Having an Online Presence
What does it take in 2019 to have a fully formed online presence?
There are many things we take for granted, and when it comes to the businesses we deal with, there is often an expectation of what they will have available to us, and how we access that information.
A business, be it traditional bricks and mortar, or a fully online business, or increasingly today, a combination of the two, will typically need several things present in order to conduct a successful business, be able to be seen online, and lead their field.
Why is this important?
- -you want your potential customers to feel confident with you as a business. Having a strong online presence is crucial for that. If someone searches your name in a search engine, they should be met with several, up to date references about you from multiple sources (even if you curate all of these)
- -if a customer searches for the specific products you deal in, you need to be able to be seen in those search results, and ultimately, own those search results.
- -elevate yourself as the expert on the subject that you are good at, and the area you do your business in
- -be in a position to secure sales over your competitors
- -allow customers to provide feedback in a constructive way
To do this you will need a wide array of online tools, and they have to be kept up to date - this is business in 2019.
Some of these tools will include;
- a well designed and functioning web site. It should minimally include a clear description of the services you offer, images where needed, contact page and contact form, about you (a description of your business) and working menus.
- a blog, or article resource. Write articles weekly and get them up on here
- social media - minimally; Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and if you are selling a physical product, Pinterest. Keep these up to date by posting regularly and responding to comments and messages.
- maintain your 'Google My Business' page with short posts, images, contact information etc
- interact with other users online on social media and review sites. If you receive a review, respond. If it is critical, deal with the matter at hand
Articles help to solidify your brand, cement you as an expert in your field, provide knowledge or opinion to casual viewers, and add to your overall web presence. A well written, informative and up to date web site has more likelihood of ranking well in search engines.
Keeping your web assets maintained and in good shape is essential. It means that a viewer will be able to see that you actively care about them as a viewer and that you are interested in maintaining them as a customer. How do you feel when you walk into a shop and it is messy or you can not get the attention of a salesperson - uneasy as best. You are more likely though to walk out without buying. And so it goes with your web presence. Broken links, missing images, typos in your text, an out of date design or one that loads too slowly, all point to the same thing.
That's my short list of items you should take care of - what else would you add to this list?