Having a holistic online presence allows businesses to improve their credibility and authority. You get to reach potential customers, cultivate a relationship, and build brand awareness.
Online presence isn’t limited to ranking high on search engines like Google. It has to be holistic. Think if you were to manage a restaurant, an ecommerce store or a review site.
With the right strategies, businesses can streamline the process. But for us to fully understand how these strategies work, we need to learn the basics.
What does having an online presence mean?
Brands can connect to their target audience when they have a solid online presence. Without it, they miss out on the opportunity to share what their brand can offer.
Your online presence helps your brand stay top-of-mind, relevant, and essential in your customers’ purchasing journey.
Studies suggest shoppers are likely to purchase products from businesses with fully online services. This means your online presence can increase traffic, engagement, and conversions.
How important is it to have an online presence?
The majority of your customers are online. This is true even for small local businesses. Google says 97% of customers look for local businesses using their search engine.
Businesses with websites get visitors just by being up. Google says 73% of mobile searches convert. And, 55% of online purchases happen within an hour of initial searches.
Your brand’s online presence also facilitates communication with your customers. It’s also a powerful marketing and sales tool.
7 Effective Ways to Grow Your Online Presence
There is a wide selection of strategies you could use to build your online presence. To help with the research process, we’ve curated a list of best practices any brand can benefit from.
If you want to build a captivating online presence for your brand, look into the following:
Create an SEO-Optimized Website
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is essential for every business. According to a study, 94% of users clicked on Google’s first-page results. Less than 6% clicked on the second.
Small businesses also benefit from local SEO strategies. Website content can be optimized for long-tail or specific search queries from users.
For example, the query “home services” is going to have a ton of competition. But the query “house cleaning in X city” would be easier to rank for.
Here’s a quick SEO checklist:
- Perform keyword research
- Use keywords in website content and tags
- Create high-quality and relevant content
- Add alt tags to images
- Optimize for mobile and fast loading speed
- Promote on social media
- Track website performance
- Regularly update content.
Create or Claim Your Google Business Profile
It’s crucial for businesses to sign up for a Google My Business profile. Those that don’t have their own websites can still benefit from GMB’s marketing services.
It displays useful information such as your business hours and contact information. It can also be used to direct customers to your website.
Creating or claiming your Google Business Profile is easy. Just follow these steps:
- Go to https://www.google.com/business/
- Click on “Start now” in the top right corner.
- Sign in to your Google account or create a new one.
- Enter your business name and address.
- Select the category that best describes your business.
- Add a phone number and website if you have one.
- Click on “Finish” to complete the setup process.
Use Automation to Your Advantage
Automation helps streamline and optimize various processes related to content creation, distribution, and engagement. If something needs repeating, automation can do it for you.
For example, you can use social media automation tools like Publer for scheduling posts across all your social media channels.
Use automation on your website for forms, CTAs, and email marketing. Done correctly, your website can become a 24/7 automated lead-generation tool.
Automation can be used to trigger targeted advertising campaigns based on user behavior. It can also analyze and report on the performance of a brand’s marketing strategies.
Build an Email List
Creating an email list helps brands connect with current and potential customers. A common example is creating gated content.
Site visitors have to fill-up a form with their contact details before being allowed access to high-quality content such as case studies.
You can also use CTAs on key areas of your website or social media to promote newsletters. When customers subscribe, it highlights a list of people interested in your products or content.
Engage With Your Target Audience on Forums and Social Media
Algorithms favor engagement and it also helps your brand build authority. It’s one of the most important social media key performance indicators (KPIs).
You can join groups and forums related to your niche. There are a lot of options to choose from on social media platforms like Facebook. You can also join forums like Reddit.
Answer questions and provide solutions to pain points as an expert. But don’t outright promote your brand. You need to provide value first.
Don’t forget to respond to reviews and comments on social media. It shows that you care about feedback. You can even reply with customized GIFs on Instagram or Facebook to personalize responses.
Promote Customer Reviews and Testimonials
Customer reviews and testimonials are one of the best forms of social proof. It shows organic sentiments from previous customers, which is viewed as more authentic.
Studies suggest that 92% of customers read reviews before purchasing a product. Meanwhile, 72% of customers trust brands with positive testimonials.
Create a Loyalty Program Around Your Brand
Creating a loyalty program attracts more people to your brand and improves engagement. According to 64% of retailers, loyalty programs are the best way to connect with customers.
A well-thought-out loyalty program improves
- Purchase rates.
- Customer acquisition.
- And helps foster a community of loyal customers.
One of the most popular strategies is to create a referral program that incentivizes loyal customers. It’s a low-cost and sustainable way to market your brand through word-of-mouth.
For businesses to thrive online, they’re going to need to build a captivating online presence. It’ll help reach target audiences, build authority, and brand awareness.
If you want to succeed in creating a solid online presence, consider the following:
- SEO should be prioritized.
- Businesses without websites can still use Google My Business as a marketing tool.
- Automate customer data collection, CTAs, and content scheduling.
- Engage with your target audience.
- Promote reviews and testimonials.
Whether you’re a solopreneur, heading a marketing team, or a well-established brand, you can always optimize your online presence with the help of automation tools like Publer!
Sign up for free today and see how Publer can take your social media game to new heights!