Lead generation for a new business
I get to work with a lot of ambitious businesses who have only just started trading. Often excitable with enthusiasm and ideas, but little understanding on how to bring it all to life.
Which is why I feel like a negative Nancy when I explain that a new website, no matter how beautiful, is very unlikely to deliver enquiries to your door from day one. It takes time for a domain to grow in authority and be discoverable in the search results.
This period for a new business owner, when there aren’t many enquiries coming in, can be scary and daunting. They want to hit the ground running, grow their customer base and start bringing in some money for their products or services! If you’re a business owner and this sounds familiar, don’t despair, here are three quick and easy things you can do during these first few months to ensure you’re set up for success…
1. Install Google Analytics (and enable the demographics and interest reports)
Even if you’re a tiny business and you have no understanding of Google Analytics, get it installed on your website as early as you can. It’s a 15 minute job to set up and it will then collect data in the background on every single visit you receive. Further down the line you (or whoever you’ve hired to do your marketing) can then use this extremely valuable data in so many powerful ways, to ensure you reach more customers.
Make sure you navigate to Audience > Demographics > Overview and enable the ‘demographics and interests’ report from day 1 too, so you can see the average age, gender and interests of your visitors.
If I’ve built your website, Google Analytics will be installed by default, and the demographics report will be enabled from the start.
2. Set up a ‘Google My Business’ listing
Google business listings appear in the search results, like this:
They provide a quick overview of businesses related to your search, including contact details, opening hours and review ratings, as well as the location on Google Maps. It’s a confirmed Google ranking factor, meaning a profile will almost certainly improve your visibility for local customers.
It’s super easy to set up and will take no more than half an hour. Just make sure you verify the listing by entering the code they send to you via post card. Old school, I agree!
3. Encourage as many reviews as possible
Online reviews and SEO go hand in hand. The more you can get your customers raving about your business online, the higher you will appear in the search results. I can’t emphasise this one enough.
When you first start trading, encourage as many happy customers as possible to leave you a review online. If high Google rankings are your main objective, make sure these reviews are left on Google, and not on Facebook for example. Customers can only do this once you have a Google My Business listing (see point 2 above).
Sometimes it can be hard for your customers to find your Google Business listing, especially when it’s first created. So my top tip is to add a link to the footer of your website which says ‘Leave us a review’ and links directly to your Google Business listing. That way you can direct your customers to your website footer and prevent any little hiccups which will get in the way of those gold dust reviews!