10 Tips for Designing a Listing

Twenty years ago, homeschoolers who needed resources or services poured through catalogs, attended homeschool conventions with notebooks in hand, and relied on the recommendations of friends in the homeschool community.

These days, homeschoolers still seek out advice from friends, but searches are much less frequently conducted on paper over catalogs and in convention halls and are much more likely to be conducted while sitting at a computer running a Google search.

So, how can companies ensure that they will be found by homeschoolers?

Explore Homeschooling eliminates this challenge by directly connecting companies with homeschoolers who are searching for resources and services.

BUILDING A SOLID LISTING

A successful listing on Explore Homeschooling is one that draws attention, offers clarify about a company or service, and encourages homeschoolers to visit the company’s site for more information. Depending on the type of listing, companies may wish to highlight a new product, draw attention to an upcoming event, or highlight upcoming special offers.

Here are some tips for designing an attractive listing:

  1. Take a look around. Before you begin to contemplate your listing, visit Explore Homeschooling with the eyes of a homeschooler. What listings stand out to you the most? Which ones are overwhelming? Take notes to help you as you build your own listing.
  2. Gather all information in advance. As soon as you purchase a listing, you can click on “Create Listing” to see what information is needed. Read all tips and suggestions shown in the upload form and make sure you understand details. Then gather images and text, design your html, and have all your information available for quick access.
  3. Be clear. As homeschoolers conduct searches on Explore Homeschooling, they are looking to quickly find companies and services that meet their needs. A listing that is unclear about what it offers will get lost in the shuffle of a search. Clarity attracts attention.
  4. Be succinct. It is tempting to try to communicate every detail about your company, website, or service. Too much information, however, can bog down a listing. Instead, give quick summaries and engaging overviews that draw customers to want to learn more.
  5. Proofread! We all make mistakes. Even the best of editors will miss details now and then! But, many errors are eliminated by simply re-reading the listing from start to finish. Better yet, have someone else read over it for you. Fresh eyes can make a huge difference.
  6. Don’t stress about the coding. If you have coding skills or have access to someone who can help with the design, don’t hesitate to utilize those skills. But, keep in mind that a very attractive listing can be created even without coding. If html is not in your skill set, focus more on ensuring everything else is spectacular, and you’ll still have a great listing.
  7. Utilize images. This is especially true if you do need to avoid html. Make sure you include images that are mostly free of text and give a clear visualization of your brand, product, or service. Note the image size instructions and make use of online resizing and compression tools such as those found at iloveimg.com.
  8. Utilize free downloads. Using a “hook” will encourage visitors to take action on your listing instead of simply gathering information.
  9. Use trackable links. This allows you to evaluate the effectiveness of your listing and consider changes as needed.
  10. Keep all information updated. Explore Homeschooling’s listing design allows you to make as many changes as you desire during your listing period. While you do not want to change the information too often, you will want to make sure content is current, prices are accurate, and any special events or offers are maintained. Make a note to check on your listing once a month or so to make sure that all information is accurate.

When combined with a package combining a listing with social media, web, and e-mail marketing, your listing will be able to establish awareness, create interest, drive conversions, and maintain interaction with your customers.