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Answer from our Guest Expert Jim Chesky of Marketing Communications - page 2

Since these are all things you may talk about when making a personal sales call, you can see what you might add to your site. For example, what types of birdhouses attract what kinds of birds? This knowledge, gleaned from your website, can help make your birdhouses and feeders sell like hotcakes.

But all this will require a more efficient website than you now have. So here's a quick recipe to get you started on a healthy note.

Success Stories -- A Big Hit

Once at your website, show wholesalers how your birdhouses will make them a profit. This means success stories from current customers. Consider putting photos of current customers and their success stories online (with their permission, of course). Perhaps even give examples of how your product is displayed in other flower shops and garden centers. Show what a successful display of your product looks like. While I won't go into how to structure your website, I'd just say this: When a business comes to your site -- no matter their specialty -- try to feature a display example that would work for them to successfully sell your product. Cover every spectrum of your wholesalers, from florists and garden shops to the corner store.

Meet and Mingle with Your Visitors

Offer interaction with the site visitor. They came; they saw; they had questions. Make it easy for them to ask. Put a hot link to either an email or a frequently asked questions (FAQ) page. It's okay if they ask you the same stupid questions that was on your FAQ page. You want interaction; it shows interest and opens up dialogue. Make sure you ask how they want you to answer their question. Include an 800 number on each web page.

Get Your Orders in Order

Next, make it easier for them to order your product. Right now, your website is like talking to one waitress to find what's on the menu, and then going to another waitress to place your order. Let visitors look at the product and order it right then. (Consider either market basket style website or put product photos on your order page). Make ordering easy and simple and watch your sales rise like a homemade bread!

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