It’s a great big internet out there. Carving out your own space on the world wide web as a small business seems daunting, at best. Fortunately for you, small businesses can outsmart the big guys if they think strategically.
Here are a few tips that can help small businesses like you get ahead of the competition.
Tip #1 Content Marketing
Develop a content-marketing plan! Right now! Content marketing is a central strategy for creating relevant, value-adding content that targets every customer’s touch point with your business. The best type of content answers questions and solves problems that customers have, or never knew they had.
Streamlining a creation process will make content marketing a feasible strategy for your small business. And longevity is KEY. Content marketing is a long game. The frequency should be whatever works best for you, just make sure you are consistent. It helps to repurpose one piece of content into multiple formats to extend the life of the content you create.
Also consider sprucing up your brand style guide. To be effective, you need to make sure your messaging and images are consistent and resonate with your customer.
When done right, content marketing helps with your brand, SEO, and social media presence. Three birds with one stone!
Tip #2 Mobile Optimization
Mobile traffic now consists of approximately 52% of all global internet traffic. That means if you aren’t optimized for mobile users, you are losing 50% of your potential customers! WOW!
Mobile optimization is not as intimidating as it sounds. Most CMSs offer prepackaged mobile-responsive sites. Great! Well, yes and no. Test your lead capture pages, forms, and checkouts. Even with a responsive site, they may not be optimized for mobile.
Here are some suggestions to get you started:
Have a readable font and size. Increase size if necessary.
Reduce number of fields to the bare minimum. Have you tried to fill out a long form on your phone? Not fun.
Eliminate clicks. Reduce the amount of times the user has to get to the end point.
Make sure you’re using mobile-friendly keyboards.
Enable easy checkout options (if you are e-commerce) like PayPal, Apple Pay, Amazon pay, Google Wallet, etc.
Tip #3 Google My Business Listing
If you are a local small business, having a Google My Business listing is essential. If you don’t know what it is, or are unsure if you have one, you can get more information here. A Google My Business listing is a way customers can gather information about your business from a trusted third party.
Below are 8 ways to maximize your listing and gain the trust of customers.
Complete all the information Google asks you for. First step is to verify listing. Use photos and videos and take the time to complete a truly descriptive description.
Utilize the services/menu option to give customers more detail about who you are.
Google allows anyone to make an edit to your business listing. Check these often to make sure they are accurate.
Did you know you can post to your listing, like a social media account? Cool, right? Make sure to post helpful content, use an image, and always include a call to action.
Enable the book an appointment feature (if applicable).
Utilize the messaging feature. Verify a phone number so you can receive customer text messages! The Google Allo app keeps business texts in the app and separate from your personal texts. Currently it only works on Chrome.
There is a Q&A section, check this frequently and answer questions about your business (before someone else does!).
REVIEWS! Google actually encourages businesses to ethically ask for reviews. Reviews are one of the top criteria for customers when researching products or services.
As a small business, you can beat out the bigger competition. You just need think strategically, implement these suggestions, and get hustling.