If you are a fan of online shopping like me, I bet you are always on the lookout for the best deals. Why not make use of coupons to get amazing stuff at much lesser rates. As more and more people are choosing to shop online, a number of coupon websites have popped up in the virtual world. Ecommerce has advanced to the extent that now you are able to get discount offers all around the year. Your savings are not limited to holiday sales only!
Today I will share my experience with a great coupons website: CouponzGuru. It is loaded with coupons offering discounts from a large number of online shopping websites.
What does CouponzGuru offer?
CouponzGuru is simply a coupon or voucher website which allows you to get discount codes for various online shopping websites. You can get the discount codes without spending anything and use them to get some amazing discounts.
CouponzGuru offers coupons for some very popular online shopping websites like Flipkart, Myntra, Jabong, FirstCry, Snapdeal, homeshop18 and the so on. The discounts are not limited to fashion and clothes only. The website is full of coupons for other categories as well like Mobile & Electronics, Home & Furnishings and Baby & Kids.
Another interesting aspect is that you can get discount coupons for travel and online food orders too. You can easily save on flights and hotel bookings through Yatra, Makemytrip, Goibibo, Expedia and Travelguru. There are coupons available for latest domestic flights as well. If you are a frequent traveler, you must check out latest deals through the website before making any purchases or bookings. Foodies can enjoy discounted rates for Dominos, Foodpanda, TastyKhana and Justeat.
How it works:
The concept is really simple. All you have to do is to search the website you want to shop from. As you find the coupon, click on the prominent button on the right side of the coupon saying “Click to get Coupon”. You will be automatically redirected to your desired website. Shop through the website as you always do. At the checkout, your coupon gets automatically applied. So simple!
My review of the website:
- Easy Navigation: The website is well-designed, easy to use and convenient to navigate through. The featured stores are all provided prominently. There is nothing complicated about the website design.
- Neatly categorized: You can browse through neatly categorized tabs on the top bar. There are separate tabs for shopping, Travel and Food. Under the online shopping tab, there are sub-categories like Mobile & Electronics, Home & Furnishings and Baby & Kids.
- Redirection to the dealer website: A click on the prominent button to the right of any coupon takes the user directly to the dealer website. There is no fuss of registration or any complicated procedure to apply the coupon.
- Deal of the day: There is a daily special discount offer located on the top of “featured and latest Coupons”. The Deal of the Day can be very handy for quick buyers.
- Although the coupons are easy to use and simple to apply, it might be confusing for the first time users. There should be an introductory note for the new users on how to use the coupons.
Overall, the website is very neat and user friendly. A large number of active deals are always available through this website. Do not forget to check them out before you launch any online shopping spree!
Getting connected on Facebook is not about limiting yourself to friends. It’s also about furthering business interests, public figures, shared interests and hobbies. But in order to shape these ties, it’s essential to comprehend the difference between Facebook Pages and Facebook Groups.
Corporate vs. Personal
- Groups are set up for a more personalized interaction, being directly connected with the administrator/s. For example, an online toy store in India in order to interact with their customers on Facebook, a group would give them enough opportunities.
- Pages are considered more of a person just like a corporate entity as they don’t list the name of the administrator/s. Pages can create content not linked personally, coming from the Page itself.
- Groups are not indexed by external search engines like Google, whereas Pages are.
- Pages are created and managed by official representatives.
- Groups can be created by anyone.
- Pages are perfect for two-way communication especially for individuals or organizations who want to make announcements to large groups of people.
- Groups permit equal communication between all members and are perfect for friends or enthusiasts who want to converse without anyone dominating.
Updates vs. Email
- Group admins can send messages to members.
- There is no limit to how many fans Page admins can send updates to or the number of fans a Page can have.
- Groups exercise more control over participation and the permission settings give admins the authority to restrict access and approve new members. The concept of a group is similar to a private club. It is just like an online kid’s toy shop having a private club at its discretion.
- Access to a page, however, is restricted by certain factors.
- Page posts and information are public and usually available to everyone on Facebook.
- Groups are equipped with more privacy settings in addition to an open setting. Posts are visible only to members in a closed group.
- Unlike a Page, a group cannot host applications.
- Neither a Group nor a Page has great features when it comes to moderation.
- People who ‘like’ a Page cannot see who else has ‘liked’ the Page.
- Group members can see who the other members are and can learn more about them by clicking on their profiles.
Repeat Visits and SEO
- The big minus of a Page is that visitors are unlikely to return after they have liked the page unless you make a post which they see in their newsfeed.
- The link on the sidebar of a member’s newsfeed enables him or her to remain abreast of all the latest activity.
- Groups won’t show up on a Google search whereas a Page will.
- Unlike Groups, Pages provide you with analytics on the number of likes, shares and other demographics.
Groups are great for organizing on a personal level and cause based small scale interaction. Pages are better for organizations, celebrities, brands, bands or movies who want to interact with their fans or customers without the burden of being linked on a personal level. Both Facebook Pages and Groups are not perfect. In a way they are similar to their users. But the positives are aplenty.
This is a guest post by Charu Swaroop. Charu contributes to Toy Tasting. When time permits, Charu loves dreaming up and trying new dishes. She has been promising herself to get over her sweet tooth (since 2003), and to trek in Nepal (since 2009).
Image source: 1
As promised in my previous post on How to Start an Online Business, here is my WordPress Tutorial for all non-technical people who want to create a free website all by themselves. WordPress is a dynamic and powerful website creation tool which allows even people who have no coding knowledge to create a website all by themselves. What makes WordPress indispensable are the great features like WYSIWYG Editor which allows content input to the website without coding or technicalities, flexibility of media manager, a huge collection of plugins and a very convenient installation process.
Creating a website in WordPress is an incredibly easy fare, so let’s take a look at some basic steps for creating a WordPress Website:
1. Understand and Plan:
It is tempting to jump right into the exciting endeavor of creating a website and go with the flow of upcoming challenges but I advise you to familiarize with the system and devise a plan first. Spend some time understanding how WordPress works and how it can be used best of your business. Make a crystal clear SEO and content writing plan before venturing into website creation. Book a domain from Godaddy.com and select a hosting provider.
2. Install WordPress:
WordPress installation requires a web-hosting account through which you can install WordPress. It seems very technical but it is actually a very simple procedure. All you need is to choose a good hosting provider like Bluehost.com, Hostgator.com or Godaddy.com and login on your cPanel to install WordPress . Most of these good hosting service providers provide one click installation which is really helpful for non-techies.
3. Set up Website and layout:
After successful installation, now is the time to set up your website and layout. WordPress provides lots of pre-designed themes with graphics, colors and text styles to choose from, with lots of customization options. If you want a more distinctive look, you can buy a professionally designed WordPress theme. Administration panel, settings, appearances, profile and many other options are also provided in your WordPress account to set up and get the website working in matters of minutes.
4. Add content:
Content in WordPress website is added as posts and pages. Posts are displayed on the blog page while static pages like “About Us” or “Product Page” can also be additionally added. Each post or page provides media managers for adding graphic, audio and video media.
5. Add Plugins and Widgets:
WordPress provides a wide range of plugins and widgets to extend the functionality of your website according to your requirements. Standard Plugins include contact forms, image galleries, image sliders etc while domain specific plugins include currency calculators or body mass index calculators etc. Some of the must-have plugins for making your website more productive are Feedburner, Google Analytics, Akismet, SEO plugin, Sitemap and Contact Form plugins.
6. Monetize your website:
Advertising is the quickest way to start making money on your website. Apart from banner and advertisement plugins, you can make use of Google Adsense program to monetize your website.
7. Drive traffic through Social Media:
The best way to drive traffic to your website is by social media integration which can be simply done by adding Facebook , Twitter and other Social Media buttons on your website.
8. Maintain and administer your website:
It is important to keep a check on spam comments, unused plugins and data backup. If you think the task is overwhelming for you, you can also create users (and hire people) to maintain your website and perform administrative tasks.
Follow these simple steps and voila! You have created a new functional website all by yourself. Let me know if you have any questions regarding any of the steps.
Unlike starting a business in the real world, starting an online business does not require a huge capital. In fact, if you have the right business idea and are willing to devote time and work hard, you can start an online business for free or with a very little investment.
But like any business venture, there should be clear plan of action of for starting your online business. I have listed below the steps that will help you convert your online business idea to a full-fledged success story:
1. Find a niche market:
For an online business it’s the market that counts instead of the product. The foremost requirement is to determine which products and services people are ready to buy through online sources. For this purpose, you will need to search the existing markets and activities of online users thoroughly. Take into account the things people discuss on forums, find out which keywords are people searching and finally check out the websites of your potential competitors. Finalize a product or service for which there is already a market.
2. Give your business a face- Create a website:
Once you have decided the product or service that you are going to market, you need a website. Now getting a website created may be very daunting for some people as the general perception is that you need to spend a lot of money for a decent website. But with so many options available nowadays, you can easily create a site for very little money or even for free (minus the domain and hosting costs). Creating a website involves 3 basic steps – Registering a domain, choosing a webhost, designing the website.
Register a Domain Name:
You can easily register a domain name from sites like Godaddy.com. Make sure that the domain name represents your business niche. Having an exact keyword match domain used to be great till recently but due to the recent algorithm changes it is no longer relevant. But still it is a good idea to include a keyword that represents your niche in the domain. Or you can use your brand name as a domain if you want. Make sure to register a .com domain if possible. You can get a .com domain for around $10 per year (INR 500).
Choose a web host:
Once you have selected the domain name, you need a web host for your website. I use Godaddy.com for all my websites and though it is not the most popular option for hosting, I have not got any reasons to complain till now. Hostgator is another popular option. On both these websites, you can get a hosting package for about $60-$80 (INR 3000-INR 4000) per year. Though there are even cheaper options, I won’t recommend going for them as the service may not be good.
Build a website:
Now comes the tough part- building the actual website. If you don’t have a lot of money to spare for your website design, you can go for free website builders or CMS. One of the most popular options these days is WordPress. Creating a WordPress website is really easy and anyone can do it without any HTML or coding knowledge. You can search YouTube for some helpful tutorials. I plan on posting a tutorial creating a WordPress website soon. So you may check that later.
If you are planning on setting up an online store, you can check DIY options like Ecwid. Ecwid has a free WordPress plugin and is really easy to set up. Also if you have a PayPal account, you can easily set up the payment feature too without the hassle of setting up a merchant account. Once your business is established, you can explore other payment options.
Please note that the free DIY shopping sites are ideal for small stores only. When you plan to extend your store and include more functionality, you may need to hire a professional web designer.
Whatever option you choose for creating a website, there are a few things you should take care of. The website should have clear navigation, informative content and should be very user-friendly.
Before you set out to create the website, I suggest you to first work on your website copy. Content is the king may be a cliché but it really is the king. You need an attractive copy to drive visitors to your website as well as for the search engines to rank your website. Also include an opt-in offer to collect email addresses. Add a Facebook “Like” or “share” option on your website as well.
3. Drive traffic to the website:
This is the most important step and is a defining factor for a successful online business. If there are plenty of visitors on your website, the chances of conversion are better. Moreover you can monetize your website through Google Adsense, paid ad slots as well as Affiliate Marketing if you have a decent traffic.
For driving traffic to your website, you must make your website relevant to search engines and that’s where content comes. Content is the king may be a cliché but it really is the king. You need an attractive copy to drive visitors to your website as well as for the search engines to rank your website. You can do a keyword research first and then use the targeted keywords in your content intelligently to make it more searchable. You must keep your website content fresh and up to date. Other ways to drive traffic is to use social networking websites like Facebook and Twitter to target the niche market.
Apart from organic traffic, Pay-per-click advertising is an easy way to drive traffic to your new website. The ads show up on the search pages immediately and allow you to test various keywords. Also they have flexible prices, headlines and selling approaches to choose from. You can also find the best keywords through these ads and use them on your website copy and code to increase your ranking on search engines. You can also use Facebook ads to get the attention of users at a low cost.
As you begin to drive traffic on your website, make sales and try to win customer loyalty by providing an excellent service. Establish an expert reputation in your field and keep your customers up-to-date via newsletter as well as social networking websites. There is almost no end to business expansion after the first hard steps but it’s all worth in the long run.
Social Media Marketing has been quite in vogue since the onset of social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, MySpace and many others. Facebook and Twitter are largely being used by all types of big and small business organizations as a marketing tool. This latest technique is considered as a great way to enhance the interaction with customers. But is really social media marketing worth the hype?
Well there are various points of views by different experts on this issue. Some think that social media doesn’t play the marketing role well enough and it is being used by only a small percentage of entrepreneurs all around the world. Because of the low cost or free advertisement on these sites, mostly small businesses use this approach much widely than bigger organizations. A different set of thoughtful experts argue that although it is a new way to advertise and promote your products but social media actually plays a smart role in developing a loyal customer following even for bigger organizations. The low cost advantage will stay there for almost any entrepreneur making these sites one of the best tools.
Well obviously, the users on such sites have increased to billions over the recent years. And if you put a constant effort of promoting your brand to such a diverse customer range, you are definitely going to reap the benefits. But there should be a constant and systematic approach to the social media marketing. It is not for people who try once and twice to give up because they don’t have the patience and time. It is for people who are consistent, have something amazing to offer and believe that they can make a great customer network through such sites.
So what makes marketing work on these social sites? The basic customer first attitude and a great story that will attract people will stay the landmark like any other type of advertisement. Just because you managed to get 1000’s of “Likes” from users in return for some incentives or discounts does not mean your job is over. A company should take the social media networking as a direct communication between them and their customers. This is a great way to increase mutual understanding and insight.
The best way to promote your products and services is to develop conversations with customers and making your presence felt on the social media. Be authentic and true in every update that you give and you will definitely win over loyal customers around the globe. If you talk with authenticity, there is a high chance that you will gain more followers through the network of your existing followers.
Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest are definitely excellent sites to start marketing. But if you want to market to other businesses, LinkedIn is a great social website to focus on. Basically, you need to set your goals and use the social media systematically to achieve them. Social media marketing will surely bring some level of influence both directly and indirectly on your business.