With nearly 28 million small businesses in the U.S., the competition can be fierce and an online presence is vital if you want your business to survive. Google data reveals that small businesses with websites grow 40 percent faster than those without.
USA Today reports a designer consignment retailer in San Antonio, Texas saw revenue increase by 250 percent the week the brick and mortar store’s website went up. Making use of today’s technology and the wealth of resources available can help your business gain an edge on the market. By examining smarter business trends to discover why they’re working, it can be easier to see how to apply them to your own business.
5 Smarter Business Trends:
If you want to boost sales and brand awareness, get mobile. By 2014, more smart devices could be used to access the Internet than PCs, according to smartinsights.com. Will your business be ready?
Just some of the ways your business can get mobile:
- Get a mobile app
- Allow mobile check-ins
- Share offers and coupons via mobile
Small businesses today are learning and benefiting more from smart analytics. It’s now easier than ever before to track your own stats and compare them to your competition, so you can see where you measure up and how to improve. Both percentages and numbers will reveal where you stack up, and this will also allow you to more clearly define goals and execute them.
Some ways your business can benefit from analytics are:
- Analyze search and web ranking
- Track social signals and social growth
- Monitor and compare marketing campaigns
- Monitor the competition
Finding ways to save on even the smallest expenses for your business means more profit. Cash back credit cards with the business in mind are a great way to earn when you buy things you already need. For example, cash rewards credit cards are created to allow you to get some percentage of money back, based on how much you spend. So when you shop for things you need anyway using your reward card, you get cash back.
Ideas to consider:
- Make business purchases with a cash rewards card
- Buy in bulk, or use coupons and discounts when possible
- Save by going green, or upgrading to green office supplies
- Look for any and all business tax breaks/advantages
If your brand is not involved in the social scene, you’re missing out on a valuable area to reach your target market, since social media affords your business the opportunity to speak directly with customers and create customized campaigns based on real-time feedback. (5)
Some of the ways your business can benefit from being social:
- Provide customer service
- Track and follow what is being said about your brand
- Learn more about what the customer wants
- Provide better insight into your brand
- Make use of social media marketing
Influence marketing carries far more way than the old school, traditional methods of marketing. The average consumer is inundated with ads everywhere they go today. A large percentage of those ads are simply ignored. Influence marketing focuses on what consumers are saying about certain products and brands. People buy what their friends and family say good things about, underlining the importance of getting people to say good things about you.
Influence marketing can be used to:
- Encourage fans to blog about your product
- Follow and track social reviews of your brand
- Gain relevant followers and connections
- Help your business to be seen as an industry expert
- Increase leads
- Build a community of brand ambassadors