Running your own small business is no easy feat. It takes creativity, drive, hard work and a whole lot of guts. While others punch in their 8 to 10 hours and return home, owning your own business often means you can never leave your work at the office. You’re “on call” 24/hours a day and you can’t afford to stray too far from your cell phone or Inbox.
Here at Wix, we tip our hats to the millions of entrepreneurs and small business owners around the globe and we strive to do what we can to help make your lives a little bit easier. In addition to our do-it-yourself web design platform, which we have a feeling you may have heard about, here are 10 super easy hacks that can help you build your brand, promote your business and even free up some of your time!
Make your website mobile-friendly
As of May 5, 2015, mobile searches officially surpassed desktop searches on Google. That means that when people are looking for your business online, chances are they’re using a phone or a tablet. A website that is optimized for mobile viewing will catch your visitors’ eye in an instant and increase your rank on Google. Remember that a well-optimized mobile site is one that makes it easy for your users to quickly find important details such as hours, location and phone number.
With the Wix Mobile Editor, it’s a cinch to see exactly how your website will look on mobile devices. You can choose to hide certain page elements, move around text and photos and make sure that your message and pertinent details are front and center on your mobile site.
Use nothing but the best images
Blurry images and snapshots on your website can immediately turn off your potential customers. No matter how fantastic your content may be, good images are essential to making your business look professional and legitimate.
If you don’t have good photos of your own, take the time to search for some high quality images. (Here are suggestions on where to find them.) Alternatively, you can save time by taking advantage of Wix’s direct integration with Bigstock Photos. Peruse thousands of photos straight from the Wix Editor and choose the perfect one to use on your site for just $2.99!
Send out e-newsletters
Email newsletters are a proven marketing tool that can be used to promote return business, thank regular customers for their loyalty, let your networks know about sales and drum up new business with coupons and updates. Part of what makes them so effective is that you can send targeted emails to specific segments of your market.
Traditionally, however, the softwares available for sending e-newsletters were either expensive or complicated to use – and sometimes both! The good news is, Wix has created Wix ShoutOut, a code-free, WYSIWYG newsletter builder that allows you to send out group emails to your contacts (or a subset of them) in a matter of minutes.
In other words, you’re out of excuses: You can send out a beautiful newsletter, today.
Perfect your on-site SEO
Think Search Engine Optimization is for tech geniuses? Think again. Even the smallest business can compete for the coveted #1 spot on Google. By finding just the right niche market and focusing on specific, 3-5 word key phrases, (called “Long Tail Keywords”), most businesses can eke their way up the ranks of the Holy Google.
If you want to check to see if your own Wix website is optimized, be sure to use ourSEO Wizard tool. Designed with beginners in mind, the Wizard will walk you through the steps of optimizing your site. If you are feeling stuck, don’t be shy. Post any and all questions on the New Wix Features Facebook group. The group’s admin will get back to you quickly and you may even receive some bonus tips from other members of the community.
Set up Google Alerts to track mentions of your company
If someone is talking about your business online, you definitely don’t want to miss out on the gossip. From first-hand reviews to newspaper articles, you can get an alert delivered directly to your Inbox every time someone out there in Cyber-land uses your business name. Sign up for Google Alerts and let the gossip begin!
Add functionalities to your website
Your website is your online business card and it should be designed to match your branding, look and feel. But a good website can do far more than look pretty. By adding functionalities to your website, you can create an address online that works, making your life easier, helping your business run more smoothly and driving in new clients.
The Wix App Market is chock full of apps designed to take your site to the next level. You can integrate reservation and menu apps into your website, add in surveys and forms, collect payments, post social media feeds and drive more traffic to the site.
Overwhelmed by all the options? Take a gander at the hottest apps of 2015.
Join the local Chamber of Commerce
While joining your local Chamber of Commerce might sound very 20th Century, it’s actually a great way to drive up business, particularly for local businesses. Designed to promote the interests of businesses in your community, the local Chamber is a great place to meet colleagues, network, learn about marketing opportunities and find new leads. If nothing else, they’ll probably add a link to your website when you join, thus helping the chances that local customers will discover your business.
List your business on directories
Speaking of local businesses, taking time to list your company on popular online directories is a must for every business that serves a particular community. Listings sites like Google Local, Yelp and Merchant’s Circle rank well in search engines and are often the places that potential customers will look for businesses like yours.
Every link to your website helps boost your online ranking, so take an hour, an afternoon or even a day to create a free profile of your business in as many directories as possible. Many of the sites allow you to add details like opening hours, contact information and even photos of your business.
Not sure where to list your business? Check out these 33 Free Places to Promote your Website Online.
Create a personalized email signature
Did you ever notice that little addendum at the end of many people’s emails? You know, the one that includes their title, a phone number, a link to their website and maybe a meaningful quote? That’s called an email “signature” and it’s a great technique that businesses use to promote themselves.
When you include your business name and website on every email you send, you create countless opportunities for new people to discover your business and visit your site. And for every person who knows about what you do, you open yourself to potential clients and referrals.
If you don’t have a custom signature, it’s time to take 20 minutes and create one! Then, be sure to use it in every email you send as well as in comments you write in professional forums or social media sites.
Not sure how to create a custom email signature? Say hello to WiseStamp, an invaluable online tool that lets you add a customized signature to your emails, for free.
Volunteer to give a talk
One of the best ways to promote your business is to establish yourself as an expert. Whether you run a marketing and design company, a photography studio or a hair salon, you have an expertise that will be of interest to other people.
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