Syed Balkhi – HostGator Blog https://www.hostgator.com/blog Web Hosting and Marketing Tips for Entrepreneurs Mon, 17 Sep 2018 20:01:09 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.7 151369968 4 Killer Ways to Convert Your Blog Posts into YouTube Videos https://www.hostgator.com/blog/convert-blog-posts-youtube-videos/ https://www.hostgator.com/blog/convert-blog-posts-youtube-videos/#respond Mon, 06 Aug 2018 15:55:55 +0000 https://www.hostgator.com/blog/?p=19633 The post 4 Killer Ways to Convert Your Blog Posts into YouTube Videos appeared first on HostGator Blog.

4 Killer Ways to Convert Your Blog Posts into YouTube Videos Producing and publishing great blog posts is not enough...

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4 Killer Ways to Convert Your Blog Posts into YouTube Videos

Producing and publishing great blog posts is not enough to grow your business. You also need to promote those blog posts to attract visitors. Don’t stop at sharing a link on Facebook and Twitter, you can also turn that blog post into a video to get more traffic from YouTube.

With over 1.5 billion monthly active users watching 1 billion hours of video content per day, YouTube is one of the most effective platforms you can leverage to generate traffic and promote your business online.

You spend days writing and crafting the best content for your blog. Yet most of those blog posts often go unnoticed. Repurpose those old blog posts by turning them into videos and easily get started on a video marketing strategy.

There’s no need to buy expensive video camera equipment or invest in video production agencies. You can create videos all by yourself without having to spend any money. We’ll show you how.

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How To Turn Blog Posts Into Videos

Surveys show that 81% of businesses who use video marketing in their promotional strategy see an increase in sales. Needless to say, video marketing can bring incredible results for growing a business.

However, if you’re a small business or a blogger, finding the time to develop videos can be difficult. You need to write a script, record a presentation, do voice-overs, editing, and much more. Frankly, it’s a lot of work. But you don’t have to go through that process.

Simply use your existing blog posts as the foundation to create your videos. Here’s what you should do to get started.

  1. Pick a great blog post.
  2. Make a list of the key takeaways from the blog post.
  3. Create a short script for your video using those key points.
  4. Use free stock video footage or images to create the video.
  5. Add a free background music track.
  6. Then insert your script into the video using text effects.

Here are a few ways you can use that process to convert your blog post into a video.

 

1. Use Microsoft PowerPoint

If you don’t have any experience in creating videos, the easiest way to turn a blog post into a video is by creating a slideshow and then convert it into a video. You can do this very easily using Microsoft PowerPoint.

Simply create a presentation as you normally would. Add new slides using your blog post text paragraphs and subheaders. Add images and animation effects to your slides.

Once your slideshow is complete, go to File > Save & Send > and choose Create A Video. From here you can select a video quality (up to 4K) and export your slideshow as a video. It’s as easy as that.

 

2. Use an Online Tool

If you don’t have PowerPoint or prefer a different approach to creating your videos, there are plenty of great online tools you can use to turn your blog posts into videos. One of the most popular online video creation tools is Lumen5.

blog post to video conversion software lumen5

Lumen5 is a beginner-friendly tool that helps you convert your blog posts into videos with minimum effort. What’s great about this tool is that you don’t even have to write a script, this AI-powered video creation tool automatically grabs the key points from your blog posts and add them into the video within minutes.

The free plan offered by Lumen5 allows you to create videos using your blog posts and export them in 480p quality. You can use your own logo and custom brand colors in your videos as well.

Lumen5 makes converting blog posts to video extremely easy. But, it has limits. For example, you can’t customize the effects used in Lumen5 videos and the free plan also adds Lumen5 branding to your videos.

 

3. Use a Free Video Editing Software

Even though it takes more work, creating the video by yourself is the most effective way to promote your brand the way you want. You get to customize the effects, add and edit content as you prefer, and add your own custom branding without having to pay for a tool or a video editor.

There are plenty of free video editing software which you can use to create amazing videos all by yourself. For example, Lightworks is completely free to use. Even the big Hollywood directors are using it to edit big-budget films such as The King’s Speech, The Wolf Of Wall Street, Road to Perdition, and more.

There are a lot of tutorials available online on how to use Lightworks. You can use those tutorials to quickly learn the basics and start creating videos.

Here are some more resources for creating videos by yourself:

 

4. Hire a Freelancer

If you don’t have the time to use any tools or create videos using blog posts, you can hire someone else to do that for you. Freelancing platforms like Fiverr features plenty of freelancers who specialize in creating different types of videos from explainer videos to product videos, animated videos, and more.

You can find a freelancer to convert your blog post into video for a price as low as $5. Of course, the price will differ based on the quality of the video. But, it won’t cost you more than $150 to create a high-quality and entertaining video based on a blog post.

 

Over to You

Using these strategies, you can convert your blog posts into videos within minutes to upload to your YouTube channel or Facebook page. Make sure to also embed your videos into your blog posts to give you visitors a choice on how they would like to consume your content.

Remember, much like growing a blog, growing a video channel also takes time. So, be patient and keep producing videos consistently to attract more subscribers to your YouTube channel and generate more views.

Syed Balkhi is the founder of WPBeginner, the largest free WordPress resource site. With over 10 years of experience, he’s the leading WordPress expert in the industry. You can learn more about Syed and his portfolio of companies by following him on his social media networks.

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How to Start a Food Blog in 5 Steps https://www.hostgator.com/blog/successful-food-blog/ https://www.hostgator.com/blog/successful-food-blog/#comments Mon, 23 Jul 2018 13:37:49 +0000 https://www.hostgator.com/blog/?p=15500 The post How to Start a Food Blog in 5 Steps appeared first on HostGator Blog.

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How to Start a Food Blog (Step by Step)

Are you an aspiring food blogger who’s dreaming about making a living by sharing your recipes with the internet? To make that dream a reality, you need to take the plunge and set up your own website. But how do you get started?

It might seem super complicated to start your own website but these days anyone can start a blog that looks professional and will attract a ton of traffic.

Let’s break it down. Here’s how to start a food blog, step by step.

Creating a blog

1. Pick a Name and Buy a Matching Domain

If you’ve already been thinking about starting a food blog, you might have a couple ideas for names. If you haven’t decided on a name yet, start brainstorming. A good blog name is easy to remember, descriptive and short. For instance, She Simmers is a great example of a catchy name that includes a pun on cooking.

domain name for food blog

After making a list of blog name ideas and deciding on the best option for your food blog, you need to purchase a domain that matches.

You can purchase a domain from HostGator starting at only $12.95 per year. Before you purchase your domain, you need to make sure the name you chose is available. HostGator allows you to search a domain to make sure no one else has already taken it. If the name you want is available, you can go ahead and make it yours!

 

2. Choose a Hosting Platform and Install WordPress

After you’ve decided on a catchy name for your blog and purchased a domain that matches, you’ll need to choose a reliable hosting platform where your website will live. It might seem like a crazy, difficult task to create a beautiful website but it’s actually super simple and you don’t have to know a thing about code.  

Step one is to purchase a hosting plan. HostGator is a great option for beginner bloggers because it’s affordable, it’s easy-to-use, and it’s fast.  

web hosting for food blog

After purchasing your hosting, the next step is to download WordPress which is very simple. After you sign up with HostGator and login for the first time, head on over to your Control Panel. There you’ll see a button called “One-Click Installs.” 

HostGator WordPress One Click Install

Click on it and then choose WordPress. Perform the simple steps that follow and then a progress bar will let you know when the download is complete. Once it’s finished, you’ve got a website for your food blog.

 

3. Pick a Gorgeous Theme

We eat with our eyes first and that applies to your delicious food blog as well, so you’ll need to pick a gorgeous theme for your site that will have your visitors wanting to stick around for a long time.

There are tons of free and paid WordPress themes that you can install with just the click of a button that are easy to navigate and mobile-friendly. Choose a theme specifically designed for food blogs so you’ll get all the features you’re looking for.  

This theme from Foodica is a perfect example of a clean, minimalist design for food bloggers who want their recipes to be the center of attention. It offers six different color themes and a featured slider and carousel to showcase your best recipes.  

foodica wordpress theme for food blogs

4. Download Plugins

Next you need to download some WordPress plugins to ensure your website is fully stacked and optimized. There are a number of free plugins you can download for your WordPress site that provide value, including:

There are also some WordPress plugins designed specifically for food bloggers that can really step up your blog game. Tasty Recipes formats your recipes for search engine optimization, creates print-friendly recipes, adds star ratings, and more.

tasty recipes wordpress plugin for food blog

5. Start Blogging and Get Some Subscribers

Now that your website is all set up, you need to start blogging. Begin creating content that your visitors will love and will keep them returning to your site again and again.

You’ll also want to start growing your email list, it’s one of the most important aspects of any blog. Having an email list gives you the ability to reach out to your audience any time you want, whether you’re emailing them about a new recipe you posted or announcing a sale for your new cookbook.

You can easily gain more subscribers by adding popups to your site with OptinMonster’s lead generation software. OptinMonster provides numerous options for grabbing the attention of your visitors and enticing them into clicking that subscribe button, including an Exit-Intent popup that can track when a user is about to leave your site and send a popup at exactly the right time.

exit popup for food blog email subscribers

Start Your Food Blog

Starting a food blog isn’t as simple as just writing some recipes and posting them on the web but it doesn’t have to be difficult either. With these tips you’ll be able to start the food blog of your dreams that will have people salivating.

Congratulations on your new food blog. Now get out there and start blogging!

Syed Balkhi is the founder of WPBeginner, the largest free WordPress resource site. With over 10 years of experience, he’s the leading WordPress expert in the industry. You can learn more about Syed and his portfolio of companies by following him on his social media networks.

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5 Ways Facebook Insights Can Help You Write Better Blogs https://www.hostgator.com/blog/facebook-insights-targeted-blog-posts/ https://www.hostgator.com/blog/facebook-insights-targeted-blog-posts/#respond Mon, 07 May 2018 18:52:49 +0000 https://www.hostgator.com/blog/?p=18832 The post 5 Ways Facebook Insights Can Help You Write Better Blogs appeared first on HostGator Blog.

How to Use Facebook Insights to Improve Your Blog One of the most important steps to building a successful blog...

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How to Use Facebook Insights to Improve Your Blog

One of the most important steps to building a successful blog is creating content that your audience is truly interested in. Typically, this includes blog posts that solve problems and provide valuable information.

According to HubSpot, 47% consumers view 3 to 5 blog posts before getting started in the buying process.

As you can imagine, creating blog posts for your target audience that spark interest is the key to generating more conversions and sales. So, how do you come up with such blog topic ideas?

You can start by doing market research to properly analyze your target audience and understand their current interests and what kind of content they’re consuming the most.  There’s no better place than Facebook to begin that research. Here’s why.

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What is Facebook Audience Insights?

Hands down, Facebook is the best platform to perform market research. With over 1.4 billion daily active users, it’s guaranteed you can find your target customers on this massive social networking platform.

Not only that, but you can also learn a lot about your target audience through Facebook, thanks to Facebook Audience Insights, a tool that provides businesses with information related to their audience to create more targeted content.

Audience Insights allows you to explore the entire user base of Facebook to filter and carefully identify your target audience based on their interests, likes, age, education, job, location, income, and much more.

 

Step 1: Identify Your Target Audience

To create more targeted blog posts, first you need to identify your target audience. You can start that process by creating a buyer persona, a detailed profile of the ideal customer you want to target through your content. Then, using your buyer persona, you can narrow your search in Audience Insights using the right filters.

identify target audience on facebook insights

For example, if your ideal customer is a woman who’s planning a wedding, then you can use the Relationship Status filter in Audience Insights to find that target audience based on the period of time a person has been married.

Of course, it’s not the best way to find the right information about your audience since you’ll still be guessing your customer interests and demographics through that process.

That’s why you need to first grow an email marketing list to collect leads, or you can install a Facebook Pixel on your website. We’ll get into that in the next step.

 

Step 2: Create a Custom Audience

Facebook recommends that you use your email list to create a custom audience. That way, you can analyze an audience who has already shown interest in your business.

create custom audience in facebook insights

Simply download your email list as a CSV file and upload it to Facebook Audience Insights. Once you upload your email list, Facebook will compare the emails with its user base to find the Facebook profiles of your leads to create a custom audience.

You can also create a custom audience using a Facebook Pixel. This is a conversion tracking tool that you can integrate on your website to track your visitors. Then you can create a custom audience using the data gathered from your website visitors.

As you can imagine, using a Facebook Pixel takes a while to gather data. Using your email list is the easiest and the most effective way to create a custom audience.

 

Step 3: Gather Insights

Once you’ve created a custom audience, you can begin analyzing the audience through Audience Insights.

Go to Audience Insights and select your new custom audience from the Custom Audience tab on the left-hand side panel. Now, Facebook will show you all the information related to your custom audience.

select email list audience in facebook insights

Narrow the results using the various advanced filters. For example, you can narrow your audience based on interests like people who are interested in dating or weddings. Then you can further enhance the search based on job titles and lifestyles as well.

Let’s imagine that you’re a business promoting wedding catering services and you’re targeting women at the age of 25 who became recently engaged and are interested in weddings.

select target audience in facebook insights

Once you’ve applied all the necessary filters, head over to the Page Likes tab to see what kind of pages your target audience most recently liked.

view page likes tab in facebook insights

As you can see, in this example, your audience seems to be big fans of the Betty Crocker website, which specializes in food and recipes.

page likes tab of facebook audience insights

We now know that your target audience is interested in learning about food recipes, so that would be a good topic category for your blog posts.

 

Step 4: Find the Right Topics

The next step is to craft a blog post title using the topic you’ve discovered through Facebook Insights. You can do this using Quora, a platform filled with questions posted by many different types of people.

On Quora, search for your topic. Following the same example, let’s search for “food recipes.”

use quora for blog topic research

As you can see in the results, people are interested in healthy food recipes for babies and vegetarian food recipes. You can use these questions to craft an effective blog post title like “5 Healthy Vegetarian Food Recipes for Babies.”

 

Step 5: Test Your Titles

Optimizing your blog post title is an important part that helps determine how much traffic you can attract to your blog. People will use your blog post title to decide whether or not to visit your blog.

Use CoSchedule Headline Analyzer to test and analyze your blog post titles for effectiveness and SEO.

coschedule headline analyzer

You can try changing the words of your title and using power words to improve its effectiveness. The tool will also show you how your title will appear in the Google search results as well.

 

Conclusion

There you go: all the reasons to add Facebook Insights to your blogging toolkit. Now you can start creating effective blog posts that your target audience will definitely be interested in.

One last tip: Once you identify the right topics to create targeted posts, remember to research for the right keywords to use in your blog posts and titles. Hop on to Google AdWords Keyword Planner and find keywords with low competition and enough search volume to further optimize your post title and subheads.

Syed Balkhi is the founder of WPBeginner, the largest free WordPress resource site. With over 10 years of experience, he’s the leading WordPress expert in the industry. You can learn more about Syed and his portfolio of companies by following him on his social media networks.

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10 Tools to Write Content Like a Pro https://www.hostgator.com/blog/content-writing-tools/ https://www.hostgator.com/blog/content-writing-tools/#respond Thu, 12 Apr 2018 23:22:21 +0000 https://www.hostgator.com/blog/?p=18788 The post 10 Tools to Write Content Like a Pro appeared first on HostGator Blog.

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10 Tools to Help You Write Better Content

As much as we want to convince ourselves that writing high quality content about things we are passionate about is easy, that’s not always the case.

Engaging site visitors is hard.

Driving traffic to our websites is hard.

Writing is hard.

That’s why we’ve compiled a list of 10 tools to help make the writing process easier. Treat it as your reference guide that you can come back to any time you are feeling stuck and need a little push in the right direction.

Creating a blog

1. 750 Words

750-stats

If you are looking to improve your overall writing quality, and don’t want to be cornered into writing seriously, give 750 words a try. Called “brain dumping”, this writing activity lets you write freestyle about anything and everything that comes to mind. All you need to do is hit 750 words.  Earn points, view statistics, and even see the themes you write about and become a stronger writer in no time.

 

2. Trello

trello

Having an editorial calendar plays a major role in how effective your writing will be. The key is to stay organized, flesh out ideas, assign tasks to the right people, and have deadlines so you publish high quality content on a consistent basis. Using Kanban style boards, Trello lets you organize your ideas into an easy to visualize display, which is bound to help you write better in the long run.

 

3. Blog Topic Generator

hubspot idea generator

Sometimes finding the right topic to write about is enough to stall content creation. If you have a theme, keyword, or a general idea of what you want to write about, but can’t quite pinpoint an actual topic, plug your words into this topic generator and let it give you a headstart.

 

4. AnswerThePublic

answer the public

Similar to the Blog Topic Generator, this automatic topic generator lets you input a keyword and spits out a variety of topics to write about that come directly from Google and Bing. Divided into sections such as how, what, and why, you will have tons of blog topics to choose from instantly that are actual things people want to read about.

 

5. Headline Analyzer

headline analyzer

Grabbing the attention of site visitors is one of the most crucial steps in writing better content. After all, your content starts with a headline. And, if people aren’t interested in the headline, they are definitely not going to be interested in the rest of your post. Run your headline ideas through CoSchedule’s Headline Analyzer and see where you can improve in terms of word balance and word and character counts.

 

6. Power Thesaurus

power thesaurus

Finding the right words to use in your content that are not overused, yet not overly complicated either, can be challenging. Check out the Power Thesaurus when you need a good synonym and see what other writers suggest.

 

7. Grammarly

grammarly

Grammarly is a free online proofreading and editing tool that helps even the best of writers fine-tune their technical skills. Though you and your editors are bound to catch most errors, and mistakes are part of being human, your site visitors don’t want to see anything wrong with what you’ve written – no matter what. This tool helps you double check to make sure all your content – from blog posts to email marketing – looks good before you click ‘Publish’.

 

8. The Hemingway App

hemingway app

The Hemingway App is helpful for stripping out the nonsense and leaving you with the good stuff your readers will appreciate. Cut down on long-winded prose, eliminate the passive voice, and get rid of adverbs which tend to make your writing weak. With this tool you can learn to write with purpose.

 

9. Pixabay

pixabay

People struggle with complementing their written content with stunning imagery. But, since most people are visual, it is important to refine your skills when it comes to finding high quality images to use for featured images, social media, and even within your blog posts. Check out Pixabay for thousands of royalty- free images and up your image game instantly.

 

10. SEMrush

semrush

SEMrush is a great online tool that helps you optimize your content for better search engine rankings. Find out what’s trending in your industry, what your competitors are up to, specific keywords that will help your SERPs, and how to better optimize your post with things like backlinks. Plus, monitor your actual Google Page Ranks and see how you improve over time.

 

And there you have it. A whole host of helpful tools for helping you to write better content for your website – starting now.

Syed Balkhi is the founder of WPBeginner, the largest free WordPress resource site. With over 10 years of experience, he’s the leading WordPress expert in the industry. You can learn more about Syed and his portfolio of companies by following him on his social media networks.

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5 WordPress Plugins To Get More Email Subscribers https://www.hostgator.com/blog/wordpress-plugins-email-subscribers/ Mon, 19 Mar 2018 19:23:40 +0000 https://www.hostgator.com/blog/?p=18820 The post 5 WordPress Plugins To Get More Email Subscribers appeared first on HostGator Blog.

Get More Email Subscribers With These 5 WordPress Plugins Are you looking for ways to quickly grow your email list...

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WordPress Plugins To Get More Email Subscribers

Get More Email Subscribers With These 5 WordPress Plugins

Are you looking for ways to quickly grow your email list and generate more leads? In this post, we’ll show you some of the best WordPress plugins you can use to skyrocket lead generation and get more subscribers in your email list.

59% of B2B marketers believe that email is the most effective channel for generating revenue. Needless to say, building an email list is probably the wisest investment you can make to boost your marketing efforts and sustain your business growth.

Get started on supercharging your lead generation process by installing these WordPress plugins.

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1. OptinMonster

optinmonster wordpress plugin for more email subscribers

Setting up popup messages, embedding opt-in forms in blog posts, and creating welcome mats are some of the first steps you take to get more people to subscribe to your email list. Usually, you have to install several plugins to enable all these features for your blog, which results in increased page loading times and higher server resource consumption.

OptinMonster is a popular lead generation plugin you can use to avoid running into that problem. It lets you install all those features and more on your blog using a single WordPress plugin.

How To Use It

With OptinMonster, you can install popup messages, floating bars, slide-in forms, two-step opt-in forms, welcome mats, and much more. One of the most useful features of OptinMonster is its A/B testing tool, which allows you to test different versions of your opt-in forms to boost conversion rates and attract more leads.

optin monster features

OptinMonster also supports exit-intent technology. Using this technology, you can create popups that appear just before a visitor is about to leave your website to grab their attention to convert them into a lead.

Pricing

OptinMonster pricing plans start at just $9 per month.

 

2. Subscribe to Comments Reloaded

subscribe to comments reloaded wordpress plugin

One of the biggest problems with blog comments is that the default comments system of your blog doesn’t support email notifications. Which means that there’s no way for your visitors to know when someone has replied to one of their comments on a blog post.

Subscribe to Comments Reloaded is a plugin that solves this problem.

How To Use It

Once installed, this plugin will show a small checkbox in your comments section, allowing your visitors to choose to receive email notifications when leaving a comment. That way, they’ll receive an email notification when someone replies to their comments.

The plugin also collects all the emails of the people who subscribe to comments and gives you full control over those emails – meaning that you can easily copy the emails over to your own email list as well.

how subscribe to comments reloaded works

Pricing

You can install and use Subscribe to Comments Reloaded for free.

 

3. WPForms

wpforms

You can use many different types of forms on your blog to collect emails as well. For example, if you have a contact form, a file upload form, or even a job application submission form on your blog, you can collect the emails from those forms and add them to your email list.

WPForms is a powerful form builder that can be used to create many types of forms to collect emails.

How To Use It

One of the best uses of WPForms is the ability to connect your email marketing service (Constant Contact, MailChimp, AWeber, etc) with forms such as contact forms to export submission emails to your email list.

wpforms survey feature

You can also use WPForms to create popup surveys and polls as well. With the OptinMonster integration, you can easily collect emails via surveys while better segmenting the email list based on the data you collect from the survey.

That’s not all. WPForms supports integration with Zapier, which allows you to connect it with dozens of different third-party apps for adding more functions to your forms as well.

Pricing

WPForm costs a one-time fee of $39 for the basic plan. You can renew it each year for customer support and updates.

 

4. Riddle

riddle wordpress plugin for quizzes

Entertaining your blog visitors is an important part of creating a loyal following for your blog and encouraging them to stay on your website. Quizzes are a great way to achieve this goal and grow your email list at the same time.

In fact, a blogger managed to collect over 10,000 qualified leads using fun and entertaining quizzes on her blog. You can do the same using Riddle.

How To Use It

Riddle is WordPress plugin you can use to create stylish quizzes on your blog. The best feature of this plugin is that it allows you to also collect emails from users.

riddle quiz email collection

For example, at the end of a quiz, you can ask users to enter their email to send the results of the quiz. Then you can connect Riddle with your email marketing service to automatically export the leads to your email list.

Pricing

Riddle costs $9 per month for a single license and lets you create unlimited quizzes.

 

5. Zoho SalesIQ

zoho sales iq wordpress plugin

Installing a live chat system on your website is a great way to not only engage with your website visitors but also to collect qualified leads as well.

Zoho SalesIQ is a great free plugin that allows you to easily setup a live chat system on your WordPress website and offer high-quality customer support.

How To Use It

After installing SalesIQ, you can track your website visitors in real-time and even initiate a chat session by yourself to engage with the visitors.

zoho salesiq features

You can ask visitors to give their email to start a chat session or to send them replies when you’re offline. The plugin supports integration with many of the popular email marketing services so that you can export those collected emails to grow your email list as well.

Pricing

Zoho SalesIQ is free to use for up to 100 chat sessions per month. For 1000 chat sessions, the price is $17 per month.

 

Over To You

With this perfect combination of plugins, you can easily generate more leads using various aspects of your blog to continuously grow your email list.

Remember, you also need to create high-quality lead magnets and great blog content to effectively convert your visitors into leads as well. And focus on quality over quantity.

Syed Balkhi is the founder of WPBeginner, the largest free WordPress resource site. With over 10 years of experience, he’s the leading WordPress expert in the industry. You can learn more about Syed and his portfolio of companies by following him on his social media networks.

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