Whether economic times are tough, or bursting at the seams with growth, all businesses (from mom & pop shops, to Fortune 500), are looking to increase productivity and return on investment; while reducing overhead expenses.
Since the mid-90's, businesses have been leveraging the power of the internet with website applications, and online marketing to do just that.
The following are just a few of the ways that using online tools (such as a website, social media profiles, and online ads) are helping businesses to increase profits, while lowering costs:
Enhanced Customer Service
By utilizing websites, social media platforms, and database technology, businesses can improve the level of customer service offered.
From online sales, account interactions, how-to videos, frequently asked questions, live online support, social media interactions, or other resources, businesses can give customers the level of customer service they require.
Websites and social media platforms allow businesses to provide customers, and employees the resources they need at anytime, from anywhere, with a secure internet connection.
Whether it's the middle of the night, a weekend, or a holiday; customers and employees can get the information and services needed whether the office is "open" or "closed".
FREE Social Media
Social media sites are today's "word of mouth" advertising, spreading valuable marketing information to similar target customers for free.
Social media websites allow users to "Like" a company's page or product publicly, and in turn share posts, letting the world know how much they like the company, product, or service.
If a post is popular enough, it can end up going "viral" whereby literally thousands, and sometimes millions of people see, the post or page within minutes or hours. Businesses whose posts, or page goes "viral" are in for extensive free publicity.
Affordable Digital Marketing
Google Ads, Bing, and Yelp are well-known methods of digital advertising that can bring in new leads and business for a fraction of the cost of traditional offline marketing and advertising methods. Digital ads are also often referred to as SEM (Search Engine Marketing) and can provide businesses a method of reaching their target market and demographic for pennies on the dollar. Often such digital advertising programs can be run for as little as a $1/day, albeit a higher budget does often lead to more success and a better return on investment.
SMM, also known as Social Media Marketing, provides an affordable method for businesses of all sizes to target and spread their company's marketing message via social media platforms. SMM can be used for any business, and any industry (regardless of size or age) to get the word out about their products and services.
Websites, and most online advertising platforms, are flexible and can be customized to fit literally any need. Websites and online ads allow companies to start small, determine an affordable budget, and grow as needed; adding in the necessary functions along the way as time and money permit.
Increased Target Market
By leveraging online services, businesses can reach millions at a far more affordable rate than ever before; both locally, and beyond.
For those that would rather focus on local expansion, there are many opportunities to improve a website's local ranking, using proper Local SEO techniques.
As well, many online advertising services allow a business to narrow and focus their target demographics that would previously have required costly time and research.
Secure, Real-Time Access
When properly developed, a website can offer far superior security to that found in-house for sensitive data access.
By using the proper technologies, companies can offer customers and employees with real-time, reliable and secure access to sensitive data and records.
Improved Service Offerings
New technologies are constantly being developed and in turn providing new methods of providing service to and for customers, both consumer (B2C) and business (B2B).
Placing orders online, scheduling appointments and order tracking are just a tiny sampling of the services the internet allows businesses to offer to its clients.
By leveraging the power of website applications, and automated online marketing services, businesses can actually free up employee hours for other tasks, thus increasing productivity and profits without having to hire or fire additional personnel.
More often than not, the hours saved programming a website to perform day-to-day repetitive, time-consuming tasks, can provide more time to be spent on allowing the company's employees to focus on revenue generating tasks, geared towards growing the company and increasing the customer base.
Whether the economy is booming or shrinking, businesses can continue to grow and prosper by using web technologies, online marketing, and reaching demographics previously not within the budget. By leveraging the today's website technologies, online sales, and ads; businesses can increase profits with minimal investment!