Small business owner’s need to get their business found online, but how do you do this? With so many online platforms and new opportunities springing up all the time, where do you start?
How and where to show up will vary depending on the type of industry you are in and whether you are a product or service based business, but the following 5 tips will apply to most businesses.
Want even more ideas? Take a look at the free download at the bottom of the page: all the information below + 5 bonus tips all in one handy guide and checklist.
1. Optimise Your Website So It Appears In Google
The likelihood is you have a website (if you don’t have one this should be your first step) but you’re not getting the traffic you need. Step 1 is to think about what keywords your ideal customer is typing into Google to find a business like yours.
Next you can do some research to find out:
- If people are searching for those keywords
- How many searches there are per month and
- how likely it is you will be able to appear on page one (competition).
If you can find keywords that have high volume and low competition you are on to a winner!
However often these can be hard to find. Sometimes you need to go for medium competition or try alternative longer variations of the keyword. Generally the higher the competition the harder it will be to get your page appearing on page 1.
Next, keep or discard the keyword depending on those metrics. There are many tools online to help you with keyword research Ahrefs free keyword planner is a great starter tool.
Build content on your website (web pages) incorporating those keywords, focusing on one keyword topic per page.
If you are struggling to find keywords try searching for one of the keywords and look at the ‘People also asked’ section on the search engine results page (SERP) for inspiration.
You could also scroll to the bottom of the SERP and look at the related searches.
Also bear in mind that 15% of daily searches are entirely new, so just because something isn’t trending now, doesn’t mean it won’t.
“15 percent of searches we see every day are new”. Source: Google Blog.
For more SEO content tips take a look at 10 SEO Tips for Content Editors.
2. Social Media Channels Where Your Customers Hang Out
Most small businesses don’t have time to be in all places at once, so choose a channel where your customers are most likely to be spending time.
Speak to your ideal customer on social channels by tailoring content that appeals to their wants and needs. Highlight key problems that they might be facing and explain how you can help them. Try to avoid selling all the time and mix up the content, examples include tips, facts, industry updates, something just for fun, quotes, testimonials and so on.
Learn as much as you can about that social channel and how to optimise your account for maximum exposure! For example if you use Instagram, spending some time building up groups of hashtags may be beneficial as is investing time in making reels, if you are on Pinterest you can optimise your title and descriptions for better visibility and so on.
Be sure to add your website URL to your social media accounts so visitors can find out more about you if they want to.
3. Offer Something for Free To Increase Clicks To Your Website
Create a lead magnet to put on your website, this could be a pdf download, checklist or mini course, focusing on helping your ideal customer solve one of their problems. Then promote it on social media to encourage people to click through to your website. Be clear to communicate what problem you are solving with the lead magnet so that people can easily see the value of downloading the information.
In exchange for providing the freebie, you can ask for the visitor to provide their email address. This way they can opt in to your email newsletter and you can continue to nurture them over time.
You could put the lead magnet on its own web page or use it to complement existing content on your website such as a blog post. As an example take a look at the freebie/ lead magnet at the bottom of this blog post.
When Backlinko added a ‘content upgrade’ (a unique resource per blog) to one of their blog posts, they saw a HUGE increase in conversions (visitors signing up to their email list):
“A 785% increase in conversions (compared to the previous month).” Source: Backlinko.
A lead magnet is a great opportunity to show the prospect the quality of your work, so don’t be shy in sharing information and put yourself in your customers shoes, what information would be practical and helpful for them?
4. Promote Your Business To Someone Else’s Audience
Networking and building relationships with other small businesses is a great way to get additional visibility to your business. Join networking groups, online memberships or make connections on social media.
There are some great ways to cross-promote to each others audiences by:
- Appearing on their podcast
- Writing a blog post for them
- Launching a joint (or group) competition that can be shared on social media and your website
- Speaking at an event
An added bonus of this tip is that it automatically builds your credibility and trust with that audience. The collaboration can help show that you are a recognised business or person of interest in your industry.
5. Online Advertising
Depending on your budget you may want to invest in online advertising to get traffic to your site straight away. It’s always a good idea to take your time planning how you are going to do this so you don’t waste your precious budget.
First decide what you want to promote, is there a particular problem you want to solve for a specific customer?
Next choose the platform that is going to appeal the most to your ideal audience and your campaign needs eg: Google Ads, Facebook & Instagram, Pinterest etc..
Then be very clear in the ad copy describing what problem you can solve. If you are sending the audience to your website, make sure the web page they land on (Landing Page) answers their questions, allows them to take action (if they are interested) and above all the page should be relevant to the ad. By this I mean don’t make the visitor work to find the information they need, they should land on a page that is tailored to them, describes their problem and how you are going to solve it.
In summary: investing in your website’s visibility via SEO as well as making connections and promoting your business on social media are key low cost ways of getting your business found online. If you have the budget then investing in online advertising can also yield great results.
For more awesome tips, download the 10 Ways To Get Your Business Found Online pdf below.