Business climate forces brick and mortar shops online
As more and more businesses are forced to turn online. The ongoing pandemic is changing the business climate, forcing brick and mortar shops to digitize - many for the very first time. This means that having an online presence is gaining importance. Closing up the shop, reopening it, and closing it again has led to an enormous increase in e-commerce products at GoDaddy (one of the world's major web hosting platforms). “There’s a huge entrepreneurial spirit happening...” says Heidi Gibson, senior director of product management at GoDaddy in a Q&A hosted by Fortune Magazine.
As more businesses are turning online, it becomes more important to stand out in the crowd. There are many ways to do this, and in the end, it boils down to your online presence. If you are not seen online, you barely exist. So, what is important to increase your online presence?
How to increase the online presence
You can always rely on the Word-of-Mouth approach. Telling your friends and family and frequent customers that you are now online, informing them that they can still purchase their usual products, will always work. However, it won’t bring many new customers, and your familiar clientele may even find their products at some other online shop at lower prices. It is a tested approach, but it won’t provide any great success online.
Therefore, let’s move on and investigate internet marketing. Even with very strong brand awareness, having just a generic website could lead to zero sales, so it is important to adhere to proven methods. In internet marketing, there are largely 3 main ways to increase your online presence: Social Media, Paid Advertising and driving Organic Traffic.
The methods are costly financially or time-wise, or both, and they all require a unique set of skills. Let’s break it down.
Social Media Marketing
SMM (Social Media Marketing) is an effective tool in this day and age. Large companies like GoPro and Nike do this very well, engaging and entertaining their current and possible customers with videos and posts. However, these large companies are household brands, and as a small business owner, it is not reasonable to expect the same kind of reach.
It is not a simple task to get random people to react to your social media posts or to watch your videos. Facebook and other social media platforms are also charging quite heavily for these ads. And if you want to make a video, well, then you have to have that made as well. In the end, small businesses can end up paying a lot while gaining little.
Ads on TV have lost a lot of oomph in the past decade. The living room is slowly fading out, being replaced by tablets and smartphones. People turn to Google for both information and entertainment. Enter the era of Paid Google Ads.
Paid Ads will show your page or post above the organic search results for a given query. People type in a search request, and up comes the most relevant results. Above these results is space for Paid Ads. Again, this is a method that can turn out rather costly as Google is charging per click (Pay Per Click set up), and some keywords (search words or phrases) can cost quite a lot depending on how many people search for said query.
Driving Organic Traffic
Generating organic traffic has a lot to do with SEO (Search Engine Optimization). A quick Google search will provide you with lists of actions required. You will also find several strategies you can apply. However, further studying the topic, it becomes clear that most listed items and strategies have to do with optimizing a website for Search Engines.
Optimizing a website for search engines entails every single individual component, from the programming language(s) used to build and structure the website to images of your product(s). So-called “On-Page” optimization is a big topic but a required one for driving organic traffic. Many new online casinos leverage this very well.
What is important to increase your online presence?
Ideally you would want to be seen in as many places as possible to increase your online presence. This can, however, be difficult even for bigger companies. Specializing in one approach generates better results than having a basic understanding of several methods.
It is important to learn at least one of the above-mentioned techniques, or hire someone to manage it for you.