Are you steadily checking your phone or computer to view your website’s traffic and to see if that traffic is converting to dollars? This habit is commonplace for many online entrepreneurs because they are ready to see their website succeed.

Unfortunately, close to eighty percent of businesses fail within the first year and too often, that failure is related to the lack of capital. The lack of capital means very little money is spent on marketing, which inadvertently means your business doesn’t get the leads it needs to survive.

In order to make your business successful, you need cost-effective and inexpensive marketing ideas. Luckily, there are a number of businesses and resources dedicated to helping your small business bloom. We’re going to share four of the best ways you can market your website with little or no cost and major returns. Keep reading for more information!

Help People Spread Your Message

Believe it or not, word of mouth advertising (WOM) is still the best form of advertising. WOM happens when:

  • A customer is beyond satisfied with a product or service
  • A customer is prompted to tell their friends

If you already know that you offer an outstanding product or stellar services, then your website needs to focus on helping your customers share their experience.

This can be done by offering a referral program. A great referral program gives an existing customer some type of reward for getting their friends to sign up as well as a small gift to the people who have responded to the referral invitation.

You really don’t have to go out and spend a ton of money, either. You can offer free shipping or a 10-20% off promo code.

Aside from making a referral program worthwhile, you must make it easy. Your customer is far more likely to email their referral link from a JavaScript contact picker than having to copy and paste their friends’ email addresses into a field manually. Choosing to make your referral program as easy as possible to share means more potential leads which of course increases the likelihood of conversions!

Instagram Like a Pro

You post to Instagram consistently and often. Your photos have great engagement from likes to comments. Yet, you don’t seem to have many people following your link to your website.

The issue here probably isn’t your content or your hashtags. It could be something as simple as your bio. Of course, you want your company to be seen as professional, but given the nature of social media, you also need to be relatable.

Achieving relatability isn’t always easy. Make your text easy to read by formatting it properly (no big blocks of text – people don’t read that!) Instead, brainstorm some Instagram bio ideas with emojis.

Currently, there are 3304 emojis; they range in skin color and gender and have the ability to show nationality and can showcase specific items. The use of emojis can make you seem less like a company and more like a relatable friend which can forge an emotional connection and eventually help leads become conversions. 

Create (helpful) SEO Content

In order to help people find your website organically, you should have a blog. In this blog, you need to offer helpful information about your industry or company. While helpful information is great, you won’t be found, if the blog isn’t SEO-friendly.

SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, will use keywords and phrases that allow your website to be better ranked in search engine results. If you’re already writing your own content, finding the keywords that your blog needs isn’t too difficult; you can actually use variations of your competitors’ keywords to begin seeing great results.

Websites like Competitors App can help you learn what keywords your competition is using and which ones are seeing the best results. Finding out what’s working (and what’s not) can help you write effective content that attracts qualified leads for whatever it is you’re selling.

Aside from creating content that drives traffic, creating helpful content that people are actively searching for will help you build trust with potential customers and possibly get your website linked on other high-authority sources.

Close the Sale

You’ve gotten through the process of creating positive word of mouth, being relatable on Instagram, and creating helpful SEO blog content. You are now seeing plenty of traffic and getting several inquiries about your business.

Unfortunately, your conversion rate still isn’t what you want it to be.

This is because you haven’t perfected the “close.” Yes, you have an idea of how to close a sale, but for some reason, it just doesn’t seem to be happening.

Often, the key to closing your sale is as simple as a follow-up. A boring reminder e-mail doesn’t always suffice. Sometimes, you must reach out personally and initiate a conversation or share pertinent news about your product or industry.

Other times, you have to create a sense of urgency in your call to action. A great example of this would be along the lines of, “Act now! The sale/offer ends tomorrow!” You can run these sales or promos often, but the idea is to get your lead to follow through with your call to action.

The Takeaway

If you haven’t realized this, each of these marketing strategies is focused on building a relationship and rapport with your customer. You can market yourself until you’re blue in the face but people want to relate and feel a connection to you and your business.

This is best done by being authentic, honest, and transparent. Being able to show your company as open and honest will make people much more likely to choose you over your competition – but you still have to strive for their business.

Ask for the sale. Offer great customer service. Reach out. Talk to people.

Ultimately, it is about being personable and not making your customers feel like they are just a number; make them feel like they are THE one in a million and you will see your sales conversions increase!