The internet has made the world a smaller space and, in doing so, has also created a generation that expects instant information at their fingertips. Gone are the days when small businesses and family-owned stores can rely on passing trade alone.
It’s a given that these days the first thing a person does when looking for a store or business to help them with a specific need, they will search for this online. Here are five ways to get your local small business noticed online.
Your business will never gain online traffic if you don’t have a website. Your website needs to load quickly, be informative and easy to navigate. The location of your business, the GPS coordinates and preferably Google Maps that shows how far your store is from the person’s location is very important.
Your business operation timings, contact information related to phone, email and physical store/office, payment facilities and other services like online ordering and shipping time need to be mentioned clearly on the website. Including an online catalog helps potential clients browse your store and do their product research. This is very important as these days, people “shop” online before they physically go to a store or business location.
Search Engine Optimization is possibly the most important tool to master when trying to get your business noticed online. SEO refers to the process of growing the quality and quantity of website traffic. The more traffic your website has, the more eyeballs you have on your product and services that your business offers.
Gaining a good understanding of how SEO works will help you understand why it is so important for Google search ranking. The higher your website is ranked in a search, the more likely you are to get people clicking on your link. Check out some of the best online SEO courses on SEO for Growth website.
Once you have an existing and loyal client base setting up a mailing service is a great way to maintain customer relationships. Give your clients the option of being notified of sales, promotions and special offers via email or text message. How you implement this strategy is key, though; the last thing you want is for your client base to feel that you are spamming them.
Setting up a loyalty program is also a great way to optimize your online presence; this can include offering a discount to those customers or clients who order products or services from you via your website. This will keep traffic heading to your website and maintain your SEO.
People spend so much time online and the majority of that time is spent on social media. Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest provide a wide audience. A solid social media presence will help you gain followers. The more followers you have, the more the SEO is boosted.
But that’s not the only thing; the more followers you have, the more reach you have through “likes” and “shares.” Social media platforms are also a non-invasive/non-spamming way to keep your client base and followers updated on promotions, new products and events that your business has available.
There’s no point going to all the effort of creating an online presence if you don’t keep it updated and current. Things change constantly and if the information available to potential or existing clients online is not accurate, you will lose business. Make sure you update your website monthly.
Daily or weekly posts on your social media platforms are necessary to keep your presence higher up on news feeds. Information and strategies change and evolve constantly so make sure you keep your finger on the pulse of SEO practices; it will be useful to take refresher courses regularly.
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