Monday, November 4, 2013

Does your business have online presence?

86.8% of Canadians today are considered “internet users”, and this number continues to grow year after year. That means that approximately 30 million Canadians have used the internet within the last 12 months. The internet is such a powerful tool because it can be used for so many different reasons. Average Canadians use the internet to: surf the web, shop, find out the news, search up articles, play games, and use social media. Let’s focus on shopping; consumers are not only using the internet to shop, but as a tool that helps shoppers figure out what product(s)/service(s) that they want.

What better way can business owners reach their target customers then to have their information readily available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week?  With the technology era in full effect, people are going online to: educate, communicate, and communicate. So how can businesses take advantage of the internet and help it grow their business?

1. Google. How does your business rank in Google? When someone is searching for your product or service, will they find you at the top of the first page? When Google users perform their searches, they usually find the result they are looking for on the first page. If your product or service does not appear on the first page you may be losing out on critical opportunities.

How can you fix this? There are several way to approve your ranking on Google, some will cost more than others. Here is a list of some online tools you would want to look into:
  • SEO (have an expert optimize your website so that Google can recognize its content)
  • Adwords (an easy way to be seen in Google searches)
  • Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, You Tube, Google+)
  • Blogging (share your expertise and opinions with the online community)

If you use these 4 tools effectively, your business should see an improvement in website traffic as well as an increase in sales. Ultimately, driving traffic to the website will spread the name of the business and help build the brand.

2. Reviews/Testimonials. Reviews are great for consumers because they are proof that the product/brand has been purchased before and unbiased opinions from those that have used it.  For businesses that do not have a history of reviews or testimonials, it is hard to prove their legitimacy without showing a history of business.

Testimonials and references are important for any business that is looking to change suppliers or manufacturers. Because it directly affects businesses, it is important to make sure that current clients are thoroughly satisfied with the products/services they currently receive.

3. Feedback. Feedback on your product or services is a great way to see what is working well and what can work better. Improvement and innovation are crucial for the future development of businesses. While not all feedback is positive, it is important to listen to your customers so that they do remain your customers.

4. Business Directories. Business directories not only display contact information, they are a great source for business leads when people are looking for certain types of industries. While phone books have been used for decades, most directories are now offered online (Yellow Pages, 411, Google). It is a simple way to have all your contact information available as well as a link to your website with products/services.

While businesses do not require a website to succeed, if you are looking to drive new customers and growth, it is important that your business can be found when companies are doing their research.

Thanks for reading!!

Michael Wong
Able Business Credit
Vice President - Business Development

No comments:

Post a Comment