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The internet has grown into one of the largest marketplaces in the world. It’s a hub for tons of unique businesses that grow with their own strategies, and it requires commitment, patience and perseverance to keep them going — but passion makes all the difference.
When I started my first lifestyle website, I had no clue what was the best direction to take or how to get visitors. I made a lot of mistakes, and as frustrating as it was at the time, I learned from them. It allowed me to become who I am today, and you can use these lessons to jump-start your own online business.
1. Build a better and faster website
Your website will be the first thing people see when they visit, and it’s how prospects and customers will know who you are. If your website is poorly designed or not optimized for mobile devices, then you’re missing out on a lot of traffic. You can also lose interested visitors because of navigation difficulties and disorganized pages.
A slow-loading site is frustrating for web surfers, which is why you should invest in designing a fast-loading site that gives users an easy browsing experience. A clean layout makes it easier for clients to get around and look at other products while keeping content organized helps retain visitor interest. Google’s page experience update (which is the update that rewards fast-loading sites) has prompted many business owners to modernize their websites, so you are losing out on traffic if you have not already.
Related: How to Start a Business Online
2. Use SEO to get more results
Search engines like Google look for keywords that people search for when they want specific products, so the more those keywords are implemented into your site and its content — such as blogs and product descriptions — the easier it is for users to discover you. Optimizing your layout and having fresh content and images related to specific keywords can make a huge difference in how many visitors find you.
However, SEO doesn’t always pay off instantaneously. It takes time to get your site ranked higher in search results, and if you’re just starting out, then you’ll need to put in a lot of elbow grease before you see positive results. Your SEO strategy should include, besides keyword optimization, off-site SEO factors, such as link building to get more backlinks and social-media shares.
3. Use an aged domain name
Aged domains automatically generate a sense of trustworthiness for search engines, making it hard to compete with them. This is because they have been around longer than new sites and are more familiar in general. They also come up higher on the first pages of Google searches, giving you an edge over your competition that can’t be matched when starting out fresh with a newly formed domain name.
Aged domains cost more money, and it can take a lot of time to bring up rankings for your new domain name. However, this is a great investment in the future if you plan to stick around for a while because it will take less time and effort in the long run.
4. Have a dominant social-media presence
A massive part of any business’s success today is the presence it has online. Social-media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest have been invaluable tools to businesses big and small for years now, and this trend will only continue as time goes on. By learning how to use social media effectively, you can increase your following, get tons of new visitors each week and even influence their purchases with ease.
By using a combination of humor, helpful information about your products or services and anything else that works well for your brand, you’ll be able to grow a lively community around your business in no time at all.
Related: Examples of Online Business Ideas
5. Use advertising methods wisely
Google AdWords, Bing Ads, Facebook ads — there are tons of ways for you to market your business online! With such a huge amount of options available to businesses today, advertising can be very frustrating when done the wrong way. However, it’s also a great tool that can help grow your business into something larger without even having to spend much money at all.
Each platform has its own benefits and pitfalls that may end up being too costly or not have enough visibility for you to get the results you want. Use them together with SEO if possible, but be careful about spending too much money on advertising without getting enough return on your investment.
6. Track your progress top-to-bottom
Investing money into strategies that don’t work is never a good way to grow your business. Whether you’re using an advertising platform, building links to increase traffic or trying any other online marketing strategy, you’ll want to track your progress so that you can make the best decisions and get profitable results.
The simplest way of doing this involves tracking basic metrics like the number of visitors coming through each page on your site and where they come from. With this information, you can see what’s working and what isn’t for your site and improve over time.
Money matters, and so does time. Many businesses fail to take advantage of the internet as a marketing tool because they don’t have enough time or money to invest in online strategies that could help them improve in the long run. However, put in the effort and learn how to set yourself apart from competitors while still being productive. You’ll be able to get tons of traffic without breaking your budget.
The online world is constantly evolving and growing rapidly, with new tools, resources and platforms becoming available all the time. It’s easy to get stuck in a rut and keep doing things the way they’ve always been done, but this will prevent you from reaching a wider audience.
You have to stay up-to-date with changes that can benefit your business or help it grow by using methods that make sense for your company. You’ll never find success if you refuse to change. Ultimately, what matters is staying persistent and passionate about your business because these are the qualities that make all the difference.