Whatever the size of your company, from micro business to large corporation – a website and online presence are essential tools. Just having a good-looking site though is not enough and particularly in this day and age, your web presence needs to be driving your business and profits forwards and upwards.
Few small businesses have huge budgets for their websites or online marketing but by focusing on certain areas, you can maximise your return on investment (ROI) and increase your turnover month on month.
1 – Remember that you run a business!
This might sound like stating the obvious but many small business owners actually forget that their website and online presence is a reflection of the fact that they are in business. Your website is a business tool and although good design is important, the most important thing about a business tool is to ensure that you get more business from it! Your website needs to drive your customers interest and engage them to connect with you.
2 – Constant review.
You may be very happy with the way in which your website looks and the way in which you have been using Facebook since 2006 to connect with customers but STOP….THINK….LOOK AGAIN…..we are in 2016 now and things have changed A LOT over the years. You need to be constantly reviewing your past performance and looking at ways that things could be done better. Not only that but when things have gone exceedingly well, ask “Why did that happen?”. Sometimes, it can be difficult to remain objective when looking at your own business so it can be helpful to get an opinion from an outside source to bring another perspective. Don’t get your back up if you don’t like what they hear – they are giving you an honest opinion and most likely although you might not like it, you need to hear it!
3 – The work is never finished.
A website and online presence should be constantly evolving and moving with the times and therefore, it will always be a work in progress. Many people however, tend to think of the website as “complete”, in a similar way to sending out a flyer or brochure and therefore they fail to take advantage of the fact that a website can be constantly updated with new, fresh and relevant information that can engage your audience. This can be done by writing blogs, adding to news sections or simply updating links to relevant new industry developments. Constantly updating your website will also show Google that you are delivering fresh content and therefore will ultimately result in your website ranking higher in the search engines.
4 – Don’t neglect your marketing.
It is just not enough in this day and age to have a website and expect people to be able to find you online. Your website needs to be search engine optimised and you need an SEO strategy, if you don’t have one then get in touch with an SEO company who can develop one for you. If you are not using pay per click or some form of paid advertising online then you are missing out because your competitors are! You need to allocate a budget for this, you will get far more “band for your buck” than you would do with print advertising in a newspaper or magazine. Additionally, there are more opportunities in 2016 than ever before for advertising on platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and the like. If you don’t have a strategy for this then make sure that you sit down with an experienced advertising agency or marketing company and devise one specifically for your company. A successful strategy will pay dividends over time.
5 – Engage your customers and encourage them to take action.
Persuasive copy on your website and special offers will encourage engagement, as will a carefully worded sales pitch. Repetition burrows deep in to your visitors mind and plants the seeds needed for a sale, just try and avoid sounding like a used car salesman! Putting yourself in your customer’s shoes will help you to realise what they might require, want and need from your business. Remember to treat customers as individually as possible and not to develop a “one size fits all” plan. Identify and develop the stages of customer interaction, customers approach buying decisions similarly most of the time. Each of the buying stages can yield different results for your company, not just a sale! Tying in the stages of the buying cycle with effective PPC, remarketing and advertising is a great way to gain further ROI on potential customers.
If you would like to talk about any of the topics featured here then get in touch today and we would be happy to set up a free consultation with you about your business goals for 2016.