Online Lead Generation for Small Business: 7 Tips for Hot Leads
Flood your Business with Customers: Online lead generation for small business that will get customers through the door in no time. These 7 tips are simple and free for any business to use. If you are serious about generating more sales, this is the guide for you.
Are you still missing out on online business opportunities? Lead generation is not as hard as some people crack it up to be.
With the right steps in place you can start flooding your business with automated leads that convert into customers. If you don’t already know the potential of the online space, here is something to kick you into gear.
But maybe you’re doing business with other companies. You don’t need the Internet for that, right? Well not quite….
- 97 percent of consumers use the Internet to decide what to buy in their area
- 87 percent use online search engines to find things to buy
- 79 percent follow brands on social networks to learn more about companies and their offers
- 90 percent of small business owners spend time networking online
- 70 percent of business purchase decisions start on online search engines
Step 1: Make a website
OK, that one is obvious, we hear you say. Or do we? Could it be you don’t have a website? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Incredibly, 40% of businesses don’t have one.
Keep in mind that your website will be the only place where most online buyers will look for your products. If you want to look like a serious seller, you should buy your own domain name.
Now this online lead generation for small business guide is not going into detail on how to create a website for your small business but if you are looking to build one on the cheap I recommend using WordPress. In the future when your business expands, marketing agencies prefer to use this popular software.
Step 2: Add your company to web directories
So you have a website. (If you don’t, go make one and then come back. It’s absolutely essential.) But having an online presence means being present in many places.
Add your business to web directories, this is an image of Summit Web’s Yelp page in Perth
There are big websites that list local businesses and services. Many of them include reviews, ratings and other ways to help buyers choose. Don’t be intimidated by them. If your product or service does what it says it does, people will write good reviews.
So how do you get included? Just open Google and write “best business directories” (without quotation marks). You’ll see several articles listing the best online directories. Or click on that link, I have done it for you. Go there and follow the instructions for each directory, it’s easy.
Normally I add my website to around 5 directories per month. Don’t try and smash 30+ directories out in one day. Google looks at that activity as spammy. So just add them slowly to month by month.
Here’s 6 to start you off:
Step 3: Make your website easier to find
Yes, we’re talking about the famous search engine optimisation or SEO. Unfortunately, when you create a website, it doesn’t mean you’ll get noticed at all. Three-quarters of site visits are a result of online searches.
In other words, if you want your website to have visitors, it’s essential that you get a good spot in Google and other search engines. This tip for online lead generation for small business can be free, as I have explained in a recent presentation.
Your site should include “keywords”, i.e. words or phrases that you expect the buyers to write on Google when looking for your kind of business. If you sell furniture, the phrase “furniture company” should be put in a prominent place on your site: the site title and first paragraphs.
Don’t stuff keywords everywhere because it would look ridiculous. Just write your site content as you would on paper and then check if your titles and content are missing any crucial keyword information.
Also, if your buyers are located in a specific area, your keywords should be specific: if you’re located in Chicago, you won’t write “furniture company” but “Chicago furniture company”, or “furniture in Chicago”, “Chicago chairs”, “Illinois furniture”, whatever you think your buyers might look for.
Google provides a free tool to help you find these keywords. Here is a video I have created explaining how to use the tool.
If you’re big and have a marketing budget, paying an optimization (SEO) expert is a great investment. But if you’re only just starting, do it yourself. It will pay off in the long run.
Step 4: Use social media to reach potential buyers
By now, even the most old-fashioned businesses have turned to social media. They can’t afford to ignore them. It is also one of the most popular online lead generation for small business techniques.
You can start out with the most famous one. As of 2016, Facebook has a billion and a half monthly active users.
When you have created a Facebook page for your business, just keep posting news, images, interesting or attractive bits about your work. There are many places online where you can read useful advice on how to make people interested. You will be building a fanbase, a growing group of people who follow your work.
There is a possibility that your buyers might be using other social media like Twitter or Pinterest. Just look around or ask your customers, it should be easy to see where your customer base is hanging around.
Summit Web’s Twitter account showing online lead generation for small business
This tip may be the hardest to stick to. But you should make it a habit of posting something each day or every couple of days at least.
Step 5: Track your progress
As a rule, social networks have monitoring tools. You can also add monitoring tools to your site, like Google Analytics. It’s a great way to learn something about your visitors. Check out information about where the visitors come from, what age group they’re in, etc. You can see how useful it can be for sales.
Learning about how your customer behaves on your website could not be any more important. Using this tool to track what content your customer enjoys or what demographics are using your website is invaluable information you can’t afford to miss out on.
6. Keep a blog
Like the social media tip, this one needs a sustained effort. But keeping a blog doesn’t have to be a pain. It’s like keeping a diary of your work, your successes, your business stories.
You do want your business to be something you’re proud of, don’t you? A blog is actually the simplest way to keep track of what you’re doing, for yourself and for others.
At the same time, you’ll be adding loads of wonderful content for search engines and attracting people to your site.
And customers will love you for it, because you’ll be writing about them, too. Of course, the optimization rules we mentioned in tip number 3 apply here, too.
Step 7: Get Your Visitors Involved: 5 second Rule
Attracting people to your site is just half the work. In the end it is all about sales, otherwise what’s the point right? Converting customers when they arrive on your website is a bit of an art. But here’s a great rule of thumb to start with.
When a customer comes onto your website they should know in 5 seconds what the website wants them to do. It could be to call a phone number, buy your most profitable product or fill out a quote form. Whatever it is make sure its front and centre with a big Call to Action button. Buy Now or Call Now etc
Use your business experience to give tips, instructions, eBooks, guides and other super-useful content. Since you’re giving it for free, create a valuable downloadable piece of content.
You can the capture an email address when the potential customer downloads that resource. The visitors will be glad to oblige and you can build on that through email marketing.
Follow these tips and make a killing! The more effort you put into it, the better your online lead generation for small business skills will develop and the more sales you’ll have.