These days it is almost impossible to have a successful business without an online presence. Most successful businesses have a website, but the truly savvy companies also engage in online marketing. There are many different strategies that a business can use to market themselves effectively online. These strategies apply to almost all types of businesses, from vacation rentals to a company offering a service such as window washing by students.
The first part of marketing your business online is to have a professionally designed, attractive website. You website should be eye catching and appropriate to your business type. Flashy websites with lots of videos and animations and music might be appropriate for a video game developer website but are not likely to be right for an online counseling service website. (click for more details)
No matter how attractive your website is, it is not going to be effective if people don't visit it. This means that people need to know that you have a website and need to be able to find it. There are two types of people you want to target, those who know about your business specifically, and want more information, and those who want information about a business like yours, but not necessarily yours in particular. For example, a professional resume writing service wants to get visit from people looking for their business and for anyone looking for resume writing services in general.
In order to make people aware of your website you should make sure that your web address is listed on all of your marketing materials. If you have a company that offers patent translation services, you web site address should be listed on your brochures, business cards, television ads, and it should be mentioned to all of your existing customers. The idea is to make sure that everybody who knows about your business also knows about your website and is able to find it.
In order to ensure that people who are looking for a similar business online are able to find yours you need to ensure that your website figures prominently in relevant searches on all of the major search engines. A business offering real estate services would want to appear in search listings for terms, such as: "Toronto real estate", "real estate listings in Ontario" and other related terms and phrases. The way to ensure that your website ranks well in search engines is to employ a process called "Search engine Optimization". This involves researching key words that are popularly searched for regarding your business and ensuring that these terms figure prominently on you website. There are many tools available that can help you determine which search terms are best for your website. Additionally, it is also possible to employ professional SEO companies to optimize your website for you.