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digital opportunity

Hey!

So you’ve seen how digital has transformed our daily lives, but now, let’s get practical.
What do the growing number of online opportunities actually look like for you?

In this article, we’ll discuss the core components of digital, how they relate to YOUR business and how to get started.

Let’s say you’re a mechanic whose business has grown strictly through referrals and word of mouth. So far, you’ve not had any digital presence, but now you want to take your business to the next level. How will being online help your business succeed?

One of the biggest advantages to being online is reaping the benefits of search. Having a digital presence means you’ll be visible when people go online and search for a business like yours.
So let’s assume someone searches for “mechanic Swansea” and your shop appears in the results.

How can this benefit your business?

Well, the possibilities are virtually endless. When a customer clicks a link to your website there’s so much they can learn about you.

They might watch a video you posted about auto maintenance that demonstrates your knowledge.

The could read testimonials from happy customers.

They might look through your pricing guide, find your shop on a map, or find out you offer free towing within a 40 mile radius.

Maybe they’ll fill out a form to ask a question or request a quote.

They might even click over to your social media sites where they’ll find even more tips, photos and videos.

You might not start by having all these features on your website, but these examples should give you a sense of the many ways you can benefit from being online.
And guess what? There’s more!

Your online presence can also give you valuable insight into prospective customers: what they want, and how to give it to them. How? Well, digital allows you to show targeted advertising to people right when they’re looking for what you offer.

For example, using search advertising, you can show ads to potential customers. Such as people searching for “auto repair Swansea.” You can also restrict the ads to show within a certain geographic radius of your shop. You can learn to use analytics tools to find out if people clicked on your ad, visited your site, and took certain actions. Like filling out a form or watching a video.

Exciting right? But how do you get started?
Well first, don’t be intimidated: the tools and technology available today are easy to learn, easy to use and easy to acquire. Many are even free.
In fact, for many businesses, the biggest challenge to being online isn’t getting used to the tools, but putting together a plan.

The first is scope. Web, mobile, social … there are so many options. Where do you want to start, and where do you want to go?

Next is Technology and Content: Decide if you’ll handle the technical and creative aspects of the site yourself—which may take more time—or get help, which may take more money.

Finally you’ll want to consider Cost and Time: Set a realistic budget and an achievable schedule with clear milestones—and commit fully to both.
Every day, thousands of small business owners are making the web work for them. The opportunity to reach customers from around the corner and around the globe is too big to ignore.

It’s time to take the plunge and go digital!

Credit: Google Digital Skills For Africa

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