As the whole world goes remote, online presence matters more than ever.
While remote working becomes the norm, and just about every possible service adapts to digital, ecommerce will be the key to keeping business ticking over in these trying times. Your online presence is the marketing that never sleeps, and factors such as social media will have a huge impact on your customer outreach.
But if you’re still not convinced, these are three reasons why a well-maintained online presence will be crucial for your brand to flourish in the near future.
1. It builds trust and secures your reputation
For many potential customers, their first experience of your business will be online – generally, via your website.
Therefore, this first impression must build an instant rapport. A poorly designed website that is slow, dated and difficult to understand will lead the customer to draw similar conclusions about the service offered, but one that functions well and reflects the quality of your business’s products and services will put the customer’s mind at rest.
An excellent example is Avacta Animal Health. Theirs is a niche service which targets vets and specialises in treating pet allergy. Veterinarians know that pet owners expect the best for their animals, and Avacta’s website perfectly communicates their expertise and trustworthiness.
The site’s transparency, accessibility and overall professional appearance is easy to navigate – a website which fulfils its purpose efficiently in this way is far more likely to convert site visitors into customers.
2. It keeps you ahead of the competition
When looking at your business online, potential customers are measuring you up against your competitors.
Therefore, it’s important to keep on top of their online activity – observe the elements that appear to be successful and learn from those which are less so.
Some of your competition may have no online presence at all – by having a well-designed website and up-to-date social media feed, you are instantly ahead of them. Meanwhile, those that are thriving online present a greater need for your business to compete.
Of course, when it comes to assessing the competition, don’t feel obliged to follow the herd, particularly when it comes to social media trends. Its important that your followers know what you’re about, but your activity should also make your unique selling point clear.
3. It widens your reach
This is particularly important for small businesses – whilst you may have only one real-world location, online trading gives you the opportunity to appeal to customers across the country, and even the world.
This is vital for brands in niche markets that may struggle to find local traction, but will find demand with a wider audience online.
Bear in mind that since the current crisis began, there has been a greater emphasis on supporting local business, a phrase which has become a hashtag in its own right. Whilst some sellers don’t believe in the importance of online marketing for small businesses, these enterprises often find that their online presence helps to target consumers who are actively seeking local services.