When it comes to establishing a new business, utilizing the internet can allow you to bypass a lot of the problems you might face if you had to establish a traditional brick-and-mortar store. However, setting up a business online can still require a lot of work to make it succeed.
Even if you’ve managed to work out a product that is going to sell well, your online business still needs a lot of help before you can safely consider online. As an owner you must be aware of any setbacks you may experience so will not shut down your company.
Even the statistics point to this happening; out of all the startups and online businesses that are started each year, and many ends up closing in the first year, and only a handful manages to survive and make it to the second year.
If you’re considering establishing a new business, particularly one that will function online, and want to ensure that it grows well, the following are 18 things you should do:
1. The Website
Pay a lot of attention to the kind of website you’re getting for your business. We don’t just mean the color scheme here. Opt for a mobile, responsive site that will be compatible with a wide number of platforms, including tablets and smartphones. In this manner, you can improve the overall reach of the website. Be prepared to spend more than a day in the development of your website. Give it some real thought and make sure to test run it before you launch it completely.
2. Researching Keywords
Now that you’ve thought about your website, it is a good idea to focus on the content which will be featured on it. One of the first things you should do for this is research keywords. Keywords are necessary since they make it easier for someone to find your products. Also, each keyword receives a different amount of traffic and hits so it is necessary that you’re only using the relevant and meaningful ones. Google AdWords is a good tool for this purpose.
3. Local Business Directories
A really helpful tool that you should make use of is the local business directory. Even if your business is conducted online, make sure it is listed here so that your business gets a bit of exposure. The best part is that some business directories are based online while some are more traditional like the Yellow Pages. Having your company featured in a local business directory also gives it more relevance in the local market. It gives your business more credibility as well.
4. Start Getting Social
Now that you’re starting to make a few waves, it’s time to set up some social media pages for your business. Take some time to really consider which social media platform allows you to showcase your services or products the most. Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter are the more common ones but consider Snapchat, LinkedIn, and even Pinterest as a viable way to interact with your target audience. Start out by making 1 or 2 posts per week on each platform and increase this number based on the results you’re getting.
5. Utilize Blogs
Using a blog is a great way to engage with your audience and it also allows you to show off your expertise regarding a particular area. A blog can also be a great way to garner the interest of the target audience, particularly if you feel like your product is rather unique and you have to educate your consumers about it. Regardless of the reasons you use it for, a well maintained and informational blog is going to be a huge blessing. Also, start out with 1 or 2 posts but spread them out to once every two or three weeks. An active blog is a good blog and will attract more attention. To do research on blog topics you can use various tools. Start with our favorite, Buzzsumo. By showing the top content, it gives an overview of what titles are trending on social networks.
6. Get Listed on Google My Business
Apart from the Yellow pages, it is a good idea to also get your business listed on Google My Business. This feature allows you to provide your consumers with accurate information regarding your company. If someone is searching for the number or the website, Google My Business will draw up the results immediately. Moreover, it also combines with Google Maps to pinpoint the location of your office.
7. On-Page SEO
When you’re considering the content on your website, you might like to try on-page SEO. This feature allows you to add SEO and other factors in a completely organic manner. On-page SEO is also responsible for allowing your business to get featured in different search results. Since it extends to different pages, each page can have its own ranking in the search engine’s pages. With the help of this, you can grow your exposure as well as get more consumers in a completely organic manner.
8. Meta Title and Description
One of the most important aspects that you should be using for your web content is the Meta Title and the Meta description. These differ from normal SEO in the fact that they give a short preview of your web page and the content it contains on the search engine. While they have no impact on the overall ranking of the content on the search engine, they increase the chances that someone will be clicking on your link. This is as equally important as any other tool you make use of and if you get the balance right, you can enhance visibility along with the click-ability of your content.
9. Create a Search Console Account
Another service that Google offers is the Search Console tool. They allow you to manage and handle the content on your own website. It also means possessing certain programming skills that allow you to streamline the user experience. If you’re skilled in this aspect, you won’t have any problems utilizing the Google Programming tools that are available, along with a vast array of other Google Tools for the website. Having a search console account also allows you a greater degree of flexibility in building a website that functions as smoothly and seamlessly as possible.
10. Securing Your Website
Any online business should have an SSL Certificate which allows them to safeguard their website. In this manner, you are able to provide your clientele with a safe and secure platform where they can easily share personal data. Moreover, it also safeguards your website from various hackers who can launch attacks and break websites very easily. Having an SSL Certificate is also a positive sign for many people that the website is safe and trustworthy.
11. Linking Website to Email Signature
Drum up more traffic for your website by including it in your email signatures. Email marketing has become an increasingly efficient way for one to reach out to a large target audience. However, don’t hinder its effectiveness by forgetting about some simple things. In this case, include your website link in the email signature, even your corporate one. It might not appear like a big deal but this is one thing that showcases the devil is always in the details.
12. Create a Social Link
Once you have all your social media accounts active, you need to link them all together with your website. Doing this allows you to create a chain of information that can be very beneficial for your business. Always link them together so that a person can get information regardless of the platform they choose to visit. Another way that you can create a social link is by encouraging people to visit your website for more details.
For example, You can post something along with a link on Twitter. The low word count makes it difficult to share more details making the link to your website more relevant here.
13. Setup a Google Analytics account
It’s always a good idea to sign up with Google Analytics to monitor and gauge the overall reach and impact made by your posts. When you’re just starting out, this will play a crucial role in helping you develop a marketing strategy that yields you tangible results. Google Analytics can even offer you real-time data that you can fine-tune and develop to show you how you can start to work towards getting better results. Moreover, when you’re launching a new marketing campaign, using Google Analytics will allow you to work out how efficient it is.
14. Setup a Google Tag Manager account
To manage all the marketing data as well as monitor and modify it for your website, you should make use of different tags. For this reason, the Google Tag Manager application is going to help you keep your website in good order and get a lot of data as soon as possible. For this reason, signing up with Google Tag Manager will allow you to get a lot of statistical data, even on mobile apps and platforms. The best part is that it is not a difficult tool to use and you can manage this on your own or avail of these services from a professional.
15. Use Internal Links in SEO
When you’re sharing content on your blog, make sure you utilize internal linking. Internal linking means that any content that is available on your website is linked to a certain page on your website.
For example: If you’re posting a blog about printing services, you can easily use internal links, related to your services. This will allow the content to be more SEO-friendly and you will also get more relevant clicks based on this aspect. Through internal linking, you can also improve the visibility of your services since if someone comes across the blog, they’ll still be able to make use of your services with ease.
16. Using Google AdSense and Bing Ad Credit
No business can function properly without the use of advertisements that allow your business to get featured everywhere. Google AdSense doesn’t just allow for better SEO, it also enables you to use pay-per-click and other features that can make you money. Good ad placement can also be achieved with the help of this. However, different search engines have different ads featuring software. While Google AdSense is perfect, you might want to try Bing Ad Credit as well. Whether it is online marketing or traditional, always remember that proper ad placement can make a huge difference.
17. Use Email Marketing Tools
Email marketing is a great channel to utilize, particularly for online marketing. Moreover, if you want to create a newsletter, you will have to send a mass email to your clientele. For this reason, be sure to sign up for email marketing tools such as Mail Chimp, which allows you to design and send emails to your clientele. Mail Chimp is renowned for its services and based on the kind of package that you sign up for, you can get around 2,000 emails for free.
18. Making Use of a Professional Phone Service
For a truly efficient business, you need to make use of a toll-free number for your business. Luckily, you can easily have it set up but it’s also a good idea to have a phone service in place that will be able to answer all your calls or even have a voicemail set up so that you never miss anything. Moreover, they can also track data and provide you with a monthly report that will allow you to make any changes or amendments to provide stellar customer support.
At the end of the day, the 18 points mentioned above detail all the things you need to do in order to establish a new business online. As with any new business, the first year is going to be the most crucial one so it is a good idea to pace yourself and be prepared for failures. On the other hand, use them as a learning tool and you will walk away with an online business that is stable and showcases consistent and steady growth.