Are You Everywhere You Need to Be?
Have you ever wondered if the first users of the internet had any idea of the power it would hold? Getting sucked into the world of the internet everyday is inevitable and, in most cases, users are thankful for instant results. Searching the web for a new restaurant to try in town or reviews on a shoe brand or the newest bathroom tile trends is second nature to even toddlers. Everyone knows they will be provided with answers and a list of options in milliseconds. For businesses, being in that list of options is vital, but do you know where people are searching for your products and/or services? Consumers use different channels to search for their wants and needs depending on their shopping habits, the product or service, where they are in the sales funnel and, simply, what apps they like using the most.
When scraping the surface of where consumers search, it can be confidently stated that Google is used the most (by a landslide). Now a pretty important question: Does your business have a Google My Business account? When someone is searching for your business, you want to make it as easy as possible for them to find and click onto your website. Without a Google My Business account, you are providing your competitors with precious time to infiltrate the search of a could-have-been customer. Scared yet? You should be! Setting up an account takes 15 minutes and it allows you to post updates, photos and show off your Google rating. This will give your potential customers all the information they want and need in seconds.
Maybe a consumer wants to get to know more about your organization before making their buying decision. Maybe they want to see a portfolio of your past work. Maybe they want to see which of their friends are also interested in you. Maybe they want to read some reviews or see photos others have tagged you in. Maybe they want to see what pages you are liking and what types of organizations you are supporting. Facebook can give someone a pretty great idea of what it is you are all about and beyond; but why is this important? Having a Facebook is crucial in creating a relationship with your customers and believe it or not, that’s what people want! Having an amazing Facebook presence is great for gaining new consumers from searches and stumbling on your page, but it is also great for retaining them.
Similar to Facebook, Instagram is also used to learn more about your organization. This could just be a simple search to see if your feed is trendy, visually appealing or showing their ideal lifestyle which will help with the decision on if your business is interesting enough for someone to support you.
Known as the hub for current trends, Instagram is effectively being used by growing brands, like Madewell, through their partnerships with influencers. One of the best ways to gain new customers is to allow them to stumble upon your product or service while scrolling through the feed of their favorite “Insta Famous” blogger or celebrity. When consumers see someone they trust vouching for your product, you’re in. We feel pretty strongly about the power of influencers and what they can do for your business; check out our blog post explaining why it is so important in today’s world.
This is a great outlet for happy and unhappy consumers to express their experiences directly to the organization. This gives businesses the power to reverse the negative experiences and do all they can to change the consumers mind and to also reinforce the positive experiences people share. Immediate responses allow for less time for the negativity to be spread by word of mouth and will show others that you are paying attention to both the good and the bad. The negative comments may also provide a good place to source new ideas to improve your business as a whole.
A place of dream closets, homes, destination vacations and recipes, Pinterest is for the dreamers but has turned into an online gift registry for friends and family. Some consumers build out their boards with the wardrobe they will be purchasing for next season while others build it out for fun, with no intention on purchasing. With this mix of user buying intention, this low maintenance site can be a wonderful tool to inspire people with your products, to spread your products to other people quickly (with very little work) and to let more people in on what inspires your business.
The new king of B2B communication has emerged! Being a powerful source for finding new employees (or highly skilled ones finding you) and connecting with potential clients, having an account is all around beneficial. This site is fairly low maintenance and occasional posting is made easy by copying and pasting some of your Facebook content over. Show off your portfolio and talk business on this site! People who want to talk business with you will find you on LinkedIn so make sure your first impression is a strong one.
By using this search, the intent of the users are mixed. Either these are the type of consumers who know exactly what they want and are going to buy today or they are dreaming up what they may want (similar to Pinterest users) in the future. No matter the reason of the search, you want your products to be the ones people are using to base their dreams off of. Let’s say you are a contractor, you can post your latest projects and show your work to people everywhere. By gaining that popularity, people in your area will know who you are. Use this as another location to have your portfolio out there for people to find and increase your brand awareness.
When a consumer is using Yelp, they are most likely pretty far down that sales funnel. They already know they need a plumber or an Italian restaurant to eat at tonight but they still want to make the correct decision. Having a strong presence on Yelp with good reviews and relevant ads will make it hard for users to miss you. The investment in Yelp might be a pretty hefty one compared to the others we have discussed but there’s a reason behind this. Yelp users want to buy so why not give them an opportunity to spend their money with you. On your account, give consumers as much information as you can and picture yourself using this search tool. What is the most important to you? Reviews or price point or pictures or rating?
Having your organization’s name in as many locations on the web as possible will increase your SEO while making you much more accessible and searchable to consumers. You basically want to be EVERYWHERE you can think of and then some.