The 5 Most Important Factors of an Online Business Environment

The growth of mobile shopping and social media has changed the way we interact and do business online. Today, a company’s online business environment is more important than ever before. The way companies interact with customers on social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram is drastically different from how they did business in the past. Additionally, with more people shopping on mobile devices than on personal computers, online businesses that are optimized for mobile access and engagement will experience the greatest growth and success.

1. Mobile-First Indexing

In today’s digital world, there is truly no “offline” business. Customers demand and expect access to information and engagement with businesses wherever and whenever they want it. To remain competitive, businesses must provide these capabilities while also meeting customer expectations for seamless and frictionless interactions.

This is exactly what mobile-first indexing is all about. Essentially, mobile-first indexing is the process of optimizing a website, app, or digital marketing strategy for mobile searches first, and then transitioning the content and functionality to meet the needs of users on smaller devices (e.g., tablets and laptops). When performing mobile-first indexing, content will be structured in a way that is consistent with how people find information on mobile devices.

2. Personalised, User-Focused Content

Customers expect to interact with businesses in a way that is both unique and valuable. To ensure they get the best possible experience from a brand or business, content should be personalized and focused on addressing their needs and questions. Additionally, since everyone views content differently, the idea is to provide content that appeals to the individual user. For example, if someone lands on your website after performing a search on their mobile device, you want to make sure the content on that page is both relevant and appealing to them as a person.

3. Relevant & Engaging Content

Today, consumers expect to find useful, interesting, and/or entertaining content whenever and wherever they want it. To ensure your content is always relevant and engaging, you must take into consideration the following:

  • Peer groups
  • Genre
  • Subject matter expertise
  • Timing
  • Competitors
  • Word of mouth
  • Customer type (e.g., buyer, lead, or existing customer)
  • Device (e.g., mobile, tablet, or laptop)
  • Market size (e.g., niche, micro-niche, or mainstream)

You also want to make sure that the content you create is easy to find and accessible. To that end, you should:

  • Create short- and long-term content plans
  • Use keywords in your content
  • Make sure your writing is error-free
  • Use headings effectively
  • Interlink your content
  • Organize your content hierarchically
  • Use visual aids, such as infographics and charts
  • Test your content:
    • Get feedback on your content from customers
    • Use tools like Google Analytics and Hootsuite to get feedback on your content
    • Ask for feedback on your content from people outside of your company
    • Listen to what your customers say about your business, products, and services
    • Try new things, but avoid sudden changes
    • If you are going to make a change, discuss it with your employees first

    4. User-friendly Navigation

    Customers expect to quickly and easily navigate to the content and functionality they want. To achieve this, you must ensure that every page on your site is easy to find and accessible. You should put yourself in the customer’s shoes and think about what would make this process simple and enjoyable. Additionally, you should use clear and concise language, and avoid using too many words. For example, if someone is looking for information about your company, products, or services, they probably aren’t thinking about the intricacies of accounting. They are simply looking for what they need: information about your company, products, or services.

    5. Responsive Design

    To remain competitive, businesses must continue to adapt to changing customer expectations and the digital world around them. In today’s world, customers expect to interact with brands and businesses through multiple devices and platforms. In order to meet these demands, your website must be designed to look and function the way customers want it to on any device. With that in mind, you should work to ensure that your website is mobile-friendly, and that the layout fits all devices.

    For example, if you are selling custom products, such as logo shirts, and you want customers to be able to view your products and place orders easily on mobile devices, you will want to take advantage of mobile-friendly, responsive design.

    To create a high-quality, mobile-friendly website or app, you must take the time to understand how people use websites and what would make them happy. Additionally, you must consider how different platforms, such as mobile browsers and tablets, work in terms of interacting with content.