Internet marketing can make or break your business. From email campaigns to social media content, online marketing is both competitive and technical. While the Internet increases the possibility of reaching a global audience, it can be a difficult path to navigate. According to Jared Hecht with the Huffington Post, “Online marketing is crucial to a retailer’s success. Social media marketing and a strong, user-friendly web presence help your company reach a wide audience for your products. But many small business owners lack the experience or time to run effective marketing campaigns online.”
So, how can your business get ahead of the curve and capture your online audience’s attention?
Optimize Your Website
Internet search giant, Google, continually changes its algorithm for search engine optimization (SEO), meaning the traffic to your site may be reduced if your business doesn’t keep up with the changes. One way to make Google’s SEO algorithm work for your business is to invest in a mobile-friendly web site with responsive design. Doing so will bump your site to the top of the search results for all users, according to Entrepreneur.
GoDaddy and Alignable recently surveyed more than 100,000 small business owners to learn about barriers that separate businesses from growth. The survey revealed that 51 percent of small business owners hire a web designer to build their website. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to get a great website, however. If you want to get a mobile-friendly site up and running without much investment, join the additional 25 percent of survey respondents who use a website builder, like WordPress or Wix.com, and do it yourself.
Become a Social Media Master
It’s no secret that having a strong social media presence is essential for your business. In fact, according to AdWeek, 74 percent of consumers rely on social media to influence their purchasing decisions, and 81 percent of consumers are influenced by their friends’ posts when making purchasing decisions. Additionally, 78 percent of consumers who receive a quick brand response on social media are likely to recommend that brand.
Websites like HubSpot and Lynda.com offer courses and training opportunities aimed at helping business owners learn the ins and outs of social media in order to create effective online marketing campaigns. Additionally, Facebook offers Facebook Business, an online training program designed to help you make the most of the platform’s tools. Once you’ve learned the basics, try a site like HootSuite, which allows you to manage multiple social networks simultaneously.
Embrace Email and Blogging
Consumers prefer to communicate with businesses through email, according to GoDaddy. And, they want trust in that communication. If your business email address doesn’t reflect your company’s name, consider upgrading to a business-level account. In an article for Entrepreneur, Firas Kittaneh found that email marketing drives 20 times more return on investment than banner ads, and has a higher conversation rate than Facebook and Twitter. Luckily, email marketing doesn’t have to be difficult. With services like List Builder and MailChimp, you can easily take your email efforts to the next level.
Blogging is another popular way to reach potential customers or clients. Hubspot reports that B2B marketers who use blogs receive 67 percent more leads, and marketers who prioritize blogging are 13 times more likely to see positive return on investment. The good news is that creating and maintaining a blog is easier than ever before. Websites like WordPress and BlogSpot make it simple to create and schedule blog posts that will draw traffic to your website.
As technology continues to adapt and grow, it’s essential to engage your online audience before they move on to your competitors. From learning more about popular social media platforms to creating a website with responsive design, there are several steps your business can take to overcome online obstacles that may be holding you back.