THE BRITISH LIBRARY

Innovation and enterprise blog

The British Library Business & IP Centre can help you start, run and grow your business

Introduction

This blog is written by members of the Business & IP Centre team and some of our expert partners and discusses business, innovation and enterprise. Read more

18 July 2016

Is your best content above the fold?

In today’s age you need to catch the eye of your customer, before they get a chance to scroll down the page

Back in the pre-digital days, there was no greater achievement for a print journalist than to see their story appear “above the fold” on the front page of a newspaper. This indicated that their story was the most important news of the day, and had worth and value that warranted it begin given prime newsprint real estate. It ensured that anyone who picked up or glanced at the newspaper on that given day would see their story first.

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These days, although pixels are in far greater supply than newsprint, the phrase “above the fold” still has a similar meaning when it comes to getting your website visitors’ attention. Though it would be more accurately described as “above the scroll”—that is, what’s visible to the eye before you scroll down the page—the implications are much the same for this piece of digital real estate. Whether your goal is sales or simply to get eyeballs on your published content, above the fold content is key if you’re looking for a high conversion rate. In fact, if you’re looking to maximise the effect your website has on visitors, your above-the-fold web design is a primary factor you need to take into consideration.

So what, exactly, does this mean? Many believe that when a website visitor lands on a landing page for the first time, their level of attention is acute and focused on what they’re looking at. In reality, however, the opposite is true. First impressions are made virtually within seconds of a website visitor’s eyeballs landing on your page. They are not spending the time to evaluate carefully if this is where they want to be—they’re either staying or bouncing on an instinctual basis. Assuming that your visitor is really motivated to be on your site is where many people go wrong.

This can seem quite arbitrary and cutthroat—and that’s because it is! The internet is essentially a massive attention-seeking contest with a target audience of people whose attention spans are becoming increasingly shorter. But the good news is in the quest for conversion, there are steps you can definitely take to improve your above-the-fold web design and convert more visitors.

Pass the blink test: Stand up and move two paces away from your computer screen. Can you still see what the landing page is about or what the top piece of featured content is? If not, your above-the-fold content might be too understated.

Don’t make them scroll or navigate: The call to action or main goal of the page should be apparent to the visitor right away. Don’t make them work to figure out what you want them to do. Make it clear and immediate in your above-the-fold layout.

Make sure your headline matches your social copy: If you have promoted your page on a social network as a means to get visitors onto your landing page, make sure it lives up to its promise right away. If the headline copy on the landing page doesn’t appear to immediately follow on from or correspond to what you promoted on social, your bounce rate will skyrocket as you’ll be viewed as disingenuous right away.

Tailor to devices: If your above-the-fold content looks great on mobile but is lacklustre on desktop, you’re not doing yourself any favours. It’s true that as screen sizes vary, there is a wide variance in what constitutes “above the fold”, but that’s no excuse to fall short. Make sure that no matter where someone finds you—mobile, tablet, or desktop—your above-the-fold web design is tailored with maximum conversion in line.


Empowering your business website is no small task, but there are several ways to ensure your site has the best chance at attracting - and retaining - those all-important eyeballs. Empower your business website today with online services from UK2.net: providing everything from your domain name to a complex dedicated hosting solution, UK2 help you succeed online.

UK2 Group are a Corporate Partner to the Business & IP Centre

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05 July 2016

Celebrating British IP Day – get IP savvy

Today is British IP Day – but what does Intellectual Property (IP) mean for you and your business?

Well, it might mean beginning to take more control over your brand, exploring new opportunities to commercialise your ideas by selling creative pieces and designs. Or indeed revisiting the business plan and opening up global marketplaces with licensing options.

Being savvy with your intellectual property can make your business scale faster. If you know how.

Protecting your ideas

We know how, and those experts who are on hand in the Business & IP Centre can advise you straight away on what to do to on questions ranging from how to avoid copyright infringement through to what can be trade marked in the UK.

Knowledge is power and by knowing your rights and how to navigate the process to protect your ideas, your business will be stronger.

Award-winning entrepreneur Dana Elemara, founder of Arganic says, “if I hadn't have gone to the intellectual property course at the British Library, I wouldn't have even thought about trademarking my business name”.

 

 

“Branding is a byword for success”

British Library Business & IP Centre Ambassador and businessman, Stephen Fear, has started-up and succeeded across many sectors in his business career and offers this advice; Brands and branding are important because they represent consistency and that is a byword for success. 

Any entrepreneur wishing to build his or her business must first achieve consistency before they can obtain riches. By building a brand you are telling the world that you intend to be around for a very long time. You tell them that you and your business can be relied on to deliver a consistent high quality service or product.

You tell them that they don't need to worry about making their purchase because you will stand by it. If it isn't up to scratch you will replace it immediately and investigate what went wrong. 

Building a business is like building a relationship. The person you are doing this with needs to know that you are committed to the relationship. Convince your potential buyer of that by being genuine and doing what you say 'every time' will cause a line to form at your door. A line of fans rather than just customers. Fans who will buy from you time and time again. Create a brand & the rest will follow.

  

 

So, on this inaugural British IP Day, spare some time to think about any untapped assets and creative skills in your business which could be optimised. The Business & IP Centre is here to help you. Stay up to date with new dates for workshops and webinars helping address these and other issues by signing up for our e-newsletter.

British IP Day has been established by the Alliance for Intellectual Property to celebrate the huge contribution that IP makes to the UK.

Written by Clare Harris

13 June 2016

Spotlight on … Ed Salt, MD of Delamere Dairy

Ed Salt

We caught up with Ed Salt, Managing Director of Delamere Dairy ahead of the upcoming Inspiring Entrepreneurs ‘Going Global’ taking place at the International Festival for Business this month.

Delamere Diary is an independently owned UK-based company producing dairy products. They supply goats’ milk products and other dairy products to retailers throughout the UK and also trade internationally. Here Ed tells us what makes the company unique and what it takes to be successful at exporting.

Hi Ed! When was Delamere Dairy set up and how did you become involved?

Delamere Dairy was started in Delamere Forest in 1985 with just three goats.  Roger and Liz Sutton founded the business with a desire to farm but soon realised they would have to process, market and sell their wares as well as being at the forefront of the commercial goat industry.  I joined the company in 2004 when the company turnover was £4 million. Following an MBO in 2008 and a foray into new export markets, the company now turns over in excess of £20 million, with offices in the UK and Shanghai.

What’s been your role in the company since coming on board?

Jack of all trades (and master of none)! As with many small, privately-owned businesses you tend not to be pigeon-holed into a specific position.  Though your job title might say sales or marketing, it is highly likely you can be answering the phone or unloading a truck.  That said, as the business has grown and the number of staff has increased, I find myself firmly in the role of MD.

What makes Delamere Dairy unique?

I am biased but I believe we have a unique culture, with strong morals and an ethical approach to business. We have three key values in the business (fun, healthy, responsible) which sit at the core of our decision-making.  The company has a very flat structure, a real family business environment, with staff working with for the good of business and developing the business relationships that have evolved over the last 30 years.

What challenges did you face in getting your products into supermarkets?

I think the biggest challenge has been the perception of goats’ milk rather than the supermarkets.  If you have a commercially attractive, quality product, in a growth category then retailers will at least be interested in what you have to offer. However, a niche product that many people perceive they do not like, offers a completely different challenge.

How important is exporting for the business?

Our business model offers a scalable platform for us to grow into different categories and new markets and, though the UK is our primary focus, the opportunity to look outwards into emerging export markets gives and gave us the opportunity to further ‘de risk’ our position.  Export has become a key profit centre within the Delamere business and is a significant part of our future growth strategy.

What advice would you give to any small business owners thinking of trading abroad?

Do your research and groundwork. Building any sort of business, whether in the UK or overseas is a little bit like building a house or a full-scale civil engineering project.  First of all you need to decide what you want, where you want it to be and how big you want it.  Once you have decided, it is then a case of commitment and time. However, if you want to build a skyscraper you have to work on the foundations and exporting is no different.  Once committed you have to sink time and money into the foundation of your business, make sure it is robust enough to support the size of business you want to create. You certainly don’t have to be a civil engineer or an architect, you can employ those services, but if you want a structurally solid export business you do need to spend time on the ground and understand the market.

Finally, what’s next on the horizon for Delamere Dairy?

We are lucky, we are in the food business: people need to eat and as the world population grows we intend on growing with it.  Delamere is firmly positioned in the speciality milk/health market with nearly 80% of goats’ milk consumers buying our milk for health reasons.  As well as being firmly positioned in the goat dairy market, we are also benefiting from the growth in speciality non-dairy milk alternatives.  The UK continues to be our main bread and butter, but export will continue to drive the brand into new markets and to new health conscious consumers.

 

You can hear Ed, along with a panel of other successful entrepreneurs, speak at our upcoming Inspiring Entrepreneurs ‘Going Global’ taking place at the International Festival for Business this month. Get tickets here.