AS COVID-19 continues to run through the population, reports are stating that 15,000 retail stores are likely to close thanks to the pandemic’s impact on business—and 50% of small business owners surveyed state that they do not think they will be able to survive operating more than 3 months in pandemic conditions.
If you are a business owner strategizing how to weather this unprecedented change in the economy and consumer behavior, one of the best things you can look into is how to build an online business.
Executive briefings are advising business leaders to focus on catering to the increased demand for online services that is taking place. Additionally, experts are stating that e-commerce will only accelerate after the pandemic ends.
Therefore, it is essential that businesses focus on building an online presence during this turbulent time. Keep reading to find out how to start shifting your small business online today.
Make Sure You Have a Well Functioning Website
The basis of a strong online presence is a well-functioning website. If you do not have a website for your business yet, now is the time to hire someone to do it.
If your business already has a website, you should review the site, and bring it up to date. Check for things like page load speed, messy menus, and laborious checkout processes. Aesthetically, you should ensure that your site is appealing and not overly cluttered.
If you wish to market your products online you should also look at creating an online store or updating your existing shopping functions.
SEO is vital for marketing your small business online. If you are unfamiliar with SEO practices, you can start with the basics, or hire in an expert to kickstart your SEO campaign.
Whichever route you choose, the end result should be that your website and its content is fully keyword optimized. To attract new customers and build brand trust you will need to plan regular, SEO optimized blog posts or other content such as video.
Build And Nurture An Email List
Another core aspect of establishing a strong digital presence is to build an email list. You can do this by giving out free offerings such as e-books in return for visitors’ email addresses.
Having an email list of leads and existing customers is invaluable as you can market directly to this base. However, ensure that you do not over-market your offerings. Instead, you will need to nurture these leads through soft marketing tactics, such as sending links to new blog posts or building engagement via storytelling.
Leverage Social Media
Social media is an essential component of internet presence. With social media use surging during the pandemic, now is an ideal time to build your following on platforms such as Instagram and Facebook.
Besides growing your brand presence via posts and interactions, you can also look into paid ads on these platforms.
Invest in Paid Ads
Speaking of ads—now is the time to put your marketing budget towards paid ads for your online business. Investing in paid ads can dramatically boost your online presence and promote online sales.
One of the easiest places to start is with Google AdWords. The platform is relatively comprehensive to use you and you will be able to find a plethora of online tutorials on things like keyword research and ad optimization.
Learning how to build an online business Is Essential During a Pandemic
Now that you know the basics of how to build an online business—and why it is essential during the COVID-19 pandemic—what is your first step?
Do you need a site built for your business? Or maybe you need to optimize an existing one?