07.07.2017, Business Strategy
Given the economic climate, for any business intending to grow to its maximum potential, there is no shying away for exploring the online space. In fact, as a small business owner what is important and critical for you to understand is that optimizing your business on the web is no longer a choice that you can contemplate making or not making. It’s actually a necessity and a reasonable amount of time and resources need to be diverted for this.
The big question however is- how do you get the best returns on your investment and what is it that you can do to make sure you are leaving no stone unturned when it comes to finding new ways of growing your business online?
Here is a best practices guide to help you navigate this space effectively:
The first step for you is to evaluate your online presence. What we really mean by this is that “being online” can mean number of things. A lot of people confuse online with just social media. Do not make that mistake. Your online presence quite literally consists of a combined effect of all the different avenues available to you. This usually consists of your website, all the social media handles that you are on and tools like email marketing that you can employ. A complete overview of your online presence and an in-depth strategy on how the different platforms are going to be connected to each other is a must.
With over 300 million people in India accessing the internet via their mobile phone, you need to make sure that your mobile strategy is well thought out. For this to happen, your site needs to be mobile savvy and you need to work on that. Invest in building a mobile site that is nicely accessible on smartphones and also rich in content. Search engines consider mobile friendliness as an important factor when they rank your site. It is important to keep this in mind as, if you are not able to do this, you will lose online visibility and this will affect your online growth immensely.
We cannot emphasize this point enough. Using social media for business can be tricky but if played well can reap very high rewards. Remember, you can use your social media handles as the voice of your business. Whatever you want to convey about your business, your products and services can be done via these platforms. You can use these handles to talk to your customers and this will keep them engaged. In addition, your customers will get to understand your brand better and this usually leads to a more personal connect and builds loyalty. One way to sustain this engagement is to remember that your handles should not become cluttered with information just about your business and promotions. Create a content calendar that has space for sharing information about the industry, storytelling and giving your followers a chance to interact with you and your business directly. Focus on authentic and creative ways to hook your followers.
In the present web scenario, there is no running away for online marketing. Most platforms expect you to invest some money in online advertising and it’s only with that that they will give you the outreach that you desire. The good news however is that if you are able to invest smartly, you can get very good returns on this money and you’re the visibility of your business can really grow online. For this to happen you need to make sure that target audience is chosen well, the posts that you are going to promote are picked after some research and thinking and also make the best of what each platform has to offer in terms of advertising. Other than this, regular SEO for your website is a must and reaching out to customers and keeping them informed consistently via e-mailers is very important.
While it doesn’t end with these four, given the expanse of the web, even investing and getting these right as basics can help kick-start online growth, something that can then be built on consistently.
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