eCommerce is a great area to be involved in as it offers many opportunities for selling products to international customers. But without the steady influx of these customers, an online business wanting to export products is not going to get very far. Attracting new customers, especially now in the digital age, is more complicated than it used to be. Many customers now know exactly what they want and are extremely informed. They don’t want to be talked at. They want to form a connection with your brand. They want to let you know what they want and they are demanding you listen to them. The advantage of exporting online is there are no geographical boundaries when it comes to targeting, and marketing to, new customers. So all you need is to take advantage of some of the great customer-acquisition tools available to online businesses. Social media With over one billion monthly active users on Facebook and 500 million users on Twitter, social media is a great place to find and communicate with new international customers. By starting a business profile on social media you can communicate with existing customers as well as reach a wider audience of people with your message. You can turn some of your social media followers into new customers by building a great relationship with them. You can do this by providing information of value to them, responding to their comments or complaints, providing great online customer service and engaging them in the business. Once your followers trust your business and feel valued they may turn into loyal customers. Social media also helps to drive traffic to your website, which will encourage your followers to become new customers. Pay-Per-Click advertising Essentially, by using pay-per-click advertising you are using a search engine’s data to place yourself infront of potential customers who may be looking for your exact product or service. Pay-per-click ads are placed on search engine results pages and other sites such as Facebook and online directories, essentially anywhere the website is picking up search content and personal interest information. When a person shows an interest in a particular topic, or searches for a particular product, the pay-per-click advertisements that are most relevant to these searched terms will show up on the results page usually to the right hand side. When a potential customer clicks on one of these ads, the organisation is billed a particular amount. Optimising your website for search engines When searching for information about a business most people go straight to an online search engine such as Google.This means your business needs to appear in search engine results to be found by potential customers.You can increase your website’s search engine rank by improving your search engine optimisation. This involves adding better keywords to your website copy, regularly updating your website content and creating backlinks to your website. Search engines drive people back to your website but it’s up to you to turn these leads into new customers. One strategy to achieve this is by providing great content on your website, which your customers will be interested in reading. Your website should also be easy to navigate and show customers exactly what they were looking for. Your website should also provide a reason for people to keep coming back or to purchase your products. Online directories Many people use online directories to search for business information. Industry specific online directories such as FatCow.com.au provide a comprehensive list of businesses in a particular area e.g. rural business. It’s then a great strategy to get listed on an online directory because it positions your business directly in front of potential customers. Online directories also help to increase your SEO and provide quality backlinks to your website. These online marketing strategies will help your business attract new customers by getting seen by a wider audience of people and by building great relationships with existing and potential customers.
PUBLISHED | JANUARY 22, 2013
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