Recently we did an article on how small businesses believe their website is too small to benefit from SEO. In the article, we cited statistics from Forbes indicating that only 17% of small business owners were actively investing in search engine optimization.

Based on an article we found on Small Business Trends, SEO isn’t the only digital marketing trend being neglected by small businesses. Is your business among the many that are missing out on new customers by not optimizing your online and social media presence?

Web.com’s Small Business Digital Trends Report, created in collaboration with Dr. David Ricketts, Innovation Fellow in the Technology and Entrepreneurship Center at Harvard, states:

“The number one reason why small business owners are online is to attract and engage with new customers, yet our report indicates small business owners may be having a hard time keeping up with the continually changing dynamic of the web.”

Check out the results from their study and learn 3 ways you can ramp up your digital marketing strategy in 2017:

  • 66% of small business owners believe having an online presence will help them grow revenue and attract more customers
  • Only 54% are confident that their online marketing is actually doing the job it’s supposed to do

 

Pro Tip #1 for Ramping Up Your Digital Marketing

According to the Small Business Digital Trends Report, SEO is the secret weapon for getting local leads. Here’s what pro, Dr. David Ricketts, says you need to do in 2017:

“Identify the unique aspects of your business: what makes your business stand out against the rest? Refine these concepts into specific keywords and phrases. Make sure these keywords are visible and plentiful on your website”

ProTip # 2 For Ramping Up Your Digital Marketing

It’s no longer enough to just have a simple website anymore. To be successful in 2017, and beyond, you’ll need to upgrade your online marketing strategy to stay ahead of the competition. If you get started now, you’ll have a good lead in the race for better online visibility and search results because, as Web.com’s research shows:

  • 26% of small business owners admit to having only a single-page website
  • 43% say they have no plans to change of improve their online presence in 2017
  • 42% admit that they don’t use both a robust website and social media channels to market their business

Harvard’s Dr. David Ricketts advises:

“A simple website is not enough for small businesses to be successful in 2017. Consider outsourcing this work to an online-marketing firm who knows how to keep you one step ahead of the competition, while also saving you hours of time.”

Pro Tip #3 for Ramping up your Digital Marketing

Source: Web.com

Embrace effective Social Media. Web.com’s Small Business Digital Trends Report shows that while the majority of small business owners are embracing social media, and 50% plan to invest in it in 2017, almost 90% struggle when using social media promotionally.

Technology and Entrepreneurship specialist, Dr. David Ricketts recommends that small businesses do the following to get the most from social media:

 

“Choose the social media platform that works best for your intended audience. Stay committed, consistent, and consider investing in paid promotion to boost your most successful posts.”

Summary

For your digital marketing efforts to be successful in 2017, you should:

  • Implement an SEO strategy that improves your visibility on local listings
  • Understand and employ online marketing best practices that will keep you ahead of the completion and on top of customer expectations
  • Make use of industry-specific social media channels that will engage customers


About Author

Sherene Funk

Sherene Funk is a voracious reader who owns more books than she can ever read in this lifetime (but that doesn't stop her from collecting more). A graduate of Brigham Young University, she has published several humorous non-fiction articles and worked in advertising for many years before moving to her current position as a writer on modern retailing at Rain Retail Software.

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