When taking a closer look at your business’s finances, return on investment becomes the crucial criteria for a successful decision. How can you make sure that you’re effectively getting a return on the money and time you put in?

The answer? Finding the most cost-effective solution. The solution varies between situations and processes. But with online marketing, many of the most cost-effective solutions have already been found. They’re just waiting for you to implement them. Here are some that might be worth implementing in your business.

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Bring them to you

When it comes to reducing the cost of your marketing efforts, a change in perspective is the way to go. In particular, you want to change the direction of the conversation. Rather than marketing at them, advertising to them wherever they are, you want to try attracting them to you instead. Search engine optimization (SEO) can be entirely free if you’re willing to learn how to do it. Improving your online presence, fixing broken links in the site, and using metadata and keywords can help improve your ranking on Google and other search engines, making relevant customers much more likely to find your website. Inbound marketing methods tend to cost less than outbound methods like paid ads, though their returns tend to be more long-term as opposed to the immediate impact of direct marketing.

Ask and give

Social media is one of the most effective tools for keeping in touch with your established consumer base, as well as finding new leads in the market. But you shouldn’t stick only to your own pond. There are lots of fish in other businesses’ social media feeds and client bases as well. Network with other business owners and get in touch with your regular partners. Set up a partnership by which you agree to help use your platform to boost their presence in return for them doing the same for you. If a partnership works well, it can grow into a referral system that leads directly to new customers. Of course, if your potential partner doesn’t need a platform boost, it’s up to you to think of an offer that will make them more inclined to help, instead.

Build a better home

When marketing online, you have to think about what you’re compelling the customer to do. If you want them to buy products online, learn more about your services, or subscribe to your content, then you have to make sure the offer is appealing. A badly designed, slow, cheap-looking website will give none of your customers any faith in your business. Invest in your website with web development companies who know not only how to better present it and make it more navigable. Choose those who also focus on improving the back-end of the site, fixing broken assets, and finding the causes of page delays and other usability issues.

Type it up

If you’ve taken any kind of close look at online marketing, you may have come across the term “content is king”. If your business can generate interesting, helpful, or entertaining content regularly, that means that it’s ever producing new material that can cause readers to click on the website and take a closer look. For instance, if you’re a plumber, then a blog on home plumbing tips can showcase your expertise. If you’re a social media networking consultant, social media tips and highlighting successful campaigns will prompt business owners to trust you know what you’re talking about. What’s more, blogs keep your site fresh and give your social media channels something new to constantly keep pushing. Just make sure your content has real value to your customer base before you spend the time and effort planning and writing it out.

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Just as other business owners can help spread the word of your business for you, so can your customers. The easiest way to utilize word-of-mouth is to encourage them to write reviews and leave testimonials on the site. However, you can ask them to more directly share with the friends, family, and peers by asking for referrals and even set up a system that can offer a discount in return for successful new leads.

To really build your brand and convert new customers, you need a mix of cost-effective strategies as well as pricier, short-term interruptive strategies. But by relying only on advertisements and other costly marketing methods, you will find your costs skyrocketing and the long-term effectiveness limited.

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