The pandemic saw people flocking online after the authorities issued shelter-in-place orders to stem the spread of the virus. The situation allowed small businesses to compete with large companies in the same market.
But it also meant that small businesses had to work harder to connect with customers in a market dominated by these large companies. Due to this, these businesses needed to work hard to increase their presence online so their target market would notice them. Here are some ways small businesses can build their online presence.
Optimize the Website for Mobile Devices
The first thing that small businesses should do is to make sure to optimize their website for viewing on mobile devices. Around 85 percent of American adults have a smartphone, and a good number of them use their smartphones to access the internet. With this, small businesses should make sure their website load quickly and feature a responsive design that allows mobile device users to access it.
The images on the website should also be optimized for viewing on a mobile device. Additionally, small business owners should make sure their websites have an eye-catching design with easy-to-read text. They should also upload relevant videos and infographics that encourage visitors to explore it.
Develop a Search Engine Optimization Strategy
Small businesses should also work with digital marketers to develop a search engine optimization (SEO) strategy to increase online traffic to the website. Higher website traffic improves the online presence of the business, which also increases its rank on the search engine results pages (SERPs)
A higher rank on the SERPs increases the chances of the business connecting with their customers. They should work on their on-site and off-site SEO, which requires the website to load fast and have a well-made HTML source code. It also requires relevant inbound from high-ranking websites.
Since small business owners do not have the capability of working on an SEO strategy, they should work with a digital marketing agency.
Create Engaging Content
Creating engaging content on the website encourages people to visit the website and explore it. The content should be relevant to the niche of the business. It is a good way for small businesses to introduce their brand to potential customers and increase the business’s online presence.
The content can include articles, videos, and interactive infographics. They can focus on the pain points of the customers and provide solutions to their issues. The content can also answer the questions of their customers about their niche.
Create Accounts on Social Media Platforms
There are more than 295 million social media users in the United States. This shows that social media platforms offer significant potential for small business to reach their market. Without a social media presence, their customers will find it challenging to connect with them. So, small businesses should create an account on major social media platforms, including Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
Small businesses can also create accounts on new social media platforms, such as TikTok since these platforms are already gaining a huge following in the market. They can also become early adopters of new social media sites since they will have higher engagement rates due to the lesser competition on these sites.
Be Active Online
Small business owners should also be active online and post regularly on their website and social media pages. They should also have someone assigned to engage their customers and answer any questions about the business.
Having a quick-thinking, witty individual can help increase the business’s online presence and increase its popularity as people will share posts that they find humorous and entertaining. This can increase the number of people visiting its website and social media pages.
Analyze the Results
After small businesses implement their strategies in increasing their online presence, they should analyze the results. They should use online analytics tools, such as Google Analytics, to see if their SEO strategy works. These tools also allow them to set goals that help them make the necessary adjustments in their strategies. But small businesses should remember that they should be patient since the results may come a few months after they implement their strategies.
The business can also work with companies offering brand tracking studies. These companies can measure the key performance indicators (KPIs) of the business and see how the target market interacts with the brand. They use different online tools to check the brand health of the business to help business owners make informed decisions about their businesses.
Increasing online presence takes a lot of work, especially among small businesses since they have to compete with larger companies that have a presence online before the pandemic started.