86% of Australians have access to the Internet.
64% will use search engines as the first step in making a buying decision.
50% will research a business on-line first even though the business may have been referred to them by a trusted family member, friend or colleague.
86% of smartphone searches are for local businesses.
74% of users read on-line reviews before making a buying decision.
93% of searches are made using Google.
1. The Internet has become the primary source for information.
2. Customers/clients expect you to have a presence on the Internet.
3. Your business will be judged by the impression your on-line presence conveys to the customer/client.
4. Mobile is key.
5. Google is the trusted authority in search and analytics.
To some this may read like old news whilst to the 70% of small businesses who are not on-line, you may want to reconsider your motivations for not having an on-line presence.
And by on-line presence, I am referring specifically to a website that is integrated with social platforms whose function should be to drive traffic back to your website.
On a side note, merely having a presence on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or whatever, is not sufficient. In fact, if you are building or have built your branding, following & lead generation activity purely on such 3rd party platforms, then you need to read about a phenomenon called digital sharecropping, a term coined by Nicholas Carr.
Essentially this involves you doing all the work (i.e. producing content) which 3rd party platforms effectively take ownership of and who ultimately benefit from the vast array of subscribers doing work for them.
The best analogy to describe this phenomenon is renting versus owning your own home. When renting, you are at the mercy of the landlord, when you own, you have more control. Your own website is the equivalent of owning the place you live in.
Having a website is not the end game. Getting traffic to your site holds a number of challenges in itself. However, once traffic hits your site, then what? I've come across countless people who've spent good money on active marketing to generate traffic only to have visitors bounce of their site in 8 seconds or less.
Why? Because your site needs to engage the visitor, be self-guiding and make them take action.
To find out more, read how to improve your website conversion rates.
* Statistics source: various on-line publications including Australian Bureau of Statistics.
|Tags: News & Tips|