How Your Business Can Reach The Next Level With Internet Marketing
Almost all businesses have growth goals for the future. This could be in the form of revenue targets, cost reduction targets, sales targets, market share targets or targets that are focused on the growth of a particular department. The point is, business targets tend to be focused around achieving growth in some way or another. Generally, if a business isn’t growing then it is at risk of being overtaken by competitors as a result of remaining stagnant in the market. Therefore, being educated about where the market is heading and how consumer behaviour is changing is absolutely critical for achieving growth and more importantly, ensuring that you don’t risk falling behind.
Are you a product based business with retail premises?
Over the past decade, there has been a huge shift in consumer expenditure in the retail industry. Online sales have risen dramatically which, as a result, has reduced the number of high street sales. This change in consumer behaviour has opened up new opportunities for retail businesses whilst also damaging businesses that rely heavily on either footfall to its high street store or methods that involve face-to-face sales. Many have failed to adapt to this shift and are now facing the consequences. Others are simply not willing to change the way they do things and this can be equally as dangerous.
However, as retailers start to appreciate that a large percentage of their target market is regularly browsing online, many will see the new growth opportunities that present themselves. In many cases, the opportunities are in fact far greater due to the sheer volume of people that can be reached using the same or an even less amount of the time and resources.
What if you’re a service based business?
The service industry is no different when it comes to how consumer behaviour is changing. More and more people are starting to look online if in need of a service and vice versa, businesses that are looking to grow are predominantly choosing to market their services through various online methods as opposed to the traditional offline forms of advertising such as leaflets, newspaper ads, door-to-door sales, and the well-known Yellow Pages. The advantage many online marketing methods have over offline methods is that they can reach a far greater amount of people and if done correctly can be better targeted at the specific groups of people or individuals who are most likely to buy.
So how can you take advantage of this?
Below are some of the more effective ways to promote your products or services through online marketing.
Get on social media
Social media is one of the most widely used marketing methods by businesses. Some of the more popular platforms used for business advertising are Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube. These platforms receive a lot of attention and it would, therefore, be wise to carry out some research and figure out which platforms may offer the greatest opportunities for your business. Once you have carried out some initial research, consider hiring a consultant who specialises in marketing with the social media that you have chosen. Although this will require some initial investment to get up and running, the results will likely be better and also quicker when taking advice from someone who is an expert in the field. An expert will know how to filter out the specific groups of people who are most relevant to your business and they will be able to implement the most proven advertising and conversion methods.
Get a website
Having a website is almost mandatory for businesses these days and it is often the first place people to find out about a business or its products and services. However, it is vital that you invest in a good quality, professional looking site as some businesses actually end up cheapening their image through having a poor quality website. WordPress is usually your best bet when it comes to building a website unless you are building an e-commerce store in which case you may be better with platforms such as Shopify or Magento.
Just having a website is not always enough, especially if you want to take advantage of online sources of traffic. And unless you have customers visiting your website from offline campaigns and brand name searches, the website will not do much in terms of generating new business. Traffic generation, therefore, needs to a priority if you are to take full advantage of the online market.
As with social media marketing, there are many internet marketing experts and consultants who specialise in generating targeted traffic. Two of the more effective methods are search engine marketing such as Google Advertising or SEO, which help you become more visible to the people who are searching for your products and services. The second is email marketing, which is especially important for e-commerce stores but is also very effective for service-based businesses. If these two techniques are implemented correctly you should have no problem bringing in new customers from the web.
So to sum up
It’s pretty clear that most businesses should be putting the emphasis on growing the online side of their business as opposed to the traditional offline methods. That’s not to say offline methods are not effective, but online is proving to be an even bigger opportunity for businesses to grow their customer base. By investing in social media advertising, traffic generation and email marketing you could be surprised at what your business is able to achieve.