Simple ways to Promote your Business- Untangling the web and Internet Marketing
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Donna Frawley wanted a simple, low-cost website for their new interior design business. Husband Mark wanted one with a high "wow factor".
Untangling Transformation: IT vs. Digital vs. Business
For some companies it will be traffic volumes, for others it's adding a certain amount to turnover. Having answered these questions Murphy says content is next: "A website is not the place to dump your corporate brochure. In a lot of cases less is more when it comes to the web. You want a site that communicates with your audience quickly and easily. If you make it complicated people won't stay. A website provides a business with the opportunity to showcase itself in the best possible light to potential customers. Around 85 per cent of the population now has access to the internet at some point in their day so businesses without a website stand to lose out.
However, the days of building a website as a destination alone are gone for many sectors, says Aileen O'Toole, managing director of online channel specialists Amas.
You must interact with them via the most appropriate channel. For younger audiences that may be through a blog or YouTube or a social networking site such as Facebook. A site can say a lot about a company's style and culture and it also has the power to directly influence the bottom line if it has an e-commerce dimension.
Murphy advises caution when selecting a web designer. Make sure you see samples of their work or talk to someone who has used them before," he says. If a site is to be used for selling, it is particularly important to choose a designer with experience of setting up shopping sites.
It is hard enough to convert visits to sales without selection or checkout glitches. It is easy to be seduced by the lure of an exciting site, but building it will be expensive once bespoke software is required.
There has to be a strong business case to support such expenditure not least because maintaining a site is an ongoing expense. Sites need regular content updates to keep both customers and search engines interested. This can be achieved by building a content management system into the site, by giving a staff member responsibility for the updates or it can be outsourced to a webmaster who will maintain the site for a fee.
Not everything related to getting a website set up costs money. There is an amount of free web-related software that can help with building a site and understanding key information such as traffic flows.
However those opting for the DIY approach need to be careful to keep their material original. Don't lift text or photographs, do not infringe copyright and only collect data for the purpose intended. Martin Murray, managing director of online marketing agency Interactive Return says there's more to developing an on-line presence than an all-singing, all-dancing website.
Tell family, friends, supporters and customers that the site is live and encourage them to visit it. This is where search engine optimisation comes in. Your site needs to be structured so the [search] engines identify you as important and your business appears as close as possible to the top of the web pages covering your particular area," he says. User-friendly marketing tools such as Google AdWords make it relatively easy for small companies to manage on-line advertising campaigns that do not cost the earth.
AdWords appear on the top and right hand side of related web pages and link directly to a company's website when they click on the link. Murray also advises companies who want to drive sales from their site to invest in some form of site analysis such as Google Analytics. IT WAS a combination of inspiration and technical know-how that gave birth to one of Ireland's first web-based companies, speech-writers.
The inspiration came from Niamh Crowe who spotted a gap in the market for wedding speeches. They can be as good, if not better, at generating leads and boosting sales. The following are proven methods you can use to market and promote your business online with little to no cost. Free reports, available for free digital download on your website or landing pages, are a great way to establish your authority and expert status in your niche.
They show customers that you are serious, real, and authentic.
And they allow you to provide great free information, while at the same promoting your business in a subtle way. Have you heard of the principle of reciprocity? In this case, you give them valuable free information in a free report, and that, along with the expert status you gain, makes them more likely to buy your paid products. Of course, to you the cost of a free report is basically free.
You could write it fresh. But be sure to leave your prospect wanting more… which you give them in your paid products. Every time somebody wants to download your free report, they have to provide their email address and permission for you to contact them in the future. This allows you to build a database of names to market to in the future. Check out the email marketing section of this article for more details on that. What questions or concerns does your typical prospect have? What are they interested in… or worried about? Say you are in the weight loss niche.
There is so much write about. Maximize the value of your free report by including a call to action. It's better to keep your free report short and to the point. A single subject that is a few pages long is better than a page e-book in most circumstances because people will more likely read and digest that information. Then if the information is good they are more likely to trust you in the future.
Nothing can ever replace the website.
Untangling Transformation: IT vs. Digital vs. Business
Your website is the place where you can market and sell your products, build relationships, generate leads, pass on valuable free content, test ideas, and more. Your website actively puts your message out into the world so that potential customers can find you too. Make your website work for you. That way you can use email to market to them further. Make a big splash on your home page by showcasing benefits to your prospect.
If you have a free offer, like an ebook, show that prominently. There are new software packages that let you showcase a free offer extremely effectively. Be sure to update your website frequently, probably with a blog, so that search engines seek it out and post them higher in the search results. Videos are also good for SEO.
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One key thing to remember is that while design of a website is important, it should easy to use and navigate. It should be clean, with a focus on providing useful information in an easy to understand format. There are plenty of low cost or no cost website building programs out there. If you can send an email or post to Facebook — you can create your own website. The software is easy and intuitive and several choices for templates are provided. No programming knowledge needed. You can do it yourself in minutes.