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How to make online ads more effective

Dear Karen: How can we get better returns on our Internet ads?

Answer: Make sure your advertising links to relevant pages on your website rather than just automatically going to your home page. For instance, if you’re advertising lawnmowers, visitors should land directly on your lawnmower page, said Jason Hennessey, director of search engine optimization at EverSpark Interactive. “Do not think that by merely directing traffic to any page on your website, visitors will go to the trouble of searching further for the actual information they want,” he said.

Optimize your Web pages for Internet searches by titling them and putting useful content on them, including your most commonly searched-for product names and targeted keywords. “Try to include as much information as you can, including prices or fees. Do not leave anything to the imagination,” Hennessey said.

Finally, make your site design and landing pages clean and uncluttered rather than loading them with ads, graphics and irrelevant information.

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There are different ways to incorporate

Dear Karen: Should I incorporate my business?

Answer: Establishing a separate legal entity for your company reduces your risk of personal liability and shields your personal assets in case of a lawsuit. Most small businesses start out as sole proprietorships and consider establishing formal entities as they grow.

Each business structure — partnership, LLC (limited-liability company) or corporation — has different legal implications for taxation, expenses and procedures, legal liabilities and fundraising. Do some research or talk to an attorney about which best suits your business needs.

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smallbiz@latimes.com


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