Most businesses, no matter what industry, will agree that having a strong online presence is critical for their success. Even brick and mortar stores rely on their websites to attract potential customers and to keep existing customers engaged with the brand. To put it bluntly, being online is now the norm, and ignoring the marketing opportunities that exist online can seriously damage your business.
With that in mind, it’s probably no surprise that a significant number of small businesses choose to pursue an online presence. The convenience of having a business that operates solely online is appealing; you can set your own hours, you reach a massive audience, and you can avoid all the hassles that come with running a physical store. If you’re wondering what kind of business can succeed with only minimal investment, you’ve come to the right place. Let’s take a look at how an online marketing strategy can help your business thrive.
Why Should Small Businesses Care About Online Marketing?
If you’re reading this article, I assume that you’re already engaged in some sort of online marketing. Noticing a trend, huh? Regardless, it’s important to understand why this is such a beneficial strategy for your business. Here are just a few reasons why.
1. Growing Your Audience.
It’s no secret that audiences across social media channels continue to evolve and change at an ever-quickening pace. When you have a strong online presence, you ensure that your content is always available to your ideal customer. With nearly everyone having a smartphone, business owners can promote their products and services at the touch of a button. If your customers can’t find you online, they may never find you in the physical world either.
2. Attracting The Right Customers.
When someone decides to buy a product or service from your business, the first thing they’ll do is research the options online. With so much information available at the tips of their fingers, potential customers have an easier time finding your website or social media channels than your physical storefront. When someone finds your website while performing a search, the first thing they’ll see is your content. Depending on your niche, you may also see pages and pages of content that align perfectly with their needs and interests. From there, they may click over to your shop to make a purchase or continue their research into other products or services that may be of interest to them.
3. Boosting Your SEO.
If your business is looking to improve its search engine optimization (SEO), you can take advantage of the fact that most people search for products and services online before making a purchase. Having a strong social media presence can help boost your SEO and increase your traffic. The more engagement you have on social media, the more likely it is that your business will show up in a relevant search result.
4. Creating Brand Consistency.
One of the major mistakes that many businesses make is trying to have one identity across all platforms. In today’s world, people can research your products and services online before purchasing and interacting with you on social media. Having brand consistency is extremely important in today’s world of digital marketing, where consumers have the power to research your product and find your competitors at the click of a button. Having a strong and consistent brand identity on social media is crucial in today’s world of digital marketing. Create content that is applicable to various platforms and devices, and make sure that your brand’s voice and language are always represented online.
How Can I Build An Online Marketing Strategy For My Business?
If you’re completely new to the online marketing game, the first thing you may want to do is assess your current situation. First, what platforms do you typically use to reach customers? Twitter, Facebook, Google+, YouTube, and Linkedin are some great places to start. As mentioned above, having a strong social media presence can help with SEO, so be sure to include these platforms in your content strategy.
Next, consider assessing the size of your audience. Look at the demographics, psychographics, and digital behavior of your current audience, and compare this to the demographics, psychographics, and digital behavior of your target audience. For example, if you’re selling mugs, you’ll want to create content that speaks to male millennials in the United States. Once you’ve identified your target audience, you can develop an online marketing strategy that is specifically tailored to appeal to them. For example, if you want to sell mugs to adult women between the ages of 25 and 44, you may want to create Facebook content that is specifically for that audience. This can help you identify the type of content that will be most effective in reaching your target audience and encouraging them to engage with your business.
The Importance Of Offline Marketing
While the internet allows for instant connection with potential customers across the globe, there are still numerous benefits to having an offline presence. In today’s world, people are more inclined to get most of their information from physical books and newspapers rather than from digital searches on their smartphones. This goes to show how much the attention of people may travel across media platforms, even when the platforms are separate.
You may find that people who discover your business on social media will also come across your website or other content in online directories and publications. Seeing as most people discover products and services online before purchasing them, having a strong offline presence, through various marketing methods, can still attract potential customers who may never have heard of your company. In today’s world, the importance of offline marketing can’t be stressed enough.
Although online marketing can prove to be extremely beneficial for your business, you must be careful not to rely solely on digital marketing tactics. Being present online is essential, but so is being present offline. In today’s world, people expect to discover a business online before purchasing from them, so having a strong physical location, with a kiosk or staffed by people ready to take in business, can help gain trust and grow a following. Finally, make sure to assess your current situation and the landscape of your business’ target audience before launching into an online marketing plan. Identifying your target audience and creating content that speaks to them is the best way to ensure that your strategy is effective and successful.