It can be tough to get enough customers for your business, and advertising can be so expensive.
Luckily, there are a many ways you can promote your small business online in Australia, for free!
How To Market Your Australian Business Online For Free:
These 5 quick tips you can complete in under 5 hours, and will get your small business much more visibility online, improve SEO and help you get more customers.
1. Sign Up With Google My Business
Difficulty: Easy (25 min.)
To get a cool map listing on google searches, you need to list your business with Google My Business.
This invaluable tool is overlooked by many small businesses, but is so important to gain local customers.
Registering is easy.
Make sure you are signed in to your Google/gmail account and visit Google My Business.
Fill in your business' address, website address, opening hours and any photos that show your recent work or products.
It's very important to add a few categories that your business falls under. (For us it was website development, SEO and photography).
If you are only an online business you should check the box "I deliver goods and services to my customers at their location."
Then your home address will not be published on your Google listing, and you can specify which locations you will serve for your business.
Verify Your Business Address With Google
The listing is not immediately live. To get it published you need to verify your physical address.
This is difficult if you are in a remote location and only receive mail at a PO Box address like we were originally!
(Unfortunately Google won't accept PO Box addresses.)
Once you click on verify, a physical "postcard" is sent to your business address.
The postcard will take 5-14 business days—for us it took 2 weeks.
Once the postcard arrives, open the postcard and find the code.
This is what you need to enter to Google My Business to verify.
Use Google Reviews & Posts
Once live, send the link to your clients so they can give you a review!
Another new feature is "Posts," to give short updates similar to your Facebook Page.
Posts are live for a week or two, so you need to keep writing little updates if you want those to stay prominent on your listing.
Your business will come up on the first page of Google in the map section when people search for your service/product nearby. E.g. SEO.
2. Put Up A Free Yellow Pages Ad
Difficulty: Easy (20 min.)
Yellow pages ads are a quick and easy step to giving your business more exposure when people are searching for a business.
To put up your ad for free on the Australian Yellow Pages website go to Sensis and sign-up.
You get one free listing from either the Yellow Pages, White Pages, Whereis or True Local, so think about which website your potential customers will be using and select that service.
The free listing only includes basic information, so if you want your logo displayed or services offered you need to upgrade your ad.
3. Create a Facebook Page
Difficulty: Medium (1 hr.)
Facebook is a good way to market your business online for free.
Even though engagement from your page followers is quite low, it does help with your website's SEO, and your page will also come up in local searches within Facebook.
To create a Facebook page, login to your existing Facebook personal profile and click on the Page link in the bottom left hand corner.
To get the most out of your Facebook business page, it's best to have a Facebook logo that is round or square to fit the new profile image size and a background banner or image that reflects your business and is the correct dimensions, (851 x 315 pixels).
Add Your Business Information To Facebook
Add information to your page such as your business type, business description, services and opening times.
Don't forget to create a call to action button on your banner, to encourage visitors to take action on your Facebook page.
This can be anything from messaging you, or getting a quote. There's also a section for your services or selling products.
Post Any Updates or Promotions
Again, ask your previous clients to give you a review on your Facebook page, and publish engaging updates, photos or videos of your business in action.
You may also want to post any deals or promotions you have going right now.
4. Get Involved in the Online Community
Difficulty: Medium (1 hr.)
Choose the best place to reach your ideal customer and become involved online.
Think about your ideal customer and what forums, Facebook groups or websites they may visit.
Leave occasional valuable comments or contribute to the conversation, and occasionally offer your professional services if relevant.
Get A Profile Image Gravatar For Website Comments
To have a business profile picture when you leave comments on a website, you will need to create a gravatar.
This will display your business logo on your profile image when you comment on forums or websites and people can click through to your website.
When you are commenting on stories, there will usually be a place to leave your website address as well.
Make sure to fill this in, so that if people appreciate your information and want to find out more about you, they can click through to your website.
5. Write Blog Posts On Your Website
Difficulty: Medium-Hard (2-4 hrs.)
If you have a website, it can be a good idea increase your SEO and regularly create fresh content.
A good start is to think about what your ideal customer would want to know related to your product and go from there.
Reverse Engineer Your Products or Offerings
A great way to attract the right visitors to your blog is to reverse engineer your main products/services.
Think about your main offerings and what your buyers would also be searching for that is related.
Then think about how you can get them from the blog post to your sales pages.
For example, if you run a party hire website, you could start with "10 ways to create the perfect kids birthday party."
So, lovelies, do you have any other great tips to promote your business online for free? Please share them with us in the comments below!
If you do need help with any of the above, we run one-on-one coaching sessions in Melbourne and Ballarat that are catered to your business' needs.