How much time do you spend online? Now think about your target audience and how they might be looking for local businesses.
Google makes the bold claim that 97% of consumers do their searching online. Even if this is a generous figure, that’s a huge audience you’re going to be missing out on if you don’t have an online presence. What do we mean by an online presence? Of course, it involves a website, but there’s far more than that. You need to be creating a virtual version of your business. It has to include a welcoming and informative website, along with several social media pages. Here are a few more things to consider.
Your competition is already building their online presence, so you need to make sure your name appears when customers are searching. Ideally, you’ll want your name to appear at the top of any search results, which means you need to understand the basic principles of good SEO (Search Engine Optimization).
Your online presence will increase accessibility for your clients or consumers. They will be able to find out about your prices and hours and compare that information with your competition. It has to be effortless for them. Your website must be easy to navigate and answer all their questions.
Reach a Wider Audience
Having an online presence means your reach can be global.
Two decades ago, less than 4% of the world’s population had access to the internet. Now that figure is more than 55%. Customers can come to you even when you’re closed. Anyone who is unable to visit your local store can find out all they need to know. Customers that visit your site and like what they see are likely to share the news of your products and services with other people.
If you’re worried about creating your own website, there are plenty of reputable companies you can turn to for help. Hiring a website designer will save you time, increase efficiency, and help you generate your message in a way that speaks to your audience.
Helps to Build Relationships and Trust
Having a good online presence that includes a site, a blog, and social media accounts means you can post reviews and comments about your products or services. You are also able to answer questions quickly and thoroughly. Praise that everyone can see will build your presence and highlight the fact that you’re a reputable business.
Even less-than-favorable reviews have their place because they provide you with an opportunity to reach out to unhappy customers and swiftly resolve the issue.
Creating and then building an online presence is not just beneficial for your business. It’s an essential part of running a successful enterprise. You can be more accessible to a wider audience when you create a blog, maintain your site and become active in social media. You’ll be building consumer trust and able to market effortlessly. Maintaining an online presence is something you have to work on continually, but the effort you put in will be rewarded in many measurable and attainable ways.