Websites are the ‘shop window’ of your business, whatever business that is, it’s usually the first thing that a potential customer navigates to.
If a customer doesn’t know about your business, how will they find your ‘shop window’ (or website)? There are numerous ways you can increase the visibility and awareness of your website and they can all be done for free and in-house to get you started.
1. Social Media
As if we need to say it - social media is a fantastic awareness tool. It might seem complex if you're not using social media for personal reasons but in 2022 all of us will have someone in our lives that is more than accustomed to Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, even TikTok!
In the early days of your business, why not trial building your audience by getting a loved one to set up your basic business profiles, and get them to show you how to start spreading the word about your business?
Remember to choose platforms relevant to your audience, and consider our longstanding, but still relevant, top tips for managing a business on social media.
If a reputable agency or website designer has set up your website, you will likely be able to ask them to install a plugin to help you manage your SEO presence. You can use these simplistic plugins to hone your website’s page title and meta descriptions around a set of chosen keywords, and then adjust your on-page content to suit these keywords, in the hope of boosting organic search traffic for such terms.
You can get started by using the Google Keyword Planner to research relevant terms that your potential customers are already using to search for solutions like yours. WordPress websites can have plugins like Yoast SEO installed, and Shopify automatically comes with simple SEO features for each webpage.
This is a long-term but highly rewarding task for any business getting started and hoping to improve its search visibility.
Really, the only way you’re going to get a loyal following is by being a cohesive unit in your messaging and visual identity. If you have a website, you should already have considered some form of branding for your website, social media profiles, printed material, etc.
If not, everything can seem disjointed and this is off-putting as it can appear unprofessional and untrustworthy in some instances.
Branding can be expensive, but there are solutions to this including taking advantage of local business funding or getting started by asking your website agency/designer to set you up with a simple logo identity, corresponding email signature and social media banners.
4. Google My Business
To really build on our point about SEO, Google is key to the long term visibility of your business, and Google My Business is a powerful tool to harness.
You can register your business information, including your location, services, contact information and opening hours, as well as compiling photos and customer reviews. All of this data is stored in a Google My Business snippet like ours below:
It is linked to your website in search results and strengthens your search rankings and visibility and is particularly useful for those businesses with a physical address.
There is nothing better than building upon all of the above than creating quality, original, useful content. You need to provide value to your reader with the information you create, and it needs to be in a format that they will be interested in.
If you’re a beautician, you should probably be on Facebook and Instagram, but if you’re a law firm, it’s more likely to be LinkedIn (and maybe Facebook) for you.
The law firm is more likely to see success with long-form, formal, written content that offers advice and proves their knowledge. The beautician will see success with video tutorials and informal, engaging posts, perhaps other customers’ ‘before and afters’.
To become a successful content creator you need a consistent, solid strategy and a strict approach to maintaining this stream of content - a great way to do this is to create a content calendar.