Whether you’ve already taken the plunge and started your own business or you’ve decided that 2018 is the year to become your own boss, we’ve got some tips to help give your business the online presence it needs.
Do your research
One of the first steps in any new business is doing the right research. This is equally important from an online point of view as without the right research it will be very difficult to target the right audience or the right customer base. Before registering a business name it is always worth checking to see if there is a matching domain name available, this also applies to businesses that will have a different trading name. So for instance, if you’ll be trading as A Plumber you’ll want to try and get the domain name aplumber.co.uk.
When picking a domain name try to avoid hyphens or the use of numbers as these can confuse people and make your business harder to find online. The easier your domain name is to remember, the more chance you have of your customers finding you.
Build a website
Once you’ve got your domain name it’s now time to put together a website. A website is one of the most important online elements for any business. Not only does it act as a brochure for your business but it also helps to establish your reputation. And while there are plenty of free website solutions available a professionally designed and developed website will give a much better impression and help you win more customers.
Some of the main points to look for in a modern website include:
- Easy to update content (a Content Management System means you don’t need to learn code)
- Responsive website design (this means your site is mobile-friendly)
- Clean and modern design
- Ability to add plugins
- Optimised for performance
Market your business
There are many ways to market your business online and they all work in very different ways. One of the best options for new businesses is called search engine optimisation or SEO for short. This is the process of improving your website position in search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing. SEO takes time to work as it is all about building up the reputation of your website.
For those who have the budget and want instant visibility paid search often referred to as pay per click or PPC for short is the ideal solution. Using platforms such as Google AdWords or Bing Ads advertisers can market their business to potential customers anywhere in the world. Like SEO, PPC is a very specialist field and to get the best results it’s advisable to employ a company that knows what they’re doing and has a proven track record of success.
Setup your social media accounts
Social media is the go-to platform of choice for most customers who are looking to research a business. An active social media account not only shows that your business is active but also offers a real-time way for customers to get in touch with you. According to research by Hootsuite, 40 percent of UK adults think that it is important for businesses to have a strong social media presence and 34 percent would rather engage with a brand on social media than other platforms.
“People are 98% more likely to remember companies they’ve seen on social media than elsewhere on the web.”
Nielsen Brand Effect Research.
We hope that you’ve found these tips helpful, feel free to let us know if we’ve missed anything using the comments section below.