[Part 1 of 2] 3 Things Entrepreneurs Can Do to Attract Customers and Increase Sales
Black Enterprise Magazine September/October 2018 Issue

Search engines might just be a small business owner’s best friend. But only if the business owner has taken the time to get online and use tools that will make it convenient for customers to find them. Jewel Burks, a Google Entrepreneur-in-Residence spoke at Intuit’s QuickBooks Connect Chicago event to cue small companies in on the tricks of the trade when vying for online customers.

“My job is to help you guys harness the power of the web to find more customers online,” says Burks, who is also founder of Partpic, a software company that helps users locate replacement parts for industrial equipment.

[RELATED: How To Attract, Influence & Keep Customers]

Here are three things she says entrepreneurs can do to attract customers and increase sales.

Get your business online

You can’t do anything until you have an online presence. Even if you haven’t built a website yet, you can still make it possible for customers to see you. Visit Gybo.com and claim your listing so that your business is represented properly in a Google search.

Set a budget for online advertisement

Before you spend a dime, you want to understand your budget. If in the past you’ve done billboards or commercials, think about how much you want to put toward Search Engine Marketing.

You can use the Google search network or the Google Display network where your ads will appear on related sites. Customers will see your ads on other sites and it might prompt them to click on your site.  “Think about where you want to start so you can be narrow and focused,” says Burks.

In order to get the most benefit, it’s important to consider geographic targeting – where you make your ad specific to where you are located.

Define your target persona

Who is your core audience? The more you understand your customer the better you can target that person. Be as detailed as you can be. Consider, age, gender, parental status, marital status, location, interests, etc.

“You have this one person who comes straight to see you when they get paid, they never complain, and they always tell their friends to come spend money with you,” says Burks. “This is your target customer.”

What about your future customers? They are just like your target person, but they don’t know the name of your business. They don’t know what your service or product is called. You want to figure out what they might type into a search engine to find your business.

Stay tuned for Part 2 of this article, where Burks will discuss social media, Google Analytics, and how to be mobile ready.

For more great tools and resources for online advertising campaigns call 1-877-763-9802 or visit AccelerateWithGoogle.com

 

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Marcia Wade Talbert

Marcia is a multimedia content producer focusing on technology at Black Enterprise Magazine. In this capacity she writes and assigns stories to educate readers about social media; digital integration; gadgets, apps, and software for business and professional development; minority tech startups; and careers in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). In 2012, she received two Salute to Excellence Awards from the National Association of Black Journalists and was recognized by Blacks in Technology (BiT) as one of the Top 10 Black achievers in the tech arena for 2011 at SXSW in Austin, Texas. She has spoken about technology on panels for New York Social Media Week, at The 2012 Rainbow/PUSH Wall Street Summit, as well as at Black Enterprise’s Entrepreneurs Conference and Women of Power Summit. In 2011, SocialWayne.com chose her as one of 28 People of Color Impacting the Social Web, and through crowdsourcing she was listed as one of BlackWeb2.0's/HP's 50 Most Notable African American Tastemakers in Social Media and Technology for 2010. Since taking on the role of Tech editor in September 2010, she has conceived and produced five cover stories on Technology and/or STEM and countless articles, videos, and slideshows online. Before joining BlackEnterprise.com as an interactive general assignment reporter in 2008, she freelanced with Black Enterprise beginning in 2003 while working as the technical editor at Prepared Foods magazine. There she further honed her writing skills and became an authority on food ingredients, including ingredients used in food fortification and enrichment. Meanwhile, her freelancing with Black Enterprise and BlackEnterprise.com helped her stay current on issues pertaining to the financial and business welfare of African Americans. As a general reporter for Black Enterprise she attended and reported on the Democratic and Republican National Conventions, where she interviewed Valerie Jarrett, senior advisor and assistant to President Barack Obama and U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder. Marcia has a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture with an emphasis in food science from the University of Minnesota, and a Master of Science degree in journalism from Roosevelt University in Chicago. En route to her secondary degree, she served as the editor-in-chief of the Roosevelt University Torch, a weekly, student-run newspaper. An avid photographer and videographer, Marcia is one of several employees at BLACK ENTERPRISE who interned for the publishing company as a college student. She lives in New Jersey with her husband, a food scientist; her seventeen-month-old daughter; and “The Cat”, but still considers Chicago home.


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