B250 L08 Weekly Reflection

This week we focused on our AdWords campaign ad.  There are certain limits put on your ad that must strictly be follow.  You can only have a certain number of characters per line, there needs to be correct punctuation, and your ad needs to be relevant to your keywords and landing page.  It is important to include a hook, such as discounts or why your products are unique, and a call to action to encourage viewers to click on your ad.  It was quite a challenge coming up with an ad that was succinct and to the point that still communicated everything I wanted it to.  It is easy to wax eloquent about why someone should buy your product when you have all the space you want, but when you only have a limited amount of characters it becomes challenging to pick just the right words.  We also learned about utilizing ad groups for each of our types of products so we can focus our ads and manage them easily.

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B250 L07 Weekly Reflection

Setting up a Google AdWords campaign can take a little bit of work. It is important to split up your campaign into a couple different ads that focus on different products that you sell.  This allows you to have your ads shown to those who will be interested in them.  You should always include in your ad something that sets your products apart, making them desirable, and have a strong call to action.  Setting up the keywords for each of the ads requires you to think like a customer.  You need to have broad enough keywords to get the right group of people, but specific enough keywords to target only those people who will be interested in your products.  Using negative keywords can help you do this.  They allow you to separate out those who may be searching for something similar or related to what you are selling, but that wouldn’t be interested in your products.

B250 L06 Weekly Reflection

It has been a crazy week learning about legal structures, licenses, and taxes.  There are several legal structures to pick from including sole proprietorship, partnership, LLC, and corporation.  Each costs a different amount to register and has different items you must complete before you can register them.  In Washington it cost $180 dollars to register an LLC or corporation.  I would like to have the legal protection one of these structures provides, but I do not have the funds for one.  Consequently I will be using a sole proprietorship.  I will need to report my income on my taxes and make sure that I don’t do anything that would cause someone to want to sue me as my personal assets would be on the line.

There are many many licenses and taxes to take into consideration when starting a business.  They can include state, county, and city licenses; federal and state income tax; business and occupation tax; property tax; and sales tax.  Not all of these apply to every business and not all apply in the same way.  It is very important to look them up and find out what regulations you need to follow for your individual business.

Setting up a shop is also much more time consuming than I thought it would be.  I have spent hours trying to get my shop ready and keep running into snags.  I have had to search for plugins to get the usability I want and then learn how to use them.  It seems like every time I get one thing figured out there is something else that isn’t working.  Starting a business takes a lot of time and energy whether it is brick and mortar or online.

B250 L05 Weekly Reflection

This week I learned about site design and credit card payments.  Site design has a huge effect on your customers.  You need to set up your site so it is easy to navigate, easy to read, has the information your customers will be looking for, and so the design doesn’t overwhelm or compete too much with your products.  Having multiple levels of menus and filtering options can really help your customers find what they want.  It is a good idea to look at sites that sell similar things to get ideas of what all you need to include as well as to see what the competition is doing so you know how to make your site stand out.

For credit card payments, I looked into PayPal this week.  They have a lot of options, but I’m unsure if they can accommodate all the things that I need.  It is a good idea to see what they have and determine if it will work for your site.  It is also important to look at their fees and their liability information.  The third party will only protect you in certain ways, and it is good to know what you will be on the hook for if something does happen.  There is a lot to consider, and it is very helpful to look through all their FAQs to find answers to questions you didn’t know that you had.  I will also be looking into what is included with WooCommerce as they are a plugin that will work with my site.