Online Presence Defined
Your business’s online presence is analogous to a physical building or store. It’s the way it looks and makes people feel when they get there (think of walking into a clean, well-organized store vs. a cluttered, dirty mess). But it’s more than just the look of it – it’s what’s inside.
A thriving business feeds on generating engagement. During this time of uncertainty, it is absolutely crucial for businesses to connect with consumers and stay relevant. In the last decade or so in particular, many consumers have become accustomed to finding what they want online.
A digital presence gives your brand an ideal platform to communicate with consumers. It gives you the opportunity to set the narrative on who you are as a brand and set yourself apart from competitors. More than just your website, your digital presence expands to all the touch points a consumer may have with your brand online. While this does indeed include your website, it can also include areas outside of your control, such as the conversations about your brand on social media and online reviews. In order to put your best foot forward in front of consumers, consider bolstering all aspects of your brand online.
Building A Stronger Presence
The first and most essential step in boosting your brand’s digital presence is creating a professional, user-friendly website. Your website is an incredible asset that allows consumers to find you and hopefully it inspires them to convert. A clean, modern design can visually connect with consumers by exemplifying your personality and brand voice. Moreover, a site that is intentionally designed for an enhanced user experience can make a powerful first impression on consumers.
Beyond its aesthetics and functionality, your website should also provide valuable content. Ensure that all information featured throughout the site is both current and accurate, as well as relevant to your target audience. Sharing news updates about your brand or maintaining a regular blog where you provide fresh and original content related to your brand or industry can be effective in drawing consumers to your site. Paired with advanced SEO and analytics tools, you can determine how to create the most impact and attract more consumers to your content.
Signs of a Weak Online Presence
Simply speaking, a dated, poorly designed and uninformative website, non-mobile responsive technology, no blog or a boring blog, and company-centric social media posts weaken your company.
But sometimes, people building the online presence are too close: they can’t see the forest through the trees. Or, they don’t have the right mind set or expertise. Doing user studies or getting feedback from an impartial outside resource is critical to making sure you’re providing the information and level of service your prospects expect online.
Time is of the Essence
Developing a strong online presence is a big change from the way many companies normally approach business growth, and it doesn’t happen overnight. It takes innovative thinking, constant analysis to understand what users want, and time for people (and search engines!) to get to know and trust you. The longer you wait, the longer it will take before you start seeing results. So that means it’s time to get busy – now.