There are a lot of great resources on the web that enables you to market your business online in Australia, absolutely free. This list is a quick starting point you can complete in under 3 hours, that will get your business more visibility online so you can get more customers.
Market Your Business Online For Free:
1. Google My Business
Difficulty: Easy (25 min.)
To get a cool little map listing on google searches, you need to list your business on Google My Business. This invaluable tool is often overlooked by small businesses, but is so important to show up to your local customers.
Registering is easy, just login to your gmail and fill in your business' address, website address, opening hours and any photos that show your recent work or products.
Verify Your Business Address
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— from our experience it took around 2 weeks to arrive. Once the postcard arrives, inside the postcard is a code that you need to enter to Google My Business.
Remember, if you are an online business you should check the box "I deliver goods and services to my customers at their location," so that customers will not show up to your home office address. Then your home address will not be published on your Google listing, and you can specify which locations you will serve for your business.
Google Reviews & Posts
Once live, be sure to 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.
2. 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 add your ad for free on the Australian Yellow Pages website go to Sensis and sign-up there.
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 if you need to stand out from a lot of competitors in your local area.
3. Create a Facebook Page
Difficulty: Medium (1 hr.)
Facebook is a great way to market your business online for free. Simply use your existing Facebook profile to create a new business page. To get the most out of your Facebook business page, it's best to have a Facebook logo that is round 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
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 calling you, sending a message or getting a quote. There's also a section for your services.
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 become involved online (think about your customers and what forums or websites they may visit, or your favorite industry web sites) Leave occasional valuable comments or contribute to the conversation, using your business profile.
Get A Profile Image Gravatar
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. 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.
Do you have any other tips for small businesses in Australia to promote their business online for free? Please leave your ideas in the comments below!