So you've made the leap. Your business has an online presence. That wasn't too bad, was it! But now you need to help the seeds you have planted to grow.
What are the key things to consider? Planning, People and Pitch!

Planning: Don't get overwhelmed

It's very easy for the new shiny online presence to take over your life. It's also simple to go the other way, stay in your comfort zone, and just ignore all the tools that have been set up. Both extremes will cause problems.

When you get your business online, make sure that maintaining your website, social media or blogs is something that fits into your daily routines. It doesn't need to be one big extra task, which will be abandoned when something more urgent comes along - take baby steps. Write blogs and tweets when you have something to say; update your best products on Facebook when you update your stocks; find the things that you can do more easily online and change your routines for the better.

People: Know Your Audience

Your website should come with a free tool called Google Analytics (if not - ring your developer!). This tells you who has been visiting you, and where they've come from. It'll help you understand how many people are coming to the site, what they've been looking for, and how they found you in the first place. It'll help you to plan where to concentrate your efforts. If you get a great response from Twitter, that's where you need to be. If no-one is coming to the site from your Facebook page, reconsider your strategy. Understanding analytics data saves you work in the long run.

Pitch: Be Concise

Can you describe what your business does in 160 characters or less? Try it. Write it down, and count the letters. It's harder than you think. Can you really get all the relevant detail into that short a phrase? The answer is - you must. Getting that description right opens up so many doors, both online and in the real world.

When you last searched online, you will have seen a page of results with a short bold heading and a couple of lines underneath. Those lines beneath (your web page's metadescription) are 156 characters long, and are the only thing a potential client can see that will set you apart from the other results on the page. Using a Twitter account? You have 160 characters to tell people about your business on your profile page. Facebook? Check the About text that appears under your cover photo. Online directories? Sometimes the space you have to sell your business on a free listing is very limited. Google+ page? Two lines of text.

It's all about the instant pitch - same as any contact with a prospective client, online or offline.

So, if you're developing your business online, remember the three Ps, and grab the opportunities that are out there.

Article by Kate Baucherel of Galia Digital.

Contact 0191 3002227.

NBSL LogoThis article is brought to you by NBSL's North East Business Support Fund which funds the costs of business improvement projects such as website development, marketing strategies, external consultancy – click here to find out more

The North East Business Support Fund  has hundreds of registered providers offering a wide range of business support. NBSL has used its best efforts to post on this web site the most accurate and reliable information given to us by our providers but does not guarantee the accuracy or completeness of any information. The thoughts and opinions expressed in these articles are those of the authors and are licensed to NBSL for publication on this website.

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