4 Things You Must Do to Grow Your Business Online

4 Things You Must Do to Grow Your Business Online

Ok, so there are more than 4 things to do to build and grow a business online.  However, at a high level, these are the most important, as all the strategies, tactics and tasks fall under these in one way or another.

Here’s what you need to have and do:

  1. A thorough plan for your business
  2. Get educated on the basics of running a business online
  3. Make sure you’re not an obstacle
  4. Learn how to scale your business

In this post, we’ll take you through each, then get into more detail over the next few weeks. If you have questions or additional thoughts, please feel free to post them in the comments below, or contact us.

With that out of the way, let’s get started.

A Plan for your Business

If you’re working towards a successful business online, you’ll need to have a plan on how to get there.  This doesn’t need to be a formal business plan, per se. However, you will need to have all the main areas of your business covered and have an idea of what you need to do for each. 

Here are some sample questions for these areas to think about:

Product
What are you offering to your customers? Physical products? Services? Information? Does it address something they really need? 

Marketing
What is your value proposition? What are the specific groups of customers you are going to reach? In what ways will they be most receptive to your messaging? How do you differ from your competitors?

Brand
What image and personality do you want to convey to the market and your customers? How do you want them to perceive your company? What are your goals and ideals?

Financial
Do you understand your costs? Will you have an adequate profit margin on your offerings to pay for your advertising, overhead and other expenses?

Operations
How will you fulfill your product or service? Do you need to store inventory? What processes do you need between your vendors and yourself or your team?

Analytics
What are the key metrics you need to track? Do you have the tools in place to track everything from your traffic to how much you’re making? 

Sales
How will you get your offering to your customers? Subscription? Through partners? Will you have sales reps or sell directly online?

Customer service
How do you want to handle when customers have an issue or question? What if the want a refund or to return what they purchased?

Team
Are you going to hire employees or contractors? Rely on freelancers or partners? Do you know how to hire, screen, onboard and train new members?

Get Educated on the Basics of Running a Business Online 

Before you can accelerate growth and scale your business, you need to get the basics down as you get started and take your early steps. 

There’s a common analogy of pouring water into a bucket, where the water is the stream of visitors to your website (also known as traffic) and the bucket is your website. Holes in the bucket cause water to leak out.

In the case of your website, visitors are abandoning and leaving for your competitors because of a variety of problems that you’ll need to continue to fix. This could be from issues including confusing messaging, stressful forms, poor layout and design, ineffective images, bad navigation or even technical problems like slow loading times or broken links.

When you first build your website, there are two parts you’ll need to do right. The first part – the what to do – is relatively simple, and you can find info anywhere or any experienced online businessperson can teach you. They’ll tell you to you need a website, an opt-in form to capture emails, a contact form if you’re trying to get leads, or a checkout form if you’re selling something so your customers can pay. 

Sounds simple, right?

Now try to do it. And do it well so your website isn’t leaking away all your visitors. It’s not as easy as it sounds, right?

This is the second part – the how to do it right – which is not that simple if you haven’t done this many times before. Here are some questions to think about as you do start to build out, or update, your website:

Audience
Do you know who your ideal customer is? Are there different niche segments you want to target?

UX
Have you mapped out your customer journeys and all the touch points you’ll have with your prospects and customers? How is your site laid out and can a visitor navigate around easily?

Design
Are you using the right colors to not only look good, but also subliminally drive visitors to the action you want them to take? Are the colors contrasting enough to draw attention, and also not get punished by Google because of accessibility requirements?

Content
How clear and relevant is your messaging? Are you talking about features or benefits? Are your call to actions strong enough to drive visitors to do what you want them to do, whether it’s to buy something or give you their info?

Forms
Are they too long and forcing your visitors to give up? Is not providing security messaging or social proof causing too much anxiety? Are you hurting your business with a “Submit” button?

SEO
Are your pages setup so that Google will rank your website high when prospects search for you? Have you tagged your page and images properly for maximum benefit?

Analytics
Do you know what your most important metric is? Is your website tagged so that you can measure it properly, or are you running blind?


Online Success Monthly

Check out the GrowthOutfitter Online Success Monthly program, where we’ll take you through these areas in detail, coach you through the “how to”, and answer your questions so you have a well performing website.


Make Sure You’re Not an Obstacle

If your business is already running (or even if you’re just getting started), you need to be sure that if issues happen, it’s not because of you. 

The way we like to put it is if you’re struggling to accelerate the car you’re driving, is your foot on the brake pedal and you don’t know it?

what if your drove while braking

A significant reason that businesses struggle is because of the owner. Are you blocked by limiting beliefs or fears? Are you holding back on anything that may prevent your online business from operating as well as it could? Is your vision of where you want your business to be in the future completely clear, so that you can plan and structure everything to get you there?

It’s hard to get somewhere if you don’t know where you’re going.

Here’s where you may want to consider High Performance Coaching, where a coach will help you get to the next level of your life in all areas – personally and professionally. You’ll improve areas including:

Clarity
Do you know where you’re headed and what you really want to do? Not only in your business, but also in your relationships, health, finances, hobbies and more?

Energy
Do you have the physical and mental stamina needed to drive your business to grow and succeed?  Or are you over-stressed and burning out? Are you working so much you’re damaging relationships with family and friends?

Courage
Are you confident that you can not only handle the ups and downs of your business, but also take the actions and have the conversations you need with customers, partners, vendors and your team?

Influence
Do you have the skills to persuade those you need to grow your business, whether it’s selling your customers or motivating your team, or getting support from your spouse and family?

Productivity
How focused are you? Are you chasing shiny objects or completely distracted by your phone? 

Most importantly, are you taking the right actions consistently to move not only your business forward, but also maintaining your own well-being and relationships?

Check out our High Performance Coaching programs to see how we can help you increase your momentum and chances to succeed.

Get the 6 Secrets of the World's Most Successful People

Learn How to Scale Your Business

Once your website is setup, your advertising is running, and you’re performing at your best, you’re ready to accelerate growth of your business. 

Here are 3 main areas to consider to scale your business:

1. Processes

Think about the processes you’ll need to grow bigger and faster. These will help you save time, energy and money by not manually performing tasks that can be automated. This includes marketing campaigns, emails, reporting, lead generation, social posting and fulfillment. There are multiple services and technologies available (some even free) to allow you to replace manual effort, which is valuable as your customer base grows quickly.

2. Team

You will need to build a team to help you continue to grow your company. This way you can delegate out day-to-day tasks as well as functions you’re not good at or would be better having an expert take care of. And then you can focus more of your time on strategy, sales, and creating new offerings. 

You’ll need someone to help bring in more business and close customers, you’ll need developers to build landing pages, emails and continue to add on your website, digital marketers, designers and copywriters for your marketing campaigns, and people to help you run the business, such as customer service and finance.

You may choose to outsource some or all of these to freelancers, contractors and agencies, or you may want to hire internally if you’d like to keep more of the business information and processes within your company.

3. Online Growth

This is how your company will grow fast online. It’s all about rapid experimentation to learn what customers resonate with and need, what drives them to take action, and how can you respond quickly.

This step includes AB testing, getting customer feedback, and analysis to generate insights to drive further testing.  It’s a loop that will continue to accelerate, and result in growth of your business.

 

Leave a Reply