If you're one of the nearly three-fourths of U.S. small businesses that have a website, congratulations. Few marketing channels are more affordable or effective for acquiring new customers than a good website.
How can you take advantage of your online presence? Try these five strategies:
1. Write valuable content
No two pieces of content will reach two people in the same way, but you can increase the odds of adding value by focusing on teaching something of value and relating to the problems your audience has. Say you're the owner of a small business that services office equipment. An article about how clearing tough paper jams might win you raves and a few customers.
2. Start a newsletter
Email newsletters such as theSkimm and The Hustle have become popular with millions of consumers as a quick way to scan the news. What about starting a newsletter of your own? Include relevant news, tips and a coupon or two to give the customers and prospects on your email list a reason to open. (Pro tip: Weebly Promote has built-in templates for creating newsletters as well as other email marketing tools).
3. Become a social media maven
Your best content doesn't just belong on your website. It belongs in the public domain. Post to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat ...wherever your customers or potential customers may like to hang out. And don't just post once. Use tools such as Buffer and HootSuite to schedule content regularly and drive traffic back to your website. For your business servicing office equipment, posting your own tips plus curating some of the best advice from other sources may make it easier for you to get found by potential customers.
4. Become a guest contributor
Sometimes the best way to share your expertise is to engage with a different audience as a guest author. Dozens and perhaps hundreds of blogs will take content from you in exchange for links back to your website. Just make sure your content is every bit as good as what you'd expect at your own site and that links back are relevant and organic.
5. Create exclusive coupons
Finally, try creating a coupon that's downloadable and shareable so others can recommend your services. A coupon code or deal description is all that's needed to manually input your offer.
Whatever your business, odds are customers are searching for the type of product or service you provide. Write content that teaches. Publish a useful newsletter. Participate in social media. Spread expertise as a guest contributor. And offer coupons to encourage those on the fence to take the plunge and buy.
You'll make your company easier to find and grow faster without making a heavy investment to buy leads or post ads — a potent combination for a small business owner on a tight budget.
This guest post was written by Adam Tanguay. Adam is responsible for SEO, Content and Organic Growth at Weebly, a simple yet powerful website builder used by thousands of businesses.