Gone are the days when just having a website was enough. These days, having a GREAT website is one of the most important parts of your marketing strategy. In most cases, having an effective website can give you a huge advantage over conventional BLT advertising. One of the most interesting attributes of digital marketing is that it creates a level playing field between bigger and smaller businesses. You don’t need exorbitant budgets to compete for the attention of your online audience. With search engines, social media, and smartphones, the target market is getting easier to reach every day.
When we consult with small and medium-sized businesses on how to get the most traffic from their websites, we often offer simple and effective techniques which can be easily implemented with some consulting.
Inbound Marketing Strategy: Three Easy Steps
There are three essential steps of your Inbound Marketing Strategy.
- Being Found: Reaching your customer when they are looking for you is one of the most distinguished features of Internet Marketing. The following are the few things that you can do on your own to reach your prospective clients.
- Your website should be Search Engine ready. Your web designer should be easily able to fix this if it is not done already. Contact us to find out if your site is search engine ready or not.
- Manage your Google Analytics and Webmaster accounts. Google Webmaster and Analytics are free tools provided by Google to interact with where you can learn how your website is performing. These SEO tools provide detailed reporting to the site owner. You can login using your own Google account and submit sitemaps, check and fix crawl error and see if you are getting penalized for anything.
- Manage your Google business page: Keep most relevant and current information on your Google business page. Get reviews from your trusted clients and add pictures and hours and other information about your company on your Google business page.
- Make Bing Webmaster and Business pages: Though Bing is not currently in the same league as Google, it is growing in popularity. You may be surprised to learn that a lot of people use Bing for searches, whether it be on purpose or my default. Bing too provides free SEO tools to submit your site information and business information.
- Fix your Citations: Search engines like it when they see your business name getting positive citations from reputable and authoritative sources. So you need to make sure that you appear on these websites and that your name, address and phone number are all consistent across all websites. In order to check the citation status of your own site, please use the Free Web Listing Report link found on the Bower Web Solutions home page.
- Have a consistent social presence on all the major social networks as they send positive social signals to search engines.
- Keeping The Reader Engaged: Once you are found by the prospective customer on search engine results, it is important that they click your website listing and get converted into a lead. So it’s important to have the right description on the SERP that encourages users to click the site link and the landing page should be ready for the conversion. The website should have all the required information that the user might be looking for. Following are important things to consider for Great Customer Experience (CX)
- Great User Experience (UX) across multi-devices
- Easy to read information
- Accessible small videos to engage users ( use Youtube to upload short video clips)
- Trust building factors such as testimonials, brand logos, memberships to a Chamber of Commerce, awards etc.
- Fast Loading time of landing page
- Call to actions such as “Call us now”, “Request more info” on landing page.
- Easy to fill out intuitive forms
- Delighting Customers: Once a prospect sends you an enquiry and then does business with your company at later stages, you can still use Digital Marketing to keep them happy and engaged. As we all know, nothing works better than a positive referral. The following are few things to consider while you try and continue to make your customers happy.
- Use mailing list manager such as Constant Contact or Mail Chimp to stay in constant touch with your customers.
- Engage with them regularly on social networks
- Send them communications on their special days such as birthday
- Give them referral rewards and loyalty bonus points
These are few things that you can do to make your inbound marketing strategy a huge success. You can hire a dependable agency to provide you with hand holding on how this can be done. We recently helped a small business (Miriam Stern Color Consulting) help to get her inbound strategy in place. Within a short span of time, her color consulting business has started to see real results. Here are few words from Miram Stern herself:
“My website was well designed with the help of Bower Web Solutions but I had little idea of how to get people to find it and then contact me for business. So I hired Bower to teach me how to do SEO and get results.
First Bower Web Solutions did an analysis of my site to determine what needed to be done and the strategy of how to do it. Then we got to work. Some of the suggestions and things that needed “fixing” on the site were beyond my capabilities and Bower helped with that. But most of the work, the ins and outs of how best to use social media, how to make my website more “Google” friendly, how to involve people with my blogs, and things like that, I was happy to learn and get busy doing. The person I work with at Bower has patience and answers all my questions.
We have only been at it for a few weeks but already I have seen some positive results. This work is ongoing and results are not instantaneous. But I am confident that in the long run it will work.”