Building an online presence for your business is hard work. And because of the time and financial commitment needed to do so, you’ll want to make it as easy as possible for people to find you and connect with you online.
Here are six FREE ways to make it easier for people to find you or your business online. Not much time is needed to get these setup. Once you’re set up you’re pretty much done.
1. Create a custom web address for each of your social networks
A custom website address (for instance, twitter.com/SueCockburn or linkedin.com/in/SueCockburn) for each of your social networks makes it easier for you to remember your web address, and share with others how to connect with you there.
Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and usually, but not always, Facebook have you create a custom web address (URL) when you sign up for your account. For LinkedIn and Google+ this is not automatic. However, LinkedIn does allow you to immediately create your own custom web address, or as LinkedIn calls it, your public profile URL. The LinkedIn process is simple. Click here to learn how to ‘Create Your Custom LinkedIn Web Address In 4 Easy Steps.’
Different social networks refer to your custom web address in different ways, But, essentially, it is the address people enter into their browser bar to reach one of your social profiles.
2. Title case your website and social network web addresses
Title casing means capitalizing the first letter of each unique word. It helps make your website address or custom social network web address, stand out when people see it in print or online, making it easier to read, recognize and remember with minimal effort.
The longer your website address is, or the distinct portion of your social network web address, the more important title casing is.
Consider how difficult it is to read facebook.com/annessimplestitches or twitter.com/bobsautoshop as opposed to facebook.com/AnnesSimpleStitches or twitter.com/BobsAutoShop.
Title casing makes your website address and the unique portion of your social network web address(es) readable at a glance. Visitors don’t need to ‘focus’ on the lettering to be able to read what it says, the words are recognizable with a quick look rather than having to consciously focus on the letters to figure out what they are saying.
Not all social networks will allow you to create your custom web address using title casing, but most will. For instance, LinkedIn only allows you to use lower case letters, whereas Facebook and Twitter allow you title case or capitalize some or all of the letters of your custom social network web address at the time it is created.
Even if you aren’t able to create your web address using title casing, you can still title case the name when you print it on business cards or other marketing materials or add it as an online link.
It won’t matter how people enter the address into their browser bar … all lower case, all upper case or a combination. It will simply make it easier for people to read, recognize and remember the address.
3. Add your website and social networks as clickable links to your email signature
Adding your website and social networks as clickable links to your email signature lets those you are communicating with easily check you out online.
This makes it easy for them to visit your website or one of your social network, now or in the future.
4. Add social media icon(s) to your website, that link to your social network(s)
This one is pretty basic but I’m surprised how often social icons and links are missing from websites. Or, the icons are visible on the website but they either don’t lead anywhere or they lead to the social networks for the wrong business.
Here are a few things, in particular, to watch for:
- Set social media links to open your social networks in a NEW browser tab. It’s always best to have links to external websites, including to your social networks, open in a new browser tab. This way visitors can check out your social network and, once done, your website remains open so they can continue to browse.
- Have social icons that link to your social networks easy to find/readily available on your website. At the top of a sidebar or at the top of the page, in or near the header area. You could include them in your site footer too, as well as close to the top of the page.
- Make sure social media icons are large enough, and/or have enough space between them so that they are easy to click on smaller/mobile devices.
5. Add your website and your social networks as clickable links to your social profiles
Include your website address and links to your other social networks to each of your social media accounts and online listings. This lets visitors know the other social networks you are active on, so they can connect with there if they so choose. If you’re only able to list a few, make sure the ones you list are your top sites.
6. Include your title-cased website address and custom social web addresses on everything
Include your website address and links to your major social networks on your print and online material. Not only marketing stuff, everything! Business cards, invoices, letterhead, in-store and mail out fliers, brochures, newspaper ads, and anything else you can think of. They should also be added to any eNewsletters you send out – as clickable links.
In our socially networked world, it makes sense to make it as easy as possible for people to find you online.
Updated from an earlier version