Limited time and budget like most small business owners? Here are the top 6 things you should be doing online in 2017 to bring in more business.
Your website is already on mobile friendly platform, right? If not…then make this the top priority now. Everything from your website to email campaigns should be formatted for mobile – and if in doubt, optimise for mobile before desktop.
Tip: Make sure your website has mobile-friendly content with phone number, location and business hours prominently displayed for mobile users as well as ensuring there is a clear call action on your mobile site.
It’s still just as important but make sure it’s quality over quantity. Don’t neglect your audience. They want to be informed – not only of your product, service or industry, but also who the people are behind your brand.
For the bigger brands, you need to work on humanising your image and personalising the message you send out to consumers who increasingly crave individualisation.
Tip: Try to blog at least once per month and include photos and videos.
A form of marketing where a key individual is targeted (as opposed to an entire target market), giving those key individuals influence over your marketing success.
For example, an influencer may write a blog post/article about your business, promote you across their social media or allow you to contribute a guest blog on their own website.
Tip: Think about your market and who they might follow on social media and see if you can reach out to that key influencer in some way.
I’ve gone on about the importance of video in previous years. This year it’s all about live content. Since live video feeds such as Periscope and Meerkat first began taking off in 2015, this form of video has only continued to expand, with Facebook Live and Snapchat/Instagram Stories following suit.
Tip: Consider using live video streaming to showcase new products, behind-the-scenes sneak peeks, or live Q & A sessions where you answer questions from the comment section.
Google is favouring websites with SSL certification. SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) establishes an encrypted link between your web server and your visitor’s web browser. This ensures that all data passed between the two remains private and secure, combating any risk of unwanted sharing of information.
It’s already accepted that any form of ecommerce website needs to have SSL but if you have a website that collect any form of personal data through web forms you really need to consider whether you should get an SSL certificate. Even if your site visitor is simply entering an email address over a wireless connection, this information can be vulnerable to third party access. “Privacy by Default” is the new internet mantra and this is a message that companies such as Google and Facebook have begun to endorse.
Tip: Talk to your web developer or web hosting company to determine what SSL certificate you need in place. There are different options and costs – even some free ones.
6Schema or structured data will become more prevalent in website design.
Now this bit is the most technical but suffice to say, it’s a way of marking up details on your website like products, reviews, events and menu items so search engines like Google pick up this data and present it in an enhanced way.
In the example below you can see where it has been used effectively and where it hasn’t. Whilst (in theory) it doesn’t impact where you appear in the search engine results, getting it right will mean a better click through rate – which one would you click on below?
Tip: Unless you are a web developer yourself, added structured data may a technical headache so speak to your web developer to see if they can do this for you.
And the final takeaway from me – keep chipping away at it. There isn’t one quick fix. Put aside time every month to focus on your small business digital marketing in 2017 and you will get results.