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Ecommerce

3 min read

Optimize your Magento SEO strategy

If you’re reading this article, you understand the importance of SEO. The improved SEO ranking will increase conversions as well as sales of your web business to a great extent.

Learn more about Andrii and hire for services on his SoftwareSupp Expert profile page.

1. Optimize URLs

URL optimization is an important point in an eCommerce business. It’s weighty that Google understands the content of each page and its location.

URLs to optimize:

  • Content Pages
  • Product page
  • Category Pages
  • Blog URLs

It’s great that Magento has built-in URL support to create searchable URLs. The platform lets you rewrite the URLs for your products and categories. All you have to do is go to the specified address: Marketing → Search & SEO → URL Rewrites.

Other useful hacks that will make your pages work properly:

  • 301 redirects for pages that are no longer relevant
  • Deleting duplicate data and pages
  • Remove default store codes from your site URLs

2. SSL Certificates

SSL certificates make sure that your site is secure. SSL-certified sites are ranked among the top searches.

How сan I know that my site has an SSL certificate? Just check your URL. There are two scenarios at the top of the screen:

1.HTTPS link. If you see “https: //” forward = SSL certificate and website protected.

2.HTTP link. If you see “http: //” or do not see anything at all, it means that your Magento website not only has SSL certification, but also lacks the security required to crack every website and cyberattacks.

Therefore, your site requires an SSL certificate

3. Website Speed

Site speed is an invaluable part of the strategy. According to research, 40% of potential customers leave the site if the download takes more than 3 seconds.

3 seconds – Your opportunity to impress.

You can use the Google PageSpeed ​​Google tool to check the speed of your site.

To maximize speed, you should:

1. Minimize the code

2. Conduct TTFB audit

3. Optimize visual content on the site

4. Evaluate third-party modules

4. Private Certificate Vs Shared Certificate

Shared certificates are free and this sounds attractive but private certificates are used for the most popular sites.

It is best to use private certificates for the right strategy. They are secure, better suited for e-commerce and protected against cyber attacks.

Popular Magento Site = safe site with a Private certificate.

5. Image optimization

Optimized content is required to prevent site overloading and slowing down.

Optimizing images does not affect their quality, but does affect size.

You can use one of the custom Magento extensions to optimize your images.

6. Responsive Themes

Responsive theme is required for SEO and conversion of a visitor into a customer.

Responsive theme is a theme that displays properly on any screen size. This theme is adaptable.

You can find many responsive on the web, but if you want a truly unique site – contact a Magento Certified Designer(we can help You;))

7. Backlink

A backlink is a great tool for building relationships and for the Magento SEO strategy. Backlink – using other websites to link to your website.

You can use other sites to reach a new audience. Each click is a potential customer.

More links = more opportunities to grow your business.

8. Keyword research

Keyword research is one of the most important points for the Magento SEO strategy.

You can use custom extensions and applications to research your keywords. These tools let you find keywords for different countries and different categories of leads. These words should be used in the titles and descriptions of your products

A good recommendation is to create a blog with unique URLs and content with keywords.

Andrii Bondarenko

Certified Magento Freelance Developer

SoftwareSupp

5 min read

Project deployment guide for SoftwareSupp Experts

Learn how do we manage and deploy projects at SoftwareSupp. Following all the steps from this article is one of the steps to successful project completion.

Learn more about Mike and hire for services on his SoftwareSupp Expert profile page.

We’ve noticed that there are multiple challenges you have to deal with when you work on IT projects. Bearing this in mind, we’d like to share with you the project deployment rules we apply for every SoftwareSupp project. If you are a SoftwareSupp verified expert, please keep in mind that by starting your SoftwareSupp project you agree to do your best to implement the practices given below into your work with a client.

Starting a project  

On the project launch, you are connected with your customer and get our support to successfully complete the project. After a customer decides to accept your offer, you’ll receive a confirmation email with a URL redirected to the project board. At the same time, he/she is requested to share access to software tools through a secured password submission form in the project board.

Together with sharing the password, he or she will be requested to provide additional materials and information, to allow you to successfully start the project.



Welcome message

We believe communication is a crucial part of every project, so at the beginning of the project please make sure to send a welcome message to the customer and let them schedule a kick-off call with you.

Kickoff

During your kickoff meeting, agree with the client how you’ll communicate during the project and let them know how frequently you are going to inform them about progress and results. (Do this at least on a weekly or bi-weekly basis.)

Keep in mind that key milestone updates have to be reported on the SoftwareSupp project board.

Communication

When it comes to ongoing project communication, it's a good idea to choose one communication channel to discuss foundation project topics. We recommend doing this in the SoftwareSupp inbox so you can easily reference them again later.

Meetings

A customer can book a meeting with you at their convenience using the meeting system available on the project board. You will receive an email notification about a booked call. (Please make sure you have added your availability).

If you are not able to attend the meeting, be sure to inform the customer that you are not able to attend, and propose an alternative time to meet.

It is a good practice to send a meeting agenda for every meeting and follow up after the meeting with a 3-point summary sent to the customer.

Project Management  

Project management is a crucial part to deliver the project successfully. For every project make sure your work is planned and reported through a dedicated project board in weekly or bi-weekly sprints:

- Set up delivery dates for each milestone. (Customers have to be sure how much time it takes to complete a milestone and when it will be ready). Also, it lets you eliminate possible risks and delays as well as adjust your efforts.

*Please remember that milestone status/completion has to be reported on the project board; it is required for the final project approval and settlement.

- Plan tasks for each bigger project milestone.

You can plan tasks directly in a project board just by clicking “add a new ticket”

- Schedule weekly or bi-weekly summary and planning calls with the customer.

Every time you’ll need to find the best time to talk with a customer use a meeting system at SoftwareSupp. Based on your availability, a customer can book a call or remote session with you.



Project manager

If you need additional help with project management, you can always contact the SoftwareSupp project manager who will answer all of your questions and help you facilitate the process with your customer.

When it comes to the SoftwareSupp project manager, he can be of any help with organizational matters, including problem-solving, and answer all of the questions about the scope changes or adjustments.

He can also help you execute all the necessary materials on time, e.g. password, specification.


Remember that SoftwareSupp provides additional tools to effortlessly manage processes of document storage, secured password sharing, and guide a customer to use them.

To summarize, the aim of the entire project management process and project manager support is to make sure the project will be delivered on time while maintaining a focus on quality.


Dev work/release

Any dev work is performed according to the following process:

a) The solution is always first implemented on the person or company’s staging environment

b) The solution is tested for proper setup/implementation

c) The solution is released on the production or is simply duplicated for the company’s

production in the same way it was implemented on staging


Support and support queries

Responsiveness is critical to forming a successful working relationship, especially when we are talking about providing support for the customer. Bearing this in mind you should reply to customer support queries within 1 hour from query submission.

In the answer providing:

a) an answer to the customer question (the real and actual one, once we don’t know something and need to check on this, we say this)

b) estimated time to complete the task and set up the solution (in hours or a time when it can be implemented)

Every answer (if it requires action on the developer/expert side) is followed by:

a) A ticket created in the system

b) Actual action/activity taken by the dedicated expert/developer

If you don’t know the answer:

a) if it can be checked quickly (e.g. by asking our community/partners) we 1. Inform the customer that we’re checking on this, 2. check with community/expert partners (e.g. by posting the query as a ticket). An internal SoftwareSupp team or a community of expert can then come back with the answer to the question and support a developer/expert in solving the issue)

b) if it requires research (e.g. dev issue) we 1. Inform the customer that we’re checking on this and that it might take a while and 2. check on this by running research.

Quality monitoring

You should know that a customer and all project members receive a weekly quality monitoring survey in which they can share their thoughts and feedback about your work and service quality.


Communication, respect, and responsiveness are critical to forming a successful working relationship. Follow the mentioned guides and they will help you complete the project successfully.

Mike Karas

Project Manager at SoftwareSupp

Marketing automation specialist or strategist?

Marketing automation specialist or strategist: who do you really need?

Learn more about Henrik and hire for services on his SoftwareSupp Expert profile page.

Marketing automation specialist or strategist: who do you really need? If you’re looking to get serious with marketing automation, it’s quite likely you’re currently looking for someone to help you implement the software.

Looking for a marketing automation specialist?

“We just need someone to set this up for us” is a phrase I often hear clients say.

They’ve looked into marketing automation platforms like HubSpot, Pardot or Marketo. They’re excited, they can see these platforms will help them generate more leads, better leads and boost their marketing efforts overall.

Or so they think.

The problem is that this “just set it up” approach almost never leads to results.

Even with a decade of experience in marketing automation under my belt, I still often felt I was crazy for, well, not loving it whenever I heard a client say this. But for years, I couldn’t put my finger on it.

But I did see this: whenever I was talking to a potential client about marketing automation, and they said “we just need someone to set this up”… they wouldn’t hire me.

And you know what? I’ve come to realize that’s a good thing. Because a company that is just starting with marketing automation and starts with hiring a marketing automation specialist is putting the horse behind the cart.

This desire for a “handyman” is now a legitimate red flag for me.

“We need someone to set this up” is a total ringer for a company that doesn’t understand marketing, hasn’t done their due diligence and just wants a quick fix.

(Did I offend any of you? There are exceptions to this rule, but they are slim, as we’ll see.)

The problem with hiring a marketing automation specialist

You see, you can’t automate what isn’t there.

Nine times out of ten, a company interested is marketing automation is looking for a solution, because what they’re doing right now isn’t working.

They’re running ads without much results. They’re sharing content and aren’t getting engagement. Lead flow is too low in general. Sales isn’t closing enough deals.

Here’s the thing: none of these problems exist because of a lack of using marketing automation software. These problems exist because, usually, there isn’t have a vision, a strategy or a set of established processes.

Marketing automation is about strategy, first

I wrote this article two years ago on SalesforceBen.com and it remains as relevant today, as it was then.

Marketing automation will allow you to automate existing processes. If there are no processes, there’s nothing to automate. To put it bluntly: if your current marketing is crap, you will be automating crap.

And that is exactly what I see with company after company that tries to implement marketing automation.

If you can’t close customers now, you won’t close customers then.

I’ve known this, subconsciously, for years now. I’ve seen this pattern repeated countless times. Marketing isn’t leading to results -> let’s hire a specialist to set up this expensive platform -> no results -> “marketing automation doesn’t work!”.

It does work. But it only works when:

  1. You have a clear vision for your company, product and goals.
  2. You have a clearly defined ideal customer profile, including a solid understanding of their situation, challenges and needs.
  3. You already know how to get leads using “WordPress & MailChimp”, which means: your messaging is good enough to attract people without fancy tricks.

Don’t get me wrong here: you will improve all of these things with consistent, automated conversations. But, again, you can’t automate conversations if you’ve never had them in the first place.

Marketing automating is about scaling up your ability to have (digital) conversations. It’s about increasing your bandwidth of what’s already there.

But guess what? If your product sucks, if it’s not relevant to the market, you can throw a million bucks at Marketo and still get squat for it.

Don’t hire a marketing automation specialist: hire a marketing automation strategist

So, from here on there’s two options:

  1. If your marketing isn’t getting results, go back to your vision, strategy, messaging and processes. Do not attempt to automate crap.
  2. If you have nailed your messaging and you are getting leads – by all means, go to town on marketing automation.

Option 1: go back to the drawing board

This is the reason clients were rejecting me, even when I clearly had the chops to help them out. It’s because I told them: you aren’t ready for this. You need to spend time and money on figuring out how to attract customers in the first place.

If that’s where you are, here’s what you need to do:

1: Go back to your Vision.

There is a reason this is the first of the Six Components™ of EOS®, the Entrepreneurial Operating System®. There is also a reason that, besides consulting in the marketing automation space, I help companies implement EOS®. It’s because they lack vision and strategy and therefore the entire company suffers.

Ask yourself:

  • What is the purpose of this company? Why does it have any right to exist at all?
  • What are your Core Values? What makes you, you?
  • Who is your ideal customer? What are their problems? How do you solve them? What’s unique about you and your solution?

(Tip: interview your 20 best customers. Ask them the #1 reason they keep paying the invoices. Also ask them what they #1 problem you solve for them is.

Then take those two points and put them in front of prospects you would love to have as customers. Yes, just ask for a phone call, or buy them a coffee. Don’t sell them anything, just say you want to see what you’re offering makes sense at all.

You’d be surprised).

If you can’t answer these questions, it’s no wonder you’re not doing well. You don’t even know why anyone should buy from you – how can you expect your customers to?

2: Develop a strategy for attracting customers

Going back to your existing customers, take a look at how you got those. Why did they buy from you? How did they find you? How long did that take? What could you have done to make that process easier or faster?

I find that most companies never ask themselves these questions. Marketers, to be sure, are great at “just doing stuff”. They create content and post it. They run ads. They blast emails.

Why? Well, because… that’s what you do, right?

Nope. You take what works and you try to replicate the success. And if you don’t have success, you try something new.

It’s not rocket science. It’s psychology. Figuring out what makes your customers tick. Why they should ever even give two sh*ts about what you’re offering.

Generally speaking, I advise clients to do two things:

  1. Start creating a real brand. That means you need that awesome messaging and relevancy. It also means finding a brand voice and consistent visual branding in ways that fits your customer. Start sharing content, have your best people on podcasts, LinkedIn and guest posts.

    Share your knowledge, show people you give a crap and don’t be cheesy. This is not an overnight strategy, but it works. Don’t worry too much about measuring results here – it’s largely intangible. You could, potentially, create content offers and email funnels here – but make them informative. Don’t sell!
  2. Create a funnel to catch folks that have buying intent. You don’t want to start the nurtures with case studies and benefits until someone is well on their way to feeling like your solution is a good fit for them. But you do need to sell! Just don’t do it too early. Create that brand, create attention, and only when a hand is raised do you switch to the conversion-focused stuff.

“But don’t I need marketing automation software for some of this?” Sure, that will help, but if you know your customers a weekly blast from MailChimp will do more good than any fancy nurture flow.

But yes… offering content, sending some informative follow-up emails, tracking intent. You can do all of that using ActiveCampaign, which starts at $50 a month.

Once you start nailing this at the small level, you can always move to Pardot or HubSpot.

3: Document & Iterate what you’re doing

Now make sure that you document what you’ve been doing.

Interviewing customers? Make a document and write down who you’ve talked to, what you asked, their answers and your learnings.

Start posting regularly on LinkedIn? Document who, what and when.

Offering content? Document why you made it, where it’s located and what happens to whomever reads it.

Running ads? To whom, when, what’s the messaging.

Etc.

Notice how we’re still not at marketing automation software? Unless you decided to start emailing (in which document when, to whom and what you’re sending) or built a basic follow-up sequence (which you documented, right?).

Make sure you start meeting weekly with your team to discuss what you’re doing and what’s working (and what isn’t).

And when it is working, try to figure out why. Replicate it. Show you can get people in front of your sales team with basic marketing tools at your disposal.

And then, with all that in place…

Now you can hire a marketing automation specialist

Once you have all that figured out, only then can you start implementing the processes on a larger scale.

Now you know what works. Now you know how you do things.

Now you can create a briefing, telling a marketing automation specialist what workflows to build and what to send to whom and when.

Now, my young apprentice… you are ready.

Henrik Becker

Certified HubSpot and SalesForce Expert

Ecommerce

1 min read

Adding a Modal Contact Form to a Shopify Product Page

How to add a basic modal contact form to the product page in Shopify, using basic HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.

Learn more about Rich and hire for services on his SoftwareSupp Expert Profile.

Whether you want to add a Contact Form, Sign Up Form, or Login Form to your Shopify site, a Modal can be a great way to allow users to submit forms via a popup window (although, technically not a popup window) without removing them from their current page, which can provide a more cohesive shopping experience.

This video explains in detail how to add a basic modal contact form to the product page in Shopify, using basic HTML, CSS and JavaScript.

*Note, I've added additional media queries from what's shown in the video to the code below for responsiveness.

HTML

<button id="contact-modal-button" class="btn">Questions?</button><div id="modal-contact-dark-overlay"></div>  <div id="contact-modal-container">    <div id="contact-modal">      <button id="contact-modal-exit">&#x2715;</button>      <h1>Contact Us</h1>      <p id="modal-success-message"></p>      <div id="contact-modal-form-content">        {% form 'contact' %}          {{ form.errors | default_errors }}</div></div></div>
 <label for="ContactFormArtwork" class="label--hidden">{{ product.title }}</label>          <input type="text" id="ContactFormArtwork" name="contact[Artwork]" value="{{ product.title }}" readonly="readonly">    
     <label for="ContactFormSku" class="label--hidden">{{ product.selected_or_first_available_variant.sku }}</label>          <input type="text" id="ContactFormSku" name="contact[Sku]" value="{{ product.selected_or_first_available_variant.sku }}" readonly="readonly">          
         {% assign name_attr = 'contact.form.name' | t | handle %}          <label for="ContactFormName" class="label--hidden">{{ 'contact.form.name' | t }}</label>          <input type="text" id="ContactFormName" name="contact[{{ 'contact.form.name' | t }}]" placeholder="{{ 'contact.form.name' | t }}" autocapitalize="words" value="{% if form[name_attr] %}{{ form[name_attr] }}{% elsif customer %}{{ customer.name }}{% endif %}">
        <label for="ContactFormEmail" class="label--hidden">{{ 'contact.form.email' | t }}</label>         <input type="email" id="ContactFormEmail" name="contact[email]" placeholder="{{ 'contact.form.email' | t }}" autocorrect="off" autocapitalize="off" value="{% if form.email %}{{ form.email }}{% elsif customer %}{{ customer.email }}{% endif %}">
        {% assign name_attr = 'contact.form.phone' | t | handle %}         <label for="ContactFormPhone" class="label--hidden">{{ 'contact.form.phone' | t }}</label>         <input type="tel" id="ContactFormPhone" name="contact[{{ 'contact.form.phone' | t }}]" placeholder="{{ 'contact.form.phone' | t }}" pattern="[0-9\-]*" value="{% if form[name_attr] %}{{ form[name_attr] }}{% elsif customer %}{{ customer.phone }}{% endif %}">
        <label for="ContactFormMessage" class="label--hidden">{{ 'contact.form.message' | t }}</label>         <textarea rows="10" id="ContactFormMessage" name="contact[{{ 'contact.form.message' | t }}]" placeholder="{{ 'contact.form.message' | t }}">{% if form.body %}{{ form.body }}{% endif %}</textarea>  
        <input type="submit" class="btn right" value="{{ 'contact.form.send' | t }}">     {% assign form_success = form.posted_successfully? %}      {% endform %}          

CSS:

 #modal-contact-dark-overlay {    display: none;    position: fixed;    top: 0;    left: 0;    width: 100%;    height: 100%;    background-color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.7);    overflow: auto;    animation-name: animateopacity;    animation-duration: 0.5s;  }    @keyframes animateopacity {    from {background-color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.0)}    to {background-color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.7)}  }  #contact-modal-container {    display: none;    position: fixed;    top: 0;    left: 0;    width: 100%;    height: 100%;  }  #contact-modal {    position: relative;    margin: 0 auto;    background-color: white;    width: 30%;    height: auto;    padding: 20px 40px 50px 40px;    box-shadow: -1px 3px 18px 0px rgba(128,128,128,1);    animation: drop-in 0.5s cubic-bezier(0.175, 0.885, 0.32, 1.275);    transform: translate(0%, -25%);    top: 25%;  }  @media(max-width: 1200px){    #contact-modal {      width: 40%;    }    }  @media(max-width: 770px){    #contact-modal {      width: 85%;    }    }    @keyframes drop-in {    from {top: 10%;}    to {top: 25%}  }    #contact-modal-exit {    position: absolute;    right: 20px;    border:none;    background:none;    font-size: 18px;  }  .hide-modal-content {    display: none;  }  #contact-modal-button {    position: relative;    background: black;    left: 243px;    top: -78px;    min-width: 34%;      }  @media(max-width: 770px){    #contact-modal-button {      position: static;       width: 100%;      display: flex;      justify-content: center;    }   }      input#ContactFormArtwork {    background-color: #F5F5F5;    font-style: italic;  }  input#ContactFormSku {    background-color: #F5F5F5;    font-style: italic;  }  input#ContactFormArtwork:focus {    outline: none;  }  input#ContactFormSku:focus {    outline: none;  }

JavaScript

<script>  const showOverlay = () => document.querySelector("#modal-contact-dark-overlay").style.display = "block";  const showModal = () => document.querySelector("#contact-modal-container").style.display = "block";    const hideOverlay = () => document.querySelector("#modal-contact-dark-overlay").style.display = "none";  const hideModal = () => document.querySelector("#contact-modal-container").style.display = "none";  // Open the Modal Window  document.querySelector("#contact-modal-button").onclick = function(){    showOverlay();    showModal();  }// Close the Modal Window by clicking the X  document.getElementById("contact-modal-exit").onclick = function(){    hideOverlay();    hideModal();  }// Close the Modal Window by clicking outside the box    window.onclick = function(event) {    if(event.target === document.querySelector('#contact-modal-container')) {      hideOverlay();      hideModal();        }  }  const hideFormFields = () => document.querySelector('#contact-modal-form-content').classList.add('hide-modal-content');// Show success message on page load        window.onload = function(){        if({{ form_success }}){  hideFormFields();      showOverlay();      showModal();      document.querySelector('#modal-success-message').innerHTML = "{{ 'contact.form.post_success' | t }}";    }  }</script>

Rich Berry

Certified Shopify Theme Developer

Top 5 Tips For Migrating To Webflow

The Webflow platform impresses with its key features: a user-friendly visual editor of web pages, a built-in CMS for quick management of store content and products, stunning animation effects, and more.

Learn more about Rhami and hire for services on his SoftwareSupp Expert profile.

The Webflow platform impresses with its key features: a user-friendly visual editor of web pages, a built-in CMS for quick management of store content and products, stunning animation effects, and more. These advantages have motivated hundreds of website owners to migrate their web projects to the Webflow.

Although the process of migrating a site is not too complicated, there are still a number of aspects to pay close attention to. Otherwise, reworking the neglected aspects can turn out to be rather costly.

Here are the top 5 tips to ensure the effective migration of your website to Webflow compiled by our team.

1. Use special migration tools

There are certain tools designed to make the migration process easier. For example, if you wish to migrate your Wordpress project, you need to export your content and import it to Webflow. This is where WP CSV plugin will help - export your Wordpress content as a CSV file and import it to Webflow in just a few clicks.

There are more useful migration tools, such as converters from Udesly. With them, you can easily transfer your products from Woocommerce, Wix, Shopify, or Squarespace to Webflow Ecommerce.

2. Implement the major SEO elements

In order to maintain the website's position in the search results, it is important not to neglect the key SEO elements.

Each project has SEO settings: editing robots.txt, generating sitemap.xml, turning off sites indexing on temporary subdomains, as well as a request for verification of the site by Google.

For each page, you can set meta tags, titles, and descriptions of the content. There are options for the OpenGraph markup as well. Each blog post and store product contains SEO settings, therefore, it is important to use these opportunities to improve the overall SEO position of the site.

3. Integrate Google Analytics with Google Tag Manager

Next, we strongly recommend integrating your Google Analytics (GA) account with Google Tag Manager (GTM). This will help you a lot with tracking your analytics, optimizing user experience and increasing website conversions.

With GTM, you can store all the script tags, pixels and analytics codes within a single tag. One of the greatest benefits of this is managing your website integrations and tracking the performance without the need to actually edit the code.

Here is a detailed tutorial on how to integrate GA with GTM in Webflow.

4. Set up 301 redirects

To prevent users from landing on the broken pages (and to minimize the loss of backlinks), be sure to check the pages on your existing website and set up 301 redirects accordingly.

Webflow platform has got 301 redirects covered - you can set up redirects either for a single page or for an entire folder of pages. Just go to the Project settings section, fill in the fields “Old Path” and “Redirect to Page”, and then push the “Add Redirect Path” button. That’s it!

In order not to forget anything, you can pre-compile a list of all the pages you have. Of course, this will be time consuming in case of sites with a large number of pages.

5. Reset your DNS settings

As long as the Webflow platform does not provide domain registrar services, you cannot transfer your previously hosted domain to it. However, you can still link it to Webflow by pointing that domain to the platform servers using the DNS records.

To do this, you should reset your DNS settings first. This will help you prevent any issues that might require troubleshooting DNS settings in the future.

Your domain registrar may or may not allow managing DNS records; therefore, your actions will differ a bit in those two scenarios. Please see the detailed instructions for both cases here.

After you’re done with resetting the DNS settings, you can proceed with updating them. The potential pitfall on this step is that all the DNS hosts have their own ways of updating the settings, and the dashboards interfaces are not always that intuitive. So, you may want to check the help documentation of your DNS host and/or to reach out to their support service.

Summary

To sum up, you can migrate your website to Webflow either independently or with the help of an expert. If you decide to do it yourself, then you should find the tips we've provided above helpful.

First, the use of special tools for data migration will make the transition to Webflow quick and easy. Second, adding key SEO elements will prevent your website positions in search results from dropping. Third, integration of Google Analytics with Google Tag Manager will allow monitoring and optimizing the efficiency of your website performance. Fourth, installing 301 redirects will prevent users from landing on non-working pages. And finally, resetting the DNS settings will help you avoid the problems with them in the future.

Rhami Aboud

Certified Webflow Freelancer

CRM

7 min read

11 signs you need a CRM

If you’re still sitting on the fence – we get it, change is daunting! – here are 11 signs that will push you over to the other side.

Learn more about Ben and hire for services on his SoftwareSupp Expert profile.

Change, they say, is as good as a holiday. But when it comes to completely overhauling the systems, tools and processes you’ve become familiar with at work, you’re probably thinking a week-long stint at a beach resort in Thailand holiday seems a tad more enticing. Vacation fantasies aside (cocktail, anyone?), it can be worth embracing change from time to time. Especially when that change is going to make your business run so much more smoothly. It’s pushing through that short-term pain to reap the rewards of the long-term gain.

Running a real estate business is no easy task, but technology is certainly helping. From keeping in touch with your past customers, staying on top of referrals, hooking in prospective customers, meeting, calls, open homes, property tours, and updating where you’re up to in the process with each customer… it’s exhausting! There’s a lot to keep track of for optimal results – but the solution lies in adopting a customer relationship management software.

If you’re still sitting on the fence – we get it, change is daunting! – here are 11 signs that will push you over to the other side. Trust us, the grass really is greener on the other side, and we're here to show you how and help you in the process.

1. You excel at Excel

Ah, good old Excel spreadsheets (bless its many functions and formulas). So reliable, so adaptable, so comforting. You’ve no doubt been using it to collaborate on the business for a while now and are in quite a rhythm. So much so, you probably haven’t even noticed its serious limitations. It’s far from a level playing field with a CRM. It’s like comparing Spotify to a Discman. If someone hasn’t told you already, it’s time to upgrade. With a real estate specific CRM you bring all your teams into the one document, which can be updated in real time. All your teams will be dancing to the same tune and working to the same goal.

2. You’re flying blind

Here’s a little test for you: get your team together and ask what the sales cycle currently looks like for your real estate agency. What stage is each prospect up to in the sales process? Our money is on the face that no-one has an exact answer – or access to an exact answer. It would take some jumping around from spreadsheet to spreadsheet to work out. Your team is flying blind!

Leads come in all shapes and forms. Through your website, email, phone calls, walk-ins, etc. It’s hard to collate all these leads and follow up on the best of days. A CRM captures all these prospects, recording it all on a platform for everyone to see – everyone is on the same page. You can classify each lead as hot, warm or cold and make sure your team is following up the right ones in a timely manner.

3. If an employee leaves, you’re in the dark

We all have that star employee in the office: they’ve been there for years, they know exactly what they’re doing and they’re you go to when you need any information about anything. What would happen if this person was your top sales rep in your real estate agency and they left your business today. Just upped and left without another word? Would your team be able to pull it together, access all their past conversations with prospects and know how to pick up the pieces? Could you easily recruit a new person to fill their shoes? We’re guessing the answer is no. You guessed it, you need a CRM.

4. You can’t predict the weather

Or can you? We’ll give you a handy hint here… with a CRM you can come close to it. An important part of any real estate business is being able to predict the market and forecast your businesses future sales. Do you know what your sales pipeline current looks like? Do you know how many hot leads your team is currently chasing? If your salespeople are currently keeping this information in their heads, then who knows whether rain or sunshine on the horizon! That’s valuable information you’re missing out on that can help you fine-tune your sales strategy and aim for future growth.

5. Double ups are deadly

If your teams aren’t singing from the same song sheet, there’s a very high chance you could have sales reps working the same contact at the same time. Oops! If your prospects are having discussions with multiple salespeople from your business, not only is this a waste of resources for you, but it is mighty confusing for the customer. Not to mention potentially embarrassing if they get different quotes for the same work!

6. Oh dear, you’re relying on a diary

Diaries are great for keeping track of your events and to-dos… but that’s about it. If your team is still using a diary to keep track of customer interactions, alarm bells should be ringing. This is risky business! From tracking leads to dealing with customers, noting essential details such as phone numbers and emails… this is vital information! And it’s information the entire office should have access to and be able to see at a glance. The good old paper diary is about as useful as lips on a chicken when it comes to managing such things. What do you need? Hint: it starts with a ‘C’.

7. Sales processes are at a snail’s pace

The property is a fast-moving market. One day you have 10 houses listed for the sale, you wake up the next morning and 6 of these have sold. If your sales process isn't keeping up, then you’re missing out on plenty of potential sales. Using a CRM can cut the time it takes to close a deal, and keep you on pace with the changing market. Not only will a CRM provide you with the data on average property turnaround times and how long your sales team is spending on each stage, but you can then use this data to improve processes moving forward. It’s a no-brainer.

8. Has anyone got Bob’s phone number?

I know who has it! All those people in your office who are still using their hand-written diaries. See the problem here? If people in your team ask for, and spend time looking for, contact details – from a prospect to the accountant to the courier – you absolutely need a CRM. If the contact details for your business relationships are not available to you at the press of a button, it is time for a CRM. Like, now-ish.

9. Reporting is ridiculous

Reports are an essential part of running any real estate business. They help you keep track of all the essential information from the amount of prospects, to how many sales happened in that time period. They need to be accessible at the touch of button. If your business is still taking hours to pull together the information from the accounting team, email, Excel docs, etc., it’s time to ask yourself why. A CRM offers you instant reports when you need them.

10. You’re repeating yourself

Whoever coined the phrase ‘Repetition is the mother of all learning’ clearly had an abnormal tolerance for the mundane. If you’re carrying out repetitive tasks over and over that could easily be automated (sending real estate listings to every prospect, every month, for example), we hate to break it to you, it’s all doable with a CRM with the click of a mouse. Automation beats repetition every time.

11. Your salespeople are not on task

You know the drill: you ask a salesperson to follow up on a lead and then don’t think about it again. Until two weeks later, that is, when you get a call from the lead asking you where you’ve been. It’s embarrassing to say the least. And you want to scream at your sales guy, right? But, instead, you have an awkward conversation in which he tells you it just slipped his mind. Well, imagine if you had a magical machine (on your desk or in your pocket) that reminded your salespeople that a job needs doing. We call this enchanted invention a CRM. You need one. Pronto.

Ben Fuller

Certified Pipedrive and CRM Freelancer

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