How To Move Your Business Online

Transforming your business to survive social distancing.

If you’re reading this, you’re probably trying to figure out how to continue business as usual during a global pandemic. Maybe you’ve been panicking and throwing around a few choice words to describe our current situation. I think it’s safe to say as business owners, we’re all going through this right now. While we might not have all the answers, we can help you with the next steps for moving your business online.

Step one: Design a website

Option A: DIY

If you’ve been thinking about re-doing or doing your website, now is the time. If you’re not online, you’re not being found. If you’re new to the web design world and can’t afford to hire a designer, checkout sites like Wix and Squarespace. Both services offer templates to get your started. A lot of these templates are designed for industry specific sites, so make sure you search your industry to see what’s available. While these might not be great for growing your business longterm, they’re enough to get you started.

Option B: Hire A Designer

If you can afford to hire a designer to design a new site, make sure you find one that fits the needs of your company. Does the designer primarily work with small or medium sized businesses? What is the price range for their services? What experience do they have? It’s important to work with a designer that vibes with you and your company. After all, you’re trusting them to capture your brand’s essence and speak to your target audience. Web design is so much more than just making something look pretty. It’s strategic and requires the ability to understand the in’s and out’s of your company. Find someone that fits. 

If you are interested, we do free 30 minute consultations and would love to help you with your project. To help our community, we are offering 10% off our web design packages for all of March. Just mention this article or use the code “COMMUNITY”. 

Step Two: Craft Your Messaging

There are a lot of unknowns right now. People are scared and confused so it’s more important than every to have clear and concise messaging. What are you selling? Who are you selling to? What problems are you solving for your customer? These are the types of things you should be thinking about when writing copy for your website. If you’re new to writing, do some research and see what other people in your industry are doing. DO NOT COPY THEM, but use them as inspiration for how to talk about your services or products. 

If you are looking for help, there are plenty of copywriters ready to jump on the task, including ones at Carrboro Creative. We are passionate about helping business’s thrive. Your success is our success. We can help you determine what you should be saying to sell your product or service in these tumultuous times. 

Step Four: INVEST IN ADS

I know, it sounds counterintuitive to spend money when things are so unknown. But, as the saying goes, it takes money to make money. I can’t tell you how much business we have driven through our Google Ads alone. More than enough to cover the expense of it. There are several options you can explore when thinking of Digital Advertising. Here are a few to get started:

Google Smart Ads

Google Smart Ads were designed for DIYers. The setup and maintenance process is simple. A google ads specialist will help walk you through the steps to get your google ads up and running. This option is great for those with limited budgets, as you don’t have to pay for someone to optimize and maintain the ads. The downside is that you don’t have someone monitoring your ads and optimizing to lower cost per click and increate return on investment. What does that mean? You’ll save some money upfront, but end up paying more per click and potentially not reaching the right audiences. It’s not ideal, but it’s a good place to get started.  

Google Ads (proper)

Google Ads (proper) is Google Ads pay-per-click advertising platform. As opposed to Google Smart Ads, Google Ads are totally customizable with so many options to narrow in on your target audience, test different messaging, and optimize your ads to get the lowest cost per click. Unless you have a background in digital advertising, this can be too much to manage yourself. That’s why we partner with Follow Us Digital to do it for us (and our clients). Rachel at Follow Us Digital is a digital marketing wizard. I’m serious. Since working together, we’ve seen an INSANE increase in conversions and our ads are working better than ever. If you can, I highly recommend reaching out to her or another digital marketing agency to help with your ads. 

Social Media Advertising

Depending on the nature of your business, Social Media Advertising might be a great way to get in front of your audiences (especially while everyone is stuck at home forever scrolling through Facebook and Instagram). Make sure you figure out your objectives and target audience before getting started so you can take advantage of their targeting capabilities. 

Some other helpful tools

Online Meetings, Scheduling, and Communication

There are some great tools out there to move your meetings online. Here are some of our favorites:

Zoom: For online video conferences
Calendly: For online scheduling
Google Hangouts: Another great option for group meetings
Slack: Remote team communication 

Online Wellness: Yoga & Meditation

Transforming the nature of your business is very stressful. I know it probably feels like you need all of this done yesterday, so it’s important to try and slow down a bit during these crazy times. You won’t be able to move your business online if you’ve gone completely bat sh*t. So breatheee. Try yoga or meditation. There are plenty of apps and resources available, with some offering free memberships or trials. We personally love Headspace App. It’s also a great time to support logo yoga businesses that are also moving online. One of our near and dear clients, Thousand Petals Yoga, has an 8-week online yoga basics course and will be adding streaming to adjust to this new marketplace. 

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