Are you missing out on potential business by not using digital marketing? According to KB Marketing Agency, “Ignoring online marketing is like opening a business but not telling anyone.”

Even if you’re new to marketing and you have a small budget, there digital marketing solutions that could transform your business and allow you to keep up with the competition.

Firstly, what is digital marketing?

Digital marketing means any marketing activity that occurs online. This includes banner ads, websites, social media, blogs, Google Ads and social media advertising. Companies across the world are expanding their digital marketing efforts as customers move increasingly toward the online marketplace. And in a world where physical interaction is having to reduce, digital marketing is more important than ever.

Why do you need digital marketing?

Your customers are online

According to Datareportal, there are over 22 million internet users in Australia and 18 million social media users. There are also over 32 million mobile connections meaning that most people in Australia have at least one mobile device with internet access. Of all internet users, 57% report using a shopping app each month and around three quarters of Australians claim to use online shopping. 84% of internet users also say that they will search for a product online before making a purchase.

So how do you reach this massive audience? Through digital marketing! Australian consumers spend billions of dollars online every year and this is expected to increase. Make sure you get a piece of the action by moving some of your marketing efforts online.

And it’s not only your customers who are online – your competitors are too. Without digital marketing, you could be handing sales over to your competitors every day.

It’s affordable

Whatever your budget, there is a digital marketing solution to suit you. Not every small business has the funds available to hire a marketing agency, place television ads or employ a dedicated marketing team. Luckily, there are a lot of affordable options available even if you’re running your business solo:

  • Websites are crucial for your business, whether you sell online or not. They are a space where you can market your brand and tell your story. Even if you are not an experienced web developer, you can make a cheap (or free) and effective website using an online platform such as WordPress, Wix or Squarespace.
  • Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) increases your chances of appearing high in a list of online search results (without paying for the privilege). When people search for something in Google, they are most likely to click on one of the top 3 links. Therefore, appearing at the top of the list could make a massive difference to your website traffic. Not an SEO pro? No problem. There are countless free resources online that will teach you the basics. Simply search ‘SEO for beginners’ into a search engine and read top tips from marketing professionals.
  • Google Ads allows you to place adverts for your business at the top of online search lists. Although you have to pay for this service, you can set a budget that Google will adhere to. Spend as much or as little as you want over a set period of time. You can learn how to use Google Ads through their free-to-use skills shop.
  • Social media is free to use and can be a great way to market your products and services. By using social media, you can build your brand, establish a community of followers, direct people to your website, and drive sales.
  • Social media advertising is similar to Google Ads but it displays your adverts on social media according to your budget and specifications. Facebook Ads is the most popular form of social media advertising.

It makes you accessible

If 84% of people search for a product online before making a purchase, then you want to appear in those searches. Even if you only sell in-store, your online presence increases your chances of gaining footfall. And if a customer has seen you in the high-street and wants to know more about you, a website or social media account makes you accessible 24/7 and can turn that passer-by into a customer.

Similarly, you want people to be able to find key information about you easily. Share your store location, opening hours and contact details online. Be open to communication with your customers, answer their questions and clearly show what you have to offer.

It offers great returns

Digital marketing can offer some of the best return on investment. This is particularly true when discussing returning customers. Loyal customers buy more and spread the word about your business.

Through email marketing, you can reinforce brand loyalty and speak to current customers or those who have come close to purchase. Email marketing has an incredible ROI of 44:1, meaning that for every $1 spent, you will make $44.

Social media also allows your current customers to follow you and share your products with others. This form of engagement is valuable to both your business and your brand.

It can help you build a brand

According to Facebook, 77% of consumers are loyal to brands. And your brand is only impactful if people can see it, relate to it and engage with it. You’re proud of your brand, so shout if from the digital rooftops!

Digital marketing through websites and social media is a great way to build your brand. Display your logo, declare your mission, define your aesthetic and create a following.

It’s measurable

With traditional advertising such as radio, print and TV, it can be difficult to tell where your engagement came from. Did someone see your ad in the paper? Or did they watch your TV ad? It’s difficult to tell which strategy was most successful unless you ask the customer – which is a time-consuming process.

Digital marketing is data-driven. Whichever marketing tool you choose to use, you will be able to track the customer journey and measure the return on investment (ROI). For example, Google Ads presents with tables displaying your campaign success. You can see how often you appeared in a search result, how many times someone clicked your ad, and how many conversions were made.

Analytics tools can also track how customers have interacted with your business. They measure how often your social media account directed people to your website or how many times your email marketing generated a sale.

This data is great for new businesses who are testing the waters with their marketing campaigns. If something isn’t working, then they can implement changes straight away. Or is something is working, then they can focus their energy on that campaign.

You can reach out to those who have shown an interest

If you’re a small business, then marketing to people who know your brand could be the most valuable thing you do. This is called remarketing.

By using digital marketing tools, you can reach out to people who previously made a purchase or who visited your site and left a shopping basket. Remarketing can help you increase repeat visitors by 50%, increase conversions by 51% and boost time spent on your site by up to 300%.

Google Display Ads is a great way to use remarketing. By setting up a remarketing campaign, Google will display your products and services to those who visited your site or used your app.

Email remarketing can also be a powerful tool. This form of remarketing sends emails to previous customers to show them new products and offers or to remind them about the shopping cart they left on the site. Be aware that all marketing emails must have an ‘unsubscribe’ option so that customers can opt-out if they wish.

While there are some naysayers when it comes to remarketing, it has been proven to be effective. Customers stay interested in the ads for twice as long as regular ads and convert at higher rates. And if customers have been proven to research online before making a purchase, it is crucial that you remind them of your business.

At Central Australian College, we offer marketing courses suitable for beginner marketers and those who want to boost their business. We also occasionally offer free marketing workshops to advise small businesses on their marketing strategies. Contact us today to find out how our courses could benefit your business.