Having a website is a great start – but there is more to online marketing than that. 54% of small businesses currently have a website, but this isn’t nearly enough if you want to create an effective web presence in order to approach potential customers according to Christopher Ratcliff of Search Engine Watch. There are billions of online searches everyday. So getting found online is ever more complicated. Your website is just one small part of your online footprint. So what else do you need? You Need:
- Directory Listings. Have you’ve heard of Yelp or Angie’s List or YellowPages.com, Manta or Merchant Circle? These are a few of the dozens of online directory listing sites available online. Think of them as the yellow pages of the Internet. Lots of social media sites are also “online directories” (i.e. LinkedIn and Google +). At present there are more than 75 relevant listing sites online and it is imperative that your business information is complete and consistent across all of them. Search engines use these sites to confirm that you are who you say you are. They give you strength and relevance as well as trustworthiness and authority in the eyes of the search engines. Having incomplete or inconsistent or duplicate listings can wreak havoc with your online identity.
- SEO. This means hiring an agency that specializes in search engine optimization (SEO). A good SEO firm will sit down with you and ask a lot of questions about keywords and competitors, geographic reach and marketing goals. Don’t fall for a sales call from someone saying they can improve your SEO overnight. Spend your money wisely.
- Analytics. Website analytics is a no-brainer. Google analytics is free and is a treasure-trove of real life data about your website. Want to know what type of device (mobile or desktop) your users are on when they search your site? You’ve got it. Want to know how your users found you? You’ve got it. Want to know what day of the week or what time of day people visit your site? How long they stay? In fact, there is so much available data that you will want to have your SEO agency filter it so that you can see just that information that is useful to your business.
- Conversion Strategy. Having a plan to convert your online users to become buyers has become the most important facet of your online marketing strategy. Once you get found online, you need to turn those viewers into buyers. This is called conversion strategy. Get your plan together and work with a reputable SEO firm that understands your bottom line and your goals for sales now and in the future. They can design a conversion strategy that is enjoyable for your viewers and traceable for you!
“Don’t fall for a sales call from someone saying they can improve your SEO overnight.”
– Susan Schauer John