While your brick and mortar store may be the physical foundation of your business, a strong online presence massively increases brand awareness, builds your audience, and drives growth for your business.
If digital is a new playing field for your business, we’ve put together a list of our top tips below to help. We’re covering mistakes to avoid when transitioning your traditional business to digital platforms, while keeping your core brand values shining through.
Not Researching the Competition
The online world, particularly digital marketing, can be daunting: updates seemingly released daily, the investments necessary to step into the digital world, researching platforms to see what seems right for you, and training to understand how each of those platforms work all combine to an intimidating picture.
Before your initial investment (or upgrades), research what your competition or industry benchmarks are doing – are they offering apps, a sophisticated website, or perhaps an online booking system or chatbots? Which social media platforms are they on, and how are they using them? Do you see their ads come up if you search for your business terms on search engines, or do you see ads for their sites after you visit?
Finding out what the competition is doing is a great first step in establishing a baseline for what you want your own online presence to look like.
Not Seeking Subject Matter Experts
Confused about what online presence you should be using? Intimidated by generating Reels and TikToks, creating Google ads campaigns or building a website? Not sure where to start online?
Our team at Sprint Digital are experts in helping businesses grow digitally – get in touch with us if you’re interested in a digital marketing partner to gain insights and lift some of the weight off your shoulders. With all decisions approved by our clients, you remain in control of your online presence, without all the hard work or insider knowledge.
Not Understanding Your Target Audience
When you create marketing messages, who are you talking to? Who are your audience personas? Even something as simple as the year they were born can flip an entire strategy on its head. Baby Boomers, Gen X, Millennials and Gen Z stereotypically have different online preferences; use these to your advantage to market to them.
The choices you make for your online presence can create first impressions of your brand - make your choices wisely!
Not Focusing on Customer Service and Requirements
Poor customer service can be a huge detriment to your brand. Bad news travels fast, which includes any negative interactions your customers may experience.
This rings even truer for your online presence. To turn your browsers into buyers, online systems need to be seamless, easy to use and clear.
You have likely come across websites that just don’t work properly on your phone, sites with pop-ups that cover important buttons, unclear information, different branding on multiple platforms or no option to contact the company.
Your customers notice these too, and it leaves an unfavourable impression in their mind. Don’t neglect the care you put into your in-person customer service when you make the switch to digital!
Focusing on the Short Term
Prior to commencing your online ventures, always focus on your long-term goals to stay focused on the key benefits the online world has to offer your business in particular.
Online actions and campaigns can take months to make a return on their investment, while others are instantaneous.
Lacking a long-term strategy can cost dearly. Partnering with a digital marketing agency will help your brand identify the steps to succeed online in the long term, not just your first quarter.
As you know, branding is essential – that’s just as true online. Branding consistency builds familiarity, loyalty, and credibility. When moving or upgrading online, be consistent with your language, tone, fonts, colours, personality, and every other touchpoint you have with your audience.
Overwhelming Online Strategies
Take it one step at a time!
You can easily become overwhelmed by all the tasks necessary for a successful digital presence – there’s a lot to keep track of, which can cause a backlog in work. You probably don’t need to be on seven different social media channels, or sending emails every day (in fact, we don’t recommend it). Prioritize strategies that make sense for your business and goals.
Prioritise tasks, or outsource tasks as needed, to ensure all your digital platforms are controlled and monitored.
Setting Unrealistic Goals and Expectations
Before any online campaign, have a plan in mind of what you want to achieve. Prepare for teething issues and trials and errors before your campaign is streamlined.
To keep track of your progress, set interim goals to check the impact of the transformation over time. As mentioned, the bigger goals will take time to take hold and make an impact.
Have patience and set realistic expectations to reap the long-term benefits.
Not Creating a Goal-Oriented Digital Experience
It’s one thing to have a nice online presence, but what do you want your audience to do with it? Take the perspective of your audience and build a roadmap of the actions you foresee them taking (or guide them to take).
Decide on your goal and work backwards to make a step-by-step plan of all the actions your audience needs to take. Intertwine your brand values into the content they see, focus on usability, and ensure your content contains clear call to actions.
Forgetting Compliance with Regulations
Things can easily take a U-turn if compliance is not on the forefront, with penalties in place for lack of GDPR compliance. Our team understand the significance of compliance and can guide you to use the right options to keep your digital presence on the right side of regulations.
Not Monitoring Regularly
You’ve done it! Your online presence is up and running – be it a website, booking system or app.
With all the hard work done to get these platforms live, ensure you regularly monitor them to ensure all is running smoothly. Perhaps content needs to be updated, maybe the system needs to be updated or the payment system is not accepting credit cards – catch them early!
Is your traditional business ready to transition to digital? Reach out to our team for a consultation on strategy, website design, paid advertising campaigns, SEO and more.