Small business owners are a unique group of hard-working, dedicated professionals. They provide 54% of all sales in the United States, according to the Small Business Administration. Millions of workers depend on the small business sector for their livelihood and the industry is continuing to grow. While it once rang true that an ad in the phone book and flyers posted around town were sufficient marketing practices, times have changed. Internet Marketing, or Online Marketing, is now a must.
There is still the misconception that small businesses do not need online digital marketing, or that they can get by with a simple website or limited social media presence. While it may be easier to stick with what’s familiar, in an ever-changing world, those practices are simply no longer sufficient. If web marketing works for big businesses, why not also for small companies?
Why Small Businesses Need Online Marketing
There are many reasons why small businesses need online marketing, but perhaps the most important reason is that they are competing with national brands. In order to remain competitive, company leaders need an intentional online marketing strategy.
Thanks in part to ever-advancing technology and the wide expanse of the internet, small business growth opportunities are everywhere. As Huffington Post reminds us, online marketing is particularly necessary because:
• Your competitors have an online presence
• Expectations have changed among consumers
• Small businesses have the chance to target specific demographic regions
Challenges for Small Business Internet Marketing
All online marketing is considered content marketing, and it is everywhere. We see it in social media, blog posts, web content, and YouTube videos. While digital marketing challenges exist in some form for all businesses, small companies face their own set of issues in this area.
1. Generating Traffic
Small business owners may feel like they lack the skills or technological knowledge to bring the necessary audience to their content, and they are not alone. However, according to HubSpot’s research, people are watching videos, engaging with social media posts, and reading news articles as their main sources of information. So, what are small business owners to do?
Small business owners can begin by looking at the content they are currently creating and evaluate the level of quality they are putting out. Is it the type of content the audience wants? If web users are absorbing video and social media content, it is important for small businesses to maximize how they are using those channels to expand their brand.
2. Budget Constraints
Even businesses with little to no web marketing budget can use social media for free. It doesn’t have to be complicated—start with a photo and a few hashtags, and see what happens. Put coupons on Facebook, respond to user comments, and get engaged with Instagram posts from customers. These actions cost nothing.
A dedicated line for web marketing will inspire your company’s growth even more. As Forbes reminds us, creating an intelligent budget is the most important step you can take for your company, no matter the size. It starts with identifying specific marketing needs and then weighing the risks associated with fulfilling those needs.
3. Maximizing SEO
Search engine optimization involves the way a website is optimized to rank in search results. When SEO is lacking, businesses may rank very low based on their keyword usage for services and products. Many small businesses struggle with building quality links, which makes it even more important for owners to have quality content. Content should include in-depth posts, infographics, and ad resource pages that are relevant to your audience.
One of the best ways to grow traffic and move it to your site is to optimize your website for search – this effort can increase your traffic by 50%. Partnering with a company who specializes in small business internet marketing is another smart option. Because their expertise lies in generating organic traffic, they can do the grunt work for you, taking the stress off.
Partner with the Experts in Small Business Internet Marketing
Every small business should have an online presence; after all, it’s how we search, connect, buy, and follow our favorite brands. If your business is not on the first page, you could be missing out on customer reach and a host of valuable leads.
A full-service search engine marketing company can offer a wide array of professional services to help you grow your small business and expand to a wider audience. Thrive Agency has the certified and proven experts in the field of digital marketing who understand SEO and quality link building and will use innovative methods to make your small business shine. Connect with us today to find out how we can bring your small business the internet marketing results you’ve been looking for.