Let me support your sanity and conserve your resources by clarifying and streamlining what is the best of the best you need to know to build your business online.
It’s my passion to see each client move to the cutting edge, harnessing the power of your website content & design, search engine optimization (SEO) and online marketing including social for real growth.
Today, I am writing for the non-enthusiast to clarify the meanings of a few of the tech buzz words and translate into how it increases your effectiveness, saves your money and makes you thrive.
Your Website Content & Design
The website is the point of sale. It is the place where you make your impression.
Like a handshake and a conversation may lead to a long term business relationship when you are dressed, ready to engage, tell your most dynamic stories and present your best capabilities up front. A good first impression is gold. Opens the door for opportunity, quality delivery and the all powerful word of mouth review!
In the digital environment, what first impressions do you convey on your website?
The experience you deliver a user on your site sends a message about what experience you will deliver in a client relationship.
The keys to remember are the same as in person impressions – be freshly dressed, engage with your most dynamic stories and present your best capabilities up front. Here is how:
- Mobile Friendly This characteristic of your website has recently (and will continue to) become increasingly significant. A conservative estimate is over 60% of online searches are conducted on mobile devices. Your potential clients are seeking solutions on the move. They pick up the device at their disposal to find an answer. Many of your business websites no longer rank in mobile searches, and you may not know it. You want to be in the running. To do that, step one is to ensure your website is mobile friendly, which is to say it responds to change size to fit the screens of tablets and smart phones.
- Clean, Modern Design You have less than 7 seconds to make that impression, engage your user, and become the option for their solution. In an instant, your user will either bounce away, or continue to explore further. Ensure you present your clear, clean and concise answer up front.
- Unique Quality Content Selling has changed. Potential clients won’t buy into a gimmick or sales pitch. But they do want to engage relevant, interesting and useful information. This is a huge opportunity to establish your business credibility and build long term client relationships. Develop a content marketing strategy to inform and educate – with both quality and quantity of unique relevant and interesting content. Leverage the power of publishing on a blog, broadcast this to social media platforms, provide an opportunity for conversations, and engage to build your loyal client base.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Keywords, keywords, keywords! SEO has become one of the most important components of marketing. Have you wondered how to grow traffic to your website? This is how – improve the rank of your site in search engines.
People are, at all times, looking for solutions. You want every chance to be their solution now you will make a great impression. To be in the running, you have got to get that website to naturally rank well.
Search engine optimization will improve the rank of your site in search engines. You rank highly, those seeking a solution find your site, and you have the chance to be their solution. The ways this is done has evolved. Here is how:
- Choose Your Keywords These are words that clients type into search engines when looking for a solution. The first step – establish which keywords clients use to find your solution. Be specific, and increasingly, take advantage of long phrases.
- Check your Content Next, look for the keywords in your content. The language on your website must be rich in the best words reflecting your products and services to improve your rank. Remain authentic as you ensure your language is edited to highlight your keywords.
- Pump up the Volume Keywords can be featured in the URL, title, description and the body text. This will link organic searches using these keywords directly to the pages of your website. The result – increased visibility directly to the people seeking a solution, and you are there! That is powerful.
Online marketing is a funny word, and a lot of discussion still surrounds its use and parameters. It can be argued the quality unique content on your website can be called online marketing. Also, activities of SEO have been categorized as online marketing. These activities originate from and are conducted in digital real estate that you own — your website. As such, for our uses, I will draw a bright line between these activities and online marketing, which I define as activities to expand the influence of your business from your website through all the avenues in the digital environment.
I’m not an advocate of online advertisement as a general proposition, I am sufficiently unconvinced of the effectiveness of banner ads (I feel most users find them annoying) and although it is a popular and often used component of online marketing, I’ll reserve the space in this article for a few strategies I find more useful:
- Social Marketing I get more questions about this than anything else. Lots of businesses feel they should do more social media. I caution that may be, but do so strategically. What I do not want to see is clients spend time, energy and financial resources to end up driving traffic away from their website — the place where they make their impressions and the point of sale — towards social sites. Rather, to harness the power of social to grow your business, engage and inform potential clients towards your website. To do this well varies by business and by platform. It’s truly a case by case scenario. The good news is this can be done in a streamlined, coordinated and planned fashion. Your unique, interesting and useful content will be shared and further increase your influence, credibility and loyal following. On some platforms this is augmented by sharing the relevant content of others.
- Google AdWords Google AdWords allows you as a paid advertiser to compete to display links to content on your site. Your AdWords budget can be set to your preference and this ranking strategy can give your company quick visibility and a competitive edge.
- Email Marketing It surprises me, I filter out my overtaxed inboxes and only check promotional emails on the rare occasion I’m looking for something — but email marketing remains one of the more efficient ways of generating revenue. Apparently there are many people that read all their emails! Email marketing serves as an effective method to keep your clients engaged. Special promotions can be sent to segmented groups of users. In this, your most valuable asset are well kept email lists of current, past and potential clients.