Today’s digital marketing opportunities give your small business the ability to compete effectively with the big guys. Whether you are a small fish in a big pond or a big fish in a small pond, your website and social media marketing strategies can be just as effective as anyone else’s. You don’t need a huge marketing budget or a team of computer gurus – just a dedication to thinking about what you’re doing, and doing things right. Here are a few tips that can help make the website for your small business stand out:
• Desktop/mobile: Previously small business owners only had to worry about how their website looked on a desktop or laptop. They could have lots of pages and complicated content. Now, the majority of users are viewing websites on a mobile device so the format has to be different. Something that easily provides information a potential customer can use, along with prominent placement of contact information. You’re doing a lot less selling, and a lot more informing these days.
• Keywords: Find out what words prospective customers use when searching for businesses like yours, and then make sure they’re included in your website content. If you’re a restaurant in Boise, it had better state that somewhere on your landing page.
• First impressions count: You’ve got about 5-10 seconds to get a visitor interested in sticking around. Make sure that the first thing they see is something that will motivate them to spend some time with your website.
• Pictures help: Liberal use of quality photographs can help tell a visual story about your business. With today’s digital cameras, there is no reason you can’t add photos to your website. Make them interesting and fun, and be sure to show your product or service in action – include one of yourself, too.
• Use video: If still photos are good, then videos are great. Today’s equipment makes them easy and affordable to produce. Keep it short and to the point, and provide information of interest.
• Keep current: Offer plenty of advice on product use, current topics, or business updates. An outdated website is a boring website, and it doesn’t even attract the attention of the search engines.
• Ask for the business: It’s surprising how many websites just put out information, and never ask the visitor to do anything. Ask them to call or visit, sign up for a newsletter, or make a purchase now, and then make it easy to do so.
• Think ahead: You may be a small business now, but you have dreams of getting bigger, so don’t let your website hold you down. Spend the extra money to own your own domain (mycompany.com), have a reliable website host that will help you with problems, and make sure you allow room for the site to grow with your business.
• Testimonials: Nothing says this is a great business like your current customers. Ask for testimonials and then get permission to use them on your site.