Whether you have products to sell or services to promote, your business’s online visibility is the key to its success. Getting noticed by your target audience is challenging, especially when you have the big companies to contend with; however, the good news is that it is not impossible!
Invest time defining your brand
Your brand is a visual reference for what your business represents. The colours you choose, your logo, the font, should all be supporting your company’s ethics but also your goals. You need to define a mission statement that explains concisely what your business is all about. Your mission statement will shape every business decision that you make and give you direction – it’s an easy way to showcase your business’s values. Everything that your brand consists of from the logo, tagline and the content that you post should reflect and support your mission statement.
It needs to appeal and connect to your target audience, so before you make any decision about your brand, you must research who your target customers are. Investing time into researching who you are targeting will ensure that you are able to qualify and focus their interest – you want the right people to click through to your site. You want visitors, but you need consumers. With time, your brand will become your most valuable asset.
Your brand is essentially how your customers perceive your business, and it must be able to provide a consistent message and experience to them across many different mediums:
- The content of your website
- Social media posts
- Documents such as letters and shipping notes
Everything that the customer sees must work in harmony to represent your business as you intend. Developing your brand is not an over-night mission, rather it is an ongoing process. There are opportunities in the every day to get your brand noticed. Have you updated your email signature with your logo? You can even use your logo on a franking machine, check it out! Whatever your customer sees should be branded so that it becomes recognised and associated with your business.
Review your website
If your website is more than a couple of years old, it will be time to review it and make sure that it adheres to current SEO requirements. Google has moved the goal posts over the past few years and has changed its algorithms to promote websites that are more user-experience focused.
You should know what keywords are relevant to your business, and target these in your SEO. However, if you are unsure, spend time looking at your competitors’ websites and see what keywords they are targeting. This is valuable research because it will shape your own strategy and you’ll gain valuable insights into which keywords are successful works and which are less so.
URLs: Over complex URLs should be avoided. The visitor (and search engine bots) should be able to easily understand the page’s content without having to click through. Identify the keyword that you want to promote and use it in the URL.
Links: Make sure that any outbound links on your pages work! You also want to make sure that you are linking to quality websites that support your brand. Google will grade your website on the authority or reputational quality of the links that you are connected to.
Page title: Always try to include your targeted keyword at the beginning of your page title but remember to keep it natural so that it doesn’t feel forced.
H1 and H2 tags: Not only does formatting your text with these tags make it more visually appealing to the visitor, but it helps the search engine bots to understand what your page is about. If you can work your keywords into the headings, fantastic, but never compromise the quality of your content to squeeze them in.
Speed: The speed at which visitors can open the pages on your website is important. Visitors to your site will not stick around if it takes an age to open. Test each page’s speed and change any sticking points. Images are often to blame for slow loading speed, so compress images to ensure they load quicker.
Using your keyword research, you will now have an idea of the words that people search for in relation to your business. Publishing content regularly is a great and inexpensive way to attract visitors to your website. Rather than aiming for high volume searched for generic terms, use niche keywords that are relevant to your business and target audience.
The content that you publish should always be unique and of a high quality. This leads to an increase in organic search traffic and helps you to convert visitors into consumers. Pay attention to how you brand images and infographics as these are highly shareable on social media platforms.
There are many social media platforms, and so you need to make sure that you post on the ones that your target audience are active on. If the products or services that you offer are for a corporate customer base, LinkedIn would be the ideal place to post your content. Go for quality and appropriate posts that are most likely to see a return on your efforts and choose accordingly. Facebook and Instagram work well for most businesses, so again, look at your competitors and see what their online profiles look like, and how you can improve on them.
Add the personal touch
Social media platforms allow you to add the personal touch to correspondence with customers. The more that you actively engage with customers or visitors to your profiles, the more visibility your business will receive. This level of engagement is what gives smaller businesses the commercial edge over large corporations and makes customers feel valued and part of the story.
Increasing your business’s online visibility is essentially all about making the business accessible. By developing a strong brand and message that appeals to your target customers is only half of the battle. Optimise your website so that it technically appeals to the search engine bots and populate it with relevant and appealing content that appeals to visitors.