As a business owner you probably know that marketing is a critical aspect of growing your business. But there is so much out there that you may feel overwhelmed and unsure of where to start!
We’d like to share with you how you can benefit from marketing your brand online and what you need to know about registering your website address.
So why is it important to build your brand online?
- It expands your reach. You are not limited by the location of your storefront or office. You can really do business anywhere in the world.
- It is an opportunity to present a professional image of your brand. Your company’s image is greatly increased by having an online presence, and it gives you more credibility. Clients take you less seriously if they hear you don’t have a website.
- Better customer service. Through online technology, businesses can provide customer support more effectively, creating customer satisfaction and better customer retention.
- Information is more readily available to customers. You can make changes to company and product content quickly and easily and share these rapidly.
- You have the ability to do business 24/7 vastly increasing your potential to create more revenue.
- Relatively low start up investment.
- In addition, the number of searches done online is ever increasing.
- Your competition is online – you need only do a google search for your services or products so see what competition you have. You need to be there too!
- The greatest benefit is that you can measure anything that you do online. This is what makes digital marketing more powerful than any other media. Once you can measure something you can manage it and tell how effective it is; you can use the info to make changes and improvements continuously.
These are the sorts of things you can measure:
- Website visits, location of the visits, the pages most visited, and the devices people are using to access your website, etc.
- On social media you can see engagement, number of new followers, etc.
- On email marketing campaigns you can see open rate, unsubscribes, email addresses that aren’t valid anymore, and so on.
- Heat map tracking which reveals the parts of a web page that people are spending the most time looking at.
- You can also track the number of phone calls each campaign generates – yes, that’s right – you can tell which part of your marketing is working for you and concentrate on improving it and stop spending money on the campaigns that aren’t working! That is really powerful.
Where to start?
The first thing you need to do is register your domain and set up your website. Your website is your official mouthpiece on the internet. You have control over what you want to say on your website.
Ultimately you want your website and various social pages to be found on page one on Google when people search for your brand. Your website should be in position one, followed by your Facebook page, LinkedIn, Twitter page, You Tube channel, Blog, Google maps listing and so on.
As a business owner you want your brand to be taken seriously and the first way you do that is by having a proper website address also known as a domain name.
While Weebly and all those online website builders are great the catch most often is that you can only have an address like mybrand.weebly.com or mybrand.wordpress.com. So when you select a free website builder watch out for that.
The same applies when using a gmail, yahoo, live, webmail email address to name a few.
How to register your domain name
Your hosting company or digital marketing partner should be able to register it for you. Our favourite hosting company is Hetzner.
What you need to try and do is get your brand name.com or .co.za. To find out what is still available or to make an offer if the domain you want is already registered, go to http://whois.net/
When you register your domain name you must ensure that it is registered with the correct owner details to prevent any disputes down the line. The hosting company should not be the owner of the domain – you should!
This will enable you to keep these roles separated in your business and as you hire more people or as more people start to assist you, you can handover that email address so they can pick up all the sales and accounts emails.
In the beginning you may be receiving all the mail and checking these mailboxes yourself but that’s ok- your plan is to grow!
Cantaloupe Digital can assist you with domain registration and building your website and online presence.
Want to find out more? Please drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org