The rise of globalized trade, increased foreign investment, and cross-border transactions have put many small businesses under pressure to find innovative ways to continue to market their products and services. This is especially difficult given that they often operate on tight marketing budgets.
In the search for cheap marketing alternatives, these small businesses continue to use conventional marketing tools such as advertisements in newspapers, magazines, radio and television, unaware of the advantages offered by Internet Promotion. Too often, these entrepreneurs focus on the downsides of Internet promotion and don’t adequately take advantage of the opportunities it presents. Also, your concern about conventional marketing strategies stems from the misconception that they are cheaper than internet promotion.
For most small business entrepreneurs, marketing or promoting their products or services over the Internet can be a daunting task. However, with the right information, small businesses can benefit significantly from Internet Promotion while minimizing the downsides it presents. In fact, it may turn out to be the marketing strategy that generates the highest return on investment.
Long-lasting and profitable marketing strategies
The Internet has become the information superhighway for the buying public. Most people prefer the hassle-free transactions that Internet shopping can offer. As a result, the Internet has become the most powerful sales tool. Internet promotion offers cost-effective ways for small businesses to improve their product or service distribution networks. For example, the use of portals can help create new marketing and logistics channels, or provide better or faster access to products for customers.
Compared to other forms of marketing, Internet promotion has the advantage of a reduced budget and storage costs compared to printing brochures, producing television or radio advertisements, or running a call center. It presents a fast and profitable option to penetrate new markets.
With millions of people using the Internet to search for products and services, small businesses can penetrate other markets at a fraction of the cost of traditional marketing methods.
Websites act as virtual storefronts, allowing businesses to remain open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Internet promotion gives a business greater visibility, thus creating more opportunities to grow its customers at a relatively low cost. Never before has it been easier for a startup company to reach literally millions of potential customers and position itself for success, without the need for expensive infrastructure and overwhelming marketing costs. Thanks to the Internet, startups can become popular almost overnight.
Low-cost, instant communication
Email makes business communications instantaneous, whether the customer or business affiliate is across the street or across the world. Makes it easier for customers to stay in touch and makes repeat purchases easier. Therefore, an effective online strategy can turn a small web business into a cost-saving and revenue-generating virtual machine. The net result is that the small business can gain a significant competitive advantage in a given market.
Therefore, many online businesses have turned to using ezines, blogs, pop-up ads, and other online marketing tools to introduce customers to new products or services, as well as to provide information relevant to their respective industry. The benefits of this strategy are twofold. Marketers can effectively increase brand awareness for relatively new products on the market while strengthening customer relationships, with shorter time frames.
The content is timeless
Promotion on the Internet also offers the advantage of being long-lasting. Whereas participation in a trade show or conference loses impact on sales once completed, and an ad in a newspaper or trade magazine can quickly lose its lead generation value within a day or two or as soon as the next number; Promotion on the Internet is usually timeless. Aside from dates and sometimes prices, much of the content on your website is still valid years later.
Real-time statistics to measure the success of the promotion campaign
One of the most important advantages of Internet Promotion is that its success is measurable. Marketers can use tools that provide real-time statistics on unique visitors, repeat visitors, click-through rates (CTR) on ads, allowing them to evaluate the effectiveness of a promotional campaign. This enables marketers to determine what works for their particular market and to make timely changes to their marketing strategies.
Another important advantage of Internet Promotion is that it saves time since it generally eliminates advice on product uses and benefits, service information and sales management. Visitors can access “frequently asked questions” to help themselves and can shop online, without staff involvement. This saves time and money. So whether 10 or 10,000 visitors visit the site, the cost increase is marginal, while the savings can be immense.
But like any business approach, Internet promotion is not without its risks and weaknesses.
Difficulty attracting customers
Small businesses may not have the resources to pay for paid directory listings, pay-per-click listings, and often have to rely solely on search engine optimization or word of mouth to drive traffic to their sites. With millions of companies selling the same products and services, competing with more established companies can be frustrating and costly for small businesses.
On the other hand, larger companies can offer promotions, pay for directory listings, implement pay-per-click campaigns, and use “who’s who” in Internet marketing to develop campaigns that drive traffic and leads.
Difficulty evaluating the legitimacy of the transaction
Another notable disadvantage of doing promotional business online is that it can be difficult for entrepreneurs and consumers to thoroughly assess the legitimacy of a transaction. Small businesses are particularly vulnerable to thieves who use stolen credit cards and stolen information to transact online.
With the rise of identity and credit card fraud on the Internet, small businesses are forced to fund expensive security measures to reduce their vulnerability to fraudulent transactions.
Sellers and customers are isolated
Another disadvantage of promoting over the Internet is that customers and entrepreneurs are isolated. There is little personal contact between the customer and the seller before and after the sales close. Therefore, the prospect of repeat sales may diminish. Therefore, entrepreneurs are forced to adopt marketing strategies to get online users to return to their site.
By all indications, it appears that the advantages of online promotion far outweigh the disadvantages. With the right knowledge, the entrepreneur can benefit significantly from promoting the Internet, especially small business owners.
Increasingly, the growth and reach of the Internet, its ease and accessibility for customers, is becoming inevitable. Therefore, small businesses are encouraged to start their web advertising role to improve their online competitiveness.