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Nov
08th
2016

Is your online marketing strategy getting results?

 

How well is your website working to drive new business? It may look great, it may be informative, you have, after all, invested in it because it is your online shop window and every business needs some form of online presence, but do your visitors actually connect with your brand and commit to buy as a result of visiting your website?

If you feel you are missing out on potential revenue streams that the online marketplace can bring then gaining a better understanding of your customers, improving your website SEO, reviewing your content strategy and working to enhance your online brand reputation are the key areas to focus on.

1. Understand your customers to improve the user experience

Monitoring website traffic is key to gaining a better understanding of your customers. Google Analytics is a great tool and by just adding a snippet of code to your website pages, it tracks all traffic landing on your website.

Through analysis of user journeys, search behaviour and demographics you will really get to know who your online customers are.

There may be a ‘disconnect’ due to too much content, too little content or unclear messaging. Users may be struggling to navigate your site on mobile devices. There could be drop-offs during the buying process that are caused by a technicality you weren’t aware of.

Through careful analysis you can identify any issues which may be contributing to low conversion rates and from there you can may the necessary changes to help improve the user experience.

2. Improve your website SEO to increase search visibility

Think of your website as one of the working parts of your business engine. Like all engines, it needs care and attention to keep it running smoothly and a thorough clean up every now and again is exactly what is required to keep it working as an effective marketing tool – attracting prospects, connecting with them and converting them into new customers.

A Website Audit will scan the site to check on-site SEO factors such as site speed, broken links or access issues. It will also flag any problems with content such as duplicate meta tags, missing image descriptions and low content volume.

A Link Audit will check the volume and quality of your backlinks which contribute to the trust flow & domain authority rating. Do you know what sites link to yours? If you don’t and you are finding your site is flagging then backlinks from low quality sites could be an issue. A link audit will identify not only what sites link to yours, but also whether they are good quality links. Too many links to low ranking domains will have a negative impact on your SEO.

Once any issues are identified, action should be taken to improve the on-site SEO as this will improve your site visibility in organic search indexes.

3. Review your content strategy to better connect with your audience

Engaging content is what keeps people coming back time and time again. I recommend adding a blog to a website as this provides the perfect platform for posting fresh content which can be easily shared across social channels, but knowing what to write about is often the biggest challenge for business owners.

The best advice I can give is DON’T COPY FROM ANOTHER SITE! Just this week someone told me they had written a blog and ‘pinched’ the content from somewhere else – cheeky!

Your content needs to be unique. OK, so the topic may have been written about a hundred times over, but you can add your own slant to it and make it your own by injecting some personality. It is this that will make it stand out from the millions of other web pages and social posts that may have been posted on the same topic.

1. Be aware of what your competitors are posting. If you like what they are doing, see if you can adapt your strategy to give your business greater authority. Make your content unique.
2. Undertake some research to find popular topics in your sector. Be inspired!
3. Write a list of questions that your customers often ask – providing answers to common questions is a great way to increase content visibility.
4. Variety is the spice of life, so make sure your content is a good mix. A blend of informative, educational, inspirational and promotional. Also post using different types of content – images, video, downloads, whitepapers, webinars.

If you are active on social channels you need to make it easy for people to connect with you.

Adding social media icons and a social media feed to your site as well as off-line marketing material will help you to increase your reach as it lets people know you are social and willing to connect.

4. Enhance your online brand reputation to increase trust and authority

Brand reputation management is an important element of online marketing, but the freedom we have to express our opinions online can often make this extremely challenging for a business.

People are influenced by what others think about a brand. Be it a friend, family member, work colleague – or you guessed it, an online review. Hopefully you have many happy customers, but we are only human, and we may not please everyone all of the time.  It is often the negative experiences that filter through more strongly than the positive ones. So what can we do to protect our online brand reputation?

We want to encourage our customers to leave reviews, and we do of course hope that they will always be good ones, but as we can’t stop people airing their grievances publicly, it is advised to have a damage limitation strategy in place so any negative reviews can be dealt with in a positive way. A defensive or aggressive response will not help, whether the comment is a genuine grievance or unfounded. The nature of the review should help you to decide if a response is required in order to protect your reputation, or whether it is best ignored.

If positive reviews outnumber negative ones, your online reputation will stay intact. Keep your ear to the ground, know what your customers are saying about you and do your level best to make sure you are providing such a good service, that any reviews posted are going to be positive!

Whizz Marketing Services in Fleet, Hampshire is an accredited Google Partner Agency. If you would like to know more about increasing your website traffic or would like some advice and guidance on how to market your business online, then please get in touch. Call 01252 622129 or email louise@whizzmarketing.co.uk