Are you starting a business or looking for small business startup help? Many small to medium sized business owners often don’t have the knowledge needed to successfully market their businesses online and with so many companies offering to do this where do you turn? If you have a web presence online you have probably, like me, received countless phone calls promising to get you to the ‘top of the search engines’. While for certain keyword terms this can be true I found that companies would over promise on this topic something which they simply could not deliver. One sales woman was particularly aggressive and it became clear her job was in no way related to the technical aspect of ranking websites. Her job was merely to over-promise and get the contract.
As a small business it is a good start to have a website but this by no means guarantees success. A website on its own is simply a business card which hasn’t been given out yet! Ideally your website would rank for your main keywords in your business niche but, depending on your business, location and the relative competitiveness of your major keywords, this may or may not be possible, at least in the organic searches. If your website doesn’t rank for any keywords in your niche it is simply sitting in cyberspace not getting see by anyone. So you must advertise.
If money is the life blood of your business then advertising is its heartbeat. Without it you won’t find any new customers and will only be relying on returning customers and referrals. This might work in the long term but who wants to wait while your competitors are spending to advertise and taking your customers from you? Advertising is especially important for an online business with no shopfront, customers, staff and only a website.
You can of course advertise using Google Adwords and get a high ranking, however, this costs money and again depending on the other businesses in your field, the more competitive your keywords, the more you will need to spend to compete.
Long Tail Keywords
As a small business owner you can target long tail keywords in your niche to help generate free organic traffic via the search engines such as Google, Bing, Yahoo and Ask. You can do this by creating content and targeting these keywords. Use the Google Keyword planner to find long tail keywords in your niche. The reason to target long tail keywords and not shorter combinations is that they are the ‘low hanging fruit’ so to speak. Short keywords are competitive, harder to rank for, and expensive to pay for via Adwords. Instead, by targeting the longer tail keyword chains (3-5 word combinations), you can rank for articles and videos which you have created and bring visitors and hopefully potential customers to your door.
Facebook is a great adverting platform which small business owners can use to great effect. Like Adwords you can set your budget and spend what you choose. You can target specific criteria in order to get the most from your money. It is best to target a small niche of people who you would consider the most likely to buy from your business. Likewise with Adwords you can target specific keywords which would show a buyer intent, and therefore waste less money advertising to ‘tyre kickers’.
For a great course which will teach you the nuts and bolts of online advertising click here.
If you have a small business and would like some advice on how to advertise please join my mailing list and get free advice and help on building an online business. Simply enter your email address in the box at the top of the page. Alternatively see my website here and arrange a consultation.