It’s hugely important to optimise your business online, so that the right people are attracted to your business, and enter your customer pathway.
Studies show that four out of five consumers (80%) like to learn about a business through the company’s custom content.
And Nine out of 10 consumers (90%) believe custom content is useful to grow their business.
Our online presence is the most easily accessible digital shop window we have – people can use our blogs or social channels to peer in our virtual shop window, get to know what we offer, our values and hopefully (if we do our jobs well) grow trust in us.
Money is the exchange of trust
– which is why building trust with our target customers is so important!
Because our businesses change every day, time passes fast, and we get busy, it’s easy for our online presence to grow stale quickly. I’m sure we can all agree that a stale and stagnant shop window, is not that appealing and won’t be serving us as well as a fresh, well designed and put together window.
But, before we can even dive into optimising our online presence, we first need to understand what’s included.
Here’s the list of the 6 online channels that I believe we should be taking care to optimise and pay attention to:
1. Your Website
Our websites should be first on our list of priorities because it’s really our only exclusively owned online content. Most of the other online channels are owned by others and we essentially “rent” virtual shop space off them. While important, we are not always in control of future changes.
Therefore, I believe that we should always put the most investment into creating a website which displays all our goods and services well, and ultimately helps us grow our business.
When I review client’s websites, there are usually at least a handful of quick things that they can do to improve their website, in under an hour!
Need help improving your website results? Check out our course: Pimp Your Website
2. Your Blog
Technically yes, a blog is part of your website. But, I’ve listed it separately because blogs are such a powerful way to attract new customers, and grow their trust.
Often they are highly under-utilized areas of our website.
Blogging doesn’t have to be super time consuming, but, if you’re clever with your content and keywords, it can be one of the best methods for people finding you organically online.
Need help with improving your blog? Check out our step-by-step course: ‘Blog Your Socks Off’
3. Your Social Channels
Common social channels include
Each social channel appeals to a different audience and not all of them are necessary for all businesses. You should only spend energy being on the channels where your target audience are hanging out.
Your content should also be carefully curated around helping you achieve your desired result (what action you want people to take next with you).
Usually, when reviewing a business’s social channels, I can find some instant things they can do to improve their results.
Need help getting better results from your social media?
Check out our course: Social Marketing Sorted.
4. Google My Business
This could be considered a social channel these days, but I’ve listed it separately because it’s SO important and many small businesses don’t utilise this space well (ahem – including me much of the time).
But, having a useful Google My Business profile gives you a huge tick with Google. And, having Google’s approval helps us because they’ll then show our website/content to more people.
5. Online Reviews
A recent survey by Podium
Of consumers say that online reviews have an impact on their purchasing decision.
So, how are your reviews?
Good places to ensure you have good reviews may include:
- Your website
- Google My Business
6. Google / Search Engine Results
We can’t always be in control of what search engines are saying about us and in what order, but we can be aware of what they are saying.
When was the last time you googled your business?
What did it say about you?
What are the search engines saying about your competitors (this can be just as important to be aware of).
If you haven’t googled yours or your competitor’s businesses in a while I suggest spending 5 minutes doing this now.
Just make sure you use an incognito browser so that your own searching behaviour and history doesn’t alter the results.
Once you’ve got your results, it’s time to set some goals about how you WANT to appear to in the searches.
Need to improve your search engine ranking? Check out Step by Step SEO
Now that we’ve explored all 6 online channels that are most important to optimise, we will look at a few of the most important ones in more detail.
Read the next instalment: ‘How to Improve Your Website So it Serves You In Your Business.’
Hope that helps!
About the author:
Kat Soper is the Founder and Head Trainer of The Helpful Academy Online Business School.
Kat is passionate about helping start-ups and small businesses succeed and achieve their business goals so that they can achieve the lifestyle they desire (and deserve).