Many small businesses are aware of the importance of online marketing, yet don’t quite know how to go about it or where to start. This article will give you some insights in how to go about creating and managing a profitable online marketing strategy for your small business.
Step 1. Delete that #$% website and start again.
Creating an online marketing strategy with a website that looks like it was made in the 90’s is not going to get you any returns. As a business, your website needs to be clean, professional and depending on your industry have a little “spunk”. Whether you use an outside company to create your website or do it yourself (WordPress is a good start), make sure it is done properly.
Step 2. Create quality content for your website.
Referring back to my 1990’s comment above, make sure your website doesn’t just have the basic pages such as “Home, About, Products and Contact Us”. This was common back then and still is today but user’s are expecting more. You’re website should no longer just be a brochure of your company, but more of an interactive medium between you and your potential customers. Another good way of creating quality content is by writing articles for your website on topics that are pertinent to your industry. By doing this, you are essentially creating an information hub around your business and telling the world that you are the industry leaders. Users relate better with a website when they get the sense that the company portrays adeptness in its field.
Step 3. Get social.
Create a Facebook Page and Twitter Account (among others) for your business. If possible, try not to use the company logo as the profile picture for Twitter. Rather use your own picture. People relate better with people, this is a fact. Ensure that you keep a constant flow of information and tips going through these accounts. By doing this you will be creating a following of potential and existing customers. As hard as it may be, try not to constantly promote your own products and services, but rather provide relevant information that your followers will find useful. Shameless self-promotion is good, but too much of it will irritate many.
Step 4. Buy your visitors.
Yup, buying visitors is an excellent way to start receiving enquiries almost immediately and is an excellent strategy to ensure that your brand gets noticed. There are many types of online advertising mediums that you can make use of. The most common of these being Google AdWords, Facebook Ads and LinkedIn DirectAds. I’ll cover these in detail in my next post. Once you have set up your online advertising campaigns, make sure that the ads are pointing to relevant pages on your website.
Step 5. Convert users to sales.
With covering the first 4 steps, you’ll start noticing an influx of visitors to your website. Assuming that your visitors are being directed to the correct landing pages of your website, the trick is to now convert them into sales or leads. Using Google Website Optimizer is a great way to start testing different variations of your landing pages to see which converts more visitors into sales. Remember, it’s not about the number of visitors your website receives, but how many of the visitors that convert into sales that counts.
Following these 5 steps will ensure your presence online is not in vain.