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  1. #1
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    Why aren't they buying?

    Hi~
    I have a video membership site that's a how-to guide to help English teachers (ESL). They have to pay to get access to the videos, ebook and a book summary.

    Only two paying customers in 5 months. Why? I thought that may be because I am competing with free. There is a lot of free info out there for English teachers, however there isn't a lot of sites with video like this. I have quality videos and other info.

    There is only one other similar site that I know of teflvideos.com. I don't know how well they do.

    The other reason why is maybe a lack of social proof. I tried to get testimonials in the beginning by making access free, but I couldnt get many sign ups then or feedback.

    Or is it my message?

    Any other ideas why they aren't buying?

    Site needs seo work too, I know as people aren't getting to my site by search. But the ones who are getting there still aren't buying.

    Here are the stats for last month:
    * 373
    Visits
    * 209
    Absolute Unique Visitors
    * 1,300
    Pageviews
    * 3.49
    Average Pageviews
    * 00:06:24
    Time on Site
    * 45.84%
    Bounce Rate
    * 50.13%
    New Visits

    Any ideas? The site is 5 months old.

    it's http://eslinsider.com
    Last edited by Mittineague; Jun 12, 2011 at 11:03. Reason: fixing links

  2. #2
    SitePoint Enthusiast Ryo-ohki's Avatar
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    Well you can't just throw a website up and hope that seo alone will get you customers. Are you promoting your website? I would also use twitter and actually tweet about your website multiple times a day. You also might want to use google adwords. I do believe they give new signups 100$ credit.

  3. #3
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    You've had 200 visitors. Every piece of data is more or less meaningless... a strong breeze would push your numbers into entirely different areas.

    When you're dealing with this small of traffic numbers your conversions are just too variable to take seriously. Aquire some real traffic on targetted sources, run at least a few thousand visitors through [over a few day period] and then let's see if you need to optimize and where.
    - Ted S

  4. #4
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    First, selling stuff is very hard work.

    Second, your videos didn't play very well on my computer. How about just putting them on YouTube and eliminating that issue?

    What you are probably going to need to do is figure out how to become a "thought leader" and/or build a loyal following, probably by giving content away, blogging, writing articles, etc. You have picked a very narrow subject matter so you are going to have to target very specifically and get very creative, persistent and patient. Perhaps you could enlist a whole school of English teachers?

    Try to become the Khan's Academy of ESL.
    Pricetack - sell your goods with automatic markdowns

  5. #5
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    As Ted says, you can't do any real analysis until you get sufficient numbers.

    Having said that some thoughts as somebody that has created video heavy sites:

    - I got multiple buffering on your introductory video on the home page, which may be down to my network conditions, but could also be down to the streaming provider. The only way to know if this is an issue (and if your intro video is glitching for many users then that will be serious sales loser) is to have your player monitor and record activity such as buffer underruns, user skips, geo ip etc I can understand if you wish to stream over rtmp or similar to offer an element of protection but it's got to be set up correctly to perform smoothly. You say that it's on a CDN, which is a good idea form the perspective of global streaming performance, but it's not performing as if it is? Which CDN are you using?
    I'd place the opening clip at the very least on cloudfront over http rather than rtmp for better consistency with buffering ahead.

    - The intro video has wind rumble on the audio which to me would indicate a lower level of professionalism than what I would expect from paid resources.

    - As you mention, you need to optimise the site for search. As with any niche, worth checking google insights for some ideas before proceeding to target search terms when updating your content for seo purposes.

    PBreit has some good advice on gaining traction and building a reputation in the market though I'd disagree on moving all your video to youtube - it's worth having some free content on there to draw views and traffic back to your site but it isn't an option for serious monetisation unless you can pull millions of views (which your market area isn't sufficiently large for).

  6. #6
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    Try to make a facebook fan page and post some of your videos there. It's a very big community you might somehow find you way there. Just my 2 cents.

  7. #7
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    May be you are lacking promotion and advertising. May be you should try something like

    - some SEO ( on page and off page )
    - Social media marketing ( facebook, twitter , linkedin )
    - You can post some demo version of videos in youtube as well. You tube is also a good way for promotion.

    - Offer some interesting FREE offers and do list building.

    May be you get some good response.

    all the best

  8. #8
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    It looks like you have some excellent videos and a real passion for teaching, so kudos to you in that regard. It's also a great idea. Now some points...

    1) As others have mentioned you essentially have no sample size. For most ecommerce business owners, if they received 300 visitors and had 2 sales they wouldn't bat an eye. You really need to be looking at 5000-10,000ish type visitor count before you can begin to make any real assessment of what's working and what's not working.

    2) You probably need some type of freemium business model. Yes, you have some free pieces to your website which is a great start but there needs to be more to keep eyes on your website. A visitor can review those free pieces and be done in 20 minutes and be gone. You need compelling content that keeps the users coming back. You're type of business is likely going to have quite a long sales cycle, so you need to repeat traffic.

    3) The website doesn't do a great job of selling your product and for me, personally, it failed to elicit any excitement for your product. You could find countless companies on elance or the like to make a very compelling website for you at a very affordable price. You're in the teaching and production business, not web design business.

    4) Your target audience are folks who are working in developing countries at relatively low wages. It's not exactly an easy market to sell to which probably means you're going to need to get creative in a marketing sense and a pricing sense.

    You have a great idea and a great passion and I'm sure you can make a very successful company. It's an uphill climb though and it's going to take more than 5 months to make any assessment on anything.
    www.ChineseImporting.com Guide to importing products from China.

  9. #9
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    You can write the executive summary that relate to your material. Tell the people what so special about your material. Some people love reading rather than watching. With these, you can attract more people to read. Submit Press Release to some PR site and create the awareness from the people. Well, you have to choose your targeted marketing All the best.

  10. #10
    SitePoint Member hostas's Avatar
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    You need more advertinsing or focus on seo. 200 visitors per month it's very low trafic,
    remember, that normally ecommerce conversion is about 1%, so that you had 2 sales from 200 visitors it normal

  11. #11
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    I'm actually looking for marketing advice myself and did learn from some of the replies you got, so that was helpful to me and I'm sure you too.

    My feedback would echo some of the previous posts, I think the site looks fairly professional and for the most part I get what its about. But if I were a ES teacher I would see your subscription as an option, not a "have to have".

    I'm not sure how, but if you could clearly and simply convey to a visitor that using your service would be well worth the expenses. Make them feel like they are really missing out if they don't use your service.

    The video played fine on my machine/network. However, I'm not a quick reader and I found that some of the text would be gone before I was finished.

    Good luck and I hope the feedback was helpful.

    Terrell

  12. #12
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    try some professional advice of search engine optimization for example
    Last edited by Mittineague; Jul 19, 2011 at 09:30. Reason: removing unnecessary link

  13. #13
    Non-Member Musicbox's Avatar
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    You need to SEO friendly your pages and SEO optimized your website so visitors can visit your website.

    Why dont you use google adwords ?

  14. #14
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    Thanks for the replies. I didn't receive any messages or notifications so I forgot about this one. The site is streaming through Cloudfront. I was trying to understand how I could test to see if the video is playing well or not. I was assuming that if someone had a good connection then they could get good streaming. However, I know that my parents get a lot of poor playback and buffering.

    I tried Adwords in the beginning, but I'd rather get some free results.

    I liked the freemium advice I have been looking into how I can create a free membership option and disable some of the other video categories.
    So if you have poor playback on the site please let me know. Probably should start a new thread, but anyways thanks again.

  15. #15
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    Checkout some of the free tools on seomoz.org and look at how some of the top results for "esl videos" or whatever you main target phrases are. You should be able to see where these companies are getting links from, this will help identify places you may try to get to link to your site. This should help bring in more relevant traffic to your site.

  16. #16
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    Alright thanks Matt...I'll check it out.

  17. #17
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    The video on your competitor's home page was addicting and hard to turn off. The video on your home page is boring and doesn't have talking. Why not have a sample video of what the customer would be getting instead? like another comment said, the video doesn't play good for me. It was stopping to load a lot. your logo is hard to see. hope this helps


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