Your small business’ online presence is key to growth and success. Especially in 2020, where less and less businesses are focusing on print and brick and mortar advertising tactics and pivoting to digital marketing strategies to attract new clients. Having a solid online presence will ensure that your small business gets noticed. Using email marketing, social media, and search engine optimization you can make sure that your ideal client can find you easily online! Here’s 4 things to check that you have in place in order to have an impactful online presence.
How To Build Your Small Business’ Online Presence
Grow Your Email List
Your email database is a very powerful tool for business growth and better online marketing starts with your list of contacts. As we talked about in our previous article, growing your email list should be a top priority in order for you to promote your services and stay engaged with your ideal clients. You could be pumping out a ton of content, new products, improvements on services etc. but without an email list you don’t have an audience to tell!
“Consumers check personal email for an average of 2.5 hours each weekday while at work”Convince & Convert
Start by collecting all of your current, past and potential clients (people who have reached out but have not yet purchased goods or services) into one database. Make sure to label or tag them appropriately so that you can segment accurately when sending emails. Segmentation is key to keeping your contacts engaged because you will be providing them with specific value that they are looking for, rather than sending out the same information to everyone no matter their place in the buyer’s journey.
“Email personalization produces 6x higher revenue and transaction rates”Experian
Once you have your list, whether it’s 5 people or 500, start emailing! The best way to learn about your database and understand what they enjoy and are looking for is to take action and begin gathering insight. You can build your marketing plan around these insights and develop a strategy for email newsletters and content creation.
Social Media Channels
When people search for your business online, they will likely start on social media. The key to success when it comes to social media for business is to be present on the channels where your ideal clients hang out.
Start with the top social media channels, but don’t overwhelm yourself by trying to be everything to everyone. Facebook is a great platform to start and will help build your online presence by boosting SEO for your business name.
“51% of Facebook users being more likely to buy from brands they follow and 80% of US social networks connect to brands through Facebook”CognitiveSEO.com
Create a Facebook Business Page (which should be your business name so it’s easily searchable) and fill out your page completely. Don’t forget to add your location! Even if you product online or virtual services, your location will help with local SEO for clients that are searching in your area. Fill out your “About” section with information about how you are different and what value you bring to your clients. Include any offers that you currently have running on your page as well as a full list and description of your services. Facebook also has the option of adding a “book now” or “call now” button under the header. This is a great way to generate new leads that are visiting your page! Make sure to add your brand logo in your profile photo and header (a video would be awesome if you have one!).
Other social media channels to explore would include Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and Pinterest. It’s important not to spread yourself too thin by creating every single channel and trying to keep up with posting. If you don’t have the time to put in effort to post and engage on more than one social channel, focus on one for now and build it up until you can delegate these tasks out to a Virtual Assistant or Social Media Manager. The important thing is to have presence on at least one social platform to help clients find you!
Online reviews can make or break your business. It’s safe to say that every single one of your prospective clients will be searching for your reviews online and will use what they learn to inform their decision making process.
“90% of consumers read online reviews before visiting a business. And 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.”Invesp
The best place for you to collect online reviews is your Google Business page. Claim your business on Google and encourage clients to post about their experience with your business. Having your reviews listed on your Google Business Page helps with Search Engine Optimization and will help you get found online! You can also build reviews on your Facebook business page,Yelp, Angie’s List, Houzz, or any other online platform that is a “go-to” for your industry.
How can you get more reviews? Just ask! Start by emailing your past clients and check in to politely ask them to share their experience. And make it a key part of your process that after your work with someone, you ask them to review you shortly after while their experience is fresh on their mind. You can also offer incentive bonuses for clients that leave you a review, such as a small gift card or discount on their next service.
When searching for your business online, the best way for you to showcase your expertise is on your business website. Having a professional looking website that appeals to your target audience is key to boosting your online presence and generating more business from online marketing. Your website should be unique to your business and speak directly to your ideal clients. Using keywords throughout your website pages, you can optimize it for local search and be found online easily. There are a ton of low cost, easy to use website building templates out there for business owners that you can do yourself! Or, make it easy on yourself and focus on what you do best and delegate the website building task to a freelance website designer or agency.
Many business owners struggle with website creation because they don’t have a clear marketing plan. It’s easy to get caught up in trying to make your website absolutely perfect and spend too much time working through tiny details or building out 100s of pages. Streamline this effort by focusing in on your ideal client and the most profitable service you can offer for them. Start by building your website with that mindset and focus your efforts on optimizing it for search keywords that will help you get found by those ideal clients, for that ideal offer. From there, you can use your marketing plan to continue building your website and creating content that provides value and promotes your business in a clear, concise way.
Key Points & Takeaway:
- Building an online presence for your business can start with 4 key elements – email, social, reviews & website.
- Your email list is the best online marketing tool you have to use right now!
- Create a Facebook Business Page and have your clients, family and friends like the page. Make sure your page is complete and optimize, post regularly, and engage with your followers.
- Generate more online reviews and rank higher locally by asking customers to review you on Google.
- Create a website for your business that is focused on your ideal client and your best offerings. Don’t try to be everything to everyone!