As a small business owner, you want to do everything in your power to make sure your small business grow and become more profitable each year. Having a solid online presence is crucial for a successful small business.
So how do you establish a good online presence?
It takes time, and some investment to build an established Internet presence. However, there are some things you can do right away that don’t require hours upon hours of your time, nor thousands of dollars in your budget. Here’s what you can do:
1. Build a website
This is the first step you have to take, and it’s the most important one. Without a website, you don’t have a real Internet presence.
Depending on your budget, there are a few different ways you can build your small business website:
- Hire a web design/web development company. A simple, user-friendly website professionally done costs anywhere from $1,500+.
- Buy a ready-to-use template that you can customize. This is a pretty popular solution for many small business owners. Most templates cost cost around $35-$65. I recommend Themeforest as a place to start. This looks like a nice template.
- Do it yourself. If you’re Web savvy, you can save a lot of money and build your own website, using hundreds of educational videos and tutorials that are available on the net.
2. Write good website copy
After your small business site is finished, you need to have a good website copy. When writing the copy, it’s important to use the exact words your customers might use when searching for your products/services.
3. Spread the word
Now that you have your website completely finished, it’s time to spread the word about it. The best way to do this in the beginning is to contact anyone who can help you market your site online – your employees, vendors, family, friends etc.
You can also:
- Submit your website to some local directories like Yelp and Merchant Circle;
- submit your website to a few industry directories;
- reach out to bloggers in your niche, offer them discounts. They might write about your business, etc.
Bonus tip: Build a list
We all know that the money is in a list. Right? Do your best to collect as many emails as possible from customers, as well as prospective customers. Email marketing solutions are relatively cheap and everyone offers them. Even Pitney Bowes is offering email marketing solutions. MailChimp is worth a try, too.
Making sure you have an established online presence is very important, especially if you’re a small business. The reason is simple – the Web can help you market your business more effectively.