How to plan for business growth during slow e-commerce times



In this issue of Commercial Currents, we’re sharing a guest piece by Anca Gooje, an e-commerce web developer based in Scarborough, Maine, who helps businesses sell easier online. Whether your business sells a product or service, Anca offers some simple ways you can use this time to increase your brand visibility and grow your audience online.Anca Gooje

By Anca Gooje

Now that the busy holiday season is over and you have filed your sales tax, it is time to take some time to focus on long-term growth for your business. How should you do that?

The beginning of the year is the ideal time for taking a deep breath and setting goals and intentions—but often there is a gap between these large goals and actually taking the action to make them happen. Consistent, meaningful steps need to be taken to move in the right direction. As business owners, we often find it easier to work IN the business (doing client work and creating products which generate immediate results) rather than working ON the business (strategy, implementing systems, and marketing which contribute to long-term growth).

Here are four simple ways to increase your brand visibility and grow your audience online:

1. Create an online marketing strategy

A marketing strategy will help you map out the steps you need to take in order to reach your marketing goals. Your approach will vary depending on what stage of the customer journey you are focusing on. You should start leveraging your organic reach as much as possible, and you can further expand your reach with some ads on Facebook for a very targeted approach. Once your marketing strategy is clear, create a content calendar that includes how many times per week you will post, on what platforms, and what type of content you will use. A monthly content calendar can be repeated with similar themes and different content.

2. Batch create posts or videos and captions

Using your content calendar, prepare your posts in batches to save time and increase consistency. Take several photos that can be used for different purposes (or use your product/brand photos), create graphics, write relevant captions, gather a hashtag list to bring your content in front of new audiences on Instagram.

3. Schedule social media posts

Once you have prepared your content, take some time to schedule your posts a month or more at a time. This will ensure you have a consistent presence on social media, and you will save a lot of time and the mind space needed to remember that you have to post something. You can even schedule stories in advance—and the best part is that it is free to do so. You can still login to Instagram or Facebook once in a while to respond to comments, interact with some of your ideal clients, and so on, but it is a huge relief when your posts are actually lined up and ready to be posted automatically at the perfect time.

4. Analyze the results and tweak for best results

After the first month, go back and check your Analytics for Instagram and Facebook. See what type of posts had the most engagements, resulted in more followers or messages and more. Keep in mind that you need to have a varied approach to your outreach. You should not just aim for getting the maximum number of likes, but try to generate reactions, comments, actions taken in response to your post.

Anca Gooje is an e-commerce web developer who works with established women entrepreneurs to help them sell easier online by creating effective e-commerce websites that look and work great. Her signature process combines front end web development, digital marketing, and soft skills that allow her to capture the essence of a business’s brand and transform it into a high-quality user experience. Learn more at www.ancagooje.com.

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