Establishing an Online Presence
1. Create a professional website.
- If you don’t yet have a website, don’t worry! It is now cheap and simple to create your own using tools provided by the same companies through which you will register your domain name. For an additional fee, you can also set up your website as a full online store.
2. Use local listing services.
- In addition to simply placing your business in local search results, these services allow you to post pictures, real-time updates, and additional information like parking tips. They also allow customers to post reviews of your business. The best part is that they are completely free!
3. Invest in search engine optimization (SEO).
- Ways to optimize your website include writing interesting, original content; posting images with captions (so people who use image searches are brought to your website); and using tags.
4. Advertise to your consumer base.
- Perhaps the best way of doing this is by investing in Google AdWords. This service displays your advertisement to customers on relevant websites and those who make relevant searches. This increases the likelihood that viewers of your ad will actually click through it. Be aware that other search engines offer this service as well.
- Another way to do this is to reach out to websites that are related, but not direct competitors, and see if they will trade website ads — they let you advertise on their website, and they advertise on yours. If you make bracelets, another website selling bracelets will probably not be interested in advertising your product; however, a website that sells vintage dresses may be open to an exchange.
5. Embrace social media.
- Facebook should serve as the most informative part of your social media presence. As a business owner, you should seek to populate every available section of your profile, including creating a visually-interesting cover photo. You can then begin to fill your wall with relevant posts, like business updates and events.