Our world faced an unprecedented challenge in 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic changed the way we live, leading many businesses to make the transition to online-based operations. Despite the uncertainty that lies ahead, there is one thing that is for certain – our world will continue to work digitally.
Before we look at why a digital presence is crucial for businesses in 2021, let us first look at what the term ‘digital presence’ means.
What does digital presence mean?
Digital presence, also referred to as online presence, is how your business appears to your audience on the internet. Many things attribute to your digital presence, including:
- Your website
- Your social media page(s)
- Adverts for your business
- Content from your business, such as a blog, how-to guides, videos
- And more.
As a rule of thumb, if it’s something accessible online about your business, then it contributes towards your digital presence.
Why a digital presence is crucial for businesses in 2021
The COVID-19 pandemic catalysed the transformation of businesses. Across the globe, the average percentage of products/services that were either partly or wholly digital was 28% in May 2018. In December 2019, this rose by 7% to 35%. By July 2020, this figure rose to 55%.
Additionally, as a result of the pandemic, many companies have invested huge amounts of time and effort into their online presence because physical presence has been reduced dramatically, and with lots of people working from home, there are more people online as a result. Between July 2019 and July 2020, social media usage rose by 10.5%, demonstrating the importance of building your digital presence.
These statistics are a few of many out there that demonstrate why digital presence is incredibly important for businesses, both now and in the long term. As we move forward, being digitally accessible is crucial for your business to thrive in the new normal.
The difference between physical presence and digital presence
There are lots of ways to reach potential customers, but it’s crucial to make sure you find the ones that work best for your business. Before we talk about how to improve your digital presence, it’s important to understand both online presence and offline presence, and how offline presence can complement your online presence.
A great marketing strategy should incorporate a physical presence and an online presence, both of which complement each other and work in tandem to achieving the end goal.
Online presence… is any digital media that your company has published publicly. Some great examples of this are a website, social media pages, press releases, and more.
Offline presence… is anything that isn’t on the internet; anything that isn’t necessarily online. For example, meeting face-to-face, flyers, business cards. Anything that isn’t primarily designed to be used online fall under the term offline presence.
How does offline presence help my online presence?
Offline presence is a fantastic way of driving traffic to your online efforts. For example, every business card has the website of the company that the employee works for, and every flyer has a phone number to call. Utilising offline presence is a fantastic way of driving potential customers to your website, or to contact you directly, where you can build a relationship with them and ultimately work towards bringing them on as a customer.
Here at Weave Studios, we can help you with your offline presence. Our Print Services give you access to great offline presence material. Contact our team for more information.
How to improve your digital presence in 2021
To improve your digital presence, you must make sure that you are working towards making your business easier to find online. Here at Weave Studios, we have many years of expertise in helping our clients build their digital presence. We have included some tips to help you maximise your digital presence in the right way below.
A website is a digital shopfront for any business. It’s a blank canvas that allows you to share anything that you want to, and it’s a very common way for customers to view your business and learn more about what you do. Many would say that a website is the center of your digital presence, as it’s often where other aspects of your digital presence will point towards.
A common question that people ask is this: Do I need a website?
A website should form a major part of your digital presence. Anything you do digitally can link back to your website, so you must have a website that people can visit and learn more about your company. Because of the importance of a website, we have included lots of information below to help you make the most of your website.
What makes a good website?
Every business is different, and therefore every website should be too. However, there are a few key pages in a website to make it a good website:
Home page – Your home page should be like the shop window of your business. It should be clear what you do and give lots of information in a short and concise format.
About us page – An about us page is an opportunity for you to share information about your business, your team, and what makes your business unique. The about us page should be informative, but with a clear human element, engaging with the viewer on a personal basis.
Services/products page(s) – Your services/products page(s) should explain what you do in more detail, giving a solution to your audience’s problem. This is your opportunity to sell, so be sure to do so!
Contact us page – A contact us page is a great way to give your audience the chance to talk to you. If you are a service-based company, this is crucial for your website as it gets the conversation going.
Blog – A blog is a great way to demonstrate your expertise in your industry. By having a blog with regular, trustworthy articles, you will be able to build trust with your audience and demonstrate your experience in your industry.
Additional things to include on your website
Outside of the pages in your website, you should also ensure that you cater for the below:
SEO – SEO, which stands for Search Engine Optimisation, is what makes your website appear when a user searches on a search engine. If your website is optimised for the keyword of ‘Website Agency’, and it ranks well, then when a user searches ‘Website Agency’, your website will appear as one of the first few results.
Good design – A good website design is paramount for a successful website. Without a good design, the user will have a negative experience and as a result, may lose interest in your business and click on a different website, losing a potential customer.
Responsive, all-device friendly website – A good website caters to the user’s device. If your website displays the wide desktop version on a mobile phone, this can be very hard to read and can quickly make somebody click away.
At Weave Studios, we specialise in creating fully responsive websites, designed to deliver a great user experience. If you would like the help of a team of experts to create your website, contact us today.
Additional ways to build your digital presence
Once you have a website up and running, there are many ways that you can build your digital presence. These other methods can link back to your website, providing a flow for your audience to learn about what you do and how you can help them, to make them want to use your products/services.
See below for some additional ways to build your digital presence in 2021.
Social media is a great way to deliver value to your audience and build your online presence. By utilising social media, you will be able to:
- Connect with current and future customers
- Deliver value to your audience
- Reach customers at all hours of the day
- Build trust with your audience and connections
- And more!
Social media is a great tool to help your business. Not only does it help you gain the above benefits, but you will also be building on your digital presence to make your business easier to find online.
Other forms of digital presence
With many ways of building your digital presence, it’s down to you to decide which ones you’ll focus on and which ones will help your business. Some more ways of building your online presence are:
- Blog, how-to articles, etc
- Online reviews from customers
- Press releases
- Forum contributions.
And many more…
There are lots of great ways to improve your digital presence. At Weave Studios, we recommend focusing on getting a website set up and getting your branding in place to form the basis of your digital presence. This will ensure that your online presence is consistent with your brand, and that your website continues to be the central place for your digital presence.
If you need help with setting up your website, or with your branding, we can help. With extensive experience in website design, we can help you transform your online presence and deliver the best user experience for your visitors. Contact our team today for more information.