With more than 3 billion people worldwide using the Internet1, it makes sense for businesses to concentrate on advertising their products and services online. Smartphones and other mobile devices have made the internet more accessible at all times of the day, and most people will immediately check online whenever they want information or if they wish to make a purchase.
Most internet users expect businesses to have an online presence, and many people admit that if they see a product in a store, they will wait until they have checked online first to try to find a similar product but at a cheaper price.
Businesses must, therefore, consider their online advertising options if they want to stay ahead of the competition. Although advertising methods such as TV, radio, newspaper, and magazine are still effective, most companies now realise that advertising online is definitely the way forward. Online marketing channels such as pay-per click advertising, banner ads, affiliates, social media, Google Shopping etc work – if done correctly – and the media & internet giants know it.
Benefits of Advertising Online
The internet offers businesses the chance to reach a far greater audience, and it has some distinct advantages over other methods of advertising, including the following:
- More Cost Effective – the most obvious benefit of advertising online is that it is a much cheaper option than other advertising methods such as TV or newspaper advertising. Traditional advertising can be very expensive, and many companies are unable to afford these outgoings. Online advertising has opened up the competition and enabled smaller companies to compete with large organisations.
- Greater Reach – with traditional forms of advertising, companies were limited in terms of audience reached. Online advertising provides a far greater reach, with many businesses being able to sell globally as a result.
- Easy Measurement – online advertising is easy to measure, which is attractive for many customers. There are countless analytic tools available to help companies measure the success of their advertising campaigns, and this helps business owners when it comes to future campaigns.
Online Advertising Tips
When it comes to advertising, most business owners are aware that online advertising is effective, yet many are unsure of how to get the most from their online advertising. Below are the top five tips for advertising online.
- Use Interactive Advertising
Interactive advertising is an enormous advantage of online advertising. This allows customers to provide feedback and encourage engagement, which is hugely beneficial to businesses – in fact, the whole idea of social media marketinis to encourage engagement, so why not do this with advertising? By providing customers with an online feedback form, companies can get an idea of how consumers view their products and services. This is also an excellent way to get customers to provide their email address and sign up for newsletters, as well as enoiraging likes and follows in social media. If customers have agreed to a weekly or monthly newsletter, a business can then include advertisements for new products and services, or discount vouchers to encourage them to buy. The social media signups allow you to deliver offers via the chosen channel too.
- Be Honest
When advertising online, it is essential that a business is honest about its services or products, and that information is accurate. For banner ads, they need to ensure that these are to the point and that they are providing a solution to a problem their customers may be having. Too many banner ads are misleading, targeting clicks rather than qualified traffic. To get effective results, customers who click on banner advertisements will need follow through to a completed sale. This simply won’t happen if a product or service does not offer the solution a customer is looking for, adn just adds to bounce rate and wasted advertising spend
- Spend as Much As is Affordable On Design
At the end of the day, a business wants its online advertising to work for them, so the best way to do this is to make sure your banner ads look professional. This may mean spending more money but, by employing a qualified specialist, a business can be certain their banner ads look professional and so will attract more clicks. A good banner ad will compel visitors to click and hopefully make a purchase. Adverts have to look appealing.
- Use Powerful Headlines
Obvious we know but too many adverts focus on the logo, or colour, or try fancy/clever messages and not enough time on the main event. The most important thing with online advertising is to grab the attention of those who see the ads. The internet is flooded with advertisements so, in order to stand out from the competition, headlines have to not only grab the attention of those who see it but also keep their attention. In order to create a compelling headline, think about the target audience and what would actually make them stop and click on the ad. What would make you look at an ad? Here’s a great post on how to write headlines in 9 steps.
- Attract Potential Buyers with Offers
Customers love it when they think they are getting a good deal – I know I do. There are many ways that businesses can attract customers but offering them a bargain is sure to get them interested. Offering a discount or free shipping is a great incentive for customers to buy a business’s product or service over that of the competition. Advertisements should also be used to focus on how a product or service will benefit the customer. Sell the product benefits not the attributes!
For information on advertising online, contact us for free advice on how to get your message out there in a cost-effective and efficient way.
(1) Reference: http://www.statista.com/statistics/273018/number-of-internet-users-worldwide/