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Tending Technology Simon Huntley Lead Developer, Small Farm Central Introduction Who am I? Small Farm Central introduction Who are you? Reasons to have a website Professionalism New customers Increased connection with existing customers Prospective employees/interns

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tending technology

Tending Technology

Simon Huntley

Lead Developer, Small Farm Central

introduction
Introduction
  • Who am I?
  • Small Farm Central introduction
  • Who are you?
reasons to have a website
Reasons to have a website
  • Professionalism
  • New customers
  • Increased connection with existing customers
  • Prospective employees/interns
  • Creative expression and show your uniqueness
  • Sales
    • Create an alternate, predictable income stream
  • Unique connections
    • Maui macadamia nut farm
  • Communication efficiency
9 steps to a web presence
9 Steps to a web presence
  • Develop a strategy
  • Choose a web address
  • Get hosted
  • Developing and updating
  • Navigation
  • Adding photos
  • What do visitors want?
  • Sell
  • Keep it fresh
1a develop a strategy
1a. Develop a strategy
  • “Personas”
    • Define desired outcome for each “primary persona”
  • Local vs. national
  • Define expectations & success
  • Updates
  • Models
    • Who is doing it right?
  • Plan for five years down the road
1b consider a dynamic strategy
1b. Consider a dynamic strategy
  • Plan for future customer expectations
  • Be on the cutting edge
    • Does not necessarily require more money or knowledge – just know the tools
  • Create conversation and community
    • Leading to even more direct sales and committed customers
  • Be unique and exceptional
2 choose an address
2. Choose an address
  • Kinds of addresses
    • Domain: http://www.yourfarm.com
    • Subdomain: http://yourfarm.somecompany.com
    • Subdirectory: http://www.somecompany.com/yourfarm
  • Is yours available?
    • http://whois.net
    • http://godaddy.com
  • Dot-com or Dot-other
  • Costs
3 get hosted
3. Get hosted
  • Try
    • Bluehost.com
    • Uplinkearth.com
    • Godaddy.com
    • Small Farm Central
  • Consider email addresses
  • Costs
4 developing and updating
4. Developing and updating
  • On your own..
    • Dreamweaver
      • Pro and con
      • Cost: $300
    • Any text editor if you are willing to learn HTML/CSS
      • http://www.webdesignfromscratch.com/
  • Or with help..
    • Online “content management system”
      • Search “CMS”
      • Mac.com Homepage
      • Yahoo! small business
      • Small Farm Central
5 navigation
5. Navigation
  • Stick to one style
  • Keep organized
    • Dreamweaver templates
  • Watch customers or a family member use your site
6a adding photos
6a. Adding photos
  • Creates an instant connection between farmer and eater
  • Choose a camera
    • Inexpensive is o.k. for the web
  • External hosting options
    • Flickr
    • Snapfish
    • Picasa
6b use flickr for photos
6b. Use Flickr for photos
  • Use existing Yahoo ID or createhttp://www.flickr.com
6c resizing
6c. Resizing
  • Resizing photos for the web
    • Detail vs. speed
    • 640 by 480 pixels is enough
    • Consider dial-up connections especially for rural customers
    • Optimize photos that will be load often
    • Picasa
7a what do visitors want
7a. What do visitors want?
  • Basic page elements
    • “About”
    • “Contact Us” page
    • Farming philosophy
    • Photo gallery
    • Staff bios
    • Updated news/blog section
    • Recipes
    • Currently available products
    • FAQ
7b beyond the basics
7b. Beyond the basics
  • Be different: allow feedback and connection
    • Forum
    • Comments
    • User generated content such as recipes
    • Customer profiles
    • Be creative!
8 sell
8. Sell
  • Single items:
    • Google checkout
    • PayPal
  • Shopping cart
    • Yahoo Small Business
      • $40/month + 1.5% of sales
    • Etsy
      • 20 cents to list an item, 3.5% of sales
    • Local Harvest
      • 10% of sales
    • Small Farm Central
9 keep it fresh
9. Keep it fresh
  • Make a schedule and keep to it
    • Set a reminder
  • Make it easy!
  • Take photos every week
  • Delegate the task
  • Include dates of last update
a guerilla marketing idea
A guerilla marketing idea
  • Start with a good base site coupled with ecommerce
  • Send product samples to food bloggers
    • Include recipes, information about the farm, and an offer to guest post
  • Be different, get written about, and let the sales come in
testing
Testing
  • Always test in major design changes in multiple browsers
    • IE 6
    • IE 7
    • Firefox
    • Maybe: Opera,Safari
  • Remember that each browser / operating system combination will render differently
getting right with google
Getting right with Google
  • Submit your site:http://www.google.com/addurl/
  • No direct control over what Google lists in search results
  • The key: get other sites to link to your site
getting listed
Getting listed
  • Related farming organizations will list your farm and link to your website
  • List with:
    • LocalHarvest
    • New Farm Locater
    • Regional or niche organizations
  • Each link helps with Google ranking and gains human visitors!
statistics
Statistics
  • Google analytics:
email lists
Email lists
  • Emails are a central part of modern communication
    • Average American checks email 5x a day
    • Drive traffic and sales to your website
  • Collecting email addresses
    • Legally
    • Successfully
      • Farmer’s markets
      • On website
  • Be consistent
    • Weekly with product lists
    • Monthly with regular updates
software for email lists
Software for email lists
  • Constant contact
    • $15/month for up to 500 addresses
  • Zoodoka
    • Free blog digests
  • PHPList
    • Ask your host
  • Small Farm Central
  • Mail merge with Microsoft Word and Excel
blogging 1 2
Blogging 1/2
  • Defining blogs
    • Try different terms if you are uncomfortable with “blogs”
    • Reverse chronologically listed posts
    • Often takes comments and tries to stimulate conversation
    • Define blog for yourself!
  • Advantages
    • Consistently posted content keeps visitors coming back
    • Creative outlet
    • Frame the conversation
      • Rancho Gordo vs. Slow Foods
    • Personalizes the business
    • Long term goals: books and other opportunities
  • Try to integrate into main site
blogging 2 2
Blogging 2/2
  • Consistency
    • Tiny farm blog
    • If you are going to do it, do it right
  • Photo for each entry
  • Can be very short and to the point
    • Just explain one challenge of the day or week
  • Great examples
    • Tiny farm blog: http://www.tinyfarmblog.com
    • Rancho Gordo: http://www.ranchogordo.typepad.com
    • Ladybug Letter: http://www.ladybugletter.com/
blogger
Blogger
  • http://smallfarmcentral.blogspot.com
rss feeds
RSS feeds
  • What is RSS?
    • The future of web browsing
  • See Google Reader
  • Comes with most blogging software (including Small Farm Central)
  • Feed Burner to track subscriptions
    • Daily digest emails
showing up
Showing up..

The best thing Seth Godin did for his web marketing in 2007:

“I showed up.

Underrated, but important.”

comments or questions
Comments or questions
  • ..your turn
  • or let’s see your site…