INDUSTRY NEWS & INSIGHTS
By James Bullis | October 5, 2021
Your 12-Month Guide to Maintaining an Online Presence
Do you seek to increase your business’ bottom line without breaking a sweat or purging your purse? Then it is high time you built a strong online presence. Yes, you must make your business visible!
In the modern-day business world, a brick-and-mortar setup can only earn you so much revenue. Thus, you must establish ways to find and serve a wider customer base without hurting your profits. In this light, finding customers online is your ace in the hole.
Creating a website is among the first steps to acquiring customers online. If your company isn’t on Google’s first page, your online presence will not be felt. Most, if not all, web surfers never actually move over to the next page. Now that should get you concerned if your site is on page 10.
As a matter of fact, it’s vital to have an online presence to boost your odds of being discovered, generate trust, and grow your reputation. But what exactly is an online presence?
Just for your reference, building an internet presence does not happen quickly; instead, it is a long-term game that might take anywhere from six months to several years, depending on your ambitions.
Read on to learn about the key steps to maintaining an online presence.
The Value of Building and Maintaining a Strong Online Presence
The perks of having a strong online presence include but are not limited to:
- Ease of Attracting Potential Prospects: Your prospects are likely to search online for the products or services you offer. To beat your competition and become visible to a larger audience, you must create and maintain a strong online presence.
- Effective Marketing: Appearing top on the search engine results pages makes you visible without involving sales agents. Thus, the customers buy your services at their own will. This eases your marketing endeavors while driving sales without breaking the bank.
- Improved Customer Relations: Having an online site and social media platforms allows you to gauge your customers’ reviews and comments. This way, you can respond to the unhappy client to amend the situation before it grows out of hand. In turn, this shows your other customers that you care about their satisfaction.
- Ability to Indicate and Track Your Progress: With an online presence, you can keep track of metrics to establish which digital strategies are working and which are futile. For instance, you can derive meaningful insights by analyzing the number of visits, visibility of posts, and engagement rate.
Steps to Maintain Your Online Presence
Below are the steps to building and maintaining a strong online presence within 12 months:
Start With a Website
Almost every piece of advice on how to boost your internet presence includes creating a website. That’s because your website is the online equivalent of your physical business – it’s your digital address. It is the location where consumers locate your company online, whether you sell offline or online.
The first step to increasing your company’s online visibility is to develop an official business website. Ensure your pages load quickly, your pictures are optimized, and your site is responsive. Have fun with your site while being professional; use fonts, colors, text, video, and photos appropriate for your business. Having meaningful content that addresses the buyer’s needs is a huge takeaway. But remember that to construct an eye-catching, search-engine-optimized, professional site, you may utilize a content management system or engage a web design firm.
Think About Engaging Your Audience, Not Just Followers
An increase in the number of followers does not boost your online visibility. Instead, a more significant presence increases your following. So, focus on developing a high-quality audience of people interested in and can profit from what you have to offer. This will result in more likes and comments on your articles and encourage the creation of user-generated material. And, in case you didn’t know, marketing initiatives featuring user-generated content have a 29 percent greater conversion rate than those without it.
It’s preferable to have fewer followers with an active and lively page than many followers but little value to provide. Remember, social media success is measured in engagement and not just followers. Thus, for your audience to connect with your brand, you must prioritize quality over quantity.
Imagine throwing a party, and yes, a crowd shows up, but everyone sits silently, no talking or dancing. Was that party successful?
Just like a lively party, you need optimal shares, comments, likes, reviews, click-throughs, and branded hashtags to generate leads effectively.
Create an Email List
Don’t overlook the value of keeping a customers’ email list. Leveraging a customers’ email list is a great way to boost your existing online presence. Using an email list, you can contact existing and prospective clients regularly.
You can grow your email list easily by producing gated content that requires readers to enter their respective email addresses to access the content. You can also increase your email list affordably by placing a call-to-action on your site and social media handles. Just for reference, a newsletter helps you gather email addresses from prospects while proving that your material is interesting to them.
Create an email collection form and CTAs using an adept content management system. HubSpot, for example, offers an email marketing tool and an online form builder at no cost to help you increase your email list. MailChimp, on the other hand, will get the job done.
Execute an SEO Strategy
Search Engine Optimization, or SEO for short, is a key strategy to boost your internet presence. This digital marketing technique seeks to boost your exposure in search results, like those provided by Google or Bing. If your firm, for example, offers hiking boots, you want your website to show up when someone searches “hiking boots” on Google or another search engine.
With SEO, you can optimize your site to appear top in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).
Optimized online visibility is crucial since most visitors (about 75 percent) stay on the first page of search results, with the top three results receiving 75 percent of traffic. If your organization isn’t in the top three, you’ll get far fewer visitors, leads, and revenue.
SEO optimization is divided into two:
- On-Site SEO: Optimizes the features of a web page to rank better in search engines and generate more relevant traffic. Enhanced on-site SEO helps search engines understand what humans view and the value they would derive from visiting a website. To master on-site SEO, small company owners must ensure that their HTML source code is well-formed and that all aspects of the site are optimized for performance.
- Off-Site SEO: Refers to measures conducted outside of your website that have an impact on your SERP rankings. Off-site ranking optimization includes increasing search engine and user impression of a company site’s popularity, relevance, trustworthiness, and authority. Encourage other related pages, sites, and individuals to link to and promote your website to improve your off-site SEO. This phase attests to the high quality of your online material.
Use Platforms You Can Handle
Regarding online presence, quality is superior to quantity. So, choose online business platforms that fit your target audience’s needs and preferences. Advisably, restrict the number of platforms you use based on your bandwidth.
Having only one or two online accounts with high interaction is preferable to having multiple accounts with low activity. Juggle between social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok and settle for one that fits your business goals perfectly.
Social media is a vital aspect of your online presence that can help you generate more income and increase client loyalty easily. It helps consumers, future customers, and other interested parties engage through more relevant and prevalently used communication channels.
The caveat here is that not every social media outlet will be helpful to every business; you should investigate your alternatives. Facebook and Twitter, for example, will serve a role for nearly every business. They are terrific places to publish news, tips, images, and videos and post polls and surveys.
Be Active Online
Do you expect your prospects to find you when your accounts are dull and dormant? Of course not! You must publish compelling content on your site and share it on social media handles frequently.
Engaging in other activities also counts as being active online. For example, you should interact with your social media followers and subscribers. Alternatively, you can join the conversation if there is a topic that everyone in your field is talking about.
Generate Great Content
The more meaningful content you provide your audience, the more online possibilities you will have. Building an online presence entails appearing in search engines, social media platforms, and sites like YouTube.
Before you begin creating content, consider where you want to appear online. Are you interested in appearing on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, Pinterest, or Amazon?
Taking advantage of customer data, establish where your consumers are engaged and create compelling, targeted content for those media. For example, you will need to think of good video ideas on YouTube, but Instagram will require you to think of photo angles and captions.
Research Influencer Marketing
If you want to be involved in your community, here is the rub; you must interact with the most famous figures in your industry.
For example, if you sell fitness equipment, you might borrow a leaf from fitness and workout influencers on Instagram. Many shoppers seek influencers for honest reviews and promotions before purchasing a product. Hence, having an influencer as your marketer will ensure that your business goes viral on the internet by doing everything correctly. The more people talk about your business, the more it goes viral.
Analyze Your Results
Once your company begins implementing varied techniques of increasing online presence, you must evaluate your digital marketing efforts to establish the most effective ones. You can use varied metrics from other websites, like Google, to determine how well your SEO is doing. If you’re establishing a subscriber list, you may set objectives to see if you meet your target and other click-through rates.
Consider Guest Blogging
Guest posting is another under-used but effective way of improving your internet profile. You can fulfill guest blogging in two ways: by permitting guest bloggers on your site or by being a guest blogger for a site comparable to yours. Essentially, this would include supplying content to another site as a guest blogger; this content should link back to you. You can also allow other website owners in your trade to link back to your website.
Guest posting takes many shapes. When you engage with rivals and other influencers, you extend your professional network. Further, you will boost your social media sharing and improve traffic to your various websites. Eventually, you will build a reputation for yourself and your company among your colleagues and clients.
Now, Automate Your Online Visibility Process
Finally, establishing a web presence necessitates several time-consuming strategies. Your online visibility process includes creating posts, uploading videos, scheduling messages, observing analytics, and generating reports.
To guarantee that your business operations will run seamlessly, automate some of your processes like data reporting and email and social media post scheduling. Better yet, you can create your newsletters beforehand and schedule them to be emailed later. Better yet, you can set up email sign-up forms that automatically pop up on your site.
Regardless of the size of your business or the industry you operate in, you should take advantage of the internet’s potential to grow your business. Thus, an excellent online presence is essential for your growth-focused business.
Given its immense potential to promote your brand’s products or services, outbound marketing necessitates a solid online presence. Yet, you need to uphold your top online position because even after engaging your prospects, you’ll need to re-engage them with improved products or services and reduced prices, just to mention a few perks.
Luckily, more investors are acknowledging the value of having a robust online presence in today’s digital economy. A solid internet presence will earn your firm a larger audience. What’s more, you can show your consumers your items and services, generate more leads, and persuade them to visit your official website or actual store location to make a purchase.
In this digital era, you can’t ignore the internet as a requisite business tool. As an added advantage, your online presence will back up your accountability and bolster your solid reputation.
Get in touch with us today to help your business become more visible in no time.
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