It has become apparent to me that people in this industry just like any other hold on to certain “tricks of the trade” if you will. When we started the Veteran Exchange I promised you all that I would break through this barrier and give each and every one of you a play by play of how we have done things and some of the tricks we learned along the way. We do this so if nothing else you have a road map to get started if you so choose to follow the path that we have and hopefully also to keep you from making a few of the mistakes that we have along the way.
First lets talk about something that seems extremely challenging but is one of the easiest things to do when you get your website or eCommerce store setup which is getting listed on Goggle, Bing and Yahoo. I was approached by so many people in the beginning that told me they could get me listed on every search engine for x amount of money. The best thing I did was wait, I taught myself how to do it instead of just throwing money at it. So for those of you that are wondering how to get your website or business listed on search engines such as Goggle literally just Goggle it! All you have to do is go to google and type in “Submit Website to Google”. You will be listed in an hour or so if not immediately and it will increase your reach substantially.
I always heard my friends talking about SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and what a pain in the ass it was and why they just hired someone to do it for them. I can tell you from first hand experience it really isn’t that bad, you don’t have to hire anyone and there are plenty of free tools you have at your disposal such as key word generators that’ll make the processes so much easier. Personally I do use Google Adwords to run my adds on Goggle because come on by now we should all know how to work Facebook well enough to not have to rely on them for advertisement on top of everything else we use them for. Plus Google has a much further reach and you can set your own daily budget even if it is just a few dollars you will still reach a few thousand more people daily than you did before.
Next lets talking about SSL issues, these are a huge issue when you operate online and are technically the hosting company’s responsibility. If you ever notice that your SSL is down or have it reported to you it’s something that you need to address right away! Call your hosting company, get tech support on it and get it resolved, just know that it could take anywhere from six to twenty-four hours which is why I say address it promptly. When you launched our server crashed and when everything was reloaded they forgot to update our SSL Certificate which kept us offline for roughly two days before we figured out what it was as we were new to all of this. Mark the dates on your calendar just in case the auto-update doesn’t run as planned.
Finally the greatest tool that you have is education, don’t rely on someone to do things for you, dive in and learn it for yourselves! It’s not always fun and right when you think that you have it figured out something will go wrong that makes you want to pull your hair out. In the end you will learn that it was something so simple it wasn’t even worth stressing about in the first place. You have so many tools at your disposal you just have to be willing to step back and identify the problem and then kick it’s ass. Hopefully this helps a few of you and I have plenty more to follow, I’m just getting started.
Anthony Gendreau ~VX7~
Chief Executive Officer
The Veteran Exchange LLC.