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Getting Your Business Online

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    More Australians turn to the internet when researching products than any other medium, so it stands to reason that you should market your business online. Getting your website visible in the search engine results might seem like the first step, but there is a critical one that comes right before that. Actually having a website. Research done earlier this year by MYOB’s Business Monitor showed that two thirds of Australian small businesses do not even have a website. (1source: https://www.dynamicbusiness.com.au/news/two-in-three-australian-small-businesses-no-website-1722011.html)

    This is a staggering figure when you think about the surge in internet ready mobile devices, and that many people do their purchasing research online, either before they walk into a store, or with a view to completing the transaction online.

    While it is strongly recommended that you have a website for your small business, many people simply do not know

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    where to start, or think they don’t have the time or money. If you reflect on the fact that $12 billion was spent online last year1, you may want to reconsider. There are many cheap and effective ways to get online – there are free blogging tools and cheap hosting packages with drag and drop website building features. One new promotion that started this year is the MYOB and Google joint venture “Getting Aussie Business Online” which gives your business a free website, free hosting and free domain registration for 2 years. What’s the catch? There practically isn’t one, but if you must know – the websites, while customisable, all follow a standard template, however all block titles, images and colours are editable.

    The websites design is mindful of SEO requirements and even comes with a Google Adwords credit to use on new accounts. Keep in mind, that as with any website, you won’t automatically rank for any of your keywords and traditional SEO techniques and marketing will still apply. This is a great starting point for those small businesses or sole traders who need an online presence to compete, but can’t afford the initial outlay.

    After the one year period has passed, the website costs $5 per month to keep live, and your domain registration will cost you $30 per year after the first two years. All you need is an ABN and phone number to start, and no credit card details are needed at all. If you are looking at branding and making an impression with your online customers, perhaps asking a professional’s advice would benefit you, as while this promotion is fantastic for someone just starting out, if you are looking to agressively market online, it can pay to spend that little bit more to make a great impression.

    Once you are up and online, you can then think about other ways of locally marketing your business, as you will have just opened up to a whole new set of customers.

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