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Online reviews have become an essential part of running any type of business in 2023. Just as people check Yelp for restaurants or movie critics for a new film, online reviews have a place in any business, from e-commerce sites to blogs to educational sites, and so on. While they haven’t always been an integral part of running a digital business, monitoring online reviews is now a necessity.

Your first step, however, is to determine where you can find these reviews so you can monitor them. Contrary to popular belief, Yelp is not the only places on the web where people leave reviews. It’s up to you to monitor your brand everywhere online by looking at all of the popular review avenues customers are taking.

Unique Places to Monitor Company Reviews

Once again, given how common reviews are nowadays, there are more and more places to go to check out reviews and see what consumers are saying about your company. Of course, there are always the common options like Yelp, Amazon, and even The Yellow Pages, but not every place carries the same weight, so below helps you sift through the noise and hone in on the best places to search for reviews. A few unique places include:

The BBB is a nonprofit organization that has their own accreditation standards, meaning they have their own process for reviewing a company. They take consumer reviews into account, mainly because the BBB places a premium on how businesses should act toward the public.

With the BBB, it’s more about location than anything else. When you head to the homepage on their website, the first thing they ask for is your city and state or postal code.

Given their high standards, the Better Business Bureau is one of the most legitimate review sites available. Here is an example of what you might see when you search for businesses on BBB’s website:

Their slogan is “Working for consumers like you since 1936”. Consumer Reports offers reviews and ratings on a variety of products from cars to appliances to electronics, and even health and family products. They provide multiple outlets for reviews, including videos, polls, news articles, and images.

Consumer Reports is very user-friendly — allowing you to search reviews by category — and you can also sign up for your own account to customize your interests and organize all of the products you’ve searched for reviews on in your history. They use a five-star rating system with their users, helping assign a quick value to each company/product.

However, Consumer Reports doesn’t just stop there. They actually take reviews from all over the web, compiling them all in one place for convenience. They even publish articles and analysis on some of the reviews, which saves users a lot of time and effort.

Angie’s List is very useful when it comes to reviews, namely because they take the anonymity out of the process. Angie’s List requires a fee ($9.99 a month) to sign up and use, but that helps maintain integrity and credibility of the reviews. Nobody is going on there to bash a site or company or product just because.

Google/Yahoo

Obviously these are the two biggest search engines on the planet, but they’re also great places to garner reviews about any product or company. These two mega companies also place a premium on local listings. If you type a restaurant into Google, for example, you’ll see the closest location to you, but you’ll also see ratings on a five-star scale and options to check out reviews.

Google and Yahoo each have different algorithms in terms of reviews and Google requires a Google+ membership to post a review, but they can still be valuable measuring sticks for your company to gauge where you stand in the public eye.

These sites are very similar to each other in that they’re both free, user-generated sites that place a heavy emphasis on local businesses and reviews. Like other sites, they are based on a five-star rating system on top of actual written reviews. Below is a screenshot of what it looks like if you search for a business on Insider Pages:

Keep in mind, these pages may come up as a search result on Google or some other search engine (much like Yelp and The Yellow Pages). While not the most popular review sites, they are still valuable resources for reviews from organic traffic. Their main draw is they tend to carry a lot of authority on search engines.

Zomato

This site is focused on restaurants and other eateries, so if you don’t own a restaurant, this probably isn’t a worthwhile venture for you. What’s cool about Zomato is that it takes reviews one step further and actually filters reviews for you. As you can see in the screenshot below, you can take a look at popular reviews, all reviews, my favorite feature, or blog posts that reviewed the company.

Comments on Your Own Website

Another Option: Reviews can also come in the form of testimonials, but since they are often self-inflated (who’s going to put a negative testimonial on their own site?), they probably don’t carry a lot of weight with users, but it’s still an option.

If you check out a page from NoRiskSEO below, you’ll notice a review on the right-hand side of the page. This is clearly an informational page that doesn’t cater to reviews (and it isn’t a homepage where you find most testimonials), but we were still able to feature a review through a testimonial from one of our partner companies.

Social Media Platforms

Final Thoughts

Don’t use just one source for reviews. Instead, take all of these platforms into account and let multiple outlets factor into your overall review process. One site may be getting more reviews than another and thus carry more weight. Also, be sure to monitor how reviews are changing on a regular basis.

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Salesforce Vs. Other Crm Platforms: Which Is Right For Your Business?

Introduction

In today’s fast-paced business world, having a reliable customer relationship management (CRM) platform can be the key to success. With so many options available, it can be difficult to determine which one is right for your business. Two of the most popular choices are Salesforce and other CRM platforms. In this article, we will explore the differences between Salesforce and other CRM platforms to help you decide which is right for your business.

What is Salesforce?

Salesforce is a cloud-based CRM platform that allows businesses to manage their customer interactions and sales processes. Founded in 1999, it has become one of the most popular CRM platforms in the world, with over 150,000 customers. Salesforce offers a wide range of features, including sales automation, marketing automation, customer service, and analytics. It is also highly customizable, allowing businesses to tailor it to their specific needs.

What are Other CRM Platforms?

Other CRM platforms include Microsoft Dynamics 365, HubSpot, Zoho CRM, and SugarCRM, among others. These platforms offer similar features to Salesforce but may differ in terms of pricing, customization, and user interface. Some may be more suited to small businesses, while others may be more suited to large enterprises.

Salesforce vs. Other CRM Platforms: Key Differences Pricing

Pricing is often a major consideration for businesses when choosing a CRM platform. Salesforce is known for being one of the more expensive options, with plans ranging from $25 to $300 per user per month. Other CRM platforms, such as Zoho CRM, offer more affordable options, with plans starting at $12 per user per month.

Customization

Customization is another important factor to consider when choosing a CRM platform. Salesforce is highly customizable, with a wide range of features and integrations available. Other CRM platforms may be more limited in terms of customization options, but may still offer enough flexibility for most businesses.

User Interface

The user interface of a CRM platform can make a big difference in how easy it is to use. Salesforce has a relatively complex interface, with a steep learning curve for new users. Other CRM platforms, such as HubSpot, have a simpler, more intuitive interface that may be more appealing to some users.

Integration

Integration with other software is important for many businesses. Salesforce offers a wide range of integrations, including with popular software such as Microsoft Office and Google Apps. Other CRM platforms may offer fewer integrations, but may still have options that are important for specific businesses.

Customer Support

Customer support is an important consideration for any software platform. Salesforce offers extensive customer support, including phone, email, and chat support, as well as a knowledge base and online community. Other CRM platforms may offer less extensive support options, which may be a concern for some businesses.

Salesforce vs. Other CRM Platforms: Pros and Cons Salesforce Pros

Highly customizable.

Extensive feature set.

Strong integrations.

Robust customer support.

Large user community.

Salesforce Cons

Expensive.

Steep learning curve.

Complex interface.

Limited mobile app functionality.

Requires extensive training.

Other CRM Platforms Pros

More affordable pricing.

Simpler interface.

Easier to use for small businesses.

May offer features tailored to specific industries.

Some may offer free or low-cost plans.

Other CRM Platforms Cons

Limited customization options.

Fewer integrations.

Less extensive customer support.

Smaller user communities.

May not be as scalable for large enterprises.

Salesforce vs. Other CRM Platforms: Which is Right for Your Business?

Ultimately, the decision of which CRM platform to choose depends on the specific needs and budget of your business. Here are some scenarios where Salesforce or other CRM platforms may be more suitable −

Large Enterprises

Salesforce is often the go-to choice for large enterprises due to its scalability, extensive feature set, and robust customer support. While it may be more expensive than other CRM platforms, it can provide a significant return on investment for businesses with a large customer base.

Small and Medium-Sized Businesses

Other CRM platforms, such as Zoho CRM and HubSpot, may be more suitable for small and medium-sized businesses due to their affordability, simplicity, and ease of use. These platforms may offer enough customization and integrations for most businesses, without the need for the more extensive features offered by Salesforce.

Specific Industries

Some CRM platforms, such as SugarCRM, may be more tailored to specific industries, such as healthcare or finance. If your business operates in a niche industry, it may be worth considering a CRM platform that has been specifically designed for your industry.

Limited Budget

If your business has a limited budget, there are several free or low-cost CRM platforms available, such as Insightly and Bitrix24. While these platforms may have limitations in terms of features and integrations, they can still provide a basic CRM solution for businesses that are just starting out.

Mobile Functionality

If your business requires extensive mobile functionality, Salesforce may not be the best choice. While it does offer a mobile app, it may not be as fully featured as other CRM platforms, such as HubSpot or Zoho CRM, which have been designed with mobile users in mind.

Conclusion

In summary, choosing the right CRM platform for your business is a critical decision that can have a significant impact on your bottom line. Salesforce and other CRM platforms each have their pros and cons, and the decision of which one to choose ultimately depends on the specific needs and budget of your business.

By carefully considering the factors outlined in this article, you can make an informed decision and choose a CRM platform that will help your business thrive.

How Gamification Methods Can Help Your Online Business

The longer a person stays on your site, the more likely they are to take action. And many website owners are always looking for ways to make sure that happens.

They space out the content in a way to keep people scrolling or add video at just the right section of the content.

There are so many ways to go about this, but a very effective and often overlooked way is to gamify the site. This is a process in which a user engages with the content as if they were playing a video game. With the right user on your site, it can convert like crazy.

In this article, I will go over several ways that you can implement gamification on your site and see how it goes.

What is gamification?

In its simplest form, gamification is just the interactivity of a website. It is a system in which visitors can perform a function on a website.

Whether it is to do something in which points are won or a code is unlocked to get additional content.

The whole idea is to create something that the user can interact with for fun and then see some kind of reward for having done so. The idea is not only to keep the user on the site longer but also to excite them so they are more likely to convert.

As a bonus, the longer a user stays on the site, the better it does in the search engine rankings.

Also read: Best CRM software for 2023

Types of gamification

There are so many different types of gamification that can be used that there is no way to list them all here. However, there are several popular ones that you may want to start with.

Mystery Wheel –

Everybody loves coupons so they can get a discount. And people also love to win things. You can make giving away a discount to your product a fun experience by offering a mystery wheel game that people can play to get points that give them a certain coupon code to use at check out. They spin the wheel and rack up the points.

Daily Bonus Points –

Getting return customers is a challenge for many website owners. One of the most effective ways is to give points that can be redeemed once a certain amount is scored.

Also read: Best Video Editing Tips for Beginners in 2023

Advantages of gamification

You’ll also see how people do engage with your site to be able to optimize the site even better for conversions.

And the more people interact with the site and keep coming back, brand loyalty is developed. And this is how you can grow your site to something really special.

Salvatore Presti

Salvatore Presti is an American writer living in Italy who enjoys the fine art of living well. His interests include anything wine, food or nature related especially when enjoyed with friends and family.

Block Robocalls On Your Iphone With These Apps

If you are one of the millions of people regularly tormented by robocalls on your iPhone, this article is for you. Often ringing several times a day, these unwanted calls are the bane of iPhone ownership. Described as unsolicited pre-recorded communications that can come from both national and international sources, these calls almost never end. Fortunately, there is an answer to helping make these unwanted calls come to an end – apps. With this list of iPhone apps, you can put an end to almost all unwanted robocalls for good.

1. Truecaller

One of the most popular options in the App Store, Truecaller has a long history of blocking spam calls or SMS messages. So how does it work? Truecaller’s backend system will automatically identify spam and fraud calls before you pick up. The app is free and even lets you find out who is behind the unknown numbers. Once a number comes in, you can copy and paste it into the search bar. From its list of more than 250 million users, the app may be able to identify the pesky source of these robocalls. To help make things even clearer, when a dreaded telemarketer calls, the app screen turns red and essentially turns itself into a giant warning.

2. Hiya

3. YouMail

While similar in function to the rest of the robocall blocking apps on this list, YouMail is right up there with the best. Replacing your smartphone’s existing voicemail service, YouMail’s software identifies robocallers by their voicemail messages. From there, it builds up a huge database so it can easily identify future robocalls and block them. What do we love most about this app? That it plays a “number disconnected” tone to incoming robocalls to make them think your number is no longer in service. YouMail is one of the few apps on this list that markets itself to business owners as well. Small business owners should give this app a hard look if they want to reduce the number of incoming robocalls.

4. Nomorobo

If you can find the number in the app name, Nomorobo claims to have blocked more than 1.2 billion robocalls in its time. That is on top of the app maintaining a list of more than 1.8 billion blacklisted phone numbers. Working directly with the Federal Trade Commission in the U.S. adds additional layers of accuracy. Another benefit to Nomorobo is its ability to separate spam calls from legitimate phone calls. You know the app is working when an incoming call is flagged and your phone only rings once. Users are then given the option to create a “whitelist” of numbers. That is a nice addition to the app, as it guarantees you are not missing important calls. The app is free for the first fourteen days and then requires a small subscription fee each month.

RoboKiller

Conclusion

David Joz

David is a freelance tech writer with over 15 years of experience in the tech industry. He loves all things Nintendo.

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Which Timeclock App Is Best For Your Business?

With so many timeclock solutions and features available today, you may have a difficult time determining which one to use. Whether you need to manage schedules, track remote employees through real-time data, or any other time-tracking features for your small business, here’s what to keep in mind when you start your search.

Bottom Line

You may want to know what the best employee timeclock app is, but there’s no one answer. Consider your company’s specific needs before selecting one.

What to consider when choosing a timeclock app

As with any business-related search, figure out your business’s needs before you start. If you only have a dozen employees at a single location, there’s no reason to splurge on a timeclock app designed for multinational enterprises. A little introspection saves time and money, and ensures that whatever option you choose will be the best fit. Think about the following questions:

How closely do you want to track your employees?

In the past, clocking in for work meant grabbing your timecard and punching in at a station. While that system worked for a long time, one major flaw existed: Unscrupulous employees used a tactic dubbed “buddy punching,” which entailed having their friends punch them in at the employee timeclock station when they weren’t at the office.

Timecard fraud remains a real problem, but options in today’s web-based timeclock apps can curtail that costly problem.

Some services allow your managers to track employees’ locations through their smartphones’ GPS. Since nearly every app works on both Android and iOS devices, geolocation functionality can pinpoint where the employee was when they clocked in and out.

In addition, geofencing uses GPS tracking to restrict where employees can clock in or out. You can require them to be at your business’s physical location in order to do so. A biometric timeclock may ask for a fingerprint scan or use facial recognition when employees clock in or out.

That may seem like a lot of employee data for managers to collect, but in the case of employee schedules and your company’s bottom line, time is literally money.

Do you need a timeclock app that has additional employee scheduling features?

While a timeclock app is important, it’s not the be-all and end-all in terms of employee scheduling. There is a range of additional functions that can make everyone’s lives easier.

Your managers may benefit from a timeclock wizard, time-off management capabilities or the ability to draw up reports detailing the impact of your employees’ schedules on the company’s bottom line. 

FYI

With enough data in hand, you can make sure your payroll is what it should be while complying with existing overtime laws.

How well does a timeclock app integrate with other programs?

Running a modern business is a lot like spinning plates. There’s a lot to consider at any one moment, and if you don’t have your attention on multiple things at once, something can go wrong. Various business programs can mitigate that issue. These days, top accounting software and Google Calendar are just as important as a cash register, so make sure your app is compatible with programs you’ve already implemented.

With the right app, you can automatically import employee schedules into a company calendar and send it to employees’ email inboxes or text it straight to their phones. Some integrations also allow your online timeclock data to go directly to payroll, further ensuring that you’re accurately compensating employees for their time on the job.

Is there a best timeclock app for Android or iOS?

Nearly every timeclock company strives to get their apps on both the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store. Smartphones are among the most ubiquitous pieces of technology today, so these companies want to have their product on as many devices as possible.

If you come across a timeclock app that only supports one type of device or the other, you should probably skip it and find a service that covers both mobile operating systems. Unless you provide a business phone to your employees, you don’t want to hamstring your time-tracking capabilities by only supporting one over the other. If you do need to choose, however, be aware that, according to Statista, iOS has about 15% of the global smartphone market share, while Android has around 84%.

How much does a timeclock app cost?

Good timeclock apps, like most time and attendance programs, come with a price tag. How much that app (and the associated service) costs depends on multiple factors.

For example, if the software is hosted in the cloud, you may need to pay for additional online storage. Some companies charge extra based on the number of employees that will use the system or how many locations it will service. If you want to use a wall-mounted timeclock to give yourself additional protections against timecard fraud, that will likely come with an additional cost as well.

According to our research, businesses with 20 employees might see their time and attendance program costs end up anywhere from $20 to $300 per month. Some providers have a monthly minimum cost, especially if they charge on a per-employee basis. There may be additional setup and implementation fees.

Best timeclock apps

Here are some of our best picks for time and attendance software that offer mobile options.

When I Work

When I Work is a great option for restaurants and retail businesses. It offers scheduling software and tracks when your employees are on the clock, comparing the hours completed to the original schedule. It also allows staff to swap shifts. When I Work offers web and mobile capabilities. Learn more in our full review of When I Work.

Clockify

Clockify is a top option for organizations that have employees who work in the office and at home. The cloud-hosted system is accessible through the web, and mobile apps. This platform offers both free and paid plans and includes an option for client billing. Learn more in our comprehensive review of Clockify.

QuickBooks Time

Accessible through a mobile app, computer or telephone, QuickBooks Time is a top solution for businesses with a remote workforce. It offers GPS features to track remote employees, flexibility for workers to clock in and out, and other handy options such as note-keeping capabilities. Learn more in our full review of QuickBooks Time

The bottom line on timeclock apps

Regardless of where your small business is in its evolution or how many employees you currently have on staff, a good timeclock app can help make sure you’re fairly and accurately compensating employees.

When looking for such an app, remember that the question may not necessarily be “which is the best?” but rather “which is the best for my business?”

Stella Morrison contributed to the writing and research in this article.

10 Powerful Email Marketing Tips To Help Your Business

One of the most complex aspects of marketing is email. It is because the landscape constantly changes, and it is very important that you stay up-to-date with the latest practices in order to run successful campaigns. Email marketing can be very effective when used properly, as it can help you connect with customers and promote your brand. Unfortunately, many businesses fail to send out effective emails.

Does Email Marketing Still Work Today?

Email marketing is still considered one of the most effective methods for reaching out to customers. If you ask any marketing expert, they’ll tell you that it’s not the most popular strategy, but there’s a reason why it’s still widely used. Some of the major companies that use this method include Amazon, Kohl’s, and Walmart. They understand how valuable it is to send out promotional emails, and they spend a lot of money on these campaigns.

Studies have shown that email marketing is more effective than any other social media channel when it comes to converting users and engaging them. It is also very cheap to reach a wide range of people, and segmentation and automation solutions can help improve the efficiency of email generation.

10 Powerful Email Marketing Tips to Help Your Business Create Optimized Lead Magnets

How do you get people to subscribe to your email list? A lead magnet is an effective way to do this.

One of the most important factors that you should consider when it comes to making your lead magnets successful is making them unique and interesting. This will allow you to get noticed by your potential customers.

Define Your Target Audience

Due to the rise of digital marketing, customers are demanding personalized offers that are specific to their problems. This means that they don’t want to be sent generic emails. To effectively reach this audience, you need to identify your target audience. Your target audience is the group of individuals who are most likely to purchase or need your services or products. Before you start creating email campaigns, it’s important that you take the time to analyze your customers’ pain points and interests.

Make Your Subject Line Pop

One of the most common mistakes that people make when it comes to marketing emails is using the subject line “Your Company Weekly Email.” It doesn’t capture their imagination and will likely be deleted unread. Instead, consider developing a compelling and effective subject line that includes making a promise, generating intrigue, using lists, and asking a question.

Automation is a Must Segment Your Subscribers

The term subscriber segmentation refers to a process utilised in email marketing to group your audience into groups according to their behavior and interests. This allows you to deliver more relevant content and offers. This technique is very important for email marketing, as it allows you to customize your messages and create multiple versions of them. One of the most effective ways to build long-term interest and trust in a brand is by segmenting your subscribers.

Measure What Works

One of the most important factors that you should consider when implementing an email marketing campaign is what worked before. Every campaign is different, and while you may expect a certain offer or subject line to work, you also have to analyze the data to see if it does. Having access to these statistics can help you make informed decisions and improve the effectiveness of your marketing efforts. Most email marketing platforms allow you to view multiple metrics, such as open rates and conversions.

Comply with the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003

One of the rights that email recipients have is the right to only receive the emails that they have agreed to receive. This is protected by the CAN-SPAM Act, and it requires that all email marketing efforts comply with this regulation. Even if an individual has already opted to receive your messages, you still have to follow this regulation.

Every email should include the names and addresses of the companies and individuals who will be receiving it, as well as a link that will allow subscribers to unsubscribe. In addition, all subject lines should be clear and concise.

Perform A/B Testing

One of the most effective ways to improve your open rate is by testing the effectiveness of your email content. It can also help you get more people to sign up for your services or products. Unfortunately, it can be hard to decide which email content works best for your business. This is why it’s important that you regularly split your emails into different versions to test the effectiveness of each.

Include a Call to Action

Before you write a message, it’s important that you have a clear goal and a plan for how you want your readers to interact with you. This will allow you to make informed decisions and improve the effectiveness of your marketing efforts. One of the most effective ways to encourage your readers to do what you want is by using a clear call to action.

Set SMART Goals

Before you start a new email marketing campaign, it’s important that you have a clear understanding of the goals and strategies that will help you achieve them. Having a timeline and a set of goals will help you keep track of your progress and ensure that you’re on track. Setting SMART goals can help motivate and focus you during the course of your marketing efforts.

Conclusion

These email marketing tips will help you create and run successful campaigns. It is important to remember that there is no magic bullet when it comes to marketing, and you have to put in the necessary structures and systems to reach a successful ROI. We also recommend reading our article about the best practices in email marketing to learn more about how to improve your efforts.

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