13 November 2017
It’s estimated that 92% of people research online before visiting a shop (source: Kibo) and, in the business to business sector, 85% of referrals are researched online before making contact (source: GeoSource).
It’s vital that you make the most of your online presence and grow your business’s profile. Here are some tips to get you started:
Your website is the focus of all your online activity and it should accurately represent who you are as a business. In other words, the feel of your website should be the same as the feel of your business. All your other online activity should pull people to it as it’s unique to you.
It should have a clear message about who you are, what you do and how to contact you. It should have easy navigation and useful content. Good content around your sector will help to drive quality traffic to your website, as well as establishing your business as experts.
Search Engine Optimisation is a big topic in its own right, but at a basic level is quite straightforward. Choose words and phrases in the content of your website that people type into search engines.
Bear in mind that phrases you like and think sound good may not be the ones that people search for. A handy tool for comparing search phrases is Google Trends. Also, aim to keep your content natural and easy to read. Don’t force keywords in to places just for the sake of it – search engines don’t like it.
This is a great way to stand out and you should use images on your website and social media posts. Yes, you may need product photos but be creative too. The blog section on your website is where photos that correspond to your news can really give someone an impression of what your business is like.
Consider including video; it’s very powerful especially for testimonials and how to guides show that you want your customers to get the most from your product.
Social Media is free and a great way to promote your business and to drive traffic to your website.
Plan the content and schedule your posts for at least a few times a week. Social media should be used as a tool to drive traffic to your website so always include links to the relevant page on your website.
When people engage with your posts always reply as it shows you care – ignoring people just sends the wrong message about your business.
Many small businesses are reluctant to take the next step into paid advertising. But it is nothing to be afraid of, and AdWords (Google’s ad platform) can be a great tool for gaining your website visibility in the first page of google search results (ads display above and below natural – organic – search results).
Put very simply, you effectively bid for priority ad space with other companies offering similar services. You pay Google every time your ad is clicked.
This kind of Pay Per Click (PPC) advertising can be cost effective if targeted well. Target your ads by location, for example, or set them to display at certain times on certain days. Monitor performance regularly to see what works best for your business.
If that sounds complicated and expensive, it needn’t be, and much of the process is automated. Read up on the basics, then start small with a limited test campaign as a learning exercise, and refine your process from there.
By registering your business on Google My Business you can display lots of details including photos in search results. Visitors can leave reviews and rate your business, giving you more visibility in search results. What’s more, it’s free and simple.
If you need help growing your business online then please contact us for a free consultation.