One of the most costly things for small businesses is building an online presence. But it is necessary in order to compete in this digital savvy world. The majority of customers are active on the internet. Having a good online presence can make a big difference to your business and marketing campaign. But this is more complex than most small business owners realize. It is more than just building a website and having accounts on all the social media sites. It is about taking your online presence seriously and actively working to stay visible and relevant to your potential customers. For most entrepreneurs the road to a good online presence is a long one, but be sure to avoid these five common mistakes.
– Not Having a Website –
The majority of people today are constantly online and those number are only set to increase as digital technology progresses. Small business owners can’t afford not to have a website. Even if your business has nothing to do with the digital world, it is important to have a functioning website in place. This will help you reach more potential customers and also build stronger offline relationships.
– Not Optimizing for Mobile Devices –
Mobile devices accounted for 49.7 percent of website views according to Statista. This is a high number and that number is projected to go up. It is essential for all small businesses to have a functioning website for the growing number of smartphone users.
The most important tips for mobile websites are:
1.) It should have a loading time of 3 seconds
2.) The eye should be instantly drawn to the key message
3.) It should be easy to navigate
4.) It should have a prominent call to action
Building a social media presence is not an easy task. It takes a lot of time and effort. Building your online presence does not have to mean that you are present on every social media platforms. It is important to engage with people continually on these platforms. This is hard enough to do on one social platform, let alone three or four. On top of that you will have your website, blog and other marketing strategies to manage. That is why it is important to carefully choose which social media outlets to use. Consider what type of audience are on certain platforms and choose what you want to convey to them. It is also key that you have different content for all social media, as you might end up with bored followers.
– Not Implementing SEO –
Most people will search for a local businesses on websites like Google. You can’t ignore SEO if you want to succeed in building a strong online presence. Having good SEO’s can boost your business visibility and provide you with more exposure. In order to boost your SEO you must incorporate keywords into your website content and optimize meta tags. Embedding Google map onto your page or verifying your Google My Business listing are also other ways to gain a better online presence through SEO’s.
– Abandoning it all –
This is a common mistake and it is crucial that small business owners do not do this. Whether it is a stagnant website or a Facebook page that is not monitored, abandoning your efforts to build your business presence online can be detrimental to your image. For instance if a potential customer lands on your Facebook or Twitter page that has been inactive for a while they might think you are no longer in business and might move onto your competitors. Giving up with building an online presence also means missing out on social media conversations relevant to your business and industry. More and more businesses are abandoning their efforts to build a strong online presence only because they can’t see return investment. Not many small business owners realise that this is a long-term process.