It’s necessary for many businesses both big and small, to get themselves online. A lot of business can be done online and many forms of communication and collaboration is done through the internet. With that being said though, not every business is switched on or knows exactly how to utilize the world wide web in order to benefit from it.
If you’re looking to help tap into the online market, then here are seven pro tips and tricks to develop and grow a business online.
1. Cross-promote your channels for maximum exposure
Cross-promotion is an effective way of reaching a wider audience and for getting maximum exposure. If you think about your following and where your audience is found, it’s likely to be in different places. Whether that’s on your website, through your social media handles, etc. by linking them altogether and cross-promoting, you increase growth on all your platforms.
You may also find that some of your followers on one platform are not following you on another or aware of its existence. From an SEO standpoint, it can be helpful to link your pages elsewhere in order to help tell Google that it’s a quality link and deserves to rank higher as a result. After all, impressing the search engines is what will likely increase the amount of traffic that you drive to these pages.
So with that being said, where it’s possible, try to find ways to cross-promote in whatever you post online. It can be a webpage on your website that links to your Instagram or it could be a link to your website via the description in a YouTube video.
It’s worth having a check-list of cross-promotion that you can do when it comes to every bit of content you produce over all of the platforms available to you.
2. Optimize your website and make it mobile-friendly
Optimizing your website is important for SEO and ensuring your website is ranking as high as it can on the search engines. One of the biggest influences for your website’s optimization is to make it mobile-friendly.
Think about it, how many people do you see using their phones on a daily basis in comparison to using a desktop computer or laptop? For those on their daily commute, they spend almost all of their time on the phone when traveling via public transport. With that being said, it’s more likely that they’ll browse your website via their mobile phone.
According to Perficient, ‘68.1% of all website visits’ in the year 2020 came from mobile phones. With over half using mobile devices, it’s essential to focus your efforts in optimizing your website to perform properly whilst on a mobile.
There are tools that you can utilize in order to test how mobile-friendly your website currently is and how you can then improve on that going forward. By improving mobile functionality of your site, you’re likely to see more engagement and prolonged use of the website too. When a website doesn’t work properly on any device, the user is more likely to bounce off it than to try and reload it.
3. Strengthen your online security to protect your data
With GDPR compliance regulations in place, it’s now even more important that you’re being very careful with how you handle and store your customer’s data, as well as your own. Osanos GDPR guide is a great place to start if you need a better understanding of making your business compliant.
So what can you do to help strengthen your online security? Well, for many businesses nowadays, outsourcing IT services can be an effective way of protecting your business not only from the threat of cyber attacks but also to strategize and organize your business data.
It’s good to have your business data more accessible to your employees and for sharing with any outside sources where necessary. Cloud services tend to be very reputable nowadays, even if they did start off with a few teething problems. As technology improves, cloud computing and remote working does seem to be a direction in which many businesses will be heading.
Finding weaknesses in your online security is only going to help strengthen your networks and to ensure you reduce the chances of becoming victim to a cyber attack.
4. Always look to create quality content over quantity
As much as it can be necessary to create lots of quantity content, it’s often more beneficial to focus on the quality of the content you provide.
The challenge is how busy and noisy the online world can be. Just take Twitter for example, where there’s around ‘6,000 tweets’ tweeted every second of the day. Now that rakes up to an incredible amount of tweets per day, so that one or two posts you make could easily get lost.
However, it’s better to concentrate on how your content can be improved and therefore attract the algorithms that are in place with these platforms to promote your content above other profiles and more importantly, your competition.
When it comes to creating content, think about what your audience would enjoy engaging in and whether it provides value to the reader. There are going to be some topics that might not seem so interesting to write about but may be useful information for the audience to know about. Some tips for creating quality content include:
- Research and have a backlog of ideas available.
- Apply data and link to other resources.
- Structure your content so that it’s easily digested.
- Incorporate imagery and grammar-check.
These are just a few tips but implementing them when it comes to your content, could make the difference between a post that’s average and something that’s viral-worthy.
5. Collaborate with other businesses
Collaboration is something that can have a mutually beneficial objective for all parties involved. However, not all businesses take advantage of the networking opportunities that can come from being online.
Sometimes using creative ways to engage employees can be helpful for helping with collaboration and the same thing should be done with those outside of the company too. Think about the businesses that align with your values and perhaps could offer something that you’re lacking currently.
Perhaps they’ve got more access to your audience and in return, you might have the tools and resources available to bring to the table. Collaborating with other businesses can bring around future business and you never know who will help influence your company’s growth and success.
6. List yourself on all reputable web directories
Even though they may sound a little old-fashioned in comparison to promoting your business via social media platforms, web directories still serve substantial benefits as a business. It’s all about finding the most reputable and engaged web directories available.
So if you’re looking for the best ones out there, a quick Google search is likely going to pull up some good ones. Just a few examples that are worth using right now would be Yell.com, Google My Business and Yelp. These are great platforms for spreading consumer awareness of your business being available online.
Be detailed in your bio or description so that the person engaging with the web directory, finds yours to be the one that is right for them and their needs. The beauty of the internet is that you can find just about anything and everything. The downside though is that as the internet continues to grow, competition comes with it.
By investing a bit of time and effort into creating these listings, you’re going to hopefully see a big difference to the amount of potential customers you end up attracting. Make sure you include everything and anything that will help promote the business.
7. Make your platforms universally accessible
It’s important that as your business grows, you’re also keeping an eye on who is seeing your business online. After all, the internet is a global network and your company might be attracting overseas customers as well as those local to you. With that being said, it’s worth making your platforms more universally accessible.
One way of doing this could be through transcription services and perhaps finding ways to caption and translate the content you provide. This can be easily done via your website but you may also want to create content in other languages when it comes to things like your email marketing for example.
A good way to assess your customer base is by looking at the analytics that your platforms provide you and that are mostly available for free. These will be able to tell you where your audience is from, their ages and gender, etc. All of this can be really useful and valuable information to help further improve your marketing as a business.
Developing and growing a business online takes time and it’s something that many businesses should be doing actively. The future of the online world is one that’s going to remain, so it’s good to take advantage of what it can offer you right now and in the future.
About the Author
Natalie Redman is a freelance writer for a wealth of clients including Skale. Natalie has over two years of copywriting experience and provides both web page content for businesses and blog content.