Digital Marketing

Don’t Let Digital Marketing Apathy Destroy Your Business!

You may have recently come across the devastating news of both Austin Reid and BHS going into administration. This has taken many people by surprise and impulsively alarmed many of just how difficult running a successful business can be in today’s ever changing world where consumer behaviour continues to change at ever greater rates.

Although both Austin Reid and BHS are highly established and very well known historic brands, the astute commentators know one of the key reasons cited as a contributing factor is their failure to keep pace with their competition in the ever more influential digital world.

No business today, however successful, can ignore the old adage; “it’s not the big that eats the small, it’s that FAST that eats the SLOW!”.

Creating An Online Presence

So building and maintaining an online presence for new and existing businesses is an absolute requirement these days. Whether you’re a family run local pumping business in Northampton relying on regular customers or developed a chain of shops in the UK, if you do not keep on top and ahead in the online world, you are almost certainly looking over the cliff to oblivion in the future. It’s just a matter of time!

So investing in a modern website is essential, but keeping on top of your website is even more important. Technology and design is constantly evolving, as should your website too!

This backed by real world data.  At the end of 2015, 46% of the world’s massive 7.395 billion population used the internet, 31% used social media and 27% were mobile social media users.

The rapid pace of change can further be seen in the 12 months to the end of 2015 where internet and social media users rose 10% each, mobile users rose 4% and mobile social media users rose a massive 17% with over half of all internet searches now made on a mobile device. No business whatever its size or how successful they have been locally, nationally or internationally can ignore the numbers and fail to keep ahead with their website and digital strategy.

Competitors

Is Your Website In Need of Being Updated?

Critically do you even know the age of your current website? If your answer is 3 years or older (and no updates have been completed even in the last 6 months) then your website is likely outdated and losing (not gaining!) customers. Do you even actively promote your website on the major search engines or engage with old and potential new clients on social media? Just step back and consider that your website should be one of the sharpest and most used tools in your current marketing tool box. It doesn’t have to be the most expensive, but it should be absolutely fit for purpose being the correct size and shape to engage your new customers. Think of your website as the spanner used with the minimum of force and effect to tighten the nut who is your ideal new client! Remember, we are all but one click away from your competitor!

Hence all successful businesses should not just be satisfied with their website, but also looking to utilise it for gaining an advantage over competitors. It is essential to keep the content, look, usability and freshness in line with what your target audience are looking for. If no investment plan has been put in place to maintain your website, then no matter how newly built or sophisticated your website is, it will quickly get left behind.

As highlighted previously a key example showing the need of maintaining a business website is the meteoric rise in mobile and tablet traffic. The rise in users browsing the internet via mobile and tablet devices has grown immensely over the last couple of years (and is still increasing!). However, most website owners are not actually aware their website was not built or designed for these devices. They actually provide a very challenging environment for users on tablet and mobile devices (would a car designed for road-use be suitable for off-road without any modifications?).  However, if a maintenance plan had been in place for your website, you would likely have taken advantage of a Mobile Friendly Upgrade that updated your website for tablet and mobile devices. To bring back the toolbox metaphor, if your site is still not mobile friendly you are still using an imperial spanner on a modern metric nut. Yes with a bit of effort for a period of time the nut may still turn, but eventually you will probably shear off the head!

If the recent news of Austin Reid and BHS going into administration is not enough to help convince you about the importance of maintaining an online presence, another major brand which has been in troubled water in recent years is Morrisons. Why? Well they simply failed to recognise the value of online. Blink and their competitors had jumped ahead by predicting shoppers’ changing behaviours with online ordering and home deliveries. It is very easy to get left behind but even harder to catch up! Just look at dynamic online business such as ASOS who’ve created an excellent growing dynamic business from scratch in such a short space of time by creating a brand nearly exclusively through online marketing. Businesses like Morrisions are called “convenience stores.” This is such a powerful statement none of us can ignore. None of us can ever become complacent about the need to make it “convenient” for all our potential customers to do business with us. So for our success tomorrow a great, fresh, appealing online presence is therefore a must to all business owners today that cannot be ignored.

Can We Help?

If you believe your website and online presence is falling behind, or would like to discuss a new website and digital strategy or even a possible mobile friendly upgrade, please give us a call via 01455 698 033 or send us a message via our online contact form.

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