I can boldly tell you that most businesses in Nigeria have had to adapt to the new way of doing business, with many moving their business operations online. Traders, Artisans, and web developers are not exempted.
While there are many helpful articles out there about how to move your business online, what about when you’ve already done so and want to expand the business? Your business may be stationed in the Nigeria capital territory, ABUJA’ or in Lagos, the business headquarter of Nigeria. Or maybe you have a steady base of clients but are now looking to find more beyond those who transitioned with you from the bygone days of the peanuts trade with low-income as profit.
Not everyone has thousands of Naira or Dollars to put into growing an online business. In reality, you can do a lot without spending any money at all. All it really takes is effort and imagination.
Today, I’m going to go over how to grow an online business for free. You can start right now and begin boosting the future of your presence on the Internet by reading and contributing to KamsyNetwork blog posts.
Below are the 7 major ways you can grow your online business fast in Nigeria.
1. Do not limit your business coverage
It’s excellently normal to keep your focus small while moving to a new way of doing things. Maybe up until this point, you’ve been focusing mostly on one-on-one remote sessions or some group classes a few times per week using video calling platforms like Zoom or Skype. Depending on your particular niche and strengths, there are several training models to choose from when it comes to diversifying.
Growing a business often involves diversifying the operation. There’s nothing wrong with including elements that will help you draw in a larger crowd or benefit from existing traffic.
Being diverse with your business grows income while keeping the company protected from market shifts. Like the adage goes, “Never put all of your eggs in one basket.” Keep the business flexible and easy to adapt to trends and change
Here are a few points i am telling you about in this article.
- Expanding Inventory: A lot of eCommerce owners will expand the inventory to include complementary items. For instance, many hotels and highly ranked supermarkets will also have a car hire service or Taxi on their premises should any customer needs a ride home.
- Ad Revenue: Adding things like Google Ad-sense and other advertisement banners to your site helps generate a bit of additional revenue. Some don’t like this as it has a chance to take potential buyers to compete for websites.
- Promote a YouTube Channel: Many companies will develop a YouTube channel to accentuate their businesses. Not only does it engage your audience, but you can earn ad revenue from the experience as well. What about creating a channel showing people how to use your products or services?
- Start a Reseller Hosting Company: If you operate online or in digital marketing, you’re going to meet businesses that aren’t fully aware of handing the hosting aspect of their operation. Offer to help them both in the marketing and with their hosting through a reseller hosting business. In reality, maintaining a number of sites when you have processes in place is quite easy.
2. Build and own a customized website for your business
- Building a business website is important to inform your audience, explain your value proposition, boost brand recognition and drive sales.
- To build a business website, you first need to choose a domain name and secure web hosting. Then, optimize your website to improve your search engine rankings and drive traffic.
- Keep your website up to date and optimized for mobile devices. Also, ensure your site speed is adequate to improve your search engine rankings
Website design software has evolved to be easy for anyone to use. You don’t need to know coding to develop an attractive and functional site. No matter what program you use, you just need to follow some basic rules and tips to give your website a professional look, make it easy to find, and show your company in the best light.
Step by step guide in building a functional business website
i. Determine the primary purpose of building a website
A business website generally serves as a space to provide general information about your company or a direct platform for e-commerce. Whether you create a simple website that tells a little about your company or a more complex e-commerce site, the most important thing you must do is say what your company does – on the homepage in plain terms.
ii. Take a professional step to get a good domain name
Your domain name is one of the most important features of your website. It’s the URL you’ll share with your current and potential clients and promote on social media. Therefore, you want it to be descriptive and easy to remember and type in. Try to keep it short, and steer clear of abbreviations, acronyms, and numbers, if possible, to avoid customer confusion, and don’t forget that WordPress is the best platform to own a website.
You also need to decide on your top-level domain or TLD. This is the suffix at the end of your domain names, such as .com, .net, or .ng
iii. Choose a vibrant web hosting company
Every website needs a host – a server where all its data is stored for the public to access at all times. Hosting your own website is probably too large an expense for your small business, so you’ll need to select an external host.
Depending on your budget, you can choose from two different routes. A shared web host, the less-expensive option, means you’ll share a server with other sites. Dedicated hosting costs significantly more, but it means that you get your own private server and won’t have to compete with other sites that could drag down your speed.
iv. Design a website
A good website is more than a static homepage. You’ll want to create multiple pages dedicated to different aspects of your business, such as a detailed catalog of your products or services, or a blog section for company updates and make sure each page supports the site’s primary goal, has a clear purpose, and includes a call to action (e.g., “learn more,” “sign up,” “contact us” or “buy this”).
A contact page, as your customers’ direct link to you, is one of the most important sections of a website, so include as much information as you can (your business’s phone number, email address and physical location, if you have one). It’s also a good idea to include information about the founding team or staff on an “about” page so customers can have good access to you and your business directly.
3. Develop and build a powerful and rich content
creating a powerful and rich content is important in a website, whether it’s a company blog or a product description. It’s all about engaging the audience and giving them a valuable information needed.
This information needs to be delivered in a way that keeps readers connected. Avoiding text blocks, separating points with headers, and keeping the language easy to understand is only the beginning.
Another important aspect of content to keep in mind is remaining factual and being real. Always base your material on the evidence you can collaborate with other sources. As we live in an age where “fake news” is tossed around frequently, you want to make sure your business is seen as a legitimate source.
In other words, you want your company to be viewed as an authoritative figure. Authority works to improve brand reputation as well as search engine ranking.
High-quality content also involves other elements outside of text as well. While content is and always will be king, the delivery of that information is greatly important.
Great content can also be valuable, attractive, and true images of your business and products. This comes with high and valued content representing your product description or business photos.
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4. Integrate Social media
Social media remains the best and most powerful information channel to grow an online business, the beauty of social media is how effective it is without actually spending money. It’s free to create a profile on most platforms and can easily put the business in front of thousands of potential consumers.
However, it’s not enough to simply have a Facebook or Twitter profile. You can’t just put up a business page and hope people flock to it. You have to be a commander of your channels, you need to learn how you can maximize your power to use social media and achieve your goals.
Below are the few things you can do to actually make your social media work for you.
Deliver Posts Frequently
The number of times you should post content on social media varies for businesses. While some find it successful to do five or more, others do well with just one. The point is you need to be active if you want attention from your target audience.
Deliver Images and Video Contents
When posting content to social media, use images or video. Graphics engage users far more than simple text. For instance, posts with images on LinkedIn receive 200% more of an engagement rate than regular text. On Twitter, videos are 6 times more likely to be retweeted than simple photos.
Share Meaningful Content
Don’t simply share random pieces of information. Post content your audience will want to read. This includes sharing any websites you find online, retweeting relevant accounts on Twitter, or perhaps even commenting on someone’s post. Keep it all centered around your industry and niche.
Adding Social Buttons
Nearly every website has social sharing buttons on its content. Don’t forget to add it to your store items or service offerings as well. You never know who is looking at your pages, and he or she might share your goods with their own followers.
5. Focus on Your Target audience
This is a very important aspect of building and growing your online business. Focus the business on your particular audience. The more you streamline content, products and services, the higher the quality of your visitors. This means you’ll target those who are most likely to spend money with your business.
For example, you wouldn’t want to create guest blog posts on a website that is job recruitment platform if you sell kitchen appliances. Any marketing you do needs to stay relevant to what you offer.
The target audience will change everything from the type of content you create to the brands of products you stock. This is a key element you’ll need to discover if you want the best chances of growing your business online.
One mistake a lot of new businesses make is trying to target “everyone.” This often leads to a haphazard marketing strategy and winds up being overly expensive in the long run. Keep your focus on those who are going to directly benefit from the business.
Later on, when you’re ready to pump money into ads, knowing your audience is going to save you a lot of money. Instead of showing ads to anyone, you can fine-tune them to show only to those people who will most likely make a purchase.
If you’re unsure who your target market is, take a look at free tools like Google Analytics. By going over the activity data of your website, you can get an idea of who likes what when it comes to your business.
6. Build and grow a community to build your online business
Online communities allow people with similar interests to come together and feel a part of something bigger than themselves. This unifies the group and creates a sense of combining multiple parts to form a single, greater whole.
Building a responsive community means building AUTHORITY! Though, building and growing a community can be very difficult and challenging, below is a clue on how to get started.
i.Pick a niche around your business or interests:
This should be the easy part, as I’m sure you have an idea about what you would like to create your community around. However, try to be specific about your community’s purpose. The best communities focus on a specific topic that the members all have in common.
One way to help make a more informed decision is to use Google Trends. It allows you to type in keywords to research if one area of interest may have more interest than another.
ii. Get started with the basic tools
There are lots of community platform builders you can pick, choose a platform that is right for you. There are many pre-built platforms and resources out there to get you started. Here are a few:
iii. Invite your friends to join first.
The best set of people to test run your community are your immediate friends. They are naturally going to be the first people you most likely invite. This is great, but without a plan to get others involved, your community will only be your friends, which likely won’t help you grow your business. So, try and extend invitations to others that may likely become your customers.
iv. Always engage your members in the community
Your members are the strength of your community, without them, there is no community.
Get them involved in commenting and engaged with other users as much as possible. This will help your community grow, create user generated content, and make every get much more interesting, faster.
7. Build a partnership network with other businesses
Use most of your time networking and partnering other businesses. Forming a symbiotic relationship with another business can offer excellent rewards. One of which is getting your brand in front of consumers who may not know it exists yet.
Networking takes nothing but effort on your behalf. This involves reaching out to other businesses or individuals who are in your industry but not exactly competing for the same buyers. In fact, a lot of large corporations join forces simply to expand their reach.
Even the smallest of businesses can network together to expand their reach. It doesn’t have to be as involved or vast as big organizations do. If two companies can benefit one another, then offering a network is ideal for all parties involved.
Networking properly requires some kind of common niche or logical connection. You must practically choose which company or organization to partner and network with, choosing the best will surely put your products or business on the lime light.