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Online Marketing Strategies to Grow Your Business
Are you taking your online marketing strategies seriously? Do you know how many leads come from your website? Do you know what percentage of leads convert into sales? Do you have a revenue goal set per month or per year? A solid online marketing strategy can help you answer these questions, and grow your business to six figures or beyond!
My company, Captivate Designs, is in its fifth year of business, and I have consistently experienced double digit growth each year. I am 30 years old, and I am very proud to say that I run a successful six figure business, while 90% of businesses fail within their first year. I consider my growth an achievement, but I am always looking for new ways to grow and improve and keep up with the times and technology.
Why am I telling you all this? Well, while many of you are running six figure businesses and beyond, some of my clients are not that fortunate. In fact, some are stagnant, their revenue is falling and they are overwhelmed and frustrated. Others are missing out on the revenue they could be getting from online marketing that will propel their business to the next level. Below are the online marketing strategies I use that help me consistently grow my business.
Proven Online Marketing Strategies
- I use my website tirelessly. Since my website is my storefront, everyone comes to me via my website. First they find me online, then they go to my website where there are numerous ways to contact me.
- I run pay per click. For most of the years I have been in business, I have used pay-per-click (PPC) marketing, because it provided me with instant gratification. It allowed me to control my positioning on search engines, and it provided me instant results. But my industry is becoming more and more competitive. The cost per click keeps going up, and click fraud is rampant. Therefore, my cost per lead and cost per sale were growing rapidly and I needed a backup plan. That’s when I turned to Search Engine Optimization (SEO), which has now allowed me to wean off my PPC addiction. SEO is really the best thing since sliced bread, because it’s like an annuity -- you can keep expecting payouts.
- I optimized my site for SEO. Initially I stayed away from SEO, because as someone who markets their business solely online, I didn’t have the luxury of waiting three to six months for my keywords to get to the top (that’s how long it took about four years ago). Today, you can get to the top in as little as 30 days. I now consider SEO the Holy Grail, because I realize it’s a long-term strategy, and unlike pay per click, I don’t stop showing up on the search engines once my ad runs out. Once I get to the top page, all I have to do is maintain my position. It’s the gift that keeps on giving.
- I write two articles per week and submit them to over 200 article directories. The benefits of writing articles and submitting them to article directories are twofold. Submitting articles provides quality back links that are highly regarded and rewarded by search engines, which is part of my SEO strategy. I also get traffic from people who read the articles, because they are relevant to what people are searching for and they contain the keywords that I am optimizing for.
- I post the same articles on my blog. I get a lot of mileage out of my articles, because I post each one on my blog, which has subscribers, so those people are also getting an update from me on a weekly basis, which leads to more sales. In addition, by posting the article on my blog, I create more pages, so each time I post a new article, Google re-indexes my website, which leads to getting a boost to my SEO, as well. I also create additional links within my website using the keywords in the article that I have posted on my blog.
- I tweet the same articles on Twitter. I then tweet the article on Twitter, where I have over 1000 followers. Some of these people read my article, and even share it with others. Again, I am able to generate more leads and sales from this effort. (Twitter works for me; for other businesses, a Facebook fan page or other social media site may work better.)
- I feature the same articles in my newsletter. I then use the same articles in my newsletter, which goes to over 5000 subscribers on a list that I have amassed over the last five years. By doing this, I usually get new sales or up sell another service.
Online Marketing Strategies Bring Results
Because of these strategies, my website gets over 1600 unique visitors per month; it’s up about 48% from last year, my conversion rate is around 2.2%, and my close rate varies between 33% and 50%. I generate between 10-20 sales each month.
How much traffic is your website getting? How much new business could you bring in if your website got 1600 visits per month? How much new business could you bring in if you could double your website traffic? How much would you be able to save if you can get all this traffic from SEO instead of pay-per-click?
It’s time to take your online marketing strategies seriously. It’s time to take advantage of the opportunities a website and the Internet offers. It’s time for you to grow your business.
Nicole McCullum is the founder of Captivate Designs, a web design company that provides small and mid-sized businesses with custom website design solutions including business web design, e-commerce web design, graphic design and internet marketing. Ms. McCullum has been featured on Inc.com as a Web Design Expert, and her web design tips and articles have been published in NY Enterprise Report and Strategy Magazine. For more information, visit www.CaptivateDesigns.com.