This post is written by a special guest, Sergey Petrov. Sergey is the CEO of SoftLogica. The most known software titles by SoftLogica are Backup Platinum - a powerful backup program for Windows OS, and Handy Recovery - a data recovery software that restores deleted files or files from deleted and formatted partitions.
After many years in the Independent Software Vendor (ISV) business, Sergey knows many secrets on how to succeed. Today he unveils 8 reasons for acquiring a separate domain (URL) for each individual software product.
Sergey shares his thoughts on a separate domain for each product, or one general site? "I think it’s fair to say that I’ve participated in discussions on this topic several dozens of times. Now all my considerations should be brought together, so that they can be referred to easily."
If your product becomes somewhat popular, sooner or later some clients (at least, out of mere curiosity) will type in the browser’s address bar www.product.com. So, why loose such “delicious” traffic?
Firstly, if a product name contains a keyword from its niche, the domain name derived from it will give some added advantage. Secondly, all website pages will be targeted to a specific niche.
Different products may require different market approaches, including differences in site structure, colour spectrum, layout etc. Is a “universal” design worth loosing efficiency?
It is much easier to keep in mind one entity (a product name) than two (a product name and a company name). As for me, I could hardly recollect vendor names for the heaps of software that I use every so often.
It may seem that a user doesn’t need to remember a URL consisting of two entities, that is, it’s enough to remember just a company name. But it is well known that every extra click results in loosing visitors.
It is much easier to analyse a separate site than a part of a general one. Any superstructure makes visitors’ behaviour hardly predictable.
Sometimes a website allows placing links only to a homepage, and doesn’t allow placing links to other pages. In most cases the problem can be solved, however, it will require additional effort.
A man is an emotional being in many respects. Therefore, a good suit and a neck tie produce an impression on people even before they get acquainted with you. Thus, imagine a reseller hearing with half an ear a product name from an IT company and/or catching a glimpse of the URL in printed material - he’s already had the first impression about your product.
Perhaps, some day you’ll decide to sell a product and the related stuff “in gross”. Will it be possible to deliver everything to a new owner without loosing some integral parts?
Does your software always work for you when it works?
I have an idea which I would like to share. It’s a raw concept but I’m sure that you can polish it and use it somehow in your business.
Remember the installers that show slides with software features and benefits during the installation process? I’m sure that some of your applications also have such processes when a long operation performs and user simply has to be watching the progress bar for several minutes.
Why not show a user something else during this period of time? For example, you may show a tip of the day, news (e.g. RSS feed), link to your site or blog, a marketing slogan, or even a banner.
How it differs from adware
- You don’t bother your user while he actually works
- You display a plug only while the user is bored and waiting for the end of a long process
- You may display not only an ad, but also something interesting and valuable for the user
Installers have been using this technique for a long time and I wonder if other types of applications can also use this trick?. I think this technique may be used in applications that deal with huge data processing, conversion routines, model rendering, compilation, etc., i.e. where there are routines taking up to several minutes. Why waste those minutes?
How to spin up a forum on your website
If you decided to setup a forum on your company or product website then the most annoying question is likely, “Initially, my forum will be empty and will look silent. This will deter people from joining the community. What to do?” As a moderator of several forums, I’d like to share a tip regarding the question.
Initially, don’t create too many sections. While your forum isn’t very popular each section would contain just a few posts and overall the forum would look inactive.
Create just a couple of general sections and have all posts there. So, these sections will be active and, therefore, the whole forum will look alive.
Later, you may create more focused sections and move the appropriate posts there from the general section. Thus, the newly created section will be immediately filled with many posts and will also look active.
This simple trick will help you quickly spin up your forum and build a community around your product with minimal efforts.