term, the balloon payment and the installment payments.

There are also many entrepreneurs who do not want to have a long term relationship with the lender. This is a very common problem in the USA. However, there is help at hand through the Agri-Corporates Program that helps small businesses expand their business and increase their profitability. With the help of this fund, you can even hire professionals who will assist you in running your business and also help you with the documentation and legal issues.

Vape Shop NZ – A Place to Get Smoked Fish Flavours

 

While the physical Vape Shop has closed its doors for the time being, it’s still a delight to visit and try out the vaporizers and other merchandise. In fact, there are so many new products in the market that even those who haven’t been keeping up with the latest trends can find something of interest. And you can also now get all the services from your local Vapor Shop such as advice on which specific products will be good for you, delivery and even after sales service.

The Vapor Shop NZ is one of the most popular places to go to. The friendly ambiance, the knowledgeable staff and of course, the various options and merchandise always make it a great experience. So if you’re looking to buy vapour equipment, you might want to consider visiting the Vapor Shop NZ.

The vaporizers and other merchandise at Vapor Shop NZ have everything you need to start enjoying an electronic cigarette experience. If you’ve tried smoking with traditional cigarettes but they made you cough, then you’ll find what Vapor Shop NZ has to offer is exactly what you need. You can choose from a wide array of electronic products that can give you the perfect smoking experience without causing harm to your body. They also offer a great variety that will make sure you find the product that’s best suited for you.

The Vapor Shop is located in the central city in Wellington, New Zealand. There is a wide selection of specialty shops scattered throughout the city. For example, you will not only find the Vapor Shop but also The Big Easy Vapor Bar, Cool Mist Cafe, Blue Carafe Coffee, Vapor Chef, Cravings Confectionery and so many more. If you love coffee, then you can experience all of the different beverages offered at the Vapor Shop. It’s also where you can enjoy your meals and purchase anything from sandwiches, muffins, tea to doughnuts and much more. The shop offers a wide range of items that you can find enticing and tempting.

It doesn’t matter whether you are a beginner or a veteran, you are guaranteed to get the worth of your money when you visit the Vapor Shop. The friendly ambiance, friendly salesperson and the variety of products they have to offer will make your experience an unforgettable one. Some of their more popular products include the Vape Melaleuca, the Melaleuca Hydramarine and the Melaleuca Platinum. You will also find e-juice, gum, lotions, sprays, creamers and other merchandise that will add flavor to your lifestyle.

Most customers come in for an introductory tasting only and then decide if they want to continue with their subscription. In this way, the shop provides additional profits to keep the doors open. The friendly, helpful staff is always ready to answer questions and assist customers with their selections. You might find yourself browsing the Internet before actually making your selection. Their Internet section allows customers to find reviews, prices and even links to their catalogs.

You can also enjoy special discounts and freebies. While you are there, take advantage of the opportunity to buy one of their newer creations, including the Vaporsnow. If you like fruit but not really into smoking tobacco or cigars, try the Fruit Flavored Vaporizer. This vaporizer is not only great tasting, but it also tastes good as well.

Stop by at the Vape Shop NZ any day of the week, to smell the sweet aromas wafting from the friendly and helpful Vapor Train Man. You will probably find that he is very knowledgeable about what he has to offer and will be glad to share it with his customers. He is open every day Monday to Saturday, so come check out the shop if you have the opportunity. You won’t be disappointed and you’ll have the chance to experience all sorts of great new flavors. As long as you are aware of vaporizer sizes, you should have no problem finding the perfect size for you.

Why Employ a Moisture Remediation Team for Mold Removal and Moisture Control in Your Home Or Business?

 

A successful mold removal process in Auckland will be based on finding the cause. This will involve identifying the causes of moisture infiltration through walls and the ceilings. Find out where the moisture is coming from, as well as identifying environmental conditions that create conducive conditions for mold growth. It’s critical to identify the severity of the situation, in addition to the remedial measures that will need to be implemented.

It’s important to identify the scale of infiltration, as well as identifying what the remedial steps are going to be. It also includes the need to estimate the extent of water damage, and, air flow meters. An accurate assessment will allow you to make the necessary decisions on what action needs to be taken. Whether your mold removal is part of a complete ventilation and cleaning program for your building or an ongoing process, it’s important to know whether there are health effects associated with the removal of the mold spores. If there are health effects associated with the spores, you may need to have the contaminated air removed, or have the building re-uccured to prevent the spores from being airborne.

The Health Effects of Mold Removal In relation to the Auckland region, experts believe that there is a correlation between indoor mold growth and allergies. In response to this, many mold cleaning specialists now carry out their own mold testing, using airborne parameters such as pet counts and moisture levels in the air to identify the presence of mold spores in the air. Once the presence of mold is confirmed, the cleaning specialist may recommend that your ventilation ducts and roof space are cleaned. As a result, any contaminated air is removed and recycled. The roof space is typically treated by either a dampening solution or an ultra-violet light, which will kill any remaining mold spores.

The Health Effects of Mould Removal As with all mold remediation jobs, the results are not guaranteed. If you choose to hire a qualified professional for the job, they will perform a survey before undertaking the work, and this survey should determine whether there are any areas that require further cleaning. It’s important to hire a professional that has been in business for over 33 years, as this means they have experienced both success and failure. The professionals will also conduct routine cleaning on site in order to guarantee that no other issues or areas of concern exist. They will post their progress on-site to ensure that you are provided with up to date information.

The Health Effects of Mould Removal In terms of the health effects of mold growth in your home, experts advise that the majority of occupants suffer from a short-term respiratory illness, usually as a result of inhaling small particles of mold. For long term health effects, experts advise that occupants may experience a form of chronic bronchitis. Both conditions can be very serious and if not treated correctly, could prove fatal. Due to the high level of moisture in many a home, indoor air pollution is common. This is why it’s so important to hire an experienced Auckland moisture remediation company to carry out an annual inspection of your property.

As soon as the inspection is complete, the experts will carry out a rapid carpet clean of the affected area to remove any existing spores and moisture. This is followed by high grade encapsulation and drying of the carpeted area, ensuring that no further water damage or mold growth occurs. When encapsulating, the moisture is held in the fiber structure of the carpet, which is then removed and discarded. Once this is completed, a dehumidifier is used to reduce the humidity in the affected area, and a restoration and repair team will then carry out any necessary repairs. Mold removal and moisture remediation services are available to residents of Auckland city.

WooCommerce NZ: Setup Steps

After installation, WooCommerce settings need to be set up for use in New Zealand.

These are the settings we usually use for an Auckland, New Zealand based WooCommerce website, selling to NZ customers. The settings will differ slightly depending on your GST status and the countries you sell to.

General WooCommerce NZ: Region
1. Base Location: New Zealand – Auckland

2. Currency: New Zealand Dollars ($)

3. Allowed Countries: Specific Countries

4. Specific Countries: New Zealand (Set this to include the other countries you sell to if not just located within NZ)

5. Save Changes!

This sets the WooCommerce installation to take orders from NZ based customers only. Most of our start up Ecommerce clients are looking for this option.

Check out our post on Selling Globally from NZ for more options.

Inventory Options
WooCommerce can manage your inventory for you – but most clients note that this can be one of the more time consuming parts of setting up your store.

If you produce products yourself, provide digital products, or if you have a local supplier that can provide additional stock in a short timeframe, you may find it easier to turn off the inventory management options.

If you need inventory management – choose the email address to which low stock notifications should be sent, and choose the thresholds, visibility and store front notifications that you want to use.

If you need something more in depth for managing stock notifications, backorders or out of stock messages, you might like to try Advanced Notifications for WooCommerce to manage these.

Tax Settings for WooCommerce NZ
1. Enable Taxes: Tick Enable taxes and tax calculations

2. Prices Entered With Tax: Select Yes, I will enter prices inclusive of tax

3. Calculate Taxes based on: Shop Base Address (unless selling outside of NZ, see below!)

4. Display prices during cart/checkout: Select Including tax

5. Save Changes!

At the top of the tax settings page is a blue link for the Standard Rates.

6. Click on Tax Rates: Standard Rates

7. Click the button for Insert Row

8. Enter the Country Code as NZ

9. Enter the Tax Rate as 15

10. Enter the Tax Name as GST

11. Save Changes

If you supply products to customers outside of New Zealand, you won’t usually charge them GST.

Setting this up with WooCommerce requires the following modifications:

1. Calculate Taxes based on: Customer Billing Address – this will remove the GST when a country other than NZ is selected.

2. If you’re having trouble – check that the Default Customer Address is set to “Shop Base Address”. This is under “General”. If you are testing out your store, remember that WooCommerce will remember the billing location you’ve entered and display product tax accordingly.

Basic WooCommerce Shipping Options
WooCommerce comes with basic shipping options out of the box. It works best with one flat rate of shipping within NZ, or a free shipping option, plus one shipping rate for each country that you supply. If you want multiple shipping prices per country, based on the products or quantities ordered, you will need to purchase a shipping plugin that offers extra options.

Flat Rate

1. Check Enable Shipping

2. Save Changes

3. Select the blue link Flat Rate Shipping

4. Title: NZ Flat Rate

5. Availability: Specific Countries

6. Specific Countries: New Zealand

7. Tax status: Taxable

8. Cost per order: Enter your shipping cost GST EXCLUSIVE (GST will be added at checkout)

9. Save Changes

Free Shipping

1. Select the blue link Free Shipping

2. Check Enable Free Shipping

3. Title: Free Shipping

4. Availability: Specific Countries or All Allowed COuntries (depending on your free shipping options)

5. Specific Countries: (if applicable) Select the countries that have free shipping

6. Free Shipping Requires: Select whether a coupon or a minimum order amount applies

7. Minimum Order Amount: Enter the minimum order amount that applies for customers to get free shipping

International shipping rates and multiple product/quantity, and weight based shipping rules can get pretty complex based on how your business operates and we’re not able to cover all the options here. You may need a plugin for WooCommerce that can handle different shipping options and multiple rate calculations.

Complete your NZ WooCommerce Setup
These steps have got you most of the way towards setting up your WooCommerce install for selling online in NZ!

You’ll also need to configure:

Shipping Options
Payment Gateways
Email messages
These settings vary widely between businesses so we can’t cover all of the possible options here!

If you need a hand with your particular WooCommerce setup options – give us a call.

Selling globally from New Zealand with WooCommerce

In our previous post, WooCommerce NZ Setup Steps, we showed the steps to setup a WooCommerce installation to take orders from NZ based customers only.

Most of our start up Ecommerce clients are looking for this option.

We do have a large number of clients that sell internationally and these are some of the tips they have shared with us.

If you want to sell to other countries, or worldwide, here are some additional points to consider.

Note: During setup, you can set “Allowed Countries” to allow users from any country to order if you like – this is used more often for online stores selling digital products or specialty NZ made items.

Selling online globally from NZ

Digital vs physical products

For digital products, there is no shipping cost applied, so global customers will pay the same price as a local customer. Global customers may not pay higher shipping costs to buy from NZ, unless the item is something unique in a niche area, or a NZ made specialty product.

Risks of fraudulent purchases

A downside to selling globally is that you are far more likely to encounter fraudulent transactions made from outside of New Zealand. Clients have reported large orders from customers based overseas that turned out to be fraudulent, only after the goods were shipped – it is almost impossible to track down or recover the goods once they are sent overseas. Also, credit card companies will require that you repay the purchase costs so they can be returned to the purchaser’s account if the transaction is recorded as fraudulent.

This means that you as the business owner can lose out doubly – you have to repay the customer AND you’ve already sent the goods.

Please take care with international orders – particularly with large ones or with names/addresses/emails that don’t seem to add up. We are yet to hear about similarly fraudulent orders originating in NZ, but I am sure they do happen.

What is Inbound Marketing?

Inbound marketing is a reasonably new term in the world of digital marketing. But it’s not a complicated concept. It refers to methods of attracting traffic to a website, landing page, or app by providing high quality content that draws visitors in.

Instead of the old outbound marketing methods of buying ads, buying email lists, and praying for leads, inbound marketing focuses on creating quality content that pulls people toward your company and product, where they naturally want to be. By aligning the content you publish with your customer’s interests, you naturally attract inbound traffic that you can then convert, close, and delight over time.

Do inbound marketing customers really just come to you?

The first point of contact is usually via social shares or Google Search. Visitors are looking for the content provided and if your SEO and landing pages are set up well.. voila – they come straight to you.

what is inbound marketingOnce visitors are drawn to the website, they access your content – blog posts, ebooks, downloaded documents, tools, apps, video, tutorials, how to guides, or other advice – sometimes in exchange for a share or an email address… marking their first inbound interaction with a brand, website or service.

Recent research by HubSpot found:

  • 84 percent of 25 to 34 year-olds abandoned a website because of intrusive advertising.
  • 57 percent of businesses say their blog helps recruit new customers, while companies that blog get 55 percent more Web traffic than those who don’t.
  • 67 percent of business-to-consumer brands have gained a customer via Facebook.

If your company doesn’t have the budget for a full-fledged inbound marketing program, or to work with an inbound marketing agency, you can start small.  You might run a small-scale inbound marketing campaign by putting up keyword-rich blog posts and responding to Facebook and Twitter followers, directing them to the appropriate landing pages, or entering them into the CRM for follow up.

How warm are your inbound marketing leads?

While Inbound Marketing sounds like the opposite of cold calling, Ari Galper cautions against this mindset:

“Inbound e-mails or calls are exactly like cold calls except that the leads have taken the first step by contacting you,” writes Ari Galper, a sales expert and consultant. “This means that the inbound ‘warm’ leads we get so excited about are actually no different from ‘cold’ leads. Why? Because you can’t assume you have any more of a relationship with an inbound lead than you do with someone you cold call.”

marketing nz inbound campaign

The point is to stay open to the conversation that the visitor has just started.

“Although it’s true that inbound leads are obviously open to talking with you because they contacted you first, you can’t assume that your product or solution is a match, so your job is still to find out the truth of their situation,” Galper writes. “If you assume you’re a match just because they called you, you’ll be resistant to finding out the truth about what’s on their mind.”

So how do you get started with Inbound?

You must create quality content that your ideal customers actually want, and then make it easy for them to find.

That sounds simple right?

But it’s scary to see how many marketers spend time, effort, and money on producing content that is ‘easy’ for them to make – not what their customers are actually Googling.

Or – the flip side – making amazing content and resources but neglecting to do or measure any SEO whatsoever – so their ideal customers can’t find what they’re offering.

Here’s what not to do:

web design case study digital marketing nz

We’ve worked with a client recently who had produced a very expensive, professionally designed PDF entitled “What we can do for you”.  It went into great detail about all the services that the business could provide and it was posted on their website and in their 25+ branches throughout NZ – including on those branches local Facebook pages, twitter accounts and Google +.

They came to us wondering if we could work out whether they had a technical issue with their website that was preventing people from downloading their brochure…  They hadn’t yet had any downloads despite spending thousands producing the document.

While we were dearly hoping there might be a technical issue that could easily be fixed, it turned out there wasn’t one – the content was simply not something that anyone, I mean anyone, wanted to download.

It was hard to explain this to the client, but after some uneasy facts were stated and graphs were shown, they were more than happy for us to review their inbound marketing efforts with them and help them plan something for much less cost – that their potential customers actually wanted.  And downloaded.  By the hundreds.

To sum up Inbound marketing:

1. Make something your customers want

2. Make it easy to find

I would also add a point 3.  It’s not really exclusive to inbound marketing, but it builds the basis of any marketing or digital activity.

It is:

3. Measure, improve, repeat

Your analytics data is absolute GOLD and you need to be set up to make the most of any marketing initiative and to make it measurable.  Set up your tags to track campaigns, and traffic coming in through Google Search.  Find out who is accessing your inbound content and why, then give them more of what they want.  Now you’re doing Inbound!

Do you have an inbound marketing story you’d like to share, or question you’d like to ask? We’d love to hear from you.  Get in touch.

WordPress Web Design Quotes

If you’re in the market for a new or updated website, chances are the first step you will take after jotting down your ideas and specifications is to approach a range of businesses to get a WordPress Web Design Quote.

what is inbound marketingWe’ll get in quick here and let you know that we’d love to quote on your project.

You can get started by contacting us for a free quote and project proposal.

Our Guide to Reviewing a WordPress Web Design Quote

If you’re shopping around, we’ve made a list of the top things we think you should see in a quote, along with a few items to check out to make sure you’ll be getting exactly what you wanted.

A solid quote is usually accompanied by a proposal or an extra level of project detail.

Your WordPress quote should help you to do the following:

Define the problem. What’s wrong, broken, requires an update, or needs fixing? If it’s a redesign, map out why the site is being revised. If it’s a new website – what is the overall goal?

Outline a solution. How will the website address your problem? You’d expect an overview here and hopefully a few technical details to help you compare apples with apples.

Outline the approach. What approach does your provider intend to take? Are they focussed on the technical aspects, or the design? Will they use data or competitor information to inform your plans? Do you get a feeling that they have a clear vision to move forward? Have they accounted for all the factors that you need covered?

Clarify the deliverables. This could describe exactly what you will receive, in what format, and how many revisions/changes are provided. What is the finished project? What will be provided along the way? Are there specific timeframes that must be met? This is the most important section of any WordPress Web Design Quote.

wordpress web design quote
Set a timeframe. Can you pencil in a start date? If not, roughly how long will the project be expected to take? Are there any deadlines that must be met?

Define the Terms and Conditions. There should be a specific set of terms and conditions that your website developer operates by. This may include rights, responsibilities, payment terms, ownership, warranties, fees. Make sure you feel comfortable with these terms and conditions. Some providers’ WordPress web design packages require you to commit to high monthly fees and even though the software is open source, they may require additional fees if you wish to move to a new provider.

Feel confident in your choice of provider. Does the provider have insurance? Do they provide any kind of warranty or guarantee of their skills and services? What are your options if you’re not happy with their work?

Get specific. Every project is different, but here are some items to be aware of in a WordPress web design or development quote. Are these included in the price? Do you need them? Why? If you don’t want/need them now, can you add them in future if required?

Check the specs:

  • Content loading, creation or editing
  • Logo or graphic design
  • Email newsletter sign up and which email newsletter system to use
  • Does this include creating a branded HTML email template
  • Search Engine Optimisation – is any provided? Just the basiscs? A DIY plugin?
  • How will a redesign be managed so as not to disrupt existing SEO and Google rankings?
  • Advanced SEO – what happens if you need it?
  • Social media account integration
  • Sign up forms, contact forms
  • Google Analytics and tagging key goal conversions
  • Blog – is it included and optimised for SEO?
  • Ecommerce – do you need to take payments, sell products, or manage bookings on your website?
  • Security – what security features will be put in place? What backup systems exist so that you can get your website back if something goes wrong?
  • Site speed – will any features be put in place to enhance website speed?
  • Mobile responsiveness – this should be standard on any new website now but it pays to double check exactly what you’ll be getting.
  • What kind of hosting will you get? What happens if your website outgrows your hosting or traffic allowance?
  • How will ongoing updates be managed? WordPress is updated frequently and your theme and any plugins used will also need to be updated. It’s always best to get your WordPress provider to manage these in case something breaks. How will this work be billed?

Take the next steps. A solid WordPress web design quote should outline what you’ll need to do next. Do you need to book a meeting? Pay a deposit? Fill out some forms? Reply in writing? Book in your project start date? What if you have more questions?

Is there anything we’ve missed here? What features make a quote stand out to you? Are there things you think that are missing on WordPress web design quotes? Do they leave you with questions? We’d love to hear your thoughts. Email us or drop a line here to let us know.

How much does a website cost in NZ? 2017 Update

What does a website cost these days in New Zealand? Costs for website design and development in NZ can vary widely. A lot of web design companies will respond with a “how long is a piece of string?” type of answer, but we’d like to give you some specifics!

WordPress Website Costs in NZ
While it’s true that websites can range from the very affordable (even free!) to hundreds of thousands of dollars, our research has found that most WordPress based websites will sit in the $700 – $5,000 range.

A heavily customised WordPress website will cost more. Basically, the more features you add, the higher the costs will be. Adding Ecommerce features, making big changes to a theme or adding a lot of plugins can double or triple the cost of a basic website.

We are finding that a lot of people would just like a basic web presence, that they can add to later on, when time and budget allows. But for them, the most important thing is to just get started. We agree! There are many reasons that just getting started is the best idea (SEO included), so we’ve tried to make it easy.

Our WordPress Website Costs
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What else is included in the website cost?
Please read the details of each package above to see what is included in the website cost given.

It’s important to work out exactly what is, and isn’t included in your website cost before you start. If you assumed something was part of the deal and your web designer hasn’t specified it, then you could be in for extra charges when you need that work carried out.

Some platforms, software and technologies used in NZ for web design require licence fees. This means that you pay a premium to use them, or you pay your web developer more because they have to pay for an expensive licence.

We choose WordPress websites which are industry standard open source to help keep website costs down for our clients.

No locked-in contracts

Unlike in-house developed systems and CMSs, our work is based on open source WordPress. This means you don’t pay license fees that many in-house systems require. You can also take your website to any web designer in future and have them make changes for you as WordPress is a globally supported system. If you want to move to a different web design company at any time – you can, and you can take your website with you.

What is not included in the website cost?
WordPress Hosting and domains

Hosting is required to connect your website to the internet. This usually ranges from $10 – $40 per month (+GST) depending on the requirements of your website. We can help you choose a hosting company that best fits your needs.

You will also need a domain name for your website. If you don’t already have one, we can arrange it for you. Domain names usually cost between $30 – $50 per year.

Stock photos or graphics

If you need to purchase stock photos, graphics or videos for your website, these will be charged for on top of the website cost.

Purchasing plugins or third party software

Some plugins and software add-ons are free, but many come with an additional cost. Keep this in mind if there is a specific plugin or type of functionality you wish to achieve.

Should you use WordPress.org or WordPress.com?

What’s the difference between the two WordPress options anyway? Well there’s a big difference and there are pros and cons whichever one you pick! We’ve put together a summary of the main differences between WordPress.org and WordPress.com for you below.

Remember that you can switch from WordPress.com to WordPress.org without losing your blog – but you do need to do it carefully!

What is WordPress.org?

This is also called Self Hosted WordPress, because to use it, you need to have your own hosting account with all the WordPress files and database stored on it. This can require some technical knowledge, however many hosting companies are making this easier and easier to achieve if you want to DIY and you’re not into the tech side of things.

This means:

  • your WordPress website is under your control and you can manage the hosting yourself
  • you can add plugins to your website
  • you can add Ecommerce modules (like WooCommerce)
  • you can add any theme you like and even create a custom theme for your website
  • and basically you (or your developer) has full control over adding, fixing and changing things on your website.

The cons are:

  • you need to keep an eye on all the hosting, updates and plugins yourself
  • you need to be running backups in case something goes wrong
  • you’re responsible for any problems that arise with your website
  • so all up – you’ll need a bit of tech knowledge, or you’ll need to work with a developer know knows their way around WordPress.

What is WordPress.com?

WordPress.com is a basic version of the WordPress software, and it includes hosting your website.  This is great for getting started, or for if you don’t like to dabble in the techy or coding side of things, but want to get set up quickly, easily and for free.

It’s not entirely free though because as soon as you want to add or improve functionality, you’ll need to move to a paid plan and these can get expensive pretty quickly.

Many bloggers find that WordPress.com is a great place to start out and grow their fledgling blog, but they will get to a point where they need more control, more options and more features – that’s when they switch to WordPress.org and a fully customised blog.  Or if they want to start selling things, creating membership areas, or building new ways of engaging with the blogging audience – that’s the time to switch too.

What you get with WordPress.com:

  • quick and easy set up
  • free for basic features
  • a large community of people helping for free int he forums
  • hosting and security is all covered for you

The cons are:

  • you can only choose from one of a few themes and they can’t be customised
  • no plugins
  • no Ecommerce
  • no membership areas, digital downloads, or advanced features
  • expensive to get more features
  • limited options for your blog
  • doesn’t work well as a regular website as it’s designed for blogging

How do I choose between them?

Hopefully the info above combined with a few Google searches will help you decide what’s best for you.  Think about your budget, the stage your blog or business is at, how tech-savvy are you (or do you want to be)?

  • If you’re just starting out with a blog, with no budget and no tech knowledge – then WordPress.com is definitely the one for you!
  • If you need certain features, plugins, Ecommerce, memberships, or a particular look and feel for your brand, then WordPress.org is your only option.
  • Remember that you can switch from WordPress.com to WordPress.org at any stage – as long as you approach it carefully, you won’t be at risk of losing your hard work.

 

How to set up your WordPress Blog SEO

Have you set up your WordPress Blog SEO yet? Is your blog getting found in Google search? You might wonder how other blogs come up top in the search results and yours doesn’t – what you need is some SEO for your blog.

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimisation. To get it right really takes a lot of work – people don’t get ranked well in search results by accident! It is the product of knowing what to do and getting it done right. It’s a huge field to cover, so we’ll just give a quick overview here and focus on the three main things you need to do to set up your blog SEO.

If you’re interested in learning more and really taking your blog SEO to the next level, then you might like to download our SEO 101 checklist, or join our SEO Bootcamp.

WordPress SEO basics
Now WordPress as a blogging platform is already set up well for SEO. But there are technical things that need to be in place and all themes are unfortunately not built the same from an SEO point of view. Here are a few things to start with:

Site Title (Go to Settings > General > Site Title) needs to contain your keywords, not just the name of your business. But it can’t be too long or spammy – make sure it is readable and makes sense to people, as well as containing one or two keywords about what you do.
Permalinks (Go to Settings > Permalinks) should use Post name or even better, use this custom structure: /%category%/%postname%/, make sure you save and check that everything is working well after doing this.
Search Engine Visibility (Go to Settings > Reading) make sure this box is NOT CHECKED – otherwise it will discourage Google from ranking your website.
An <h1> tag on the home page that uses your keywords. This may come with your theme, but if not – you might be able to add an <h1> tag using the page editor. If you’re not sure how to check for tags, right click on your home page and choose ‘View source’. Look through the code for a title with the code <h1> </h1> around it. There should be only one on the page and it should be the main title AND use your keywords.
There are hundreds of other items to check in a full SEO audit of your website, but these will get you started!
WordPress SEO Plugin
While there are many SEO plugins out there for WordPress, the best one to choose is by Yoast. Are you using it yet? (Go to Plugins > Installed Plugins and look for Yoast SEO).

Go through the set up steps and then use the traffic light system to check EVERY blog post and page on your website and improve as many of the items as you can. Sometimes it’s just about ensuring that you have the right keywords in the right places, other times it might be that you’ve forgotten to add alt text to each of your images. Yoast SEO plugin will find them all!

Also – make sure that you set up the Meta description for each post. This doesn’t influence SEO, but it is the FIRST THING people see when they see your site in a Google search result. So make sure it’s something that tells them about the page or post and why they need to read it! To find it, scroll to the bottom of the post, click “Edit snippet” in the SEO section and write a custom Meta Description. You can also edit the SEO title here – make sure it includes your keywords!

Using the right keywords in your blog posts
I’ve already mentioned keywords a few times and chances are, you’ll already know how important they are. But you may not have had the chance to think them through or to make sure that they’re appearing int he right places on your website or blog.

Keywords are the words that describe what you do – this mean the words that you want people to use when they search to find YOU! Sometimes this includes your brand name, but often it will include more generic words that tell people about what your website is about.

The trick with keywords is not to make them too broad. If you sell kids clothes, think about how many thousands of website in the world that also sell kids clothes! So using the keywords ‘kids clothes’ might see you lost in a sea of other websites, never to make it to page one. What you need is to think specifically about the terms your customers will be using and try to build those into your keywords. So you might choose ‘kids clothes nz’ or ‘hand made kids clothes’ to distinguish what you’re offering.

Start with a list of AT LEAST 20 keywords. See what comes up when you search for them. Can you find your website? You might need to go back a few pages… If they’re too generic, cross them off the list and start with some more.

Now you have a list, you need to make sure that you have one page or post on your website or blog that focuses on EACH of your keywords. Focus on one keyword per page or post. This might mean that you need to write new pages or posts just to accommodate a keyword. Go ahead and do it! Use the Yoast SEO plugin to grade each page and post for it’s keyword and make the suggested changes – see if you can get all the traffic lights to go green!

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