10 Ways Niagara Businesses Can Improve Their Online Presence
If you’re running a business in the Niagara region (or anywhere for that matter) there are 10 ways you can improve your website’s online presence. By following these steps you will no doubt increase website traffic, rank higher on Google, and convert more visitors into customers. These steps include focus on Design, SEO, E-Marketing, and more.
How to get started:
1. Optimize for your Target Audience
Does your website effectively target the right customer? Are you getting traffic but not making any sales? Optimizing for the appropriate audience is one of the most important aspects of improving your online presence. This includes text, images, even design and layout. Take a look at your existing website, think about who your customers are. Eg. If you’re customers are looking for Porsche they shouldn’t get Volkswagen.
2. Make Sure Your Website Looks Great
Does your website design complement your business? Your website should look good, be targeted at the appropriate audience (not just your personal taste), and make them feel confident in your ability to deliver the product or service you’re selling. One of the biggest mistakes companies make is using a generic website template. Your website should be a reflection of your company and the last thing you want is for your customers to think you’re ‘generic’. Investing in a professionally designed website will help to define your business, strengthen your online presence, and will be targeted at the appropriate customer base. There are a lot of businesses in Niagara – your business should stand out.
3. Use Social Media
Integrating Social Media with your website is one of the easiest ways for Niagara businesses to increase their online presence. It’s free, requires minimal time investment, and if done properly, can generate a ton of recurring traffic to your website. Select the tools that match your industry – Twitter is a good place to start as it works for almost all industry types. Don’t forget about Facebook, LinkedIn, and YouTube to name a few…
4. Start A Blog
Just start writing. You don’t need to be an English major, but you should use a spell and grammar check. Think about what your business has to offer and write about it (just like I’m writing this article). Having a blog on your website gives customers a reason to come back. If they like what you post they might even share it with a friend. This is an excellent way to start improving your website presence in Niagara and open the doors to recurring website traffic.
5. Search Engine Optimize (SEO)
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) plays a key role in obtaining a high ranking on Google, Yahoo, and Bing. There are many techniques and strategies that can help to improve your on-site SEO. One of the easiest ways to get started is to look at your target keywords. The keywords for your website should say who you are and what you do. As an example, Creative Dept. designs websites. If you had not heard of us before but wanted to find a company in Niagara that provides website design you would probably search ‘Niagara Web Design’ or something similar. Really think about what people will be searching and make sure these keywords are mentioned (and repeated) throughout your website.
6. Get Linked!
Creating backlinks to your site can improve your off-site Search Engine Optimization (SEO). The more backlinks you get out there, the more opportunity there is for traffic to your website. Contact your friends and business partners and ask if they will post a link to your website. As an example, if your business performs home renovations in Niagara you may have a sub-contractor that you use frequently. This would be a perfect opportunity to exchange website links.
7. Try Pay-Per-Click Advertising
Sometimes you need to give your website a kick-start. Using Pay-Per-Click ads help by advertising your website to customers that are already interested in your product or service. Two of the most popular services for this are Google and Facebook. Both services can accurately identify your target audience and will display advertisements you create. Cost per ad varies on keyword popularity so you will want to be a specific as possible. Generic keywords such as ‘Niagara’ or ‘Website’ are too vague and cost will be at a premium. Instead try to use a 3 to 5 word phrase that people will most likely use to find your business on Google.
8. Update Regularly
Update your website often. Think about websites you like to visit – is the content always the same or is it updated on a regular basis? Keeping the content fresh gives customers (and search engines) a reason to come back. Integrating a website blog is an easy way to do this. You don’t need to update the site every day, but adding content 2-3 times a month would be a good start.
9. Offer Unique Content
Are you an expert in your field? Do you know something the rest of us don’t? Posting unique content on your website is a good way to get noticed and generate backlinks. Let’s say your business specializes in selling equipment to amateur wine makers in Niagara, you may want to start posting different techniques and reviews on your website. This is something unique to your business and will help to strengthen your online presence.
10. Use Mobile-Friendly Technology
More and more people have smart phones and tablets – how does your website look when viewed on a smaller screen? Does everything still work? You may want to consider having a ‘mobile-version’ of your website developed specifically to accommodate these customers. If that is something that does not fit within your budget, at the very least you should make sure your site does not use any technology that is known to not work on most of these devices (eg. Flash).
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If your website needs improvement or if you are interested in a complete re-design, please contact us today for a FREE Estimate.