Running an online small business isn’t as straightforward as it used to be. With so much competition as more and more businesses turn digital, succeeding online is harder than ever. As a small business, you have a lot of competition including large, well-known retailers. You need to be innovative in your strategy to stand out against the crowd. Here are the best tips and tricks for online small business success in 2018!
Search Engine Optimization
Search Engine Optimization or SEO isn’t just for big businesses. Small businesses need SEO now more than ever with so much competition in cyberspace. Optimizing your website for SEO means making it easier for your customers to find you quickly. You can optimize your website using keywords and title tags as well as by creating great content. Forbes business expert Kelly Shelton recently claimed SEO is a small business necessity in the modern era of digital marketing. You can’t overlook the power of SEO anymore. If you haven’t already optimized your website for search engines, start including it in your marketing strategy today to see a big difference in search traffic.
Video is one of the biggest ways to market in 2018. Like the migration from in-store shopping to digital buying, people are also watching more videos and reading less text. While all consumers are watching more videos than ever before, video marketing is especially effective with younger audiences. OptinMonster.com reports marketers who use video see over 60% more leads than those who don’t bother with video. Those are big numbers!
Video translates perfectly to the world of e-commerce. You can use videos to share high-quality content with your customers or even to just show off your best products! Customers like to see things before they buy them, and video helps break down walls before buying. On social media, video outshines text posts or static images every time. As people scroll through their newsfeeds, you can stop them in their tracks with a visually appealing video! In a few years all businesses will have to invest in video. Get ahead of the competition by jumping on this trend now while it’s hot!
In all honestly, it’s downright impossible to compete with big retailers like Amazon in terms of shipping, price, and selection. That being said, you can beat them where it matters most. As a small business, your focus should be entirely on delivering an excellent customer experience. Customers enjoy the thrill of shopping in store, and you can bring this positive interaction to your website by going the extra mile.
Having a great customer experience online means making sure your website is easy to navigate and choosing the right merchant account for fast purchasing. According to ExpertSure, choosing the right merchant account is one of the most important parts of running a successful business. If you can master the customer experience, you already have an edge on the competition that will keep customers coming back again and again.
Like the customer experience, as a small business you should also deliver quality service. Even with a smaller budget, you can afford to go the extra mile for customers since you’re a smaller business. One of the main reasons customers hesitate to make purchases online is because they can’t see products in person. Ease their minds by being available to answer questions quickly and effectively.
You can install a live-chat feature on your website or just be active on social media. No matter how you choose to be there for your customers, make sure you do it well. Live-chat software leader ZenDesk argues over 85% of online shoppers would be willing to pay more for quality customer service. Those are statistics you can’t ignore as a small business! Your customers are the most important part of your online small business. Make sure they feel valued by creating an unforgettable, amazing experience for them every time they shop!
Your small business isn’t going to get anywhere if you’re busy trying to walk in the path of bigger businesses. The reason brands like Amazon are such a success is because they’re innovative. They disrupt the norm and challenge all companies to rise to their standards. Find your own rules to break and disrupt your own industry! Look for things no other business is doing and invest time in standing out! All the best-known businesses got to the top by daring to be different with their strategy.
Respond to Feedback
When you’re operating a physical business, you have the advantage of interacting with customers directly on a daily basis. This isn’t the same online. A lot of customers feel they aren’t being heard by big-businesses. That’s why online small businesses have a chance to succeed if they’re willing to listen and respond to feedback. Make it easy for customers to give their thoughts after making a purchase. Encourage users to submit contact forms or share feedback when they aren’t satisfied with their experience on your website. Nobody wants to shop somewhere when they feel like they are talking to a blank screen. Be a human being and listen to your customers! This is your biggest asset as a business!
Shine as a Small Business Online
Online small businesses are quickly taking over the digital space. According to AdWeek, online shopping is all about the perks. Customers want a great experience as well as a great deal. You can stand out to customers even in a competitive market by turning the focus back on the shopper! With so many businesses popping up online, a lot of businesses forget to make it all about the customer instead of all about beating the competition. Customer service and experience goes a long way! When paired with SEO and innovative strategy, your online small business will be unstoppable! Are you ready to stand out and make a splash online? Now’s the time to go all in with your online small business!