There are a lot of factors that will contribute to the success and failure of a business. But with the advancement of technology, it is important for the business to established a solid and reputable presence online. For one, business owners tend to focus on areas that are currently generating sales. After all, that’s one of the primary attributes of any modern business – to be sufficiently in tune with the marketplace to be able to both identify and optimize current income streams.
Furthermore, the company website might be yielding dozens of inquiries suddenly, or a post on Instagram might have spurred huge interest in a particular product. In the flurry of the moment, it’s important to remember that overall image consistency is your main asset for long-term business success.
It is a fact that your clients expect your company to have a strong presence online. It’s become exceptionally rare to be in conversation with any business and be told: “We don’t have a website, no.” These online “branches” of your business – the various profiles you have built on various platforms – give your business credibility. That’s a priceless commodity, perhaps even more so than ever before.
Online Presence is Important
There are a lot of reasons why any business’s online presence has become so vital. Tying into customers’ expectations, the company website makes it easier for clients to find you, as well as reassures them that this really is who you are and what you do. Poor quality websites are (fortunately) mostly a thing of the past, but don’t think a DIY website using one of the free builders out there will do anything but tarnish you. Because it’s a remote, silent transaction – the one where a customer comes across you by chance or dedicated search – your online presence is a double-edged sword in a manner no former marketing tool has been.
Another important point on the web presence is the fact that it’s a lot easier to market your brand online. This ties right into the point above, but it’s also a valid standalone. Never has it been easier to fly your colors as it is online. It’s also never been easier to showcase your goods or services, with accompanying current specials and testimonials from existing clients. You can do it 24/7, another huge leap forward for an opportunity in the business. Finally, a professional and consistent online presence makes it easier than ever to start building a relationship with a client or customer. Particularly, social media platforms are all about building relationships.
Steps to Improved your Online Presence
- It is all about looking at your own mirror. If you want to see what the world sees of you – search for yourself! Have a look at what comes up from a Google search of your company, the website, the varying snippets, the social media accounts. The journey to a great, welcoming and reassuringly consistent online presence begins with looking at yourself from a client’s perspective. Apply whatever metrics you use when vetting businesses online yourself, and a great many things will fall into place.
- If there are necessary differences with such details – clarify them! Read from a customer’s perspective, explain fully why some details might differ, and make sure you spell it out as needs be for clients. Don’t lose that “branch” effect and allow it to dissolve into lost sales because you forgot that new customers have no idea who you are.
- Be consistent in providing different types of posts in your social media, be it on Facebook, Instagram, and other platforms. List the platforms you’re on and spend time on all of them to ensure consistency! If your company name is Big Biz Whizz, don’t let the Facebook account say “Big Biz Whizzos” or “Big Biz Inc.” That kind of small detail differing across platforms completely throws customers, who are then left “pretty sure” they’re dealing with the same company, but not completely sure. Even if the logo is consistent, one different word about the name, location or focus of the business can lead a client to believe they’re dealing with a subsidiary or competing for business. They might think “this” company is offshore or only speaking to a local demographic, and most won’t bother going back to the original source where they saw your name to find out.
- Make your online presence free from insensitive or offensive materials to avoid complications and issues in the future. Being zany or funny is fine, but take a cosmopolitan viewpoint, realize that anyone in the world might be looking at you online and about to spend money with you, and make sure your copy is engaging, informative, and polite to all.
- It is a must to be copious and consistent with contact details. Make sure they’re current and correct on your website. For example, fill in the About section on your Facebook profile as much as possible. Larger concerns with more staff might want to dedicate a particular address to a particular platform, thus knowing from whence their custom came as soon as a mail lands in an inbox. This is data or metric analysis that can be fed into the marketing wisdom, making it easier to optimize platforms more relevant for your business.
The importance of online presence for your business cannot be underestimated. It is an important part that can make or break your business in terms of getting prospective clients. Furthermore, to establish the online presence of business requires consistency and truthfulness to be able to connect with the future and current customers.