To some business owners, marketing your business online can seem like quite a daunting prospect and, while you know you should be doing it, you may be unsure of how or what you need to do. In fact, a 2017 report found that out of 500 small-medium business owners just 254 of them have a basic understanding of SEO. As a consequence, most people will look towards engaging with a digital marketing agency to improve their business’s online performance, as they either don’t understand what they need to do or they simply don’t have the time to do it themselves.
With that being the case, even for those that are currently marketing their business online, a recent study showed around 49% of organizations do not have a clearly defined digital marketing strategy and another report by HubSpot/State of Inbound found that 39% of marketers don’t think their organization’s marketing strategy is effective – so there is clearly a disconnect between strategy creation and execution. Ultimately, though, whether it is yourself or an agency that’s marketing your business online, here are a few essential digital marketing methods that are proven to drive traffic to your website.
Almost any professional engaged in the digital marketing industry will advise that SEO is always worth putting resource and time into as part of your wider marketing strategy, as gaining greater visibility for your core keywords should naturally produce an upturn in traffic. In fact, HubSpot/State of Inbound also reported that 61% of marketers claim that SEO is a high inbound marketing priority and this should come as no surprise to any budding business owner. Literally millions of potential customers use search engines, such as Google, every day so by not investing time in promoting your business on them you’re passing up on a prime opportunity to attract new customers.
On-page SEO is still one of the most crucial aspects of SEO to get right, purely because search engines look to identify the topic of a page from the repetition of certain keywords. By researching and optimizing the page for keywords that carry high search volumes, you’ll be able to gain greater visibility across search engines and increase the flow of targeted traffic to your website. To support this, a report from 2017 found that 48% of 1,200 global digital marketers feel that on-page SEO is still considered to be the most effective SEO tactic, so it should be considered as a priority for most online business owners.
On the other side of the fence, some would argue that off-page SEO – such as Link Building and Manual Outreach – is possibly the most effective method of increasing referral traffic from search engines. However, off-page SEO takes time and resource since it should be an ongoing method, much unlike on-page SEO which doesn’t really require frequent attention. This is a notion that has been echoed throughout the digital marketing community too, though, where the same report from 2017 also found that 65% of marketers agree that link building is the most difficult tactic to perform. As such, this is where most business owners will engage with an agency to assist with link building and manual outreach.
For many businesses, Pay-per-Click is a superb way of winning new business from search engines and, if a healthy conversion rate is maintained, will continue to deliver an ROI on your marketing spend. Although PPC isn’t always the most cost-effective method of digital marketing, running Google Ads campaigns will promote your brand in prime locations for your chosen keywords to give you the best possible chance of generating traffic. To illustrate this, a report on PPC stats & trends found that the average click-through-rate of a paid ad is 2%, while ads in position 1 typically generate an average of 8%. In monetary terms, though, according to the Google Economic Impact Report businesses make an average of $2 in revenue for every $1 they spend on AdWords, so PPC should be also be considered as a high priority for most online businesses.
Google Display & Shopping
As a more creative method of marketing your business via PPC, Display Marketing and Shopping are excellent ways to attract new customers and increase traffic flow. According to Google, their Display Network contains over 2 million sites and reaches over 90% of people on the Internet, whether via websites, mobile apps or video content. As such, promoting your products in this way offers business owners an additional channel to monetize with product sales, which is especially beneficial to ecommerce businesses.
Designed to target customers who have already expressed an interest in your products / services, Remarketing focuses on reengaging with them by promoting previously viewed products as a way to generate more sales. In the visual ads that are served to potential customers, initiatives such as sales or offers are the most ideal methods of attaining a sale or additional visits to product pages.
Aside from the fact that Social Media is an effective method of managing your business’ reputation, with the right strategy you can also drive referral traffic and potential customers to your website. The key to success in Social Media is to understand your audience, so that you can ensure you’re promoting the right products to the right people at the right time. Additionally, with the plethora of platforms available you can entirely tailor your strategy to target specific audiences, whether your focus is B2B or B2C.
While regular and ongoing organic social media management can be quite time-consuming, when executed correctly it can bring a wealth of benefits to your overall strategy. Paid social media management on the other hand works in a similar way to Google Ads with a PPC model, but enables business owners to specifically target certain demographics to promote their products / services to. It’s also relatively inexpensive too, but can be an excellent method of trying to attract customers from new audiences that haven’t engaged with your business before. To demonstrate this, a report from 2017 found that 64% of consumers say that watching a video on social media influenced them to make a purchase.
You may have heard the term, ‘Content is King’, well you should probably believe it because it underpins almost everything within digital marketing. As examples, without content;
- Your website would look empty
- Your SEO wouldn’t work
- Your PPC Ads would literally just show a URL
- Your Social Media Channel would have 0 posts
Despite its pivotal role within other digital marketing disciplines, Content Marketing has grown to play a significant role within any digital strategy. Whether in the form of webcopy, blog posts, resource / downloadable guides; digital content is one of the most effective methods of getting your business noticed online, becoming a thought-leader and promoting your products / services within context.
Digital marketing is all about finding out what works best for your business, which is why being active across as many marketing channels as you can will be beneficial to you overall. When crafting your strategy, you should look to adopt a data-driven approach, where you review and refine your campaigns after set periods of time to see what’s working for you. Then, simply do more of what works and less of what doesn’t!
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