Don't kickoff 2012 without thinking about your plans, goals and objectives for your business web presence.
Prior to the Internet, there were really only 3 ways to get your business noticed: buy expensive advertising, beg the mainstream media to tell your story for you or hire a huge sales staff to bug people one at a time about your products (David Meerman Scott).
Now, you can get your business in front of consumers exactly when they are needing your products and services through smart Internet marketing strategies. Make your online business strategy for 2012 all about boosting your web presence. The Web Presence Professionals at ReachLocal share their top resolutions for local business web presence.
FOCUS ON CUSTOMER SERVICE TO IMPROVE ONLINE REPUTATION.
- 86% of consumers consult online reviews before buying and 90% of consumers trust the reviews they read
- 78% of consumers say reviews are important when deciding what to buy.
Monitoring your online reputation and working towards improving it are crucial for any local business. Building a positive reptuation full of glowing reviews of your business all starts with focusing on excellent customer service.
"Improve your online reputation by stopping bad reviews before they happen! Let your employees know customer service is a top priority, and inform them that reviews are monitored and negative reviews will be addressed. Encourage good customer service by rewarding employees who are mentioned in positive reviews and by teaching every employee how to ask happy customers to post reviews. Employees need to know that your online reputation is important for your business and that sometimes, all it takes to get a great review is to ask!”
– ReachCast Web Presence Professional Emily Bright, @RCEmilyBright
POST MORE PHOTOS OF YOUR BUSINESS ONLINE.
Who doesn't love a good photo? Let consumers see the personality of your business by posting more photos on your website and social media profiles. Not only will consumers love knowing what goes on daily in your business but it will also help boost your organic web presence if you tag the photos correctly.
“Sharing photos all over your social media outlets is a great resolution forboosting local business web presence in 2012. Photos are great, because they give your online audience an inside look at the wonderful things going on daily at your business. Plus, photos posted to Facebook and Twitter usually receive the most activity and engagements of any content type. And, photo sharing is a hot trend right now, with many businesses creating accounts on niche photo sharing and curating sites like Instagram and Pinterest – some of the fastest-growing social media sites this year.”
– ReachCast Web Presence Professional Sam Unell, @samunell
SHARE THE PERSONAL SIDE OF YOUR BRAND.
Let your customers and potential customers get to know the personality of your brand by sharing more of the daily interactions. Online search is the #1 way consumers look for local products and services. Make your business stand out by sharing the personality behind the brand.
“Customers want a chance to really get to know you and your business! So, post on Facebook or Twitter about the things that make you and your business unique, like your support of a certain sports team or your involvement in the community. Invoking an emotion or feeling of camaraderie when a potential customer sees your name on their computer screen can help kick-start a long and profitable relationship.”
– ReachCast Web Presence Professional Lindsay Prince, @lindsp123
GET INVOLVED IN REAL-TIME CONVERSATIONS AND TRENDS.
"In today's real-time world, anyone can share their thoughts with the world as news is unfolding...In the emerging real-time business environment, size is no longer a decisive advantage. Speed and agilityy win the moment" (David Meerman Scott).
It's time that you got more involved in the conversations that are already happening online. Share, post, and monitor questions, topics, pop culture and trends that people are talking about online right now.
“Timely information is more relevant to both people and the search engines. There are several places where you can find what people are talking about now: the Yahoo "Trending Now" section, Twitter trends (which you can now filter down to major cities or go as broad as nationwide), and the questions and comments found within your customer interactions (both online and offline). So, this year, make it a goal to share timely information and join in on the social conversation!”
– ReachCast Web Presence Professional Brian Collins, @BrianTheCollins
PROMOTE YOUR SOCIAL PRESENCE ON YOUR WEBSITE.
So, you have a Twitter account, Facebook fan page and Google+ Brand page but do you actively promote these pages on your website? It's time that you tied your entire digital marketing strategy together. Get the most out of your online efforts by tieing them all together.
“A lot of businesses spend time creating social profiles but neglect to connect the dots between their website and their social media presence. When someone comes to a business website, one of the first things they should look for is how to contact, connect, and engage with you business – including social media profiles. That’s why you want your social icons present above the fold and at the top of your businesses' website – where you also need to include a phone number and email contact. This is important, because you interact, engage, and get more personal with your consumer on social sites, which humanizes your business and helps set you apart from the competition.”
– ReachCast Web Presence Professional Nick Marino Jr., @revolving_mind
BRING YOUR PHYSICAL AND DIGITAL PRESENCE TOGETHER.
Much like you need to tie all your digital marketing strategies together, you also need to make sure that your physical presence promotes your online presence.
Post signs in your business that promote your social media profiles and website. Ask your current customers to become a fan or follower on Facebook and Twitter.
“You can make it as easy as possible for customers to connect with you by setting up a designated space or computer in your lobby just for that purpose. For example, one business I work with created a ‘Like us on Facebook’ booth in the corner of their waiting room, which displayed call-to-action posters with QR codes that customers could scan to easily connect with the business online, as well as a poster about a social media contest for the business. Making it as easy as possible for customers in your business to see that the company has a social media presence and incentivizing them to connect with you is a great tactic any local business should try this year.”
– ReachCast Web Presence Professional Justin Snasel, @jsnasel
What are your objectives, goals and resolutions to build your business web presence this year? Share your ideas in a comment. We'd love to hear your digital marketing and web presence goals for 2012.
If you like this article, then check out these.
- 7 Twitter Tips for Businesses
- Set Up & Optimize Your Google Places Page
- Twitter 101: How to Get Retweets
About TeamBishop: TeamBishop (Dawn Bishop & Leslie Whittaker) are Internet Marketing Consultants with ReachLocal Orlando. Our mission is to help you grow your business by increasing your leads and revenues and decrease unproductive advertising expenses through proven online marketing strategies. Give us a call at 321.422.6600 to schedule your free consultation.
Read our client testimonials to learn more!
Author: Leslie Whittaker
Graphic and content partially from ReachLocal ReachCast blog.