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PSPinc will help your business thrive by providing for all of your technology needs. We offer a wide array of products, including Web & Email Hosting, Website Development, Email Marketing and Data Storage Solutions. Visit pspinc.com to learn more.

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Customer Surveys: Ask the Right Questions

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We often ask questions with some expectation of the answers before we hear them. When asking our customers for their input, however, we must willingly set aside our opinions and remain neutral if we want to get honest feedback and learn something valuable from them.

According to Peter Drucker, guru of business management, the fax machine is a prime example of the influential power in our questioning techniques.

Before the fax machine came to market, U.S. manufacturers conducted market research asking, "Would you buy a telephone accessory for upwards of $1,500 that enables you to send, for $1 a page, the same letter the post office delivers for 25 cents?" You guessed it; the answers were no and U.S. manufacturers did not pursue the fax machine.

On the other hand, as Drucker pointed out, Japanese manufacturers asked a more straightforward question: “Is there a market for what the fax machine does?" And they realized fax machines could replace courier services like FedEx in the 70s. As a result of asking the right question, Japanese manufacturers were first to market and more dominant in fax machines than U.S. companies in the 80s and 90s. It was too late for many U.S. companies to follow suit.

Collecting feedback from our customers is beneficial, but only if we phrase our questions in such a way that allows them to be honest and think for themselves. If we are going to take the time to survey people, make it worthwhile. Prepare ahead of time, keep it straightforward, and take the bad with the good – because it all helps to better your business.
#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Marketing #Advertising #B2B #SmallBusiness #OfficeTips #Surveys #CustomerSatisfaction #CustomerFeedback #CustomerService #OnlineSurveys #CRM #FocusGroups

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How to Host a Focus Group

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Hosting a focus group to get more granular feedback from your customers is a great way learn what’s working, what’s not, and what the people want. The feedback can help you make better informed decisions when it comes to introducing, modifying or discontinuing products or services – instead of relying solely on your gut instinct.

Follow these five steps to host a successful focus group:

1. Define your Mission

What do you want to learn from your participants? Plan your focus group around a purpose and stick to it.

2. Recruit Participants

Carefully consider the people you invite. Think back to your plan for the focus group. Should you invite business people or consumers? What ages? Does income level or location matter? And should you be talking with people who are loyal to your company or people who have stopped purchasing your products or services? Maybe you need a good mix of everyone. You might consider sending out a questionnaire to pre-screen participants.

3. Provide Incentives

Time is money so be sure to reward the people who participate. Perhaps a discount or a gift card. Whatever that is, put yourself in their shoes and determine if the incentive is worth your time.

4. Interview

Interviewing participants in person is beneficial because there is much more to answers than words. Tone of voice and facial expressions can say a lot too. You can really capture the feelings in person. Prepare questions in advance and be very straightforward when delivering them. Don’t use a lot of adjectives or language that can be leading. Stay objective and try to get non-biased answers.

5. Take Notes

This is your chance to get more than a yes or no answer, so take advantage. Take notes on how the users engage with you. How do they appear? Do they smile? Are they agitated? Are they struggling to answer right away?

For a successful focus group, you need plenty of preparation ahead of time. You can find lots of sample questions online to give you ideas!
#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Marketing #Advertising #B2B #SmallBusiness #OfficeTips #Surveys #CustomerSatisfaction #CustomerFeedback #CustomerService #OnlineSurveys #FocusGroups

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Simple, Immediate Surveys get Results

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The best time to ask a customer about their experience with your business is immediately after your transaction or interaction with them. Life is busy and our memories get muddled because of it, so don’t wait too long to get feedback. Ask when when it’s fresh in your customer's mind.

If you want to keep it really simple, ask just one question: “Are you happy?”

Here are two ways PSPinc is doing that:

Feedback Form

We implemented a simple email survey through our CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system so whenever our support staff helps a customer, the customer immediately gets a follow-up email asking them to rate their experience with us. This can tell us a lot about how we are doing, and also what kinds of issues customer are having.



Opinion Stand

On a tablet next to our lobby entrance, we ask customers, “How did we do?” and they have the option to give their feedback on the tablet as they exit.



Don’t miss an opportunity to connect with your customers. These simple and quick surveys can provide a lot of great insight into what you’re doing right and what you need to do better.
#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Marketing #Advertising #B2B #SmallBusiness #OfficeTips #Surveys #CustomerSatisfaction #CustomerFeedback #CustomerService #OnlineSurveys #CRM

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How to Get Customer Feedback

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Learning from our customers equips us with information to better our business. In a previous article we discussed using analytics as a tool to understand our customers’ online behavior. Now let’s talk about reaching out to those customers to get their feedback.

One of the best and easiest ways to engage with your customers is to create a survey for them. Surveys are easy to make and you can customize them to ask broad questions or get very specific – it all depends on what your company needs from it.

Here are some key points for you to consider before you start your survey:

- Determine your goal for the survey, and what you want to get out of it.

- Compile your customer list, preferably emails, to which you can send the survey.

- Consider offering an incentive (coupon, freebie, discount) if they take the survey.

- Come up with your questions. Keep it simple and neutral, don’t lead your customers toward a particular answer. Stay completely objective. Consider questions like: How do they like your product or service? Where did they learn about you? What else would they like to see your company offer? What is your strength / weakness?

- Keep it short and tell them up front how long it should take to complete the survey. Everyone’s busy, don’t get greedy with their time.

- Be sure to follow-up at some point so your customer doesn’t think their time and feedback was wasted.

- Consider asking some of the tough questions, even if you’re worried about receiving criticism. Remember, you’re not looking for a testimonial; you want to understand how you can improve. Customers might appreciate it.

Once you figure out your questions, then you can find the survey tools. PSPinc has an online form program, so if you need any help, contact us! We would be happy to assist you.
#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Marketing #Advertising #B2B #SmallBusiness #OfficeTips #Surveys #CustomerSatisfaction #CustomerFeedback #CustomerService #OnlineSurveys #CRM

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Learning from our Customers

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Sometimes we let our values or assumptions dictate our business decisions. But how do we know if we’re making decisions that appeal to our customers’ needs and desires? If business is good, that’s a pretty solid indicator your ways are right. But what if business could be better? I think there’s always room for improvement, and it starts with customer research.

In this next series of articles, we explore ways we can learn from our customers – starting with web analytics.

Google Analytics is a free web tool that’s simple to use. First, you need to setup your Google Analytics account. Go to www.google.com/analytics. Follow the instructions and get a “tracking code” for your website. If you’re unsure how to proceed once you have your tracking code, contact your webmaster, your marketing company, or call us at PSPinc.com (1-800-232-3989). Most websites have easy ways to embed those codes so you can track the visitors to your pages.

Google Analytics can give you a lot of data about the people visiting your site, including where they come from, how they enter your site and where they exit.

Some things to look for include:

- Page Hits = how many pages are viewed
- Visitors = how many visits you had
- Unique Visitors = how many visitors are new to your site
- Bounce = meaning people are leaving your site
- Page Flow = shows how your visitors navigate through your website

So now you have all this data in front of you, but what do you do with it? Start asking questions. Here is a jumping off point:

How many people are visiting your site? Where are they coming from?
Who are they? Are they your target audience?
How are you attracting them? Are they spending time on pages you hoped they would hit?
Are they taking the “actions” you want them to take via your website?
What pages interest them the most? What pages do they leave from, and why?


Questioning this kind of data may help you develop some theories for testing your website’s appearance, content and functionality, and improve its performance altogether. Even a small tweak can make your homepage more effective.
#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Marketing #Advertising #B2B #SmallBusiness #OfficeTips #Surveys #CustomerSatisfaction #CustomerFeedback #CustomerService #OnlineSurveys #CRM

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7 Ways to De-Stress at Work

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It’s okay to feel stressed or frantic about work sometimes, but when it happens every day it’s time to make some changes. From jamming to your favorite tunes to tidying up a bit, here are 7 ways to de-stress while at work.

1. Exercise

Don’t underestimate the benefits that a brisk walk around the office or around the block can have on your energy levels. If you don’t have time to leave the office try stretching at your desk or take a walk to the bathroom.

2. Snack

People are more prone to stress on an empty stomach. So, if you find yourself in a heated internal monologue, try grabbing an apple from the kitchen. A snack might be just the break your body needs to deal with a stressful situation. Make sure you’re hydrating too!

3. Communicate

Try communicating your worries to a friend, co-worker, or even with a pen and pad. You might be surprised how verbalizing your stress can help. Don’t just complain about your problems, make a list of actions that you can take to tackle each one.

4. Take a Break

Give your mind a break by finding something that will distract you from your tasks. Even moving on to a new task, and taking a short break from the one that’s causing stress, can help you refocus while you continue to get work done.

5. Breathe

Inhale for 1…2...3…4 counts and exhale for 1…2…3…4 counts. Repeat this breathing exercise several times and then allow your breathing to return to normal. Repeat as often as you need throughout your day. It might seem too simple, but it actually works!

6. Listen to Music

Instrumental, classical, jazz, and even lo-fi music can be a wonderful distraction when stress hits. Try listening to calming music while doing your breathing exercise.

7. Tidy Up

The saying is “A cluttered desk is a cluttered mind.” By tidying up your desk and cleaning your office, you cut down possible distractions and feel more energized to take on your tasks.
#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Marketing #Advertising #B2B #SmallBusiness #OfficeTips

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Why is my Company's Facebook Reach Declining?

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Facebook had a rough year in 2018 and it’s hasn’t gotten any better so far in 2019. They acknowledged their mistakes and rolled out some changes to the news feed.

Like Google, Facebook determines how posts rank and which ones show up first in your news feed. In an effort to ‘save Facebook’ Mark Zuckerberg has implemented changes that cut back on showing posts that aren't from users' friends and family.

Since Facebook is now scoring personal posts above business posts, the change has been costly to companies trying to increase customer engagement. They've seen a significant drop in organic Facebook reach throughout the year.

What does this mean for your business?

Essentially, your company’s Facebook posts will (on average) be shown to only 2 - 5% of your audience. If you have 1,000 followers, that means only 20 - 50 of them will see your post. Our company has seen a stark drop in engagement this past year on our own social pages.

Companies will be looking for ways to get those numbers back and the fastest way to do that is paying for ads. We expect ad prices to start going up as more companies look to broaden their reach in non-organic ways. The good news is there are still ways to grow your organic reach:

1. Focus on the quality of your content instead of the quantity.
2. Facebook is putting more focus on ‘meaningful discussion’ so get engaged with users, reply to comments, rather than simply liking posts or comments.
3. Don’t oversaturate your page by posting too often. At most, you should post once a day but studies have shown that posting less than that doesn’t hurt your reach.

On top of everything, Facebook continues to deal with pressing issues like questions from congress over user privacy and an outage last week that lasted over 12 hours. Facebook is home to over 1 billion users and we don’t see that changing anytime soon. But the social media landscape is quickly changing and companies will have to adapt and work harder in order to get the same results that came so easily only a few years ago.
#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Marketing #Advertising #B2B #SmallBusiness #OfficeTips #SEO #WebDesign #WebsiteBuilder #Facebook #SocialMedia

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9 Things Every Small Business Website Should Have

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As a business, you want to make sure your office or storefront looks professional. You may apply a new coat of paint, add lighting and signage where it’s needed. You do this because you know your appearance has an effect on people’s opinion of your business. Well, the same concept applies to your online business.

Below, we share 9 elements that every website needs to put its best foot forward.

A Clear Description

When someone visits your website, they shouldn’t have to dig through pages to learn who you are and what your business does. State your business name clearly and sum up your products or services on the homepage. Don’t put everything on your homepage, just enough to give visitors adequate information about your business so they can decide if they’re on the right site.

Easy Website Address

When choosing a web address, note two things: Make it memorable and keep it short. If your web address is complex and long, your visitors might forget what to type in or misspell it. Keep it simple and try to avoid dashes, if possible.

Simple Navigation

So you don’t know how to code or anything about web design. Great! Keep your website simple and easy to navigate. Worry less about how pretty your website looks; instead make it easy to navigate and chock-full of great information about your business.

Clear Contact Information

It sounds silly, but you’d be surprised how many websites don’t have a clear description of the business or any way to be contacted. Contact information should be one of the top priorities when building a website. A clear and obvious section that contains your phone number, address, business hours, and email info can make a huge difference.

If you can, add a contact form on your website to make it even easier for visitors to contact you.

Customer Testimonials

Establish trust and legitimacy with new visitors by adding testimonials to your website. People love to hear from other people about their stories and experiences with a company. If you don’t have any testimonials, start asking your current or past customers to leave one on Google or Yelp. In exchange, you can offer to link to their businesses website from the testimonial they give you.

Call to Action

Each page on your website should serve a purpose and that purpose should have a ‘call to action’. What is the purpose of your homepage? It might be to inform visitors about your business and give them a way to learn more about your products/service. So in this case, you should have a call to action that leads visitors to your product/service information.

If the purpose of your product page is to lead customers to your contact page, have a call to action that links them to the contact page.

Fresh Content

Updating your website with new quality content frequently will not only help your SEO, it will also give visitors the most up-to-date information. Websites that have old and outdated information reflect poorly on the business.

Links to Social

Your business should be on social media as another means to reach potential customers online. A great way to grow your social channels is to include icons on your website that link to your social pages.

Secure Hosting

Often overlooked, a secure hosting platform can make a huge difference when it comes to your website. Small businesses that collect user information need to protect themselves and their customers. It’s important to find a trustworthy hosting company that will keep your websites protected from hacker attacks.

Dreamersi is a product of PSPinc and offers secure hosting packages and SSL certificates that ensure your site is protected at all times.
#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Marketing #Advertising #B2B #SmallBusiness #OfficeTips #SEO #SearchEngineOptimization #Website #WebHosting #OnlineMarketing #DigitalMarketing

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Step out of your Business Comfort Zone

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Doing the same thing the same way might be comfortable, but is it helping your business progress? That’s the question of the day.

The formula for success is simple: you make a profit by earning more revenue than your cost. So we often focus on ways to increase our revenue, but what if we could also cut costs? And remember, time is costly too.

One of our clients needed help making their process more efficient, cutting back on the time, energy, and especially manpower to make their operation work…

The company has a very data-entry driven process, which includes multiple steps, such as data collection, compiling, confirming and entering the data into multiple places. We discovered they not only spent a lot of time entering the same thing over and over, but during that process, mistakes were being made.

They had at least three to four people touching the data; first on paper, next on the whiteboard, into Excel, and finally onto their server database. For every touch point, there was a new person involved.

PSP came up with a solution. First, we spent a good amount of time analyzing the flow of data entry and understanding each person’s job. Then we created a single point of data entry via browser, where multiple people can view the forms. Not only did we eliminate the need to enter the data multiple times, but we helped improve the client's overall business process, making it more efficient, accurate and secure. Our new system also gave them access to the data from multiple locations.

This business bravely stepped out of their comfort zone and look what it got them – an entirely upgraded process that will same them time, effort and money.
#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Marketing #Advertising #B2B #SmallBusiness #OfficeTips #BusinessGoals #WebTools #WebHosting #TimeManagement

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Digitizing your Business Operations

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Today we want to share another example of a company that stepped outside the box to improve its business operations.

Vantaggio Suites is a specialty extended-stay hotel chain, located in San Diego and San Francisco, serving mainly business travelers on assignment and students studying abroad. Because their customers stay with them for longer periods of time, extra paperwork is required. And when we say paperwork, we mean good old-fashioned hard copies. This was costing them a lot of time and resources producing copies, filing, and searching for documents.

Think about it. How much extra time would it take to simply file every piece of paperwork and then search for it when needed? Then tack on the cost of paper and printing, and the space it would take to keep all of those documents securely tucked away.

Vantaggio wanted to shorten its 15 to 20-minute check-in process and be able to pull up documents immediately rather than dig through filing cabinets. If they have 20 guests to check in, and each one takes 15 minutes, that’s a solid 5-hours just to check in guests. What happens if 4 guests arrive at the same time?

PSP to the rescue. First, we learned all about their check-in process. We went through each step and every document, making it all digital. We even took it a step further by making the process mobile and tablet-friendly. Now, customers can check-in on tablets, read the rules, waivers, watch the video, and then the information is filed electronically. We also created a set of search functions so office staff can find and pull customer information quickly.

This may not be your business model, but perhaps it’ll get you thinking about ways you can make your business operations run more efficiently. After all, time is money!
#ENnews #PSPinc #Blog #Marketing #Advertising #B2B #SmallBusiness #OfficeTips #BusinessGoals #WebTools #WebHosting #TimeManagement

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