A website is like a shopping window for your business only on the Internet. It means that people usually can’t try your product except you’re offering an online service, but you can tell them about it, demonstrate how it looks and show its basic features.
You’ve probably heard of some basics of startup promotion: create a website, state your mission, find your audience and publish great content. But in most cases, you need more specific information or some untapped ideas to get into the niche and establish your online presence quickly and with minimum efforts.
At the beginning of their journey to success, startups usually have a modest budget that doesn’t allow them spending money on paid ads and promotion in media. They should carefully examine their opportunities and focus on creative but trite-and-true marketing techniques.
The main success factors of almost any startup are the following:
⦁ A proper choice of niche. It’s much easier to succeed in the niche that has low competitiveness. So a startup owner should carefully consider how “crowded” is the niche they aim for with their product.
⦁ A proper choice of the audience. As an old saying claims, you can’t sell ice to Eskimos. It means that you should learn your audience inside and out to know who are those people that will eagerly need your product or service. And then turn all your focus toward them.
⦁ A team of like-minded people. I mean, if you can’t sell your idea to your team – it will be almost impossible to sell it to others.
Now let’s check out a few the most important steps you should take to promote your startup website.
Impress your audience
Modern online shoppers who conquered the web in the last decade are not those who they were before. They won’t buy your beautiful dazzling advertising anymore. Generation Z who followed the Millennials in the past decade now make a purchase with more attention to the product and its features than to what ads said. Surveys showed that only 59% of Gen Z representatives click ads compared to 71% of Millennials.
That’s why your sparkling banners won’t work today. Instead, you should provide a message they will believe and accept. They will not follow the brand they know nothing about, especially about its story and ethical values. Thus you should make your brand values, goals and message as clear as possible.
Get to know your competitors
Learning who are your main rivals is as essential as learning the audience. If only you’re not invented something completely new, you will be facing competitors in almost any business niche. So you should gather the most info you can find about them and learn:
⦁ Keywords they rank in Google Top10 for;
⦁ Their traffic sources;
⦁ What content brings them traffic, backlinks, and shares.
When you have this info, you may try to ‘steal’ ideas from your competitors and attract more customers to your website from yours.
Establish a solid SEO strategy
So you have found what keywords your competitors use on their website. Now you have to select only the best ones from the entire amount of your competitor’s keywords to implement them into your content.
Metrics you should take into account:
Search volume. It shows the number of searches of this keyword per month. Since Google Keyword Planner groups volumes, you should consider other tools to get the idea of the exact search amount for a given keyword.
Estimated traffic. Advanced tools will also give you the idea of a potential amount of traffic you may get for a certain keyword.
Amount of clicks. It will show you the estimated number of clicks you may get on your link if it gets to the Top10 of Google. There are some search queries that Google considers as ‘questions’ and shows the answers right on the SERP page (e.g. “star wars the last jedi release date”). Thus, they may get a lower amount of clicks than those ones considered to be ‘topical’ searches.
Competition. Check out Google Keyword Planner or another tool that shows you a level of competition for a given keyword. The best choice for a startup to choose the keyword with a decent amount of traffic and search volume but a low competition score. You can also check out the difficulty for a selected keyword that suggests how hard it can be to get into the Top10 for it. The best idea is choosing long-tail keywords for your startup website SEO strategy.
Create a decent content strategy
Today you can not fill your website with mediocre content stuffed with a ton of keywords. You should offer a content that brings value, tells a story or helps your clients solve their issues. Create a blog and fill it with high-quality content. Post regularly but don’t chase the frequency. It’s better to post one article a month that brings value, than dropping trifling pieces every day.
Team up with brand advocates
Word of mouth today is one of the strongest marketing practices. The survey from BrightLocal showed that people trust online reviews more than before. Users trust the ones they know – friends, relatives, even their Facebook connections – more than any other source of information.
Most renowned brands already got this trend and encourage customers to leave reviews and share their opinion about the interaction with the brand online. You should also keep closer contact with those clients who tried your product and improve their loyalty to your brand. Pay attention to their reviews and answer their critique fast. Consider feature requests, advice and offer them a nice reward for the feedback (any feedback actually). The more genuine a startup feels – the more trust it gains.
Benefit from user-generated content
It’s not just reviews and testimonials from customers you can use in your content strategy. Encourage them to share their photos, advice about how to use your product. It’s a perfect way to create an emotional connection between your startup and customers. Videos are those of the most powerful content types today. According to the research, a 1-minute video is worth 1.8 million words. Videos help tell a story, share opinions, give advice, raise your brand awareness.
Another benefit of user-generated content is that it saves you from a routine of creating content by yourself. It requires less time- and effort-investment than creating your own content from scratch. But don’t forget to ask your users before posting their photos and videos to your website.
The bottom line
Startups usually have fewer resources to promote and market their websites online. That’s why they should invest more time and choose wise strategies to get their place in the sun. Thus, traditional marketing activities like getting a website and creating social media accounts, they need to focus on solid SEO strategy, build a loyal community of brand advocates and ordinary customers who will share the info about the startup.
The author bio:
Helen is a content marketer at Ahrefs. She explores new things every day to impress her readers with catchy stories. Apart from all that marketing stuff, Helen loves listening to rock music, reading and traveling. A lot! Follow Helen on Twitter and Facebook.