When is the last time you cracked open a phone book or drove to a store just to check out a company? Chances are, it’s been awhile since you’ve done that because you can find out what you need to know online. In addition to their products, services and company vision, independent reviews and customer experiences are all there, enabling you to make a judgement call before you meet a company representative in the flesh.
So how do you fare when your customers meet you online?
How your company presents itself online is just as important as how your company presents itself in person. Following are some tips on how to make a great impression when “meeting” clients online for the first time.
Be Easy to Find
People looking for your products and services are not going to Google your company name. They are going to Google phrases like “best pizza in Quebec” or “best office cleaning company”. These are called keywords and should be used in your website’s content and blogs. Proper keyword usage and placement is a skill; consider hiring an SEO firm to help you optimize your website.
You don’t have to sign up for every social media site available, but you should pick the ones that will best allow your clients to interact with you online. For example, a photography studio or bakery would do well with the highly visual Pinterest platform, while a music promotion company can keep their patrons updated with Twitter. When you post, pin and tweet, you remind your clients – and potential clients – that you are there with the services they need.
Watch Your Online Reputation
When a customer has a bad experience, it is common for them to complain about it on social media. This can really damage your business as that one complaint can turn away dozens of potential clients. Take the time to review what people are saying about you on sites like Yelp and Glassdoor, and adjust accordingly. Be frank and upright. Apologize for bad service and ask how you can make the situation better. Avoid petty arguments, such as blaming the customer for their bad experience. However, if the customer was rude, aggressive or inappropriate, you can (nicely) point out that the customer was turned away in the interest of the safety of your staff and other patrons.
Update your v/blog
Your online blog, or vlog, gives clients a reason to keep you in mind. Blogs can also be optimized with keywords so as they archive on your site, you can achieve higher Google rankings. Don’t start a v/blog and then stop updating it. Decide if you will publish monthly or weekly, etc., and then stick with it. Otherwise your loyal viewers or readers will drift away and get their information elsewhere.
The Internet is a wonderful way to “meet” new clients and stay connected with existing ones. Use this resource wisely to keep your business growing.
AF Accounting is dedicated to helping small businesses succeed. Let us handle your accounting needs so you can focus on the many facets of growing your company. Meet us online here.