Have you finally made up your mind to build a website for your small business? People have told us that yeah, every business need a website. That’s how you get the words out that you exist. Point taken. Now what? Are you getting all excited now that you are finally going global? Before, hiring a website builder, you have better sit down with me. Like me, your business too needs a website strategy. Let’s begin our journey.
1. What Is The Goal of Having A Website
I am still asking myself the same question. I am comfortable just providing my products to the local industry. My principal supplier is supportive of my business and the products are well received in the local market. However, as an ongoing business student, I am curious about growth, hence the ROI. Can I grow my current business beyond the border of my little regional reach? As a B2B provider, what can I do to export my products into markets like Thailand, Indonesia, China… How should I use my website? Should the site
a. Be an e-Commerce site
b. Used to generate sales leads
c. Propel my company as a thought leader within the industry
2. The Name Of Your Web Address or Domain Name
We will spend more time here because, this is the starting point. The name. Supposed, you are the local fertilizer distributor, with a name like Peter Kahn Fertilizer Pte Ltd, what domain name would you use? Peter may tell me that the question is a no brainer. Of course he will use PeterKahn.com. After all,your clients already know your company and they sure do know you personally as Peter Kahn. The one and only.
In this age of search engine sophistication, your logic is valid. But bear in mind, your goal of setting up a company website. You want to expand your business globally, if not regionally. You wanna cross borders and be bigger than what you are currently. If you are servicing the crop market, why not consider using cropfertilizer.com or grainfertilizer.com. Nothing more than a two word domain name please because, you want your internet address to be memorable. You should read more about What It Means To Have A Good Web Address For Your Online Business.
The main reason for using GrainFertilizer.com instead of PeterKahn.com because you want both your potential clients and search engines to know your business for what it does. Using an exact keyword domain name is especially crucial for a small business who lack marketing capitals for advertising. Most brand builders have investment funding to carry their cause. Although, Google no longer paid much weight in keyword domain name for SERP ranking, but a proper keyword will yell out to the world what you do. You want an easier route to compete with the more established players. Although the road may be long and tedious, but a good keyword internet adress does have that extra grease for your business mechanics.
3. Content Strategy For The Web
Many brick and mortar businesses heard the importance of a website for further commercial growth. Therefore, they hired other third party website builders to build the site. Herelies the problem. These businesses do not understand the internet. The ancient adage that when you build a darn good mousetrap, customers will line up to buy your mousetraps….like foolish rats in the Pied Piper. If this doesn’t happen in the offline world, it wouldn’t happen in the online world either.
Look here. It isn’t enough just to put out a page about your company and a page about all your products. It is insufficient to have some pictures of your products in your product pages and pray that new customers will love the pictures, and start clicking to buy them. My own principal and suppliers have their own websites. But, sadly, they only ranked for their own company name.
If you want your brand to rank well, your team have better make sure that your brand has a unique name. For example, if you are selling baking powder, make sure you don’t name them like Omega or Riser. Either you will be competing with a damn famous watch or you will foolishly get your brand beaten up by a dictionary meaning of a piece of equipment, called raiser!
Incorporate a blog as part of your website ecosystem, an important part that is. An active blog will ensure fresh contents added into your website, and this is good for SEO. If you are in the fertilizer business, blog about everything about your merchandise, planting etc. In time to come, your blog will be the strongest pillar holding up your website against your competitor in the first page of Google. Once you decide to have a blog, make sure you have somebody to add relevant post into the blog on regular basis, for at least two years!
4. Interaction With Your Customers
Before you think of implementing the latest state of the art chatbot into your website, know this, a blog by itself is a medium of interaction. Make use of email marketing and social media platforms like Linkedin and Facebook to get to know your customers. Let them know the real people working behind the scene of your products via tools like Facebook Live.
Apart from Facebook and Linkedin, consider using Pinterest, Instagram, Youtube and others as part of your web strategy. Each of these social media platform carries their own distinctive characteristic that might be a plus point to your own business. Now, if your business is B2B in nature, do you need to engage your customers via social medias? You don’t need to, honestly. Using social media is by no means a fly by night activity, because just like blogging, you need to invest time and possibly a lot of money to make your Instagram works for your brand.
5. Advertising For your Website
As I have taken into consideration that your business is bootstrap initiative, putting advertising towards the end of the web strategy is also a deliberate agenda. As a business entity, advertising should be part and parcel of your business strategy regardless of whether you have a website or not.
Learn how to use Google Ads Keyword Plan and you might be surprised that the advertising cost in using Google Adwords is way cheaper than building a blog or building a presence in social media. Yes, you hear me right. The advertising cost that we as bootstrap business owners fear, may just be the best tool that we need for our online business.
Every features that I list in this article are meant to achieve our goals for the website we built. Therefore, the strategy is to achieve goals, the features like blog, Instagram, email marketing are mere tools to carry out our strategies. Remember we are here to explore easy ways to make cash, for ourselves and of course, for our business too. Don’t let the bells and whistles overwhelm you when you listen to your website builder’s presentation.
God bless you!