Websites are increasingly becoming the key backbone of any marketing strategy. Jon Hollenberg runs through 5 key steps when starting out online.
1. Have A Very Clear Online Strategy From The Outset
How will your online marketing be integrated into your business activities and what is your desired outcome from your website? Do you want the end user to buy a product, send an email or pick up the phone? It is important to define these goals clearly from the start.
2. Use Good Design And A Solid Platform
Make a great impression as this may be a visitors first interaction with your business. Does your website look creative and innovative? Give your business a competitive advantage by developing a reputation for innovation – meaning you won’t have to compete on price alone.
Consider an open source platform such as WordPress. It is easy to maintain and is the worlds most popular CMS (content management system). There are specialised features (plugins) for every possible requirement such as contact forms, search engine optimisation and image galleries.
Ensure the layout of your site is easy to navigate around and clearly shows any current offers. Design and layout should be focused around channeling your audience to your end goal.
3. Invest In Creating Quality Content
In the past year there have been many rapid changes to SEO or ‘search engine optimisation’ (the process of making your website more visible in Google). Google has updated how they “rank” websites and have dropped a lot of over-manipulated sites which may have previously ranked quite high. Google are now only focusing on “quality content”.
The best way to implement SEO, is to forget about SEO. Business owners need to take a market leadership role and consistently educate and provide valuable content. By taking this approach you are providing Google what it wants (quality content) and you will be rewarded with qualified traffic.
Video is a great way of adding quality content. It allows your visitors to stare down the lens of a camera and eyeball you. This builds rapport and sets the scene for future sales activities. Video can also be transcribed (typing out the script) and placed on your website which in turn creates new and unique content.
Adding a video of FAQ’s is an excellent example of how videos can be integrated into your website. e.g. what are the top 5 questions your business gets asked every day?
Another video focus could be news within your industry. It gives you the permission to communicate with your prospects, customers, post-costumers about changes in your business/industry. The end result should be more traffic and enquiries as people are naturally “pulled” toward you.
4. Share Your Great Content
By creating quality content all the time you are able to easily share this with your pre, current and post customers. A good online strategy uses a combination of email marketing and social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest and LinkedIn.
Share your new video content through the social platforms also driving traffic back to your website. This opens up new conversation streams and allows your visitors to ask questions and provide feedback socially.
5. Focus on Conversions and Measure Everything
Ideally the end goal will be a phone call, email enquiry or purchase. Make it very easy for a visitor to contact you. Your phone number should be in the top right of every page and a link to your email or contact form clearly visible.
Use Google Analytics to measure the traffic & goals through your website. This software allows you to track where people came from, how they found you, what they are looking at and how they exit your website. Measure how effective your online activities are and make changes or tweaks to better serve your audience.