Whether you specialize in e-commerce or the brick-and-mortar kind, you’re probably well aware that the internet has completely reshaped the way people shop, meaning it’s changed the way your small to medium business gets customers. With buyers more focused on value and benefits of products rather than shiny, useless features, it’s more important than ever to differentiate yourself from your competitors and show your prospects why you remain the better choice.
The fact that people rely on Google and social media to find out if your product is worth their time and money only broadens your marketing portfolio. But with a little time and planning, you can make your customers’ digital habits work in your favor.
Here are 6 ways to get more customers for your SMB:
Invest in Google AdWords
There’s one solid reason why Google AdWords has earned a top spot in the digital marketing playbook: it puts your product front and center in front ot the people who are actually searching for it. When a prospect is looking for the type of product or service you provide, your information pops up at the top of the search engine results page. AdWords can be especially helpful if you don’t appear on the first couple pages of organic searches. If crafting an AdWords strategy seems too onerous, tools like Algomizer’s Ad-Assistant can do it on your behalf, so you can spend less time focusing on marketing and more time on running your business.
Up Your Trust Factor
People tend to do business with brands they trust, but how do you build trust in a digital world? Offering free trials, money-back guarantees, and ongoing customer support are good places to start. People want to know they aren’t taking a huge risk by working with a company they don’t know much about. Maintaining visibility, especially on social media, can also help reassure people that you are who you say you are, and won’t simply disappear when a customer has a problem.
Ask For Reviews
Reviews can be a powerful megaphone in shaping other people’s perceptions of your business. Research indicates that 84% of people trust online reviews, and 90% of people will read reviews before making a commitment. While it’s unethical to hire strangers to write fake reviews for your company, it’s entirely acceptable to ask satisfied customers to leave you a nice review on Google or social media.
Studies have shown that word of mouth remains the most effective form of advertising. People trust the opinions of family and friends, partly because they know those opinions are credible and do not conceal underlying motives. But while word of mouth will happen organically, you can help spread the word a little faster by asking happy customers for referrals.
Companies like NatureBox and Zulily offer shopping credits to their members who refer paying customers. Or you could opt for a cash incentive, like the mattress company Leesa. However you choose to reward your customers, make sure it’s a process that’s easy for you and your customers to follow.
Begin a Blogging Strategy
If you want to succeed in the competitive digital hemisphere, it’s important to position yourself as a problem solver, not a commodity peddler. By starting a blogging strategy, you can position yourself as the industry leader via expertly written blog content that helps customers find answers to their questions.
In addition, you can employ SEO optimization to your blog content to boost your visibility on search engines. Blog content gives you a multitude of additional opportunities for prospects to discover your site and learn about your services.
Engage on Social Media
Social media profiles have nearly become a standard for business. Not only do channels like Facebook and Twitter offer an additional space for your contact information, but they also provide another outlet for paid advertising and help you promote your content.
Displaying your business’s strengths and how you resolve problems on social media can lend a lot to your trust factor by letting people know you care about their experience. Some companies like Nike and Whole Foods have transformed their social channels into a customer service hub, answering questions and resolving problems for their social fans.
Truthfully, social media marketing could easily become a full time job for a small business owner if you choose to manage it on your own. Tools like Algomizer’s Appforma can take a lot of the manual labor out of the equation and make the process largely streamlined by automatically activating and optimizing social media and email campaigns.
The Bottom Line
When it comes down to it, every small or medium business owner needs to be aware of the changes in the industry, as well as the different tools that will help you manage an organized business. Between hiring, ordering, R&D, and bookkeeping, no task is more crucial than finding the customers who will make all your other efforts worthwhile.