Any business owner worth his salt understands that customer interaction is vital to the life blood of a business. As a small business, you may not be able to compete with the low prices and variety available at bigger companies. It is through customer/company interaction that you can create customer loyalty. While face-to-face interaction is a tried and true method, you must remember that you can continue to engage with your customers when they’re not in your store. Here are a few methods to do so.
Create a Twitter and Facebook
As a technologically advanced society, we are a glued to the internet. According to a study by Experian Marketing Services, Americans spend 16 minutes of every hour browsing their social media sites. As a business owner, you can increase the amount of time that you can interact with your customers by starting social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter, and Google +.
You can create a successful social media presence by:
- Posting on your social media accounts regularly.
- Creating links to your websites on your social media accounts.
- Encourage customer engagement by encouraging users to ask questions and comment on posts.
- Answer any customer questions in a timely manner.
- Announce contests, sales, and company events online.
Create a Company Website
Don’t forget to set up a company website. As a new business owner, you may have other concerns, but creating a website is a vital part of a successful marketing campaign. Creating a company website can serve many purposes. It will give you:
- Another method for old and new customers to locate your company.
- The ability to provide contact information for customers with questions. It is vital that you try to answer any relevant questions. Failure to do so may annoy customers.
- The ability to broadcast your values, services, and ideals. A thoughtfully planned out website can be an area where you can set up your brand presence.
- To announce company events, specials, or contests.
- To create a company blog with quality and informative content. Quality content will be appreciated by your customers, can draw in new customers, and can increase how you rank in the search engines.
Creating a Company Website
Website creation is not a cookie cutter equation. There are multiple methods to create a successful website. Here are a few things to consider.
Setting up a domain name. Before creating your website, you need to choose your URL. Domain registration can be done online for a small yearly fee. In this area you have two choices, your domain name (www.google.com)and your extension (www.google.com).Your domain name should reflect your brand. The default extension for a commercial company is “.com.” You may also benefit from choosing an alternate extension (.co.uk or .co.au).
Creating Your Site. As a business owner, you will need to decide how you will create your site. If you are not all that knowledgeable in website development, you may need to hire someone, which shouldn’t be a problem in the current labor market. If you are building your own website and don’t have a background in web design or programming, then you will probably want to use a simpler content management system, like Quick.Cms. If you can afford some skilled third party help, however, I recommend using Drupal.
Drupal is a web site development software written in PHP. It has excellent security, optimizes your code for search engines, and is incredibly versatile. If you have a developer who can tell the program what he wants, Drupal can do it.
The downside of Drupal is the learning curve.
Drupal requires some real programming skills. This means that the initial website coding may require that you hire a team that specializes in Drupal development to create your site. The good news is that once the website is created, you should be able to add new content with very basic web development skills.
As a new company, you may not be able to spend any extra money on website design at this time, but that should not stop you from engaging with your customers over the internet. Set up your social media accounts and look into creating a temporary website on WordPress or Quick.Cms. Down the road you can look into creating a website with software that allows more flexibility.