Article provided by xneelo
As a small business owner, you juggle a lot of different roles. This makes it important to work smart, not hard. What’s the best way to do this? By using all the tools available to you as a small business owner. Google offers several tools for small businesses that can help you streamline your work. But where do you start? Luckily, xneelo has outlined the essentials.
Of all the tools you should be using, Google Ads is number one. Why? Because, when it’s managed right, it offers the greatest potential ROI (return-on-investment). Google Ads command 71% of the search market and 90% of the display market share. This means huge reach and potential exposure for your business.
Your options are search ads (ads that show in response to search queries on Google) or display ads (banner ads displayed on websites). What’s helpful is that you can measure almost everything on Google Ads, and see where every rand goes. There’s no long-term commitment, so you can run campaigns for a few days or even a few hours. If something isn’t working, you can pause it. And when something is working well, you can increase your spend on it. Be sure to set your budget upfront so you don’t overspend.
Top Tip: Do your research before launching your Google Ad campaign. It can take some time to understand how the process works. And you don’t want to run a campaign that’s been incorrectly set up because it can cost you money. Once you’re confident you have the right campaign, targeting the right keywords, then it’s time to activate your campaign.
Google My Business
Google is a big supporter of small businesses. They have a whole Google for Small Business platform and offer both free and paid-for tools to choose from. They also have free training on Grow with Google to help you make the most of your digital presence. The first step is Google My Business.
Google My Business is a free business listing tool for your business. When customers search for your business on Google, it will appear in the search results. This listing will include your location, contact details and any other relevant information. You can also promote your services – at no extra cost. It’s a no-brainer to set up Google My Business if you have a physical office or store, and the new updated version lets you set it up even for delivery-only stores.
Top Tip: Ask customers to review your products or service. These reviews will be added to your Google profile and act as social proof. Even a negative review can be used for good if you respond to it correctly, and quickly.
Google Search Console
This free tool provides insight into your website’s performance on Google search. Google Search Console gives you information on your website’s impressions, clicks and CTR (Click Through Rate). 76% of global web searches happen in Google. This makes having a direct tool that tells you what Google thinks of your site very helpful. What’s more, the tool also provides warnings and notices if there are any problems on your site, for example, if it’s been hacked or Google isn’t able to crawl your website for some reason. And you can submit sitemaps on Google Search Console, so your website will make sense to Google’s bots.
Top Tip: Use the keyword stats tool in Google Search Console to build a content plan. Look for keywords your website is ranking for on page 2 or 3, and then improve these keywords through custom SEO content.
Google Analytics is a free tool, with a paid-for version if you’re looking for more functionality. It’s a web analytics tool that allows you to track visitors on your site. It also helps you understand the pages they visit and what actions they take while on your website.
When you understand how visitors interact with your website, you can optimise it. You can also track where visitors leave your site and fix any issues in the user journey. When you find out where your customers come from and how they find your site., you can tailor your products or services to match their needs.
Top Tip: If you’re running an e-commerce store, set up the e-commerce feature in Google Analytics. You’ll be able to track product and sale performance, transaction value and time to sale. This can be really helpful if you’re in the process of a remarketing campaign. You can use this information to catch potential customers who are interested but haven’t made the decision to buy just yet.
If you’re looking for a simple way to collaborate with your team, G-Suite could be the answer. It includes a range of productivity and collaboration tools, all hosted in the cloud.
It’s a free suite of tools for personal use, but you do have to pay per user if you want a business account. Think of it as the usual office suite (Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint), but in the cloud. Included in the suite are familiar tools like Gmail, Calendar, Drive and Hangouts. It also includes extra business tools like Forms, Slides and Sheets to name a few. Because it’s cloud-based, you’re able to work remotely. The collaboration feature means that multiple people can work on a single document at the same time. It’s also pretty cost-effective. If you’re a small team, you benefit from a range of tools in one subscription package.
Top Tip: Here’s a nifty productivity hack – create a new Google Doc or Spreadsheet from your browser address bar. All you need to do is type in any of these URLs: doc.new, sheets.new, slide.new
You might think of YouTube as a place to stream videos rather than a tool to grow your small business. But you can set up your own YouTube channel to promote your business. By creating helpful videos about your product, you can increase your reach and improve engagement as customers can leave comments. You can also embed these videos on your website or social media platforms. Once you have a few videos, you can use them to advertise on YouTube so that your videos play as ads before other related videos.
Top Tip: If you’re using YouTube for your business, set up a Brand Account. This type of account is linked to your business, not an individual. You don’t want an individual to leave your company and your YouTube channel to go with them.
There are plenty of tools that make running a business easier. These Google tools have been specifically created for you: the small business owner. They help you work smarter, not harder and ultimately be more productive. For more advice on running your small business, visit the xneelo Insights page.