by Contributing Author
We live in uncertain times, and to put it mildly, experts don’t have high hopes for the future of our economy. The crisis is already affecting many of us in our personal lives, e.g., on grocery runs and when buying gas for our cars. But if you’re a small business owner, it could get a whole lot worse very soon if you don’t start preparing. Industry after industry has already suffered, and you never know if yours will be next.
So, don’t stay idle and leave the survival of your livelihood up to chance. Take your fate into your own hands and give yourself the best odds of making it long-term. And in this digital age, what is an excellent place to start this process? On the Internet, of course. Read on for our best tips to boosting your online presence below.
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Before you worry about expanding, make sure that what you’re already doing to present your business online is of the highest quality possible. For a lot of businesses, their online presence begins and ends with a website. If yours is one of them, chances are you won’t have updated it much, if at all since you made it way back when. While the information on it is probably still relevant and correct, an old website will not only tell potential customers that you’re out of touch with technology – it might also be hard for some of them to even navigate it, since they’ll be used to wildly different websites at this point.
Make sure to give your website a makeover and update it to match the current standards and appeal to your target audience. If you find this overwhelming, try using intuitive platforms like WordPress or Wix – or consider investing a bit of money in getting a programmer to help you.
Another easy way to improve your website is to optimize the copy on it. And what is that you may ask? Well, your website’s copy is simply just whatever text you publish on this. This includes titles, categories, descriptions, articles, blurbs – literally any piece of text. When ranking the endless number of websites online, Google prioritizes certain sites over others based on, among other things, this copy.
If you use words and terms that are common for users to search for, you get a higher ranking. The same goes for many other websites linked to yours if you use shorter sentences and many other things. Of course, many business owners simply don’t have time to implement these things themselves. In this case, paying a marketing agency to do it is money well-spent. For instance, We Digitize specializes in SEO solutions and would be more than happy to help you boost your Google ranking.
Lastly, social media plays a huge part in growing almost any business today. Of course, the obvious example would be fashion retailers: These businesses typically have great success with sharing outfit inspiration, posting about sales, deals, etc. in their stores and even selling items directly through DMs. But many other types of businesses will also find social media channels useful. It’s all about connecting with your audience where they are, frequently and on a personal level – and nowhere is this easier than on social media.
But to really profit from social media, you need a following. Part of this following will of course naturally be generated from your current customer base. You can promote your social media channels on your regular website to achieve this. However, social media is also great at reaching customers not yet in the fold.
You can place relatively cheap ads on Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok to really boost the number of people that get exposure to your brand and/or products.
Maintaining a social media following is going to take lots of constant care. Otherwise, it will simply stagnate. To keep your followers engaged and talking about your brand you can host giveaways, competitions, and much more. This usually also makes people share your posts to spread the word, making for cheap and efficient advertising.
Make sure that there is always someone available on your social media sites to handle incoming requests and questions. Plenty of people use social media these days as channels for communicating with companies. They’ll expect you to be available there.
When Uncertain, Conduct a Survey
One of the best benefits of having an online presence is the reach you get to potentially millions of people. This is also great if you want to figure out what your customers expect from your services and how you can improve your online presence.
You can create a simple survey for interested people to answer. In the end, you can offer a discount for those who complete it as incentive.
By doing this you can quickly gather a lot of relevant data to incorporate on your website, social media, advertising campaigns and much more.
Just keep in mind, that you shouldn’t make the survey too intrusive for people. That will simply encourage them to ignore it; Have it inserted tastefully and respectfully. This gives it a higher rate of responses overall.
Into the Digital Age
Running a company in this day and age means you are almost guaranteed to have to adapt to the digital infrastructure that only continues to grow. After all, people are not withdrawing from the internet; They’re getting closer to it.
If you want to optimize your advertising, reach, profits, and consumer base, going digital is a must. To do this successfully, you can take steps like making a user-friendly website, using SEO to optimize your online content, establishing a social media presence to keep in touch with your consumers, and finally conducting surveys to optimize your digital presence.
Your business most likely already has touched a bit on one or more of these steps, but consider giving them all a try, gauge their effect and see if you can incorporate it in your online strategy.