It’s critical for small-businesses to be visible and effective on the internet.  About 75% of adults are online to research, shop and find services – even local ones.  Big companies recognize this as an invaluable means to tap into sales, increase revenue, steer corporate image and manage information.  Where does that leave the “little guy” in business?  Many times the small business owner is left wondering how to compete when they don’t have huge national budgets or a big marketing department.

It’s ok.  We demystify this everyday.  If you’re just getting started online, or your refreshing your online presence and strategy.  Here are a few of the basics you should have covered.

  1. Launch a website.
    Believe it or not, we still meet business owners who are hesitant to take the plunge. But for consumers, having a website is about like having a phone number.  They are looking online.  They’re searching (Googling) for local services and if you’re not there, you’re not called.  So get your website launched.  If you’re revamping an old site, get it re-launched ASAP!
  2. Make it clear and relevant.
    Websites don’t have to be expensive to be engaging and increase sales.  Make it attractive and easy to navigate.  Offer good, relevant information your customers are looking for.  Include a clear call to action. If you’re revamping, ask your customers what works and what doesn’t on your old site.  Find out what they’d really like your website to to.  You can read up on best practices or hire a qualified developer for help.
  3. Don’t sell stale bread.
    Nothing beats the aroma or taste of fresh bread – taken right out of the oven.  Offer your customers content that’s “fresh from the oven” and up-to-date. Make a recurring date with your website and put it on your calendar. Or delegate the task of updates.  Assign a staff member or virtual assistant to help with content creation periodically.  Update calendars, events, articles, galleries.  Keep it coming on a regular basis.  No one want’s to ask for fresh bread and get a crouton.
  4. Do the Tango!
    Establish a rhythm between your company and website.  Put your web address everywhere you put your phone number.  Offer special online offers to pull clients to your site and increase sales.  Include links to key pages and offers in your emails and ads.  Develop a plan for the two to work in harmony.  They need eachother.
  5. Email instead of “Snail-Mail”: Conversion rates are higher and costs are lower for email marketing than traditional outreach marketing.  There’s a place for both, but generally speaking, “send” is better than “stamp.”  Utilize a low-cost third party email system to ensure Can-SPAM Act compliance, higher delivery rates, and reduce blacklisting.  Most start as low as $10-$15/month.
  6. Get Your Toes Wet in the Social Scene. Social media is undeniably a place to venture for visibility and profits.  Automate your efforts through a social media management services or software.  This will reduce the amount of time required to build an audience and stay in contact with them.

Your business can be more successful online.  Start advancing today!

For help with fresh website design and content planning, call us at 910-938-4319 or get a Free Quote.





Cindy is the founding President at 17blue Digital Marketing. She's passionate about helping businesses reach their goals and impact their communities.