15 weeks into 2015, how’s your business doing?
In the constantly changing world of search engine updates, data refreshes, bad advice, is it ranking well or has your home page fallen off the radar?
If you cant answer this, I really don’t blame you.
Should you be focused solely on Twitter?
Should you claw your way to the top of Google Places? Do you have to write 3, 000 word posts everyday? How do you even optimise for mobile traffic? These are a few of the questions small business owners try to get answers to everyday.
But trying to answer all these, while still running your business effectively is almost impossible.
Yet this is the constant struggle of the solo entrepreneur. Marketing online doesn’t have to be that hard. Yes, it involves a lot of moving parts. By focusing on the most important bits, you will make better progress than running around in circles trying to understand it all.
The following are some of the most important internet marketing tips that you need to get right for your business to have the desired impact.
A Content+ survey found that “companies with an active blog report 97% more leads”. This doesn’t mean should start posting 500-word articles three times a day; remember that you shouldn’t build content just for content’s sake. Failure to heed to this will guarantee your content is lost among the four million blog posts that are published every day.
But, you MUST produce content. For starters, all small businesses face the problem of content creation. Don’t listen to those that say create “epic” content. As long as you deliver value and can teach readers something new, you’ll have a greater chance of attracting the right customers.
Another sticking point is not understanding who you are selling to and thus using the wrong approach. B2B customers are driven by the perceived value on offer. Your copy and content should reflect the tangible data and favourable stats. On the other hand, B2C customers tend to respond better to emotionally driven copy. While these two extremes CAN be used interchangeably in certain industries, actually knowing the difference is winning half the content creation battle.
This difference can also provide a solution to the third problem of content marketing – what type of content should I create? If your audience doesn’t respond to that ‘funny’ story about how your company got it’s name, it may be time to switch style AND format.
Instead of a 2000 word post, how about an infographic with the facts laid out in easy-to-spot sections? You can use the power of video. Posts with videos attract three times more inbound links than plain text posts. Your video doesn’t have to be a Spielberg biopic. Short, snappy, informative videos. That’ll do.
- Find the balance between making your headlines both keyword rich AND meaningful to the human reader.
- The video service, Vine, can be an answer to the issue of long winded video. With a smartphone, you can record a six second video showing your audience ONE tip to help them.
- Whether your content is words, video or images, never forget to optimise them. Optimise any content so they are easily spidered in the SERPS.
We’ve always been told not to judge a book by it’s cover, but a Stanford Persuasive Technology Lab report showed that 46.1% of people say a website’s design is the number one criterion for discerning the credibility of the company.
With the numerous CMS platforms available, webmasters are thoroughly spoilt for choice. Add the vast amount of themes, layouts, colour choices etc. and over-analysis sets in. Before you dismiss the importance of design, remember that if your site’s design doesn’t appeal to your ideal demographic, they won’t get far into your sales funnel.
Leaving pure aesthetics to one side, what about the overall user experience? Is your blog, or specifically that landing page, optimised to deliver what the visitor expects?
While there is a definite need for businesses to have a web presence, if your blog doesn’t have a clearly defined purpose, it’s all for nothing. Blogs for small businesses can be set up for lead generation, as a repository of FAQs to educate visitors or simply as a gateway to buy your products.
To achieve any of these goals, all blogs must be tightly focused. People can be easily distracted, therefore your page must communicate its value proposition to them as soon as they land on it. By limiting visual cues that can cause them to click away and cost you the sale.
Whether you are trying to get an opt-in or close a sale, the page must clearly reflect the value they are getting. Increase the chances of this by using a picture showing the product; using action words or conveying scarcity.
- Do you know what your visitors are doing on the site? Use a heat-map to track their movements and see what may be causing a high bounce rate.
- Clearly state the benefits of your product or service.
- Tell visitors exactly what they’re going to get.
Marketing can be a tough nut to crack for small business owners. Analysis paralysis, inconclusive customer profiles, hard-to-decipher tools are only some of the problems that small business owners face.
Join us next week for the concluding part of our tips to help boost your local business rankings. If all this is Greek to you, let Search and More take charge of your marketing. We know how the machine works and how everything fits. Let us help you find more time to work on your core business.
Call us today on 0161 669 5544.