An Internet presence can serve as a strong equaliser for businesses, enabling smaller businesses to compete on a national and global scale. Surprisingly business data indicates that over 60% of Australian businesses do not have an online presence, such as a dedicated website.
Data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics indicates that businesses are more likely to have a wider customer catchment if they have an Internet presence. This is due to businesses being able to reach a wider range of presence customers through the Internet. While the nature of an Internet presence may differ depending on the type of business and its target markets, it is clear that businesses benefit from a website and other forms of online marketing.
For example, while there may have been a time when heavily localised businesses had little to benefit from an Internet presence this has changed significantly over the past year. Search technologies are now location aware, meaning that local businesses are relevant within these search results. In addition, integration between Google Maps and its search results means that even localised businesses with a very local catchment can benefit from an Internet presence, through their business being provided with a map within search results.
The increasing use of smartphones reinforces the importance of localised search results, particularly given that mobile web users tend to use search functionality when they wish to make an impulse purchase decision. Localised businesses can benefit from these results to provide online visibility for their business and to reach potential local customers.
A successful marketing strategy requires a combination of marketing tools and increasingly an online presence, such as a website should be part of a proactive marketing approach. Consider how a website and other online marketing tools can help your business reach a wider customer base or reinforce a local marketing presence.