Five Tips for Creating and Monetizing Your Own Web Applications

You could make the case that designing a web application is the easy part of the app creation process; the hard part is actually monetizing it, or earning an income from it. For example, the user interface, or UI, of your web application is one of the most important parts of the application itself. The user interface will be the main area of the application that your users will actively use, so it is important that you ensure it is easily understandable and helps promote other parts of the application that could earn you extra income. Strategies like these can you improve your application and its monetization potential.

# 1: Highlighted Changes
To help ensure that your customers notice when there has been a change since the last time they used or updated the application, it often helps to highlight these differences for them. These changes do not have to be only to the application itself, but simply in its function or purpose; they can even be something as simple as the customer receiving a new message.

Five Tips for Creating and Monetizing Your Own Web Applications

Image courtesy of KROMKRATHOG /

# 2: Keyboard Shortcuts
Keyboard shortcuts are a great way to make it easier for your customers to navigate through different parts of the application without having to open a dozen different menus to get what they want. If you decide to incorporate keyboard shortcuts into your user interface, you need to make sure that you either have a shortcut guide or have the keyboard shortcuts written next to the option in the menu.

# 3: Upgrade Options
This aspect of your UI will be used to remind customers that they can get more features by upgrading their accounts on the web application. Including a simple upgrade button in the interface itself that users will see each time they open the application will encourage quite a few free users to upgrade their accounts, simply due to the added convenience factor. Make your upgrade button stand out from the other buttons on the page. Many web application designers will do this by making the button either a yellow or golden color, but the final choice, of course, is entirely up to you.

# 4: Feature Promotion
This point ties in closely with point three. While the free version of your application may be high quality and very useful, it still needs to show the customer all of the other features to which they would have access if they were to upgrade their account. It is best to list the most relevant and appealing features near the upgrade button without taking up a significant amount of room. However, the feature list itself does not really need to stick out, as the upgrade button will attract users’ eyes.

# 5: Color Coding
To make it easier to spot different tools on the user interface, it can often be helpful to color-code the most important features. This will allow users to instantly find what they want after they have used that feature a few times, and it will help them differentiate between all of the different available options when they are a new user. The last thing you want is for a new customer to become overwhelmed by all the different options and just quit using the application you have worked so hard to build.

Essential Conversion Tips

There are many ways to drive traffic towards your e-commerce website. Search engine optimization can move your site closer to the top of the search results, pulling in droves of interested visitors. Social media can generate buzz for your brand and a good email list can help keep prospects informed and interested. None of these techniques are worth much, however, if they don’t convert into a sale.

When you’re first starting out, it’s a common error to focus on traffic rather than on leads and sales. True, traffic is the lifeblood of any online enterprise — but only if you can establish a good conversion rate. These tips will help your enterprise to turn clicks into real sales.

Every successful enterprise starts with a solid and effective plan. The same goes for Web-based enterprises. Determine what you’re offering, how you’ll deliver it and what makes your business outstanding. Think about the elements your site will need to communicate with your visitors and what they’ll need in order to make a purchase. The better your focus at the beginning, the less patchy, fragmented or confusing your site will be.

Essential-Conversion-TipsIf your site is already up and running, the first item on your checklist should be your page load times. If there’s one thing that will send prospective customers fleeing, it’s a page that takes too long to load completely. Even a fraction of a second can be enough to cause your visitors to disengage. By streamlining your design and getting rid of any extraneous elements, you can shorten load times and make certain that you’re not keeping your customers waiting.

While multimedia elements such as audio and video can add value to your site, they can also be distracting and irritating. Media should not play automatically or obscure other elements when it launches. If the first thing your visitors have to do when they visit your site is close down an intrusive video or animation, they won’t be well disposed towards buying from you.

Next, examine your site’s overall usability. Your color, font and background choices can affect readability — ditch any low-contrast color schemes, distracting patterns or tiny typefaces. Interestingly, using a larger font size has been shown to improve conversion rates in many cases.

There should be a smooth path from your landing page to the point where a customer can place an order. If you make the process of buying your products too complicated, many people will be discouraged before they ever get as far as your checkout. Include clear pricing for every item and make sure there are easy-to-follow links to different products or sections. You should always include a site map — this is helpful to humans and also to the web crawlers that index your site for search engines like Google.

If you have a lot of different items for sale, don’t try to cram them all onto the first page. Catalog them and make sure that you have a fast, effective search system. Don’t limit the results per page too stringently — consider making the default 75 or 100 items rather than 10 or 20. You could even use an endless scroll, since most people are happier to scroll down the page than they are to click link after link to find the item they want. Just make sure that your automated scrolling element isn’t knocking navigation links off the bottom of the screen.

This final point can never be stressed too much: Registration should always be optional. Trying to force your customers to set up an account for no real reason can seriously damage your sales. Studies have shown that even if a prospective customer has selected their items and is ready to pay, telling them they have to register an account to complete their transaction will cause almost one-third of them to abandon their purchases. Only ask for the minimum amount of information you need to provide your customers with the items they want and reassure them that their privacy will be respected. Offer the opportunity to set up an account if they wish but always give them the option to check out without registering.

Instead, provide social media integration for your visitors. Giving people an easy way to link their Google Plus or Facebook accounts with your site is a more productive way of creating connections than adding an unnecessary registration step.

By keeping websites simple and avoiding common pitfalls such as unnecessary registration, Web-based businesses can avoid losing valuable sales. This article aims to address that problem by offering some helpful advice for those new to Internet marketing and e-commerce. It outlines some general ways in which conversion rates can be improved by making the sales process easier for customers to navigate.

Six Effective Ways to Reduce Cart Abandonment in Your Online Store

In 2012, Comscore estimated that 67 percent of shopping carts are abandoned by customers upon checkout. In 2013, Listrak pegged shopping cart abandonment rate at 75 percent. It looks like this conversion-lowering woe of e-commerce site owners has not been properly addressed.

Use your checkout page to drive conversion. Simple tweaks to your e-commerce site design can work wonders for your sales and reduce the number of abandoned carts. Here are six basic ways to minimize cart abandonment.

1. Do Not Ask a Customer to Register Before Shopping

Prompt your customer to register after he/she has completed placing the order. The annoying pop-up or redirect asking to create an account before you allow a user to shop turns away potential buyers. On a different note, functionally like Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, PayPal connect could be tried out depending on the audience you are targeting.

2. Help Your Customers by Suggesting Related ProductsSix Effective Ways to Reduce Cart Abandonment in Your Online Store

Suggest related products before your customer reaches the checkout stage. Many shoppers relish being confident about their purchase. And one way of ensuring that they have added to their shopping carts the product options that they find most satisfactory is to situate your recommended related items before checkout. If you sell electronic gadgets, for instance, a customer may forget to buy a much-needed adapter for a certain product. Preempt that need and along with reducing cart abandonment, you also increase your cross-selling or upselling rate.

3. Show All the Fees While the Customer Loads Items Onto the Shopping Cart

“Hidden” fees that only appear upon checkout are the bane of many online shoppers. Display taxes and shipping fees on the cart at all times. If you show applicable fees only at the final checkout page, then you risk having the customer abandon his cart.

Also, consider offering free shipping. A study made by Forrester Research revealed that 44 percent of online shoppers abandoned their carts due to high shipping costs and 22 percent did so because there was no mention of shipping fees at all. If you cannot afford to offer free shipping, then have a flat shipping rate instead.

4. Improve the Usability of Your Shopping Cart

Items added to the cart must be visible at all times. Display small images of the items that are already loaded by the customer to the cart. That way, he does not need to backtrack. Show all the applicable fees, as well.

And while the customer is looking for other products to buy from your store, the shopping cart must be readily accessible from all web pages, preferably through a dropdown menu on the upper right hand corner of the screen.

Make the shopping cart button distinct from the checkout button. There should also be enough space separating them. Help the user avoid clicking the wrong button as that can easily put him off from completing the purchase.

Design your shopping cart to accommodate changes in product quantity. Your customer may remove items from the cart, and he should be given the ability to do so in one click.

Another way to limit cart abandonment is to allow your customers to easily email or print out the contents of their cart. An assistant, for example, is buying for his boss and may need a go-signal before charging a corporate credit card. If there are interruptions to the checkout process, make it easy for the customer to resume buying and finally pay for the items. allows users to add products to their wishlist and save items on their cart. It is an excellent cart usability feature that encourages future sales. You might want to consider adopting it.

5. Shorten Your Checkout Process

If you have multiple forms to fill out, a webpage for survey questions and recommended products, and another webpage to showcase your current promotions before the customer reaches the billing page, and then you might as well count that customer as an abandoned-cart case.

Consider making guest checkout an option. Book Depository is not only successful because of its free shipping deal. Buy from Book Depository and use PayPal as a mode of payment. Notice how the cumbersome registration and billing forms are missing. The checkout process is remarkably seamless and fast. There are only two web pages after clicking the checkout-with-PayPal button, lessening the chances of a customer changing his mind about the purchase.

6. Offer Different Payment Options

On top of credit cards, third-party online payment services like PayPal, Interac (in Canada), Debit Cards, are crucial if you want more customers to complete the checkout process. Accept a variety of payment methods and grow your customer base.

Redirecting Incoming Traffic to Immediate Action

Getting Acquainted with Call to Action (CTA) Buttons/Text

The term “Call-to-Action” has become more common in the field of web designing and online experience of internet users. It is used to refer to those aspects of a web page that request the visitor to take immediate action. In fact, you may have seen some CTA buttons yourself while browsing over the web. Remember the biggest and inarguably the most prominent buttons on the webpage with ostentatiously catchy fonts that are just too hard to miss? Yes, they are called CTAs; prominent clickable buttons or text that, when clicked, perform a custom predefined action. Clickable buttons are the most common demonstration of CTAs.

Are CTA Buttons And Text Two Sides Of The Same Coin?

There isn’t enough difference between a CTA button and a CTA text and the two terms have often been used interchangeably. The only difference between the two is in their appearance with CTA text being in the form of prominent, colorful, and very legible text while buttons are simple text wrapped in eye-candy. Both of them are strategically positioned on the page and their words are carefully chosen so that they literally drive visitors to action. As far as usage and marketing benefits are concerned, both have the same scale of marketing capabilities.

CTA – Online Marketing and Promotional Tool

In the online world, the term “call-to-action” is solely an advertising, promoting and marketing concept. It is both a request as well as a directive that encourages the visitor of the webpage to take immediate action. CTAs are the doorway to the sales process because they answer the most common question that pops up in the mind of the site visitor; “I want to purchase it. So what do I do now?”

A good CTA can be a great marketing tool for businesses with online resources. They are the most prominent link that acquaints the user with the sales process. This makes them a highly effective tool for websites that need to redirect incoming traffic to landing and sales pages.

CTAs have been observed to increase sales levels exponentially by encouraging a considerably higher number of signups compared to other tools of marketing, promotion and distribution.

How Big A Punch Do CTAs Pack?

The entire purpose of a CTA button or text is to ensure that the visitor is driven to action. However, not all visitors would be so keen to click on these buttons or text regardless of how strategically planned and placed they might be. Therefore, many businesses keep monitoring the volume of traffic that is directed to their landing sales page as a means of checking the efficiency of CTAs. Also, it is in the best interests of a business to check the effectiveness of CTAs on a regular basis. Current statistics on the volume of traffic should be compared with past trends to identify fluctuations in volume.

Finding The Perfect Spot For CTAs

Simply making button and text colorful, prominent and fancy is not always enough to make them visible. The placement and positioning of a CTA property also plays an equally important role in how effective it is at driving traffic and generating a higher sales turnover. This is because most visitors do not even consider skimming or scrolling down the page to view all its content probably because they are short on time. Therefore, CTAs should be placed such that they are the first and possibly the most prominent feature of the page upon loading.

Most common and strategic positions for CTAs are at the right hand of the page or in the center. Traditionally, a CTA is placed in a strategic position where it is isolated and prominent. Along with contrasting colors and catchy, visually appealing buttons, using the right color contrast also helps the button in standing out from the other text on the website.

(a) In an isolated but strategic area so that it dominates other web elements
(b) Right in the middle of your layout
(c) At the top of the page for shorter pages
(d) Throughout the length of the page if the page is long. Also, it is best to place CTAs in multiple positions for long pages.

LANGUAGE SPEAKS VOLUMES – Simple, lucid and laconic is the inarguably the best approach to make CTAs powerful and comprehensive. Using big, bold fonts for CTA property works really well. Care should be taken to ensure that text does not represent double meaning as it would confuse the user to act.

BUTTON ICONS ADD VISIBILITY – It also helps the site in boosting its prospects if an element of visual stimulus is added to the button. The most common types of visual stimulants are button icons or images.

Adding Dynamism to CTA Buttons

Smart marketers and webmasters make effective use of dynamic text as a tool to boost the prospects of a CTA button. Dynamic text is helpful in that it allows the user a lot of customization options for the text to use in the CTA button. Using dynamic text tools also creates more relevancy drives stronger and quicker conversions.

Text-free CTA Buttons

During your time browsing the internet, you may have stumbled across a CTA button that in fact does not look remotely similar to the conventional CTA buttons on other website. These buttons use no text and rather take help of signs and symbols to deliver a message. A good example is an online media resource that has a “play” button with a corresponding “play” sign embedded into it. These are effective and innovative variations of the CTA button as they are more laconic in conveying their purpose. However, the use of text-free CTA buttons is limited as not all text can be translated and represented by a symbol. Also, in most cases, symbols fail to induce people to action as they represent neither a request nor urgency.

Uses and Abuses of CTAs

Owing to the popularity of CTAs as the leading marketing and conversion tool on the internet, there are countless positive as well as negative practices that they can be used for. Some of them are listed below:


  1. Add to Cart – Sites and pages use these buttons as a means to coerce the visitor to consider buying the specific product or service that he has been reviewing. These buttons affect direct sales.
  2. Download Buttons – These buttons direct visitors to take possession of a specific item on the page.
  3. Trial Buttons – It is common for marketers to entice the visitor into trying out their service before they can decide on buying it. This is especially true on gaming sites where visitors can try out a free- trial version of the game in order to understand it better.
  4. Sign Up Buttons – These are perhaps the most common type of CTAs and they entice visitors to subscribe to an online service. Social networking and international news sites use Sign Up buttons in highest frequency.


Compared to the positive aspects of CTAs, their negativities are not many. The only possible way they can be used negatively is that, marketers who usually have the tendency to run a strict promotional campaign may use CTAs as a means to deceive customers or to lure them. In such cases, customer may not find what they had been promised by the CTA property.