If you are in business today, you know the value and importance of having an online presence. As a business owner, you can often feel overwhelmed when trying to explore the most suitable online opportunities, so to help you out, here's a few tips to get you started.
1. Mobile responsive website:
In New Zealand, there's still a great number of small businesses who don't have a website or if they do, the website is outdated and not mobile device friendly. Websites that are mobile friendly render their content in a manner that is easily readable for smart phones or tablets. These websites also include similar features found in a standard website, such as navigation, search options and share functions.
If you have an existing website, check to see that it is mobile friendly and that it views well on a smartphone and tablet. If not, it would be a good time to think about updating or creating a new website. You can easily check to see if you are already compliant with the new guidelines by checking out this free tool offered by Google.
If you don't have a website - you definitely should consider getting one. If looking at developing a new or updating your website, make sure you factor in mobile optimisation, site speed, and overall usability in to your planning.
2. Local SEO:
It’s pretty safe to say that most Internet users search for local businesses online. Local SEO (search engine optimisation) helps you attract customers who perform searches for a particular location, such as “marketing in Nelson”. By optimising your site for local queries, you are helping customers discover your business and your services.
The best ways to boost your local SEO are:
- Verify your Google My Business listing or create a listing if one isn't there: Google My Business connects your business with customers. Once you verify your page you can update your name, address and phone, add the right categories for your business and a relevant description. This helps customers find more information about your business, increasing the chances of attracting more visits. Make sure you optimise your listing with your logo and images too.
- Embed a Google Map in your website: A Google Map that links to the Google Business listing allows your business to offer all the required information to its customers.
- Use local keywords to optimise meta tags and page content: Optimise your website for local search results by ensuring you add the city, town and/or region in the title tag and the meta description.
- Use consistent contact information across your online profiles: It is important for every business to maintain a consistency on its contact information on every online source, from its site, to its social networks, Google Business Listing and other online directories.
3. Take advantage of customer reviews:
An important part of consumers’ purchasing decisions are online reviews. They will trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. The more reviews a business has, the higher the chances of earning trust among new customers.
As a small business, you should encourage reviews, whether it be for your website or posted on your social networks, such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Google. Social media platforms can be the hardest to control, however even the negative reviews can be helpful and every business should embrace them, building a trusting relationship with the prospective customers, while working towards improving its performance and processes.
4. Understand and communicate with your customers:
As a business owner, it’s important to understand your audience. The key to a good online presence is to pay attention to your customers and listen to their needs. By showing how you can help them, you will build a meaningful relationship with not only your existing customer base, but also prospective customers.
If you are a business owner who is feeling too daunted by any of these steps, we can help! We’ll assist you in creating an effective web presence in order to reach those potential customers. So why not give us a call today.