5 Keys to Online Marketing for Your Business
Having an online presence is not a luxury, it’s a necessity — regardless of what kind of business you own. With the rise of mobile and wearable devices, the Internet is infiltrating every corner of the world. Consumers expect every business to not only have a website but several social media accounts and a mobile presence. In order to stay relevant in today’s market, you will need to embrace these 5 tips for your business.
1. Make Your Site Mobile Friendly
75 percent of users prefer a mobile-friendly site when browsing on their smartphone or tablet. If a site is not optimized or easy to use, 61 percent of visitors will move on to another site almost immediately. More importantly, Google is now using mobile-friendliness as a major ranking signal for searches that originate on mobile devices. While Google allows for three different methods of mobile optimization, they suggest going with a responsive web design. Unlike a standard desktop site, responsive web design utilizes a flexible grid layout that then fluidly adjusts the image to suit any screen size. Since it uses the same domain, HTML and CSS it not only saves you time but it also helps with your ranking as it is easier for Google’s bots to crawl. But just because a site is responsive doesn’t automatically make it mobile friendly. You should keep in mind the following:
- Page load speed – the faster it loads the more likely you are to retain visitors. 47 percent of web users expect a site to load in under 2 seconds!
- Touch controls – smartphones and tablets can only be operated by touch. While it can have its benefits there are also drawbacks. Small links or difficult to press navigation buttons can negatively impact your visitor’s overall experience.
- Calls to action – mobile users are generally accessing their device on-the-go and want information quickly. Make it easy for them to know what to do with clear calls to action.
2. Be Active on Social Media
Social media is not a time-waster. It has grown to become a very powerful marketing tool for businesses and has changed the relationship between consumers and businesses. Thanks to the rise of social media, consumers expect engagement and immediate responses to their questions or problems. This means that you need to constantly check your accounts. While this might seem time-consuming, it ultimately helps improve your brand image and loyalty. After all, you’re not just marketing your goods and services on these platforms you’re building a community. Another great feature of social media is its ability to tap into word-of-mouth marketing. Social shares, likes and links to your company can net you more interested first-time visitors who will be more likely to convert their first visit.
3. Make Online Checkout Hassle Free
If you’re selling something, you should make it as easy for visitors to make a purchase as possible. Even if you do have an actual store, online shopping is a major source of income for many businesses. It’s expected that worldwide e-commerce revenue will exceed $2 trillion in 2015. Despite this continued growth there is still a 68 percent online shopping cart abandonment rate. Why are shoppers abandoning? There are several reasons:
- Unexpected costs – upon checkout, shoppers are hit with additional fees that they were not informed of beforehand.
- Site crashed or was too slow – 24 percent of consumers cited this as one of the main reasons they left abandoned their carts. The longer your site takes to load, the more people will leave and go to your competitor.
- Process was too long – most of the purchases made online are impulse buys. The longer you make the checkout process, the more time you give your shopper to reconsider the potential purchase.
The best way to improve your checkout experience is to make it as quick as possible. Don’t bombard shoppers with requirements when they first sign up. Make it as hassle-free as possible by just collecting the necessary information.
4. Produce Content
Content remains king, and now there are even more ways you can deliver quality content to visitors. Whether you decide on infographics, articles or videos, your content should offer some kind of value to your audience. What kind of value depends on your overall brand image and target demographic. Content marketing has become the norm for almost every business and for good reason: 61 percent of consumers prefer companies that deliver custom content over those that do not. Besides attracting more people, your content will also help solidify your position as an expert in your niche.
5. Use Email Marketing
No, email marketing is not dead. In fact, it’s stronger than ever. Thanks to smartphones and tablets, people are checking their emails more often, presenting an excellent opportunity for businesses to reach their audience through yet another avenue. Of course, your email will be competing for a viewer’s attention with at least a dozen other businesses. Even still, 44 percent of email recipients made at least one purchase based on a promotional email. In order to catch people’s attention your emails need to have:
- An informative and intriguing headline – 33 percent of email recipients open an email based on the subject alone.
- Personalization – from the headline to the body of the email, you should take the time to segment off your email list based on your subscriber’s location, seniority (how long have they been a subscriber) and spending habits.
- Mobile viewing – 64 percent of decision-makers read their email on their mobile device. If you don’t have the time or expertise, services like Mailchimp provide responsive email newsletter templates.
Start Building Your Online Presence
Building these various outlets for your business will help improve your brand’s image and your relationship with your audience. If you’re just building a platform, make sure to have a clear and consistent message across the board and always spend the time to engage with others. These steps can take a lot of time and effort, but ultimately it will grow the number of fans, followers and leads your business has.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org to get started with building your online business presence now.
Written by Ivan Serrano for Now Creative Group.