Get the Most Out of Your Online Presence

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Small business owners frequently double as world-class plate spinners, working hard to keep all those moving parts in motion. But if you really want business growth with more customers and fatter revenues – and who doesn’t – focus more time on the plate labeled “Web presence.”

Web presence simply refers to all of your online business locations: your websites, your blogs, and your social media pages such as Facebook, Google+, Twitter or Pinterest. In this digital age, Web presence is your company’s marketing window to the world; it’s often how new customers find you, and it’s where they can form a lasting impression. Bottom line: you need to optimize your online presence.

In her article at Small Business Computing, Tamara Weintraub, a content marketing manager for ReachLocal, offers five ways that you can optimize your Web presence to keep it relevant, consistent and fresh.

1. Get Your Google+ Local Page

Google+ Local Page ranks as a “must-have” tool for your marketing arsenal. If you don’t have one, get one; if you have one, make sure the information it contains – basic business details, photos, videos, customer reviews – is accurate and owner-verified. Populating the page with relevant business information – don’t forget to sprinkle in appropriate keywords – helps your map listing appear in organic search results.

2. Clean House

Google loves fresh content, and sites that provide it tend to do better in the search result rankings. Check your websites, blogs and social media pages and get rid of old, stale or inaccurate info. You’d be surprised how much outdated info – expired offers, old products, maybe even a former employee listing or two – lurks within your Web pages.

3. Redecorate

People find visual content compelling, and providing it is a great way to connect more deeply with current and potential customers. Updating your websites and social media pages with new images (think employees, product shots, logos) and video keeps things fresh and engaging. Remember to keep your images and branding consistent across all your online outlets.

4.  Cultivate Social Media Fans

If you want to expand your brand beyond your immediate customers and rank higher in organic search results, engage your Facebook and Twitter fans. Their likes, comments, tweets, retweets and shares will help you reach more people (and potential customers) than anything you could ever do on your own.

Show your fans some love:

  • Mention them by name in your posts and thank them for their loyalty
  • Create special offer for fans and followers
  • Post customer photos to your social sites and tag them (get permission first)

Your business is always changing, so make sure that your Web presence keeps pace. These steps can help keep your customers engaged, spread positive word-of-mouth and build your business.

Lauren Simonds is the managing editor of Small Business Computing. Follow Lauren on Twitter.

Adapted from 5 Tips to Optimize Your Online Presence by Tamara Weintraub at Small Business ComputingFollow Small Business Computing on Twitter.