As a local business owner, you may be searching for a way that not only makes it easier for you to reach out to those in the community but also beyond. In the year 2021, it’s clear that having an online presence is beneficial to any and every business small or large. Building your local business online can be low-cost and done at the tip of your fingers by utilizing these three basic components; branding, social media, and a business website.
Branding is important in the online world. You want to have a consistent theme and voice that can transcend many platforms. Colors, fonts, sizing, and your business logo should be cohesive and make sense. Your branding will be what people associate and identify you with in any space online so it’s crucial that it’s unique to your business. Your branding can change with time, just make sure you have a base level to work with.
Once you have your basic branding down, social media will be one of the easiest ways to start to build your business online. You most likely already have a social profile on one of the main platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram, which already gives you the advantage of knowing the basic functions and tools of these platforms.
Once you create your business’ social profile(s) on whichever platforms you feel will be best for your business to reach its goal, it’s time to create content. Your content is the sole driver of your social media being successful in driving traffic and sales. Your content doesn’t have to be complicated. If you’re a baker, you can simply post a quality picture on Instagram of a dessert with a caption that fits the tone of your business whether more playful or straightforward factual. It can be that easy and if you want graphics, there are user-friendly sites like Canva that you can use to create designs for free.
Engaging with your current customers by giving them a follow, like, or comment will get your business’ presence known if you’re still fresh. It’s important to always engage as much as you can on social media to create relationships and positive experiences which will drive sales.
Having a website can be cost and user-friendly with sites like WIX and Squarespace. A website will help build your business beyond measure because it works as your online hub. It’s the one place you can have all accurate information about your business. From contact info, product images and inventory, and more. Using a website for sales will keep you organized and globally accessible if you’re seeking for your local business to have an expanded audience. To learn more about the basics of a website check out our article Owning Your Online Presence (Part 2).
Building your local business online isn’t hard, it just takes time.
Building your business online will help sustain it in the long run making the effort well worth it.
Angelica Espinoza is the founder and creative director of AE Creative Works. She oversees design projects for a wide range of clients while also contributing the graphic design, marketing strategy, and web design needed to execute their goals.