Internet Marketing for the Self-Employed
No matter what kind of business you have, you can benefit from the use of a great website and internet marketing. Not convinced? Here are some of the uses of the internet that can improve your business.
Say you are self-employed. You have a small business, consisting of services only, with no concrete product to be manufactured and sold. You may think that you don’t need a website, because there is nothing to order online.
This, however, is far from the truth. Even a “static” website that doesn’t involve a shopping cart can be an invaluable aid in your business. With your website, you can tell about yourself and your services, provide customer testimonials, and offer a rate chart.
When the customer base feels comfortable with you, they are more likely to trust you. As a self-employed business person, you will be working one-on-one with your clients. Whether you build fences, do landscaping, do housework, or write internet content, you customers will get to know you better with each successive job. A website provides that first introduction, and can encourage prospective clients to initiate interaction with someone they already think they can trust.
Since most self-employed business people don’t have a staff to answer customer inquiries, a website provides a great source for information. A FAQ page may be useful for handling questions about services, quality control, scheduling, and payments.
This information can also serve to protect you and your business, because everything is spelled out right there on your website. You can even have a section where customers have to provide an electronic signature to show that they agree to terms and conditions.
Your web designer can even provide you with scheduling assistance. Your website can have a calendar that shows open appointment dates and times. We have several music teachers with private studios who take advantage of this feature. If they have a student cancellation, they show that space open on their calendars. This makes your scheduling easier and more official.
You can even bill your customers via your website. The above mentioned music studios allow for debit and credit card payments in advance of music lessons. Families that just want to “try out” piano lessons for a month can register their child for a month of lessons on whichever days are available, pay in advance, and attend lessons.
Your website can also act as a portfolio. Keep a sample of your work on your website, whether it is in the form of photos of completed and in-progress projects, links to publications, or videos of skills in action, you can provide links to your website as a part of your portfolio.
Your website may be simple, but with proper design and abundant information, it can be an invaluable aid to your business. Give it a try, and you’ll find that the convenience is well worth this minor investment of time and money.