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Analysis / Ecommerce

5 Ways For Businesses To Boost Their Online Presence

The rise in lightweight and ultra-portable electronics like tablets, smartphones and ultrabooks means that people are always connected. This is one reason why businesses are finding it increasingly important to invest in websites or blogs for successful inbound marketing.

In fact, business websites and blogs are one of today’s most reliable and efficient methods of publishing and distributing business and marketing information. It is no secret that business blogging is a great way to target clients, expand your customer base and nurture existing relationships.

Concentrating on driving traffic to your website is a start, but the key skill is turning those first hits into repeat visitors who will help to build your company’s social media presence. Next, you’ll want to focus on adding credibility to your brand in the long term. Follow these steps to encourage loyal subscribers and followers.

1. Make a blog subscription landing page

Even if you already feature a ‘subscribe’ module on your website’s homepage, you should still create a separate landing page that gives visitors the option to subscribe to your business blog. This is particularly useful if you are planning to promote your blog through online marketing channels like email and social media. A blog subscription landing page will serve as the target link for all your sign-up efforts, giving you flexibility in the way in which you choose to promote subscriptions.

Optimize your blog’s subscription page by utilizing the same best practices you would for any landing page. Try to include a headline that will capture visitors’ attention and summarise all the benefits of subscribing to your blog. Think about adding high quality photos and social ‘proof’ to boost your conversion rates.

2. Use email campaigns to support subscription

Sign up new subscribers and remind existing ones to return to the site via email marketing campaigns. They are an effective tool in improving blog traffic. Notifications, for example, can be sent every time new content is published to the blog, driving customers to your website, and giving you the opportunity to convert their interest into business leads.

3. Blog regularly

Don’t expect visitors to subscribe to a blog that is idle for long or isn’t updated. If you really intend to upscale your blog, make sure you commit to blogging at least once a week. A recent study conducted by online marketing agency Hubspot found that company blogs that were updated at least once weekly added new subscribers at twice the rate of business that only blogged once a month. The ‘freshness’ of online content is a significant factor in visitor retention, so make sure to work up to publishing as regularly as possible. The most successful blogs update content daily and some even multiple times a day.

4. Engage in conversation

A successful blog is genuine, real, and always engaging. As the editor or writer of a post, you are actually starting a conversation. But jumpstarting a conversation with customers isn’t enough. Being an active participant in the conversation is the key to reaching out to consumers and increasing the number of blog subscribers. Think about personally responding to each comment as a sign of respect to your consumers and in order to encourage repeat readership. Make every subscriber and new reader feels welcome, respected, and heard.

5. Participate in various contexts

Conversations that have been sparked off by one of your blog posts can often transcend the comments section of your website. Make sure to meet people in the online places where they are spending most of their time. Social networking sites like Digg, Facebook, and Twitter (which also have popular apps for tablets or smartphones) can also serve as marketing channels that will give your content wider exposure and build your credibility.

Twitter is a great tool for reaching out, and continuing conversations. Make sure to install social media buttons on your posts to lets readers share your content easily from their mobile units such as ultrabooks.

Ideally, someone would spot your post while checking their Facebook feed on their mobile device (a recent study by Gartner found that 62 percent of tablet owners used their tablet to access social media, and 57 percent of mobile phone owners used social networking on their smartphones) and then share it with their friends, enabling your business to reach out to more people effortlessly. Be an active participant in the part of the blogosphere related to your niche and an active participant in social networking sites and you’ll find that you can easily increase the number of repeat visitors to your blog and improve the overall credibility of your brand.

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Joanna Stevenson studied mechanical engineering in London and currently works for an energy research and consulting firm. She enjoys writing tech and business articles in her free time. She aspires to be an intrepid tech and gaming enthusiast with the exploratory spirit and witty prose of her favourite author Robert Louis Stevenson.