Apr 24
Reading Time: 2 minutes

11 Tips For How To Get Started Programming Games - BMT Micro

In our October 24th blog we discussed a few tips on how to get the most out of your game launch. Game launches can make or break the selling success of your game. However, for someone just getting started with game programming, your game launch may be the last of your worries at this point. The most common type of question for a beginner is where do I start? For the beginners out there, here are 11 tips for how to get started programming games.

  1. Start with small games and take things one-step at a time. You don’t get frustrated as easily and it will be easier to see your progress. Remember there is no time limit on when you need to have your game ready (if you are starting out with a time constraint, you are in for a rough time).
  2. Finish your first game.
  3. Always get feedback. Test your game with honest groups of people who have never played it before. These people can help you find potential problems or bugs that you may have overlooked or been unaware of during your games development phase. This will give you the opportunity to resolve all issues before you are ready to launch!
  4. Prototype frequently.
  5. Find teammates. They will motivate you and give you responsibility.
  6. Find a mentor.
  7. When you think you have a good idea, go for it.
  8. Have a close group of people that understand what you are doing and appreciate your work. They can provide you with additional instruction and help with improvements.
  9. Networking is important.
  10. Brainstorm with other developers before starting a game. This can save you time and prevent wrong coding. A good place to start is independent gamer forums. You can find support and get good advice from fellow game developers.
  11. When you get stuck at a dead end, sleep. Your brain keeps trying to solve the problem and when you awake you may find your solution.

Learn at your own pace and build your projects one piece at a time. The most important tip for a beginner is don’t get frustrated and continue to work on your game. If you love and believe in what you are working on, it will shine through in your finished game.

When you are ready to launch your game, BMT Micro can ensure that your game gets the exposure it deserves. BMT Micro offers easy set-up options and can help with your download links and customized shopping cart. With BMT Micro, you can take off running with your new game. It doesn’t matter if your game is available on PC or Mac, or even if it is played in a virtual environment, BMT Micro can process all your transactions. You will see all of your efforts and the time invested in the development of your game rewarded by the gain of your new players. BMT Micro’s multiple payment options allow you to provide your players with the convenience to use their preferred method of payment all while keeping them safe with our PCI compliance and extensive fraud protection. BMT Micro can even help with your Marketing efforts to reach a larger gamer audience. Never neglect the need for marketing and a good platform to make your final game a huge success. BMT Micro is here for you!

Apr 17
Reading Time: 1

Pinterest is a digital pinboard that allows you to collate and categorize anything you find visually appealing online. Since its launch in 2010, Pinterest is growing quickly. Pinterest may seem just like any other social media site; however, unlike Facebook, the whole setup of Pinterest is designed to move products. Pinterest’s power is the volume of referral traffic it generates to your website. Research has shown that Pinterest users are more likely to purchase more items online, use more money and shop more often than any other social network user. According to Shopify, “The average order coming from Pinterest is $80, higher than any other site including Google, Amazon and Facebook, which has an average of $40.” Pinterest has become an important new way of driving traffic to you website, but that is not all it is capable of doing.

We have created an infographic that lists a few other unique ways implementing a Pinterest page into your digital marketing strategy can help your business!

Unique Ways Pinterest Can Help Your Business Infographic - BMT Micro

 

Pinterest is one of the 10 most popular social networks and is continuing to grow. Pinterest is a powerful tool for visual storytelling and is the perfect way to create brand awareness and reach new people. We are excited to announce that BMT Micro has also added a Pinterest account to our digital marketing strategy! If you are looking to expand your social media networks, we hope our infographic will help in your decision of what works best for you! Be sure to check out our Pinterest page in the future for other infographics and much more!

Apr 10

SEO vs. Content Marketing

Posted by BMT Micro

Reading Time: 3 minutes

The most basic definition of SEO means finding ways to increase your site’s appearance in web visitors’ search results. This in turn should generate more traffic to your site. Basic search engine optimization is essential to help position your website properly to be found when current or potential consumers search for your site. We discussed in our April 22nd blog that the algorithm search engines such as Google use to determine your ranking continues to change. So, what exactly are search engines looking for in 2015?

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Google has made many changes to their algorithm over the past few years, and now that 2015 is here, these changes are only increasing in frequency. It is no secret that Google wants to provide its users with the best, highest-quality content found on the web. The problem is too many internet marketers have been looking for the short-term win (from keyword stuffing to spammy link building). Those short-term wins actually went against Google’s goal of pleasing the user and have been classified as black-hat SEO techniques. These “black-hat” practices made Google.com less appealing to the general public and resulted in bad search results which ultimately lead their users to explore other search engines.

How has Google responded? Content is continuing to become more and more important in SEO. Google even finds content marketing important enough to base algorithm updates on. Google responded to the “black-hate” practices with their Panda and Penguin updates. But how do you pass the Panda and Penquin test with your content marketing? Google’s Panda update is a search filter meant to ensure that quality content wins and penalizes “thin” or poor content from ranking well. Panda looks for fresh and quality content on your site. Panda also penalizes websites that sit stale so if you are not creating content at all, you are not safe from Panda. Once you win the battle with Panda, you are now on to the Penguin test. Even if you are producing fresh content to your audience on a regular basis you are not in the clear with Google. Google’s Penguin update targets spammy websites, in particular those that are using black-hat SEO techniques.

So how do you stay on Google’s good side when it comes to your SEO efforts? This is where your content marketing comes into play. By implementing a quality content marketing strategy and producing compelling, useful content on a regular basis, you can create a solid foundation to support your SEO efforts. We have provided you with a few things to keep in mind when analyzing or developing your SEO and Content Marketing efforts.

  1. Content Quality
    Do you provide a reason for people to spend time on your site when reading your pages? Do you offer real value to your visitors that they won’t find on another site? Having well-crafted content is crucial for your website if you want to attract traffic and drive conversion.
  2. Content Research
    What keywords do people that are genuinely interested in my site use when searching? What keyword phrases are currently driving traffic to my site? How often do people search for certain keyword phrases? The process of picking the right keywords is one of the most important parts of SEO. You want to create content using keywords people are using when searching the web.
  3. Content Words
    After doing your keyword research, have you actually used those words in your content? If you want your pages to be found for your particular keywords, it is a good idea to actually use those words in your content.
  4. Content Engagement
    How long do users stay on your site or a page on your site? Do they ‘bounce’ back to their search results to try something else? Quality content should produce meaningful interactions and engagement with users. Metrics like bounce rate and sessions length allow search engines to determine how pleased a visitor is with the result.
  5. Content Freshness
    Is your content out of date? Has your site earned any new inbound links? A site that hasn’t been updated in months or years will result in lower content quality. Without a good freshness factor, it is likely search engines will pass over your site for newer, more current content.

Google and other search engines are leveling the playing field as they get smarter and smarter. Content is still king and you will continue to hear that phrase over and over when it comes to SEO success. Like any marketing technique, you will need to test different approaches to see what works best for your company and continue to improve. If you are a vendor with BMT Micro and you need help with your SEO or Content Marketing efforts, we may be able to help. If you would like to learn more about the services we offer, please contact our Marketing Specialists via email at leah@bmtmicro.com for more information.

Apr 3
Reading Time: 3 minutes

For an E-Commerce business, your online shopping cart is one of the most important features of your website. Unfortunately, the average rate of cart abandonment has now grown close to 70%. There are many explanations for why shoppers abandon their shopping carts before making a purchase. A simple explanation is – E-commerce shoppers are smart. When they are looking to purchase a product or service they will browse multiple sites, compare products, pricing and shipping costs to that of your competitors. As an online business you must find ways to encourage customers to complete their online purchases on your site.

shopping-cart-wide

The following suggestions are a few steps to improve your shopping cart conversions and ultimately decrease cart abandonment.

1. Be Consistent in Design
Your shopping cart is one of the first places you can lose a potential customer. If your shopping cart does not match the rest of your website, it is more likely that a potential customer will become confused or feel uncomfortable making a purchase. Shoppers need to trust who they are giving their sensitive information to and consistency is key. Make sure your shopping cart matches your website for a cleaner, trustworthy transition.

2. Stress Security and Privacy
It is essential for an E-commerce business to protect their site, and more importantly, their customers sensitive information. Security and privacy are two of the most important features of a shopping cart. They are also the two areas most online shoppers are concerned with. Show the security lock in the browser and keep your SSL certificates up to date to make your customers feel comfortable and safe while making their purchase.

3. Keep it Simple
Don’t confuse your shoppers by using specific, industry-related jargon that they may not understand. Use simple, easy-to-understand words that provide a clear path for your shoppers to follow through your shopping cart to finalizing their order.

4. Be Clear About Prices, Tax and Shipping
Shoppers do not like surprises when they are finalizing a payment. Shipping can also make or break it for a conversion. No one likes the surprise of hidden charges. Make sure you are displaying any additional costs as early in the ordering process as possible.

5. Offer Multiple Payment Options
Shoppers like to have options and control over which payment they use. If you limit them to one option that they are forced to use, it can reduce your chance of selling and increase your cart abandonment rate.

6. Offer Discounts or Incentives
Discount schemes help create urgency, increase awareness and drive purchases. Things such as quantity discounts, specialty item discount, buy one get one free, etc. are considered discount schemes. By using discount schemes, you can encourage your customers to keep coming back to you, but also at the same time encourage them to spend more. Discount schemes can also increase your customer retention, customer frequency, customer spending, customer referrals and increase the success of your marketing strategies.

7. Check the number of steps that are required to actually make a purchase on your site
Shoppers like to be aware of where they are in their ordering process. Clearly listing each next step they have to take will make their checkout process simple and stress-free. Your shoppers should not be questioning where to go next when making a purchase.

8. Include a confirmation page & an email notification
Even though your customer has completed their order, shoppers can become confused about whether their order actually went through or not. Once they have completed their order, the next step should be to send your customers to a confirmation page thanking them for their order, list their order or confirmation number and list any additional steps to expect next. You should also email the customer the same information they received on the confirmation page. An email is something they can save and refer back to as needed.

Overall, offer your customers as much convenience as possible during checkout. Shopper satisfaction and engagement can lead to positive reviews, more purchases and new customers. The suggestions we have provided you with are just a few simple steps to begin with when improving your shopping cart conversions. BMT Micro handles all of the steps mentioned for our vendors through our vendors area and our robust shopping cart system. All BMT Micro servers are fully secured and host all shopping carts using the highest encryption standards available. If you have any questions or if you are interested in learning more about BMT Micro’s offerings please contact our vendor services at vendors@bmtmicro.com.