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Your web presence - are you doing enough?

Do more. Mac on desk workspace

What is web presence?

Web presence in a nutshell is all things digital that represent and showcase your business or organisation and brand online.

This can include your website, targeted email campaigns, regular e-newsletters, digital branding; where areas of your branding is adapted for web use, this should match any physical or offline branding but be optimised for web use such as colours, logo size and quality or fonts. Web presence also includes the following:

·Social media, the use of Twitter, Facebook and Instagram or online networking through LinkedIn to build reach.

·Content; On page, regular blog posts or videos.

·Organic Search on and off site, or PPC campaigns through Google or even Facebook depending upon your audience.

Importance of an online presence

Why is this so important? Well, your web presence is your voice before a prospect gets to talk to you, it is your virtual shop window. It creates a platform for businesses and organisations to strengthen their brand and entice prospects.

A professional looking site has the potential to level the playing field between the smaller and larger businesses.

Your web presence is where you can raise your creditability, show your expertise within your industry and increase the trust and authority you hold over any niche services.

I hear a lot of people say that they gain their new business through referrals. Well that may well be true, but that referral will more than likely check the website to ensure they do in fact offer what the referred person needs. For example, when someone recommends a restaurant or hotel you most likely check it out on TripAdvisor and go through their website too. If they didn't have a website or had no offsite reviews or social media presence at all would you trust that referral? Probably not, you would click else where just as this prospect would.

Your website needs to showcase your brand, who you work with, what you do and how you do it and the other avenues of your web presence should align to this too. This in turn will aid the sustainability and growth of the business.

B2B customers get up to 70% of the way through the buying journey before they're ready to talk to anyone about making a purchase and the average paying customer will have had 7 touch points before converting. These touch points can vary in platform hence why the web presence is so important. They may read a leaflet, see a post on Facebook, follow you on other social media channels, sign up to a newsletter, visit a shop and have numerous visits to the website, all before making a purchase or signing up for a service. For 81% of people looking to make a purchase they will look to the internet, if you aren't there then that potential customer will find someone who is.

To stay ahead of the game with this trend you need to show up in the initial research phase which will most likely include a Google search and looking through the first few organic rankings. You should also have a fast loading, easy to use, responsive website that has https on any data gathering pages at the very least. Having reviews or case studies available to users and relevant, engaging content can also be a real game changer in conversion rates for you.

Working on digital content

Doing enough?

Sometimes it can be hard to tell whether you are doing enough with your web presence. No one expects a business or organisation to necessarily be covering every point that's been mentioned within this post. Generally speaking, to get going you need a good website that is built professionally so that it can achieve what you want it to, is fully responsive and secure (https) that is then filled with engaging, relevant content.

Having a blog as part of your website is a great way to keep people coming back as you can let them know when new content has arrived. You can use a blog to promote certain products and services or tell customers and prospects what the company has been up to! As part of this content (including blogging) there should be potential to cover some on site SEO (search engine optimisation) this can be done by creating on page quality content that covers services, products or information that you want to rank for. The rest of this can be done with the set-up of your site or through most CMS (content management systems) post going live.

It is also best to set up a Google my business profile and ensure all the details match those of your website. Finally having some sort of social media presence is becoming more and more important and relevant. Rather than trying to cover every platform choose one or two that seem good for your audience and master them through regular posting of great content and sharing of other relevant content that you may come across. Remember you can do PPC campaigns on social so when you feel confident and have some budget for extra marketing they can be a great area to expand into.

Talk to us more about your web presence and how you're doing by emailing: or and we'll organise a call.

BCC and Focus join forces for the ENGAGE_YOUTH workshop

BCC and Focus join forces for the ENGAGE_YOUTH workshop

I have had the pleasure this morning to support Les Compton of Bristol City Council with presenting our website Go Places Do Things at the Engage event at the Watershed.

The workshop was arranged to discuss digital tools for participation and active citizenship with participants from the UK, Germany and Denmark.

ENGAGE is a continuing professional development programme for European youth workers who wish to understand the new ICT-enabled culture and explore how web 2.0 and social media tools can help to extend and enhance their practice.

Les and I went along to talk about our participation with young people while developing and evolving the GPDT site, as well as discussing the challenges that we have faced and the plans for the future. We discussed the access we have given to youth workers and other activity providers for adding their own events and direct feeds that have been set up from the BCC events online and 1 Big Database.

After Bristol the programme will move to Aarhus, Denmark and then on to Hannover in Germany where participants will continue to develop their understanding of how developments in ICT and online technologies can amplify and extend the voice of young people in European society.

The session was really interesting and we had the opportunity to discuss the other online solutions that people have set up, as well as talking about how to get young people to participate and engage as young editors on website content.

I will certainly be following the progress of the programme via the Engage website and will be looking to keep in touch with some of the participants at the workshop.

Villagers stage protest over Google Streetview

Pitchfork rabble roused by Google's latest featI wasn't overly surprised at seeing today's leading article on the BBC Technology page.  Google's Streetview project has precipitated much debate on topics ranging from personal privacy to crime since its official launch two weeks ago.  In this instance, residents of a small town in Buckinghamshire physically blocked the passage of a Google streetview car, insisting angrily that the invasion of their privacy was too much to bear. 

I empathise, having felt a deep uneasiness at seeing my front garden two clicks into a Google search.  We are all well aware of increased surveillance and presence of cameras within city centres, but for me this goes a bit too far.

There are benefits to the service though, that I shall no doubt take advantage of.  It will make visits to unknown destinations much easier for a start, as you will literally be able to trace a virtual journey from your start point to destination.

The biggest question I have is what the real purpose of Streetview is.  How do Google propose to monetise this new feature?  I'm guessing a merge between Google Adwords and Local Business Centre (once they sort through their algorithm problems) will allow businesses to advertise their products and services from a virtual shop front, but surely this has already been done more effectively by Second Life?

With Microsoft's plans to launch a rival service later this year on beta, my head shakes with Luddite pensiveness.  This new technology could either take off and thrive in a social networking fashion, or wither away under a backlash of suspicion.  I'm not entirely convinced either way but will be interested to see what the general consensus will be once the launch hype has died down and people start experimenting with both Streetview and GeoSynth.

The democratisation of information

We've just read Jay Adelson's piece regarding the democratisation of information, care of the internet's burgeoning blogging community.  He describes the situation well - the way we assimilate knowledge is changing due to the proliferation of 'news' outlets (we're all increasing coming across information regarding new technologies from independent blogs and not from conventional news sites). 

Despite this explosion of information I think the power still lies with Google.  You can only access a fraction of what is out there without a search engine and the rules that govern SEO are constantly being rewritten.  Which really means that those complying with Google's latest guidelines get the largest amount of traffic.

Created on Wednesday February 20 2008 11:33 AM

Tags: blog google media seo technology web-development

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Schmoozing with the luvvies

While Lisa dined out on croissants and hearty English fare yesterday, I quaffed a few glasses of complimentary red with the cream of Bristol media society... dahling! 

It seemed that everyone had turned over the same leaf, with a collective decision made to be sociable and 'get out there'. 

Goldbrick House's champagne bar was heaving with an eclectic mixture of folk representing the entire spectrum of media.  I met cameramen, post production crews, an artistic dance director and a lovely illustrator amongst others, whose lengthy job titles prevent me from mentioning them here.  What they all had in common, however, was an open, friendly approach - cooperation rather than competition seemed to be the order of play here.

Bristol Media are doing a great job of providing a link between disparate arms of the well established media body here in the South West - I'm looking forward to the next event in February.

Created on Wednesday January 30 2008 03:42 PM

Tags: media networking new-year technology

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