Whether you run an e-commerce business or not, an online presence is now essential for all businesses from start-ups to corporate giants. Where is the first place you look when you need a service or product, or even if you want to find a Bed & Breakfast? Well, naturally, your first port of call will be the internet; only a small minority still rely on the Yellow Pages! So, now you understand the importance of having an online presence, how can your business take advantage of this? Check out website design gloucestershire for affordable, bespoke and tailor made website design.
- Get a good quality website!
A good quality website is the obvious place to start, yet a recent article from Forbes stated that many small businesses still aren’t maximising their online presence. Many small businesses had a basic understanding of the role of social media in promoting their businesses, or were using sites such as Etsy or eBay to sell their products. However, ironically, they didn’t have their own site and domain. Whilst many understood the potential benefits of having their own website, they chose social media to promote their business instead. Now, there is nothing wrong with using social media. In fact, it plays a huge part in marketing your business online, but there are significant benefits to having your own site and domain.
- Make your brand legitimate and professional with your own website
Your own site acts as a home page and starting place for your business and it establishes you as trustworthy and legitimate. Your site can then point the way to your social media accounts, and is an essential part of building your brand which can be used for sending newsletters and updates on offers, new products and promotions to your customers.
In fact, many small businesses are simply unaware of just how many options are out there for them, in terms of affordable good quality website providers who can also offer services such as Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and social media marketing. This can free them up to do what they do best – manage their business and focus on their products or services.
- An online presence alone is not enough: be proactive
You may not have heard of SEO, so this term will be new to you. In short, it makes you more visible to search engines just as Bing, Yahoo and Google. This is where most people search for what they want and need.
A well managed site can increase your visibility and traffic, thus generating more leads. So, is just having your own website a sufficient way of getting to the top of the search engines and staying there? In short: the answer is no! Google rewards active sites that publish fresh content on a regular basis. Publishing regular, unique and engaging content is one of the best ways to attract visitors and this in turn can generate more leads and conversions.
- Why blog?
Many businesses are told that it’s important to have a blog, but why? Well, this is going to be one of the important components in your active online presence. Now, there are two very important aspects to blogging:
- It tells search engines that your site is regularly adding fresh, unique content and this will help boost your rankings.
- It is also a great customer engagement resource. An entertaining and informative blog of your own is one of the best ways to increase traffic. If you publish interesting posts which add value to people and offer information on your business such as free tips and ‘how to’ guides, you are giving something away for free, which is fantastic from a marketing point of view.
- Getting social
How many people do you know with no social media accounts? They are probably few and far between. Many business owners already understand that social media marketing is now an integral part of optimising their online presence, but some strategies are more effective than others. A poor social media strategy can actually be worse than no strategy at all! So, once again, it’s a matter of being proactive and finding the most effective social channels and strategy for you.
The bottom line
It’s worth hiring a professional to work with you on building your website SEO, blogging, social media and managing your online presence. It’s also worth bearing in mind that there are many companies who cater to smaller businesses and start-ups, who offer these services at affordable prices. So, it won’t break the bank, and you are likely to see leads and sales soar! So, all in all, finding a professional who can manage your online presence may be one of the best investments you will ever make.