When to start developing an online presence?

When to start developing an online presence?
That is the question of the day!

When to start developing an online presence?!?  Yes we are answering this question for you as best as we can.  This is a very long blog and we want to thank for reading it.

i4 Web Services - When to start developing an online presenceSo let’s get started, here are some common Social Media Marketing & Website SEO Service Questions for when people want to start building an online presence. First off, we should quickly discuss old school marketing and advertising.  While a listing in a phone book is not a bad idea, the fact is that the internet is a far easier way to find and contact a local business.

This is one reason why local web design, social media agencies, SEO companies, and online advertising agencies have become so important over the last few years. Because there are so many people and so much white noise on the web, even inside a search for local businesses, it can be hard to be noticed above all other competitors. And that is when people start getting either frustrated, scared, or just do not want to be bothered with it all.

Advertising your brand online (or on the internet) kind of is the wave of the future. Unfortunately for some people that does not make it an easy process nor a painless one either. For those willing to adapt to the twenty first century way of doing business, the rewards are great as internet marketing is far cheaper and less difficult than traditional methods of advertising.

The next thing many local businesses misunderstand is how to run social media marketing. It is more than simply making a Facebook page, a Twitter account, and posting to it on occasion. It requires dedication to both brand building and paying attention to sudden shifts in social attention. And this why we are writing the blog article – at our agency we have some answers to common questions small businesses tend to have about Social Media Marketing and Website SEO Design too.

When to start developing an online presence? Answered by i4 Web Services based in Florida – Here are 3 questions we hear a lot at networking meetings:

Isn’t It Cheaper to Run My Social Media on My Own?

Yes of course it is cheaper because you are doing it all yourself. But, the problem is that it’s not functional more so as it is time intensive. It is true – doing on-going social media requires time and attention to build your brand or brands if you have more than one. Which is something you need to really think about.

Do you want to spend hours each day focused on your online brand? Or is it a better use of your time and attention that you could be using for other things – I don’t know… like running your business. Do you have time to deal with this as well as these critical business tasks:

  • Payroll
  • Shipping
  • Receiving
  • Taxes
  • Bookkeeping
  • Hiring
  • Production
  • Service visits
  • Customer service issues
  • Prepping for meetings
  • Special Events
  • Answering the phone
  • Returning calls and emails
  • Meeting with vendors
  • Solving problems

This list goes on and on. Now add in setting up a social media account profile for numerous different channels you want to be found on, posting to them regularly, creating backlinks that make sense and that are visually appealing. Then to continuously check the internet to see what sort of information people are looking for and how you can introduce your brand to the mix?

When to start developing an online presenceTherefore, you could say it is cheaper to do it yourself of course but at what price? What are you willing to neglect? Bookkeeping?  From what I understand the IRS is not genuinely nice to people who make mistakes or only simply neglect to file their paperwork correctly. You know what they say – so you saved a few pennies but ended up spending a fortune in the end.

Now you can say – well this is a sales pitch to use your services. Maybe it is or maybe it is a chance for you to look at things with your eyes wide open. 

Can’t My “Branding” Simply Just Be Me?

Okay, so let us break this down a little.  It is your business, and your efforts are part of the brand image. Therefore, if you are a sole owner and not set up with a business name other than yourself – well yes, your brand is you!  But what if you start up a business that does not include your name? What if you start up a business with employees that are more so the face of the business than yourself? What if your business model is disconnected with personal interactions?

These are things to think about and consider. Now, again this is not a sales pitch – you name your business anything you want. You setup your business to operate anyway you think will give you the most profits at the end of the day.

So, with that being said – properly building a brand involves finding the best way to present your company to the online community. This is done by highlighting the ways you do business that are new, different, and interesting. So, by building a brand, all you are doing is highlighting your best features.  Feeling concerned about this point – do not worry we can give you some advice if needed – just give us a call to schedule a branding consulting appointment at 407-416-1515 /  Read more of our thought about – When to start developing an online presence? Answered by i4 Web Services based in Florida

Why Do I Never See Any Return On Investment (ROI) For My Social Media Marketing?

It is true that certain aspects of any type of advertising or marketing require luck. The hard truth is that all marketing requires alittle bit of luck. Anything you send out needs to be professional with an easy to understand clear message.

After that it becomes a question of:

  1. Does the prospect that saw your marketing or advertising piece need it now?
  2. Do they want to get it today or do they want to wait to get it at some point in the future?
  3. Are they going to go price shopping for the lowest bidder?
  4. Do they want to see what people’s experiences were for using your business?
  5. Do they need to run the purchasing decision by a partner or spouse for approval first?
  6. Is this potential purchase built into their budget plans?

When you look at it this way – are you a business setup for impulse (fear of missing out also known as FOMO) purchasers, emergency purchasers, or when they need it, they will think about coming to you?  This is super important to consider. Let us look at example for a second.  Real estate – there are so many realtors and real estate agents out there. Every community has plenty of commercial and residential real estate agencies. A realtor can make a huge profit off the sale of property.

i4 Web Services -When to start developing an online presenceBut it is a matter of being in the face of the community. Why? Because not everyone wants to sell their home today nor are looking to buy one. Generally, buying a property is one of the biggest investments a person will make in their lifetime. With that being said – it is not a matter of ‘if’ but ‘when’. You want to be front and center ‘when’ someone is ready to make a buying or selling decision.

You want your marketing to be fresh and interesting. You want to be in their face weekly – so when they are interested in doing something you are there. You have credibility by showing that you are an active business that is alive and well plus ready to get to work for the customer.

So, sending out flyers, mailing a postcard, doing a radio commercial, or taking out a magazine advertisement require just as much luck as online marketing. It is not that online marketing and social media marketing do not give you a return, it is that they give you a return over time.

That is right it takes time to build a brand. It takes time to get your company’s website and social media accounts to a place where they can be recognized. These things do not happen in a week or a month. Sometimes it takes a year or more to properly optimize a company for online marketing and social media advertising.

Thanks Again For Reading ‘When to start developing an online presence?’ & i4 Web Services hopes it is very informational for you. But there is still more to read about!

Attracting a loyal following it something you grow overtime and not all at once. Even though it is so amazing to have instant gratification.  Even if your business is a fast-food restaurant – look at your business as being a 5-star restaurant that delivers the highest quality to its customers. That is how you build a long-term loyal following.

But the end results are worth it. By getting the ball rolling on marketing and optimizing for search engines really matters. It will take time and every minute you personally invest or have paid someone to do the work necessary for you matters. And really utilizing online marketing tactics, you could be setting the foundation for future growth. It requires an investment, both in terms of money and time. But if you are willing to make that investment, you can see some amazing returns.

Social Media should integrate with your blog perfectly.

Here is something to consider, there is no need to worry about integrating your blog with whatever content management system you are using for the rest of your site if you use WordPress for everything. Social Media sharing can happen right from your website.  You can post new articles from your website to Social Media platforms and increase your website visitors – thus increasing your potential new buyers of your products and services.  

A marketing campaign that includes blogging only adds more value to your business brand online. We recommend starting to write blog articles on day one and do not stop. We recommend if you do not wish to write article – hire someone to do it for you!  That is right – invest in your future right now.  Did you want to talk to us about content writing for you?  We do it and yes – that is a sales pitch – our number is 407-416-1515.

Web Design needs to Very User-Friendly – also known as User Experience or UX for short.

There are more robust and feature-filled website products are available these days. Unfortunately, some are weaker in user-friendliness (i.e. your website visitor). You should not ever be needing to teach your website visitors how to handle getting around the website. When you start building your website keep your user or site visitor in the front of your mind. How do you think they feel about your website page? If you are feeling awkward about it most likely they are too – but they will never tell you so.

WordPress Re-Design - i4 Web Services

Therefore, in our modern digital new world that we live in where connectivity and ease of use is everywhere, it is a matter of “when” and not “why” when it comes to establishing an online presence. Every kind of business will eventually have to take on the challenge of creating a website, a social media account, or another online footprint. It can be easy to dismiss website building and an online presence. 

Whether you are a local entrepreneur with years of industry experience or a startup that hopes to revolutionize something – your user experience needs to be on point and knowing that taking your brand online can positively impact your company.

Once you decide to build an online presence, where do you go next? Most people know Facebook, Google, and few others right off the bat. But your web design, its SEO and Social Media accounts need to be really thought out carefully. How do you create and then promote your website to ensure that your business benefits from the added exposure?

Do you want to build your website yourself or have someone do it for you?

This step may seem obvious, and at the same time, for many business owners, web design is a daunting prospect. Building a website is more straightforward but it is important to really consider every aspect of it. You do not have to be familiar with programming languages such as C++, Java, and Python, or do not know simple html code, but it is sometimes actually extremely helpful.

For people that are reading this – that literally do not have any resources to speak of and are concerned about being able to pay rent, get gas for the car, and to put food on the table. There are several nearly free tools online, including Weebly, Squarespace and Wix that work off a “what you see is what you get” model.

For the rest of the readers, that are not in such financial dire straits.  It would be better to invest in a custom domain and custom hosting package that fits your short and long-term business needs. Most website design platforms allow you to drag and drop design elements into ready-to-use templates. Which is great if you have the time to invest learning about navigating the software and not concerned about ‘blowing up’ your web design a few times.

i4 Web Services | Website Development, Design, SEO & MoreIf you are interested or maybe not interested in that way of doing business, i4 Web Services is on your side and we can help walk you through the creation process step by step. If you want us to do or you want to be involved to some extent. If you can afford it, you can also purchase more premium plugins that enable more customization beyond the standard website designs.

We work on a monthly retainer basis with our business and charity clients to serve as there developer, designer, and marketer for their online presence growth. This is a great option if you have the budget – feel free to call us about this option at 407-416-1515. And yes – that was another sales pitch.

Just remember that your initial goal is to build a website, and simply be “online.” You can refine its appearance and content over time, so do not feel as though that first homepage you put online is going to represent your company forever, most of our clients like to refresh or adjust everything once every few months or years.

Unlike a printed flyer – your web design is not printed so it can be changed – repeatedly.  There is no finish line and there is no limit to your imagination when working online. Keep in mind, that a website gives you the power to change your company’s messaging and imaging within seconds.

There are Tons of Great Themes for your website.

WordPress is offering more themes to choose from, and they are getting a lot of attention. Why? Because WordPress works well with search engines – it is no secret either. You will find a huge selection of great WP themes you can customize to fit your needs and we are here to help you if this becoming a little bit beyond your skill set. And if you think all WordPress themes are completely blog only – you would be wrong it can also serve as your content management system, customer relationship management software, and more.

Remember to design with your goals in mind even if you hire someone to help you.

As you begin to build your online presence, carefully consider what you want to achieve with it. Creating an online presence just because you feel you need one will not help you meet your goals. Take a moment to clarify your objectives, your goals, and your desired results first.  

By doing this, it can help you decide how to design that effective online presence you want. For instance, maybe you want to process online orders through your website. If you are an outdoor gear online shopping site, perhaps you hope that your online presence will increase your volume of overall impulse buys and customers who stop in to buy something again from you. Or maybe you would simply like to generate more leads for your mortgage business.

Make Certain Your Website’s Content Is Informative Enough

The main purpose of any website is to inform and engage future clients at all hours of the day. But if customers cannot find the information they need, they are only going to leave your site angry and frustrated. And yes – this will unfortunately decrease your potential future sales. Also, if the overall number of visits to your homepage decreases overtime, so will your SEO rank as well. It is important to make certain every page has a link to your home page thus making it easier for people to jump around your website quickly.

You may want take some time to review if you have enough content available on your website. It is important to consider having at least over 300 or more words per page of your website. By having less, it will hurt your page from being considered worthy to be found on a search engine.  Most bots may skip over the page if it is not built correctly and/or that it has limited readable content. Also, as you are thinking about your online presence – consider what avenues can implemented to increase the content as well.

Build and Establish Your Online Presence

Once you have done a lot of brainstorming, soul searching, product and service development – now it is time to build it all. Either do it yourself or hire professionals like i4 Web Services to do it for you.

A simple way to think about search engine optimization (SEO) on your website is:

  1. Inbound links your website.
  2. Outbound link in your website.
  3. Quality blog articles.
  4. More relevant content on your site is to a particular search query.
  5. Images with ALT text and the list goes on.

There are a lot of SEO to-do list items that can make your website more visible your website online. In general, when you type a phrase like “local lawyer” or “lawyer in (your city name here)” into a search engine, the websites with more inbound links and more relevant, high-quality content will be displayed first.

After your website is complete (for now), the next step is to promote it. There are several ways to do this. First, submit your sitemap to the search engines to crawl your website and get your site indexed with them too. This might mean directly submitting your link or your sitemap to Google, DuckDuckGo, Baidu, Yandex, Bing, and even Pinterest just to name a few.

Make Your Search Engine Marketing Work

Search engine marketing (SEM) is the sibling to SEO. It is not well known because so many people throw it into SEO.  So many times, clients have told us to improve their SEO but what they meant was improve our SEM.  This is critical to any online marketing strategy that can help you produce new leads.

However, having a poorly structured website and social media pages for that matter can limit how high your business shows up in search engine results. Or, even worse, it can negatively impact your search engine marketing activities and push your site farther down in Google.

If you notice your search engine marketing efforts are not working, ask us to do a FREE WEBSITE & SOCIAL MEDIA REVIEW, so we can check out how your site is structured and determine if it’s time to rework it.  Call us at 407-416-1515 today!

Well thanks for reading this blog article on “When to start developing an online presence?” Answered by i4 Web Services based in Central Florida and we hope you enjoyed.  We will be coming out with more articles – so check out our Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter Pages to stay up to date with new blog articles.  Thanks!

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