E-commerce has revolutionised the business world and small businesses have been positively influenced by the changes. The availability and accessibility of creating and implementing an e-commerce platform has meant that large companies aren’t the only ones to enjoy the benefits of selling products online. Small businesses have found success online and these companies have been able to grow beyond their expectations. So, how can your small business benefit from e-commerce in terms of sales?
Attracting a larger customer base
Perhaps the most obvious benefit of e-commerce is how it expands your customer base. If you are a small brick-and-mortar store, then you can’t expect to generate customer numbers beyond what is locally possible. On the other hand, when you set up an e-commerce site, your customers are not bound by geography. You can sell to customers around the world. Even if you don’t want to get started with international shipping, you’ll still be able to sell to a broader audience within your country. The benefit for a small business comes from how the increased amount of sales is generated with almost no additional overhead cost.
Access to commercial platforms
In order to enjoy growth in sales, small businesses naturally have to be able to get the word out. You need to ensure the customer base is able to find you and your products online. When your business is small, your website might not always be attractive enough to generate enough visitors. But e-commerce doesn’t just happen on single websites – there are plenty of commercial platforms that are open to all, no matter what the size of the business. Platforms such as Amazon and Etsy can be great for small businesses, not just in terms of visibility, but also how these sites offer analytics tools and help with sales and shipping. Small businesses can also be on a level playing field on different shopping portals aimed at helping customers to save money. Discount providers like OZCodes.com.au can help you save money and ensure that you are saving the best on a wide variety of esteemed products. This makes sure that your customers are attracted to find your products or services.
Free or cheaper promotion
Related to above point is how e-commerce and the Internet have helped provide free or cheaper promotional options for small businesses. Traditionally, the marketing costs have placed small businesses in disadvantage. The cost of advertising in the newspaper or TV has continued to increase and physical advertising elsewhere can cost thousands. The Internet, on the other hand, provides tons of routes on a much more level playing field.
If your business is not yet promoting itself on social media, then you need to get started immediately. Regular posting on sites like Twitter and Instagram can help drive up sales. The great thing about marketing online is how you can utilise the power of social media and get your customers to advertise for you. If you can get them to post about your business, you reach more people and you didn’t even have to do anything beyond providing a great service and product.
Not to mention how much easier it is to personalise the marketing to suit your customers. If you have a wide customer base, you don’t need that one single ad to suit all – you can use different platforms and marketing methods to reach different segments and ensure your promotional material is always appealing to the person in question.
Better and more personalised service
E-commerce has also helped drive sales because of the personalisation opportunities. This is especially good for small businesses, which might handcraft most items regarding customer preferences. You definitely don’t need to focus on mass production in order to make it in the e-commerce market.
As you learn about your customers, you can start offering more personalised solutions. Customers of the modern era love to tweak their products and buy something that isn’t available for everyone else – uniqueness and personality are the big words of the decade, if not century.
Easier way to shop and sell
Overall, e-commerce has made the process a lot easier. Not only can it be easier for you to sell as a small business online, but the customer also benefits from the simplicity and ease of shopping this way. The simplicity can help your small business, as customers tend to look for things online before venturing out in the shops. Therefore, if you can provide a niche service, the customer is likely to opt for the ease of online shopping rather than start looking around.
E-commerce has truly revolutionised the way businesses sell. What’s better is how this revolution has boosted the opportunities available for small businesses. Small businesses are not at a huge disadvantage anymore. In fact, they can often offer a more unique experience to the customer, making their products and services more appealing.
If your business is not yet part of the e-commerce revolution, then hopefully the above points will convince you to join up. You’ll experience higher sales and improved growth as a result.
Small Biz, Big Name: The 5 Most Effective Marketing Strategies for Small Businesses in 2019
Running a local business is tough. So tough, in fact, that 50% of small businesses fail within five years of startup.
With such a competitive marketplace and with so many challenges, it has never been a better time to think about your marketing strategy.
Having effective marketing strategies will help your business stand out from the crowd and set you ahead of your competitors.
However, marketing techniques change all the time, and it’s possible there are new techniques that could help your business reach out to even more customers. So, check out these effective marketing strategies to make sure your business stays ahead in 2019.
1. Facebook Ads
If your small business does not advertise on Facebook, you should reconsider. In fact, two million businesses advertise on Facebook, so there must be something in it!
Facebook ads are an inexpensive way to reach a wide audience. They also have the added bonus of targeting to your chosen audience demographics and location.
Creating a Facebook ad is also pretty quick and easy and does not require specific skills. All you have to do is create a regular Facebook post with images or video to upload, and away you go.
2. Instagram Stories
Instagram marketing is a great way for small businesses to showcase their products and services. Your business may already be using it as a social media tool, but Instagram is always adding features that you might not be aware of.
Instagram stories are a particularly good way of taking your customers “behind the scenes” of your business and building up a real rapport with your followers.
There are lots of fun features in the stories platform that can make your posts really eye-catching, and it is a great way to live-blog events and product launches.
3. Video Marketing
By 2020 video will account for 79% of all internet traffic. So if your business does not have video marketing strategies, you could be missing out.
YouTube is an excellent platform for product demonstrations, “how to” videos, and even holding Q&A sessions. They can increase brand awareness, and help customers get to know the story behind your business.
4. Email Marketing
Using emails for marketing is not a new idea. However, if you have been using the same old templates for a while, it could be time for your small business to upgrade its email marketing strategy.
Modernize your email content can be a really effective marketing strategy, and demonstrate to your customers that you are a forward-thinking business.
Keep the written content short and snappy, and always include images and videos.
5. Optimize For Mobile
People spend a lot of time looking at their phones. If your small business website is not optimized for mobile, you are putting yourself at an immediate disadvantage.
Always double check all pages of your website to make sure they look as good as they can on all devices. Make sure that your site loads quickly too, as users are less likely to hang around waiting for it if they are on a mobile device.
Tips On Effective Marketing Strategies And So Much More
So those are five tips on effective marketing strategies for small businesses in 2019.
If you found this useful, then why not check out some more of our marketing guides right here.
Things to Consider Before Measuring Digital ROI
Measuring digital ROI can often prove confusing if you don’t know what you are looking for. You can use soft metrics like social media impressions, email engagement, and website visitors which are essential for shaping your digital marketing strategy.
Or you could focus on hard metrics, like spend and revenue. Both hard and soft metrics feed into calculating digital ROI. This confusion often leads to businesses all over the world outsourcing their digital workloads to a digital marketing agency.
First of all, lets lay out some of the types of key performance indicators that can help you determine your ROI –
- Overall digital performance: Traffic, sales leads and user reach.
- Channel: social media platforms, search engines, websites
- Performance based on source: Pay-per-click, sales emails, direct website traffic and organic search.
- Performance based on digital campaign: Conversion rates, lead generation and click-throughs to your website.
Once you have decided which key performance indicators are the most applicable to you and your business, you can then start to measure them to determine your ROI. However, do be aware that measuring ROI does have some disadvantages. It all depends on what type of business you are and what constitutes the return. At the same time, it also depends on what the original investment was. Your company need to determine and agree on both of these factors before measuring ROI.
6 Metrics to Help You Determine Your ROI
Once you gain an understanding of what your ROI objectives are, you need to consider the following metrics, and these are what will ultimately help you determine whether a campaign has been successful or not.
Cost Per Lead. This is the amount that you spend on a campaign which is then divided by the number of new leads you get.
Cost Per Acquisition. This is very similar to cost per lead. The difference is that its an actual transaction.
Click-Through Rate. This metric depends on whether a customer clicks through to your website as a result of digital marketing activity. When calculating click-through rates, make sure that the clicks are directly linked to the campaign you are running. For example, if you are running a paid campaign on Facebook, then any clicks you get from Twitter do not apply to the ROI.
Unique Monthly Visitors. This metric will tell you how visitors are coming to your website every month. However, do be aware that this is a very broad metric to measure and needs more investigating to determine which visitors are a direct result of a marketing campaign. Our tip would be to segment this metric by “paid, organic and social.”
Understand Your Customers and Their Consumer Habits
With digital marketing, it’s important to recognise the fact that not all customers can be regarded as equal. This is because not all of them will return to spend money with your business on a regular basis. On the flipside of that, some will consume a lot more of your digital marketing efforts but never convert into a paying customer. With this being said, marketing teams need to understand that it’s not about the number of online users reached, but the type of user reached.
For example, you need to consider what a customer’s transaction value is. You need to identify if they are spending money with you for smaller purchases on an ad-hoc basis or you’ve have found that they are a consistent buyer and have a loyal relationship with your business. There is another factor that can be taken into consideration and that can be the number of years that a customer has been using your business for. By looking at this will allow you to determine their loyalty.
The best course of action for your digital marketing efforts would be to identify who your most profitable customers are, and where they are coming from in terms of your digital marketing efforts. Did they see a social media post? Or, did they receive a product newsletter from you via email? Returning customers are the ones to have the most positive impact on your business, resulting in repeat transactions and higher profits.
Know Where You Are Spending Your Money
If your digital marketing campaign has been strategically planned and implemented in the right way by creating achievable objectives, then this can be a great way to generate promising results and provide you with data to support any future campaigns. Failing to keep track of how much money has been invested in a digital campaign will cause you nothing but problems and your ROI calculations will be wrong.
Building An Anthill: How to Market Your Pest Control Business
People have had problems with pest infestations for as long as civilization has existed. Because of this, you can rest assured that your pest control company will always be in demand.
And, because you know that your customers are already around, the only thing you must worry about is letting them know how to find you.
So, how do you spread the work and track down new customers?
Here’s everything you need to know about marketing your pest control business.
Create a Website
As we said before, the internet is the most powerful tool available to small business owners nowadays. And, the easiest way to take advantage of it is by creating a website.
A website will allow customers and clients to get a taste of the services you have to offer, get an idea of how much you charge, and get in contact with you.
While getting any old website up is a good first step, you may want to check out a few other pest control company’s sites to get an idea of what you should include.
Check Your Local Listings
Phone books are officially antiquated. These days, if you want to track down a specific service in your area, you turn to something like Google Maps.
If you’ve been open for a while, there’s a good chance you already have an online listing. But that doesn’t mean you’re in control of the information on it.
You need to claim all your online listings and make sure they include up-to-date contact information and a link to your company’s website.
Start a Blog
Once you have your website up and running, you’ll need to start generating a little traffic to it. And, one of the most surefire ways to help give your site the SEO boost it may need is by publishing content on it regularly.
A blog will give you an easy way to keep your site’s search engine rankings high. While also educating potential clients on pest control issues they may be having.
For example, by publishing an article on what bed bug bites look like, you could alert a new customer to bed bugs in their home and inspire them to hire you.
Having a website is an excellent start. But, one of the best ways to build an online presence and track down new customers is setting your business up with a few social media accounts.
Social media can put you in direct contact with your current and potential customers. It also allows you to keep customers up to date on any special deals your offering.
By keeping up with your social media, you can also use it to take control of your online reputation.
Marketing Your Pest Control Business
The internet can make marketing your company a breeze, but only if you know how to harness it. By following these tips, you’ll be able to market your pest control business and find dozens of new clients in no time.
Are you looking for a few more tips and tricks to help you take your business to the next level? We can help.
We have dozens of articles to help you start a new business or help you grow your existing company. Check them out today.
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