Business

Tackling Online business failure by Adegboye Adeniyi

How organic web traffic can stunt business growthWhat if I tell you there is one single thing you are doing online that is making you lose customers and invariably lose money. You see, with changes in technology, come increasing changes in the way brands and customers connect.

While online marketing can be a mix of different strategies, understanding the fundamentals of any marketing approach can make your efforts yield good results.

Here are some misconceptions about factors causing poor returns on investment from online marketing efforts:

You have a ‘lousy’ website

Okay, I admit that your website should not be totally poor in design but I can tell you that some of the greatest websites with the highest traffic do not even have “great” designs, e.g. Craglist.

Search engine optimisation

The problem is not with lack of implementing SEO on your website. I sell SEO services and most times it is not about your website optimisation.

Paid promotion

The problem is not because you are not using paid promotion very well. A lot of businesses run paid adverts and they still are suffering huge loses online.

The single most important mistake many online business owners make is the refusal to design, build and operate based on who their customers are.

You may need to ask yourself these salient questions.

Who is your customer? (Note that I used the word ‘is’ and not are)

Does he/she have access to the Internet?

Will he/she be accessing this website on mobile for a larger part of the day or using desktop computer?

And most importantly, why precisely are we online?

If you answer all these questions offline then why not take time to answer them online before you even lift a finger to design your website.

Why don’t you understand your customers before you design your ads online?

Why not know who your customers are and the best way to relate with them before you decide if the best social media platform for your brand is either on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn?

Why don’t you put effort into understanding how your customers behave online before you decide to use that keyword for your website?

The major threat may be the “lack of customer persona” for your business.

What is customer persona?

Customer persona is a fictitious description of your idea customer based on part data and part hypothesis. You can have as many as 20 or as low as two customer personas. The idea is to segment your target marketing into distinct unit that enables you to create specific offer for them.

For example, a persona for a business may be

Name: John

Gender: Male

Age: 40

Location: Lagos

Income: N6.7m per annum

Family: A wife and one daughter.

How do you come up with your business persona?

Customer persona should be based on data from research and guess work with a pure balance between the two.

To create your customer persona, you can use data from

  • Your website analytics.
  • Your current customer and their behaviour.
  • Educated guesses based on what your product does.

With a detailed persona, you can now go ahead and

  • Create meaningful design for your website:

With your customer persona, you can now go decide if the favourite colour for your website should be blue. You can now make an informed decision on if having a larger font on your website is a good choice or not.

  • Create content for your website

A detailed and proper persona can help you understand what your customers want to read and how such content should be presented. Once you have identified their pain point, you can write the copy on your website to answer their question thereby leading further down the marketing funnel.

  • Choosing your keywords

Keywords are important in anything you do online but not all keywords are applicable to every situation. Understanding your customer’s behaviour and how they search for you would let you know what keywords to use to attract the right kind of people to your business.

  • Where, when and how to connect with your audience

‘Business to Business’ or ‘Business to Consumers’? Understanding your audience will let you know where to focus your marketing spends. Should you spend more time on Linkedin or Twitter? Should you invest more in email marketing or organic marketing?

Conclusion

The difference between a company that succeeds online and those that fail is not in the amount of money spent or how large their team is. When it comes down to marketing your business online, the key strategy is to identify ‘Who,’ ‘What’ and ‘Why’ of who you are selling to.

source : Punch

About the author

Segun Balogun

Segun Balogun

Experienced Social media Manager , Website designer/Manager, and Search Engine Optimization Consultant with a demonstrated history of working in the information technology and services industry. Skilled in Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Public Speaking, Writing, HTML, and Content Marketing. Strong marketing professional with a Bachelor of Science in education focused in Industrial and Technology education from University of Nigeria , Nsukka. For a FREE 30 minute chat about your digital marketing strategy.

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