In the 21st century, a brand’s online presence can be the difference between the success or failure of a business. In fact, one of the top three reasons for start-ups failing is a lack of online presence. Digitisation has spread to all sectors and industries, so regardless of whether you run a retail business, a takeaway, a pub or a financial services company, an online presence is critical.
This can be worrying for business owners who aren’t what you would describe as “tech-savvy.” However, learning a few digital skills or investing in digital marketing help could really have a positive effect on the business. Small business owners need to take advantage of all marketing opportunities available – and with many social media and online tools being completely free, why would you not utilise them?!
Read on to find out the importance of digital platforms and how they can be used by all businesses to increase exposure and ultimately, boost business.
What is an online presence?
In simple terms, an online presence is your corner of the internet. It is the combination of everything a business does on the web, including an official website, social media accounts, forums, quotes in news articles and listings on business websites. An online presence can be made stronger with certain management techniques including SEO (Search Engine Optimisation).
As the world’s most used search engine, Google has millions of visitors per day and answers countless queries and questions – some of which may relate to your business. Google searches are often carried out on mobile devices ‘on-the-go’ and many internet users start their shopping journey on Google.
Simply by registering with Google’s apps can increase your business visibility. Signing your business up to Google’s business listings, and registering on Google Maps, can open up your business to a whole new audience.
Having a social media page gives your business a voice, as well as allowing customers to engage and interact with you. There are many different social media platforms – some businesses prefer to stick to one or two, while others have multiple accounts. Choose what’s best for you by evaluating how much time you will have to manage the social media accounts.
The most popular social media accounts include:
Each are slightly different and have difference advantages and disadvantages. They also have different demographics, so do a bit of research before deciding which platforms will be of most benefit to your business.