Why your online presence is vital for business growth

by Klaus on March 16, 2018

in Articles

Like it or not, the way in which we currently conduct and grow a business is changing fast. Gone are the days of door-to-door salespeople, billboards, and even television advertising, as in today’s increasingly digitalized world you need to get online to be seen and make a scene. No matter the market in which your business operates, or even how many years since you have launched your venture, if you want to see your business grow and reap the rewards, then you need to make sure that you have a firm and established presence online. So, if you have been putting off that website refresh project for a short while now, then it may be time to have a rethink.

The Internet is a free and essential resource for any business. Consumers and potential clients are much less likely to call your firm up, or even ask for a brochure to be sent out in the mail. Now, you can tap into the perks of online digital marketing, e-blasts and even set up campaigns all from your office, without even having to speak to another individual – unless you want to! The way that people consume information is changing, and so you need to make sure that you tailor your business plans and requirements to do so too. A few years ago you might have thought that social media, blogs, and even video content were a waste of company time and budget. However, you may now need to rethink how you spend your annual budget, as these are all key tools that will enable you to grow your online presence and help to position your firm in a positive light, helping you stand out from your competitors.

Luckily, if you are short on both time and resources, you can still find ways to easily keep your online presence updated and relevant, meaning that you can target potential customers and still keep engaged with your long-standing consumers and clients. First, you will need to consider starting a monthly editorial calendar to enable you to get planning and preparing. Begin by keeping tabs on relevant international events, trade shows and even news items that you think are worth sharing with your online followers. Next, consider any relevant international days or holidays that you want to highlight – maybe you are running a flash sale, or perhaps your products are designed for a particular demographic that you can tap into. If you want to improve your online presence, then you will need to start getting more organized. Even if this sounds like a lot of effort, in the long term, you will be able to reap the rewards. So start scanning the headlines and get ready to think outside of the box, to ensure that your business presence booms online.

Create copy

Writing and using persuasive and relevant copy on your company website, social channels and blog can be a tall order, in particular, if your marketing team are still in the dark ages, and have previously only written for print media. Don’t worry, as writing for the web is not as complex as you might think. Begin by coming up with a relevant and snappy headline to engage and attract users to your website or page. Remember that this headline will also be included in your page URL too, so it is important that it is not too long or complex. Unlike writing for print media, when you are writing for the web, you can use shorter sentences and less complex vocabulary also. The idea is that you keep visitors on your page rather than scaring them off with the first paragraph. Feel free to break up lengthy text with relevant imagery and videos, as this will ensure that users spend longer on your page, rather than bouncing off during the first few seconds. Finally, make sure that any copy you create has something of an evergreen value, which means you can chop, change and re-use it time and time again, without losing any of the initial value. Not only does this reduce your workload, but it also ensures that you can continue to drive more traffic to your website over the coming days and months.

Use videos

The way that website users consume information is changing fast, and video is now one of the top tools to share important company messages or information about a new product line, rather than by creating a long-form article. Video content is shaping the way that the Internet operates, with users consuming all kinds of information, from Youtube clips to news broadcasts and even Instagram feeds via videos, either on mobile or desktop devices whenever they feel like it. Keep this in mind when you are producing video content for your website and social media channels. A video is a powerful tool, so it is vital that you treat it with the respect that it deserves. When dreaming up any video ideas consider that you need to keep your content short and relevant. Any videos over three minutes risk being too long and you could even lose followers rather than gain new ones. Next, consider keeping costs down by creating videos in-house. All you need is a tablet or smartphone and a willing employee to help you to film engaging content that takes a matter of minutes to edit and upload. Finally, consider which channels your video will work best on; are you planning to launch a video campaign on social media or perhaps you want to create new video content for your website. You will need to plan and prepare accordingly, so be sure to film enough content to enable you to chop and change where needed.

Consider your user experience

No matter who uses your corporate website or follows you on social media, it is crucial that you consider how the experience is for every user when you are creating online content. When it comes to your company website, you will want to make sure that your site is fully mobile responsive, so that users can access information and engage with your company while on the go. If you are keen to find out more about responsive web design, then read more here. Next, make sure that you complete testing to check just how easy your site is to navigate. If you cannot find information quickly and easily, then the chances are that your users will be unable to either. So, make sure that you consider this vital step if you are planning to make changes to your site. Finally, consider your sitemap. If you do not have an easy to navigate website, then you are seriously impacting your overall user experience. So, if you want to build on your online presence, then you should place your users at the top of your list of considerations.

Use social media

If you thought that social media was purely for millennials and teenagers, then think again! If you want to be a successful online business, then it is vital that you make good use of social media channels to grow your follower base and increase traffic to all of your online sites. Your social media plan should marry up with your website content planning too, meaning that you can repurpose and change content to use uniformly across your entire digital channels. When deciding which social media platforms work best for you, consider your business needs first. Are you trying to showcase products? Perhaps you are looking to grow your online community? Or maybe you are currently going through a recruitment drive? Once you have decided, it is time to ensure that you use your company branding effectively and consistently across all of your channels. From LinkedIn to Twitter and even Instagram, make sure that you complete this step, to boost your overall online presence. Messy branding reflects poorly on your business. Finally, make sure that you post regularly and engage with comments and criticisms. If you fail to do so, then you risk losing followers and even receiving even more negative responses. Little and often is the key to ensuring that you make the most of social media while growing your business presence.

For many firms, launching a new company website is enough when it comes to their current digital plan. However, the reality is that if you want to grow your online business presence, then you need to make sure that you get organized and start planning weeks in advance. Be sure to write regular and relevant content for your blog or corporate website. Be sure to consider using videos as a tool to share information and increase interest. Make sure that you review your user experience, to ensure that your site is easy to use and the information is displayed correctly. Finally, make sure that you use social media to drive traffic to your website and engage with your online followers. Once you have begun to build your online presence, remember to ensure that you regularly review all of your channels to ensure that you are keeping up the positive results.

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