How much is your outdated website or lack of social media presence hurting your business? The recently released Small Business Digital Trends Report from Web.com and Dr. David Ricketts—an Innovation Fellow in the Technology and Entrepreneurship Center at Harvard—reveals an alarming amount of small business owners fail to optimize their website and leverage the power of social media platforms.
The report shows that only 17 percent of small business owners will invest in search engine optimization (SEO) in 2017, and only 15 percent are successfully marketing their services on social media.
- Fewer than 6 percent of respondents say SEO is a challenge for their business
- 26 percent of respondents have a single-page website
- 43 percent of respondents reported they don’t plan to change or improve their online presence in 2017
- 42 percent of respondents say they don’t utilize both an optimized website and social media platforms for their business
“The number one reason why small business owners are online is to attract and engage with new customers, yet our report indicates small business owners may be having a hard time keeping up with the continually changing dynamic of the web,” stated Web.com CEO David Brown.
Understanding the importance of utilizing an online presence to grow your business’s bottom line is crucial, regardless of your company’s revenue. Next, it is necessary to determine the best social media outlets for you.
According to 2015 Pew Research Center data, 44 percent of women use Pinterest vs. 16 percent of men and 31 percent of women use Instagram vs. 24 percent of men. If you’re target audience is women, these are two examples showing that certain social media sites hold more value than others. Men prefer online forums and text-centric sites like LinkedIn, Twitter and reddit. Familiarizing yourself with the online usage of your market will help you customize your marketing campaigns.
Strengthening an online presence is a valuable tool that small business owners cannot afford to disregard. The low cost of websites and social media accounts may be more attractive to small businesses than investing additional funds, but streamlined SEO and online marketing can mean higher revenues.