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Launching a Business? Here’s Why You Shouldn’t Overlook Online Presence

by / ⠀Blog Entrepreneurship Startup Advice / July 25, 2022
launching a business

Did you know that an average internet user spends around 7 hours every day online? When the internet is so effective in capturing the interest of billions around the world, you cannot overlook its potential for your business, especially when launching a business. 

In today’s digital age, building an online presence for your business is crucial. Whether you are opening a brick-and-mortar store or an e-commerce platform, establishing an online presence enhances your brand’s accessibility, discoverability, and reach. 

Unlike other traditional media, the internet never sleeps. Your target audience can seek your products and learn about your business at any time of the day, thanks to the internet. Moreover, a business isn’t bound by geographical boundaries. Your cyber presence can easily transcend such limitations and allow you to reach a wider market.

Whether you’re launching a new business or running an established venture, building an online presence should never be an afterthought. In this post, we’re sharing proven strategies for setting up and growing your brand’s web presence. Let’s dive in.

Design a Functional Website

A website is essentially a 24/7 showroom, billboard, and catalog all wrapped into one. Did you know 85% of consumers conduct online research before making a purchase? And this includes visiting a brand’s website. 

So you can imagine the impact of a poorly designed website, or worse, no website. A website plays an important role in your business’s online presence. Without a website, it can be difficult to inspire trust and establish credibility. 

A great website offers the best functionality and aesthetics. From the loading speed to easy navigation, make sure your website promises a smooth user experience. Moreover, your website should also have the necessary whitespace, legible typography, suitable color scheme, and other design elements. 

Considering that over 90% of the global population uses a mobile device to access the internet, you cannot forget about mobile responsiveness when designing your website. Make sure your website looks good and functions properly on all kinds of devices when launching a business. If you are not familiar with website design and development, it would be best to involve experts for ​​Web Design Ottawa.

Implement SEO Best Practices 

Your online presence won’t grow without Search Engine Optimization. SEO is a highly effective practice to secure top search result rankings for your business. From creating keyword-targeted content to optimizing various web pages, it’s time to invest in SEO best practices. 

It won’t be fair to expect overnight success with SEO. Focus on consistent and targeted SEO efforts and watch your online presence flourish. 

Utilize Online Directories

Online directories are one of the core pillars of your brand’s online presence. Listing your business on online directories offers a plethora of benefits. A business directory promptly delivers relevant details when customers are seeking information about your business. These listings also boost your business’ search visibility in a cost-effective way. 

Google My Business and Yelp are two of the most popular online directories. When creating a listing, make sure you include all necessary details such as website link, photos, contact information, opening hours, etc. You can also look for specialized directories that target your niche market. 

Don’t Underestimate Social Media

Social media is just as valuable as your website for establishing your brand’s online presence. The best thing about social media is that it is virtually free, at least when you’re just starting out. 

There are several social media platforms out there–Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Quora, TikTok, and LinkedIn– just to name a few. We suggest choosing platforms that are most relevant to your brand and target audience instead of spreading your resources too thin. 

Consistency is key to attracting customers on social media. Create a content calendar that will help you regularly post and engage with your audience.

Collaborate with Influencers

The fierce competition on social media can make it difficult to get your brand noticed. Fortunately, you have the option to collaborate with creators with an established following. Partnering with influencers and content creators is a great way to quickly reach your target audience, boost brand awareness, and increase your followers. 

Offer Social Customer Care

Running a business is not always smooth sailing. Despite your best efforts to deliver high-quality products and services, there will be instances when customers will be dissatisfied with your business. 

Unhappy customers don’t shy away from leaving a scathing review expressing their disappointment. But rather than ignoring these negative reviews, it’s better to address them and provide a satisfactory resolution. 

If some customers have left negative comments on your social media post, deleting them won’t make the bad press go away. In fact, trying to sweep the situation under the rug can make things worse.

Rather than letting negative comments go unanswered, you should reply with an apology and ask the customer to share their experience with your business. Accordingly, you should come up with a way to fix the situation. This could include offering a refund, product replacement, or store credit. 

Add a Business Blog

Adding a blog to your website is an excellent way to offer something valuable to your audience and urge them to visit your website. Curate well-researched blogs on topics that your customers find relevant and interesting.

Encourage Customer Reviews

What do you usually do when you are searching for a product or service online? Whether you are hiring a lawyer or shopping for earrings, you are likely to go through customer reviews before making a final decision. According to Trustpilot, nearly 9 out of 10 customers check the reviews before making a purchase. 

Therefore, customer reviews are a critical aspect of your online credibility and presence. That’s why it’s important to encourage customers to share reviews of your products and services. Positive reviews not only urge potential customers to trust your business but also improves your ranking on Google local search results.

Wrapping Up

Online presence is indispensable regardless of industry or business model. A strong presence on the internet can do wonders for your brand when launching a business. It’s a powerful asset for reaching a wider audience, building credibility, and boosting engagement. While the aforementioned list of strategies isn’t exhaustive, it’s a good place to start. 

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