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  • Writer's pictureFlanker Media

A Guide to Free Online Tools & Exposure for Small Business Owners

Updated: Aug 21, 2023

Small business owners - do you simultaneously feel like there are limitless opportunities to grow your business online while also having no idea where to start? The guide below is designed to help you get some traction regardless of where you're at in making an impact in local Google searches or social media conversations.


This outline breaks down the different sections of our guide in case you feel like skipping ahead. We hope you find it useful:


d) YouTube

e) Reddit

f) Twitter

i) TikTok

b) Wix


Establishing Your Google Business Profile

1. Establish a Google Business Profile


A Google Business Profile, formerly known as Google My Business (GMB) profile, is a free tool that allows businesses to manage their online presence on Google, including on Google Search and Maps. If you have a small business, setting up and optimizing your GMB profile can be a great way to promote your products or services and connect with potential customers. Here are some tips on how to set up and optimize your Google Business profile:


Setting Up Your Profile


To create a Google Business profile, you will need to have a Google account. Once you are logged in, go to google.com/business and click on the “Start Now” button. You will then be prompted to enter your business name, address, and phone number, and choose a category for your business. You can also choose to add additional information, such as your website, hours of operation, and a brief description of your business.


Verifying Your Profile

To ensure that your Google Business profile is accurate and trustworthy, you will need to verify your business. This usually involves Google sending a postcard to your business address with a verification code, which you will need to enter online in your profile to complete the process. Recently, Google has employed additional methods of verification including uploading photos or videos from your business location.


Add Photos & Videos

One of the key benefits of a Google Business profile is the ability to add photos and videos to showcase your business. You can add photos of your products, services, staff, and location, as well as videos that provide more information about your business. These photos and videos can help to attract potential customers and give them a better sense of what your business is all about.


Gather Reviews from Your Best Customers

Customer reviews are a key factor in how your business ranks on Google, and can help to build trust and credibility with potential customers. Encourage your customers to leave reviews on your Google Business profile by providing them with a link or by asking them in person. You can also respond to reviews, whether positive or negative, to show that you value your customers’ feedback.


A more streamlined method for gathering Google reviews is to use your profile's review link. Within the menu of your profile, you may see a clickable option titled "Ask For Reviews" or "Get More Reviews". In that section, Google provides a link unique to your business that allows customers to go straight to your profile review section to leave their review - cutting down several layers of clicks in the process!


We've written an article that describes several key ways to leverage your Google Business profile review link.


View Analytics & Reporting Tools

Your Google Business profile provides a range of analytics and reporting tools that can help you track the performance of your GBP profile and understand how customers are finding and interacting with your business online. These tools can help you identify opportunities to optimize your GMB profile and improve your online presence. You can easily track metrics tied to your profile like clicks to your website, phone calls, direction requests and messages - even comparing each activity to the same month of the previous year.


2. Establish Social Media Pages Relevant to Your Business


Setting Up Your Facebook Business Page

Setting Up a Facebook Business Page

Setting up and effectively using a Facebook business page can be a great way for small business owners to reach and interact with their customers online. Here are some tips on how to set up and get the most out of your Facebook business page:


Setting Up a Facebook Business Page


To create a Facebook business page, you will need to have a personal Facebook account. Once you are logged in, click on the “Create” button in the top right corner of the homepage and select “Page” from the dropdown menu. You will then be prompted to select a category for your business and fill out some basic information, such as your business name, contact information, and address.


Customizing Your Facebook Business Page

Once you have created your page, take some time to customize it to reflect your business. You can upload a profile picture and cover photo, add a brief description of your business, and include links to your website and other social media accounts. You can also choose to add a call-to-action button, such as “Book Now” or “Contact Us,” which allows customers to easily take a specific action on your page.


Draw Up Posts That Encourage Engagement

Your Facebook business page is a great platform to share updates, promotions, and other content with your customers. Try to post a mix of text updates, photos, and videos to keep your page interesting and engaging. You can also consider using Facebook’s scheduling feature to schedule posts in advance, so you can plan out your content in advance and save time.


Interact With Your Audience as it Grows

In addition to posting content, it’s important to interact with your followers and respond to comments and messages in a timely manner. This helps to build trust and strengthen your relationships with your customers.


Advertising on Facebook

Facebook offers a range of advertising tools that can help you reach a targeted audience and get more visibility for your business. You can create ads targeting specific demographics, interests, and locations, and track the performance of your ads in real time.


Should Your Business Use a Facebook Business Page?


Here are some things to consider before committing the time to creating a Facebook business page and building a following:

  • Will you or someone in your organization commit the time to game planning, writing and scheduling posts several times per week?

  • Do you feel confident that you or someone in your organization can craft engaging posts that will encourage people to like, comment or share? Without engagement, organic follower growth is virtually impossible.

  • Are you willing to moderate comments, messages and other feedback?

  • Even if the first three bullets are covered, do you think an engaged follower base will move the needle toward your goals? For instance, will you have measurements in place to quantify the value of the engagement you achieve?


Setting Up Your Instagram Business Account

Setting Up an Instagram Account for Your Small Business


Instagram is a popular social media platform that allows users to share photos and videos, and to connect with others through likes, comments, and hashtags. If you have a small business, setting up and using an Instagram account can be a great way to promote your products or services and reach a wider audience. Here are some tips on how to set up and get the most out of your Instagram account:


Setting Up Your Instagram Business Account


To create an Instagram account, you will need to download the Instagram app on your phone or tablet, or go to instagram.com on your computer. Once you have the app or website open, click on the “Sign Up” button and follow the prompts to create your account. You will need to provide your email address, phone number, or Facebook account information, and choose a username and password.


Customizing Your Instagram Business Profile

Once you have created your account, you can customize your profile by uploading a profile picture and adding a brief bio about your business. You can also include links to your website, other social media accounts, and your email address, so that customers can easily contact you.


Draw Up Posts That Encourage Engagement

Instagram is all about visual content, so it’s important to post high-quality photos and videos that showcase your products or services. You can also use Instagram’s editing tools to enhance your photos and videos and make them stand out. In addition to photos and videos, you can also use Instagram’s Stories feature to share more candid and ephemeral content with your followers.


Interact With Your Audience as it Grows

In addition to posting content, it’s important to interact with your followers and respond to comments and direct messages in a timely manner. You can also use hashtags and participate in relevant Instagram challenges and events to increase your visibility and reach a wider audience.


Link it to Your Facebook Business Page

If you have a Facebook business page, you can easily link it to your Instagram account. To do this, go to your Instagram profile and click on the “Edit Profile” button. Under the “Contact Options” section, you will see a “Facebook” field where you can enter the URL of your Facebook business page. This will allow you to easily cross-promote your Instagram account on your Facebook page and vice versa.


Should Your Business Use an Instagram Account?


Here are some things to consider before committing the time to creating an Instagram account and building a following:

  • Will you or someone in your organization commit the time to game planning, writing and scheduling posts several times per week?

  • Does your business lend itself well to visually engaging content? Instagram is a visually driven platform.

  • Are you willing to moderate comments, messages and other feedback?

  • Even if the first three bullets are covered, do you think an engaged follower base will move the needle toward your goals? For instance, will you have measurements in place to quantify the value of the engagement you achieve?


Setting Up Your LinkedIn Business Page

Setting Up a LinkedIn Page for Your Small Business


LinkedIn is a professional social media platform that allows users to connect with others in their industry, find job opportunities, and share content related to their work. If you have a small business, setting up and using a LinkedIn business page can be a great way to promote your products or services and connect with potential customers and partners. Here are some tips on how to set up and get the most out of your LinkedIn business page:


Setting Up Your LinkedIn Business Page


To create a LinkedIn business page, you will need to have a personal LinkedIn account. Once you are logged in, click on the “Work” icon in the top right corner of the homepage and select “Create a Company Page” from the dropdown menu. You will then be prompted to select a category for your business and fill out some basic information, such as your business name, contact information, and website.


Customize Your LinkedIn Business Page

Once you have created your page, take some time to customize it to reflect your business. You can upload a profile picture and cover photo, add a brief description of your business, and include links to your website and other social media accounts. You can also choose to add a call-to-action button, such as “Learn More” or “Contact Us,” which allows visitors to easily take a specific action on your page.


Draw Up Posts That Encourage Engagement

Your LinkedIn business page is a great platform to share updates, promotions, and other content related to your business and industry. You can post articles, photos, and videos, and use LinkedIn’s hashtags and tagging features to increase the visibility of your posts. You can also consider using LinkedIn’s scheduling feature to schedule posts in advance, so you can plan out your content in advance and save time.


Interact With Your Audience as it Grows

In addition to posting content, it’s important to interact with your followers and respond to comments and messages in a timely manner. This helps to build trust and strengthen your relationships with your customers and partners.


Try LinkedIn Advertising

LinkedIn offers a range of advertising tools that can help you reach a targeted audience and get more visibility for your business. You can create ads targeting specific demographics, job titles, and locations, and track the performance of your ads in real time.


Should Your Business Use a LinkedIn Business Page?


Here are some things to consider before committing the time to creating a LinkedIn Business page and building a following:

  • Do you sell primarily B2B or B2C? If B2C, do you feel confident that you can create content that fits the business professional environment of LinkedIn?

  • Will you or someone in your organization commit the time to game planning, writing and scheduling posts several times per week?

  • Is that person also capable of writing compelling stories? LinkedIn is typically a platform for storytelling and sharing professional expertise and achievements.

  • Even if the first three bullets are covered, do you think an engaged follower base will move the needle toward your goals? For instance, will you have measurements in place to quantify the value of the engagement you achieve?



Setting Up Your Business YouTube Channel

Setting Up a YouTube Channel For Your Business


YouTube is a popular video sharing platform that allows users to upload, share, and view videos. If you have a small business, setting up and using a YouTube channel can be a great way to promote your products or services and connect with your customers. Here are some tips on how to set up and get the most out of your YouTube channel:


Setting Up Your YouTube Channel


To create a YouTube channel, you will need to have a Google account. Once you are logged in to your Google account, go to youtube.com and click on the “Sign In” button in the top right corner of the homepage. You will then be prompted to choose a name for your channel and select a channel icon. You can also choose to customize your channel’s look and feel by uploading a banner image and adding a brief description of your business.


Start Uploading Videos!


Your YouTube channel is a great platform to share videos related to your products or services. You can create instructional videos, product demonstrations, customer testimonials, or behind-the-scenes glimpses of your business to engage your audience and showcase your products or services.


Be Mindful of Keywords in Your Titles and Descriptions


To make it easier for people to find your videos, it’s important to optimize them for search engines. You can do this by adding relevant titles, descriptions, and tags to your videos, and using YouTube’s analytics tools to track the performance of your videos.


Moderate Comments and Messages (or Turn Them Off)


In addition to posting videos, it’s important to interact with your viewers and respond to comments and messages in a timely manner. You can also use YouTube’s community tab to share updates, ask for feedback, and engage with your audience.


Try YouTube Advertising


YouTube offers a range of advertising tools that can help you reach a targeted audience and get more visibility for your business. You can create ads targeting specific demographics, interests, and locations, and track the performance of your ads in real time.


Should Your Business Use YouTube?


Almost certainly yes. I'll keep this section pretty simple.


Setting Up Your Reddit Business Profile

Setting Up a Reddit Profile For Your Small Business


Reddit is a social news and discussion platform that allows users to share links, images, and text posts, and to interact with others through comments and votes. If you have a small business, setting up and using a Reddit account can be a great way to connect with your customers and learn more about what they are interested in. Here are some tips on how to set up and get the most out of your Reddit account:


Setting Up Your Reddit Business Profile


To create a Reddit account, go to reddit.com and click on the “Sign Up” button in the top right corner of the homepage. You will then be prompted to enter your email address, choose a username and password, and agree to the terms of service.


Customizing Your Reddit Business Profile

Once you have created your account, you can customize your profile by uploading a profile picture and adding a brief bio about your business. You can also include links to your website, other social media accounts, and your email address, so that customers can easily contact you.


Draw Up Posts That Encourage Engagement

Reddit is organized around communities, or “subreddits,” that focus on specific topics or interests. To engage with your customers, it’s important to find the subreddits that are relevant to your business and participate in the discussions. You can do this by commenting on posts, sharing relevant links, and asking questions.


Try Reddit Advertising

Reddit offers a range of advertising tools that can help you reach a targeted audience and get more visibility for your business. You can create ads targeting specific subreddits, locations, and interests, and track the performance of your ads in real time.


Follow Reddit's Rules Closely

To avoid being banned or getting a negative reputation on Reddit, it’s important to follow the platform’s rules and guidelines. This includes not spamming, self-promoting excessively, or posting offensive or inappropriate content.

By following these tips, you can set up and use your Reddit account to effectively connect with your customers and learn more about what they are interested in.


Should Your Business Use a Reddit Profile?


Here are some things to consider before committing the time to creating a LinkedIn Business page and building a following:

  • Will you or someone in your organization commit the time to game planning, writing and scheduling posts (or commenting on relevant posts) several times per week?

  • Are there subreddits out there that are both relevant to your industry and provide opportunities for localized engagement? By that we mean, are there ways for engaged users to make meaningful interactions with your business through subreddit posts either online or in-person? For a typical small business, the only way to accomplish this is through a community/city subreddit.

  • Are you willing to follow the rules of each subreddit and avoid overtly self-serving posts? If not, you will get down voted into oblivion.

  • Even if the first three bullets are covered, do you think an engaged follower base will move the needle toward your goals? For instance, will you have measurements in place to quantify the value of the engagement you achieve?



Setting Up Your Twitter Business Account

Setting Up a Twitter Account For Your Small Business


Twitter is a social media platform that allows users to share short messages, called “tweets,” and connect with others through likes, replies, and hashtags. If you have a small business, setting up and using a Twitter account can be a great way to promote your products or services and connect with your customers. Here are some tips on how to set up and get the most out of your Twitter account:


Setting Up Your Twitter Business Account


To create a Twitter account, go to twitter.com and click on the “Sign Up” button in the top right corner of the homepage. You will then be prompted to enter your name, email address, and phone number, and choose a username and password. Your username, or “handle,” should be unique and reflect your business.


Customizing Your Twitter Business Account

Once you have created your account, you can customize your profile by uploading a profile picture and adding a brief bio about your business. You can also include links to your website, other social media accounts, and your email address, so that customers can easily contact you.


Draw Up Tweets or Replies That Encourage Engagement

Your Twitter account is a great platform to share updates, promotions, and other content related to your business. You can use hashtags, tagging, and Twitter’s Moments feature to increase the visibility of your tweets and reach a wider audience. You can also consider using Twitter’s scheduling feature to schedule tweets in advance, so you can plan out your content in advance and save time.


Interact With Your Audience as it Grows

In addition to posting content, it’s important to interact with your followers and respond to mentions and replies in a timely manner. You can also use Twitter’s search and advanced search features to find and connect with potential customers and partners.


Try Advertising on Twitter

Twitter offers a range of advertising tools that can help you reach a targeted audience and get more visibility for your business. You can create ads targeting specific demographics, interests, and locations, and track the performance of your ads in real time.

By following these tips, you can set up and use your Twitter account to effectively promote your business and connect with your customers online.


Should Your Business Use Twitter?


Here are some things to consider before committing the time to creating a Twitter account and building a following:

  • Have you discovered people or subjects to follow that are relevant to your business?

  • Will you or someone in your organization commit the time to game planning, writing and scheduling posts (or commenting on relevant posts) several times per week?

  • Are you willing to moderate comments, messages and other feedback? Twitter is filled with parity accounts and faceless trolls willing to take your brand to task for little to no reason.

  • Are there ways for engaged users to make meaningful interactions with your business through your tweets either online or in-person?

  • Even if the first four bullets are covered, do you think an engaged follower base will move the needle toward your goals? For instance, will you have measurements in place to quantify the value of the engagement you achieve?


Setting Up Your Pinterest Business Account

Setting Up a Pinterest Account For Your Small Business


Pinterest is a social media platform that allows users to save, share, and discover ideas and inspiration through images, known as “pins.” If you have a small business, setting up and using a Pinterest account can be a great way to promote your products or services and connect with potential customers. Here are some tips on how to set up and get the most out of your Pinterest account:


Setting Up Your Pinterest Business Account


To create a Pinterest account, go to pinterest.com and click on the “Sign Up” button in the top right corner of the homepage. You will then be prompted to enter your email address, choose a username and password, and select your interests. You can also choose to sign up with your Facebook or Google account.


Customizing Your Pinterest Business Profile

Once you have created your account, you can customize your profile by uploading a profile picture and adding a brief bio about your business. You can also include links to your website, other social media accounts, and your email address, so that customers can easily contact you.


Creating Boards and Pins

Your Pinterest account is a great platform to share images and ideas related to your business. You can create boards for different topics or products, and pin images that showcase your products or services, or that provide inspiration or information related to your business. You can also use Pinterest’s SEO features, such as titles and descriptions, to make it easier for people to find your pins.


Create Pins that Encourage Engagement

Pinterest is a community of users who share and discover ideas and inspiration. To engage with your customers, it’s important to participate in the community by commenting on pins, repinning content from others, and using relevant hashtags.


Try Advertising on Pinterest

Pinterest offers a range of advertising tools that can help you reach a targeted audience and get more visibility for your business. You can create ads targeting specific demographics, interests, and locations, and track the performance of your ads in real time.

By following these tips, you can set up and use your Pinterest account to effectively promote your business and connect with potential customers on the platform.


Should Your Business Use a Pinterest Business Account?


Here are some things to consider before committing the time to creating a Pinterest Business account and building a following:

  • Does your business lend itself well to visually engaging content? Pinterest is a visually driven platform.

  • Will you or someone in your organization commit the time to game planning, writing and posting pins several times per week?

  • Are there ways for engaged users to make meaningful interactions with your business through your pins either online or in-person? For Pinterest, this usually means either having an e-commerce store or a blog.

  • Even if the first three bullets are covered, do you think an engaged follower base will move the needle toward your goals? For instance, will you have measurements in place to quantify the value of the engagement you achieve?



Setting Up Your Snapchat Business Account

Setting Up a Snapchat Account For Your Small Business


Snapchat is a social media platform that allows users to send and receive photos and videos, called “snaps,” and connect with others through chat and stories. If you have a small business, setting up and using a Snapchat account can be a great way to promote your products or services and connect with your customers. In fact, we've written a separate article highlighting ways a small business owner can best leverage Snapchat.


Here are some tips on how to set up and get the most out of your Snapchat account:


Setting Up Your Snapchat Business Account


To create a Snapchat account, you will need to download the Snapchat app on your phone or tablet. Once you have the app open, click on the “Sign Up” button and follow the prompts to create your account. You will need to provide your email address, phone number, and choose a username and password.


Customizing Your Snapchat Business Account

Once you have created your account, you can customize your profile by uploading a profile picture and adding a brief bio about your business. You can also include links to your website, other social media accounts, and your email address, so that customers can easily contact you.


Post Engaging Photos & Videos To Your Stories

Your Snapchat account is a great platform to share updates, promotions, and other content related to your business. You can send snaps and stories to your friends and followers, and use Snapchat’s filters, stickers, and text features to enhance your content and make it more engaging.


Interact With Your Audience as it Grows

In addition to posting content, it’s important to interact with your friends and followers and respond to chat messages in a timely manner. You can also use Snapchat’s discover and search features to find and connect with potential customers and partners.


Try Advertising on Snapchat

Snapchat offers a range of advertising tools that can help you reach a targeted audience and get more visibility for your business. You can create ads targeting specific demographics, interests, and locations, and track the performance of your ads in real time.

By following these tips, you can set up and use your Snapchat account to effectively promote your business and connect with your customers online.


Should Your Business Use Snapchat?


Here are some things to consider before committing the time to creating a Snapchat account and building a following:

  • Will you or an on-site employee commit the time the time each day to posting stories? Snapchat is very much an "in-the-moment" platform that requires that posting party to be on-site.

  • Are you willing to lead customers to your account by using the QR code or a link? Unlike other social media networks, Snapchat requires a more face-to-face method of requesting a follow.

  • Does your industry lend itself well to "in-the-moment" content?

  • Even if the first three bullets are covered, do you think an engaged follower base will move the needle toward your goals? For instance, will you have measurements in place to quantify the value of the engagement you achieve?



Setting Up Your TikTok Business Account

Setting up a TikTok Account for Your Small Business


TikTok is a social media platform that allows users to create and share short videos, set to music and other audio, and connect with others through likes, comments, and shares. If you have a small business, setting up and using a TikTok account can be a great way to promote your products or services and connect with your customers. Here are some tips on how to set up and get the most out of your TikTok account:


Setting Up Your TikTok Business Account


To create a TikTok account, you will need to download the TikTok app on your phone or tablet. Once you have the app open, click on the “Sign Up” button and follow the prompts to create your account. You will need to provide your email address, phone number, or social media account information, and choose a username and password.


Customizing Your TikTok Business Account

Once you have created your account, you can customize your profile by uploading a profile picture and adding a brief bio about your business. You can also include links to your website, other social media accounts, and your email address, so that customers can easily contact you.


Post Videos That Encourage Engagement

Your TikTok account is a great platform to share videos related to your products or services. You can create instructional videos, product demonstrations, customer testimonials, or behind-the-scenes glimpses of your business to engage your audience and showcase your products or services. You can also use TikTok’s editing tools, music, and effects to enhance your videos and make them stand out.


Interact With Your Audience as it Grows

In addition to posting content, it’s important to interact with your followers and respond to comments and messages in a timely manner. You can also use TikTok’s discover and search features to find and connect with potential customers and partners.


Try Advertising on TikTok

TikTok offers a range of advertising tools that can help you reach a targeted audience and get more visibility for your business. You can create ads targeting specific demographics, interests, and locations, and track the performance of your ads in real time.

By following these tips, you can set up and use your TikTok account to effectively promote your business and connect with your customers online.


Should Your Business Use TikTok?


Here are some things to consider before committing the time to creating a Pinterest Business account and building a following:

  • Does your business lend itself well to "phone-in-hand" video content? If not, are you willing to provide the resources for consistently producing video content?

  • Does you feel confident that your video content will grab attention within 2-3 seconds? TikToks are easy to breeze past if you don't hook the viewer almost instantaneously.

  • Are you willing to moderate comments, messages and other feedback?

  • Even if the first three bullets are covered, do you think an engaged follower base will move the needle toward your goals? For instance, will you have measurements in place to quantify the value of the engagement you achieve?



2. Creating a Website for Your Small Business


As a small business owner, it's important to have a strong online presence in today's digital age. One way to establish this presence is by building a website for your small business.


Why is it Important to Have a Website as Small Business Owner?


There are several very important reasons to make your mark online in a local community with a detailed website. Below we list just a few for beginners:


Credibility to Prospective Customers


In today's market, consumers expect businesses to have a website. By having a professional website, you can establish credibility with potential customers and showcase your products or services.


Increased Accessibility to Who You Are


A website allows customers to access information about your business at any time, from any location. This is especially important for businesses that have irregular operating hours or are located in areas that may not be easily accessible to everyone.


Opportunity for Wider Reach in Your Service Area


A website allows you to reach a wider audience beyond your local community. By creating a website, you can attract customers from all over the world, increasing your potential customer base and revenue.


Data Collection for Future Marketing


A website can serve as a cost-effective marketing tool. By creating a website, you can reach a larger audience without incurring the high costs of traditional marketing methods, such as print or radio advertising.


Enhance Your Customer Service & Response Time


A website can provide valuable information to your customers, such as product descriptions, pricing, and contact information. This can help to improve the customer experience and make it easier for them to do business with you.


Building a website is essential for small business owners in this day and age. It can increase credibility, improve accessibility, reach a wider audience, serve as a cost-effective marketing tool, and enhance customer service. Don't let your business be left behind – start building your small business website today with us!


What Platform Should You Use to Build Your Small Business Website?


Do you feel intimidated with the thought of having to build your own website? Don't worry - we can help, or you can take a swing yourself by giving one of these tools a shot. This list of three website building platforms are just a few of dozens of options out there but they are some of the most popular for DIYers.


Building Your Small Business Website With Wordpress

Building Your Small Business Website with WordPress


WordPress holds the distinction of being the largest CMS in the world. Millions of websites use WP including big brands like Nike and The New York Times down to corner shops. Here are some tips for small business owners who are building a website on WordPress:


Choose a Reputable Hosting Provider


It's important to choose a hosting provider that is reliable and offers good customer support. This will ensure that your website is up and running smoothly and that you can get help if you need it. Hosting providers can effect the load speed of your site and may also offer security measures to ward off attacks from bots and other forces up to no good.


Find a Theme That Fits Your Brand


WordPress offers a wide variety of themes to choose from, so make sure to select one that aligns with your brand and meets the needs of your business. It's also important to consider that theme's layout on both desktop and mobile devices. Typically a small business will find that more visitors use mobile devices to access their site - so it's important to create design that's easily navigated from that environment.


Break Out Sub Sections Clearly and Concisely


Your website's layout should be easy to navigate (see above) and should clearly display your products or services. Use clear headings and subheadings to break up content and make it easy for visitors to find what they're looking for. Google (and other search engines) likes a website with clearly organized content too...


Include High-Quality Images and/or Videos


Use high-quality images to showcase your products or services - bonus points if they are your own photographs and/or artwork! This will help to engage visitors and give them a better understanding of what you have to offer. It can also help your website appear in local image searches.


Search Engine Optimization


Make sure to include relevant keywords in your website's content and use tags and meta descriptions to improve your search engine ranking. Honestly, SEO can get pretty complicated - but in general, organizing each page to feature as much relevant content as possible and making regular updates/additions is a great place to start.


Don't Set and Forget Your WordPress Website!


It's important to keep your website up-to-date with fresh content (see above), such as blog posts and product updates. This will help to keep visitors engaged and improve your search engine ranking.


Should My Small Business Use WordPress to Build My Website?


Here are a few things to consider before choosing Wordpress as the CMS for your small business website:

  • Will you eventually need the flexibility to add many customer features to your site? Wordpress has a limitless number of plugins and third party apps to allow your website to facilitate many different functions.

  • Will you eventually be interested technical SEO (search engine optimization)? Wordpress is considered the most flexible platform in this regard.

  • Are you willing to weather a tough learning curve? WP can be much less naturally intuitive than platforms like Wix or SquareSpace.



Building Your Small Business Website With Wix

Building Your Small Business Website with Wix


Wix is designed to be more user friendly with premade templates and drag-and-drop elements almost reminiscent of PowerPoint or other presentation tools. Here are some tips for getting started with Wix (this website was built with Wix, by the way!):


Choose a Template that Fits Your Brand


Choose a template that aligns with your brand: Wix offers a wide variety of templates to choose from, so make sure to select one that aligns with your brand and meets the needs of your business.


Break Out Sub Sections Clearly and Concisely


Use a clear and easy-to-navigate layout: Your website's layout should be easy to navigate and should clearly display your products or services. Use clear headings and subheadings to break up content and make it easy for visitors to find what they're looking for.


Include High Quality Images and/or Videos


Include high-quality images: Use high-quality images to showcase your products or services. This will help to engage visitors and give them a better understanding of what you have to offer.


Search Engine Optimization


Make sure to include relevant keywords in your website's content and use tags and meta descriptions to improve your search engine ranking. Wix has a built-in SEO Wiz tool that can help you with this.


Don't Set and Forget Your Wix Website!


It's important to keep your website up-to-date with fresh content, such as blog posts and product updates. This will help to keep visitors engaged and improve your search engine ranking.


Browse Unique Tools and Add Ons from Wix


Wix offers a variety of features and tools that can help you create a professional and effective website. Make sure to explore and utilize these resources to their full potential.


Should My Small Business Use Wix to Build My Website?


Here are a few things to consider before choosing Wix as the CMS for your small business website:

  • Are you looking to design the site yourself in a short period of time? Wix features intuitive drag and drop elements that make creating a respectable design scheme both quick and easy.

  • Will the interactive elements of your site such as forms or galleries remain relatively simple? While Wix makes the initial design work simple, there may be some limitations for more complex backend functions.

  • Are you willing to pay an additional recurring subscription fee? Linking your domain to a completed Wix site requires an annual subscription that is pricier than most theme options on WordPress.



Building Your Small Business Website With SquareSpace

Building Your Small Business Website with SquareSpace


Similar to Wix in its user-friendly reputation, SquareSpace simplifies page design with pre-made templates and an interface built to make editing simple. Here are some tips for building a website with SquareSpace.


Choose a Template that Fits Your Brand


SquareSpace offers a wide variety of templates to choose from, so make sure to select one that aligns with your brand and meets the needs of your business.


Break Out Sub Sections Clearly and Concisely


Your website's layout should be easy to navigate and should clearly display your products or services. Use clear headings and subheadings to break up content and make it easy for visitors to find what they're looking for.


Include High Quality Images and/or Videos


Use high-quality images to showcase your products or services. This will help to engage visitors and give them a better understanding of what you have to offer.


Search Engine Optimization


Make sure to include relevant keywords in your website's content and use tags and meta descriptions to improve your search engine ranking. SquareSpace has built-in SEO tools that can help you with this.


Don't Set and Forget Your SquareSpace Website!


It's important to keep your website up-to-date with fresh content, such as blog posts and product updates. This will help to keep visitors engaged and improve your search engine ranking.


Browse Unique Tools and Add Ons for SquareSpace


SquareSpace offers a variety of features and tools that can help you create a professional and effective website. Make sure to explore and utilize these resources to their full potential.


Should My Small Business Use SquareSpace to Build My Website?


Here are a few things to consider before choosing SquareSpace as the CMS for your small business website:

  • Are you looking to design the site yourself in a short period of time? SquareSpace, much like Wix, features intuitive drag and drop elements that make creating a respectable design scheme both quick and easy.

  • Will the interactive elements of your site such as forms or galleries remain relatively simple? While SquareSpace makes the initial design work simple, there may be some limitations for more complex backend functions.

  • Are you willing to pay an additional recurring subscription fee? Linking your domain to a completed SquareSpace site requires an annual subscription that is pricier than most theme options on WordPress.


4. Collecting Data from Your Website


As a small business owner, it's important to track and analyze the performance of your website in order to make informed decisions about your digital marketing efforts. Google Analytics is a powerful tool that allows you to do just that.


Advantages of Installing Google Analytics


Why Google Analytics is an Important Addition to Your Website


Here are some ways that small business owners can use Google Analytics to collect important data from their website:


Track Your Website Traffic


Google Analytics allows you to see how many people are visiting your website and where they are coming from. This information can help you understand your target audience and determine the effectiveness of your marketing efforts.


Monitor User Behavior


Google Analytics allows you to track how users are interacting with your website, including what pages they are visiting, how long they are staying on each page, and what actions they are taking. This information can help you understand what content is most popular and how to improve the user experience.


Identify Areas for Improvement


Google Analytics provides data on the performance of individual pages on your website, including their loading times and bounce rates. This information can help you identify areas for improvement and optimize your website for better performance.


Count Conversions or Goals


If you have specific goals for your website, such as generating leads or making sales, Google Analytics allows you to track conversions and see how well your website is performing in achieving these goals.


Does My Website Need Google Analytics?


While creating a Google Analytics isn't required for new websites, we would HIGHLY encourage you to use at least some form of site analytics. Google Analytics is by far the most popular tool in that regard. Also, GA provides easier integrations with Google Ads and other tools for serving ads and tracking user behavior. What good is a website if you have no idea what happens there? Plus - it's free!


Setting Up A Google Analytics Account

Setting Up a Google Analytics Account for Your Website


Initial Sign Up for a Google Analytics Account


Go to the Google Analytics website and click "Sign In" in the top right corner. If you don't already have a Google account, you'll need to create one. After signing in, you'll be asked to set up your account. Fill in the required information, including your website's name and URL.


Setting Up a Property For Your Website


A property is a specific website or app that you want to track. Click "Create Property" and fill in the required information, including the website's name and URL.


Install the Tracking Code on Your Website


After setting up your property, you'll be given a tracking code that you'll need to add to your website in order to track its performance. There are a few different ways to do this, depending on your website platform. If you're using a content management system (CMS) like WordPress, you can use a plugin to add the tracking code to your website automatically.


Once you've added the tracking code to your website, you'll need to verify that it's working properly. Go back to the Google Analytics website and click "Verify Tracking Code." If everything is working correctly, you'll see a message saying "Tracking Verified."


Advantages of Installing Google Search Console


Google Search Console is a powerful tool that illuminates a treasure trove of data around how your site ranks for important keywords organically, the health and security of your site and what links are incoming or outgoing from your site across the web. Here are some ways that small business owners can use Google Search Console to collect important data from their website:


Monitor Important Keyword Data


Google Search Console allows you to see how many people are visiting your website through search engines and which keywords they are using to find your website. This information can help you understand your target audience and determine the effectiveness of your SEO efforts.


Identify and Fix Errors


Google Search Console will alert you if there are any errors on your website, such as broken links or crawl errors. This can help you fix these issues and improve the overall user experience on your website.


Monitor Page Performance, Security and User Experience


Google Search Console provides data on your website's loading times and the number of pages that are being indexed by Google. This information can help you identify areas for improvement and optimize your website for better performance. It will also alert you if there are any security issues on your website, such as malware or phishing attacks. This can help you protect your website and your users from potential threats.


Setting Up A Google Search Console Property

Setting Up a Google Search Console Property for Your Website


Google Search Console is a powerful tool that allows you to do just that. Here's how to set it up on your website:


Initial Sign Up for Google Search Console Account


If you don't already have a Google account, you'll need to create one in order to use Google Search Console. Go to the Google Search Console website and click "Sign In" in the top right corner. Follow the prompts to create a new account. If you already have established a Google Analytics account, this process should move along more quickly.


Adding a New Property and Verifying Ownership


After signing in, click "Add a Property" and enter the URL of your website.


In order to verify that you are the owner of the website, you'll need to prove your ownership in one of three ways: by adding a TXT record to your domain's DNS configuration, by uploading an HTML file to your website's root directory, or by using your Google Analytics or Google Tag Manager account.


Submitting Your Sitemap


A sitemap is a file that lists all of the pages on your website and helps search engines understand your website's structure. You can submit your sitemap to Google Search Console by clicking "Sitemaps" in the left-hand menu and then clicking "Add/Test Sitemap." It's very possible that the CMS or web building platform and/or plug ins you've used to design your site will help do this for you.


Start Reviewing the Data!


Once you've set up your account and verified your ownership, you can start using Google Search Console to monitor your website's performance. This includes tracking your search traffic, identifying and fixing errors, monitoring your website's performance, and monitoring your website's security.


Does My Website Need Google Search Console?


Similar to our comments related to Google Analytics, we believe that more data is always preferable. Google Search Console is a free tool just like GA, but instead of tracking behavior WITHIN your website, GSC collects data relative to how your website is indexed within search results for particular keywords. If you have long term SEO aspirations, Google Search Console is a fabulous, free tool for tracking your ranking progress and site health in many ways.




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