HomeDIGITAL MARKETINGOnline Advertising: What Options Do I Have?

Online Advertising: What Options Do I Have?

Online advertising is more accessible than many people think. Because even if you don’t use the Internet directly with your online shop as a sales channel: online advertising can help to increase your sales! With a straightforward website and targeted online advertising, the number of potential customers who become aware of your offer on the Internet can be improved.

Online Advertising: The Website As A Basis

The basis for successful online advertising is your website or your online shop. This is where you present your products, services and other information of interest to your customers.

Therefore, regularly publish promotions, information, offers and events on your website. This allows you to lure prospective customers from the Internet to your stationary business or your online shop and persuade them to make a purchase there.

This Is What You Need To Pay Attention To When Creating A Website

Anyone planning extensive web projects should always contact a specialized service provider. On the other hand, Smaller website projects can be carried out very well on your own. Many manufacturers offer weaving kits for this. A website can be created from ready-made designs and functionalities using drag and drop. There is no software installation since the provider in the cloud hosts the site. IT knowledge is also not necessary for such a website creation. Nevertheless, there are some aspects that you should already consider during the preparation:

  1. Plan your web project early (budget, participants, responsibilities, etc.).
  2. Choose a concise domain name that is related to your business and offerings.
  3. Check whether the technical requirements are met (hosting of the website, domain availability, access to the site’s administration).
  4. Ensure (human) resources to maintain the site and update content regularly.
  5. Define the goals of your website (e.g. information, awareness, customer loyalty, sales, support etc.).
  6. Clarify the target group question: Who are your target groups, and what are they interested in?
  7. Analyze which end devices and channels your target group use on the Internet.
  8. Get clarity on what content will help your audience and deliver that content.
  9. Analyze how your competitors have positioned themselves on the web.
  10. Think about tomorrow and how to spread the word about your website (social media, word of mouth, advertising, etc.).

The content is the core of a website and its critical success factor. The top priority should be the relevance for the user. The content format is closely linked to this. Comprehensible and SEO-optimized texts cover the information needs of users. High-quality, large-format images are essential today to arouse emotions and convey messages as eye-catchers. The younger the target group, the more popular videos are. The invitation to user interaction should not be neglected either: simple contact options are just as important as linking to your own social media channels.

Tip: Offer your website visitors a look behind the scenes, for example, by introducing the team, sharing videos from the last company event or giving an insight into the production process.

When designing and designing the website, you must consider the following:

  1. Rely on a mobile-first strategy: Your website should be created in a so-called responsive design to be optimally displayed on tablets and smartphones.
  2. Communicate in all channels with the same tonality: You should use clear, objective language in short and understandable sentences and not “overwhelm” readers with information. The tonality must match the target group and be the same in all channels.
  3. Use “online-friendly” typography: too many fonts make text confusing. You should, therefore, only use one font on your website if possible. The sans serif font family (e.g. Times) is easy to read on the web.
  4. Choose harmonious colours: When choosing colours, make sure that the backgrounds harmonize with your company logo, images and font colours.
  5. Use large-format images and short videos: Large-format photos attract attention, while short videos keep interest high and visitors on the page.
  6. Pay attention to a clear website structure: Keep the design of your website as simple as possible. Name all pages and subpages clearly so that users can find their way around at any time.
  7. Please pay special attention to the start page: Under no circumstances should you annoy website visitors with self-promotion on the start page or bore them with welcome speeches. Rely on concise information.
  8. Offer several contact options: In addition to a telephone number and email address, you can also offer links to social media profiles or a contact form. Don’t forget your postal address either. If there are several contacts, they should all be listed separately in text and image.
  9. Use a correct imprint: Many warnings are related to complicated information requirements on the Internet. Get legal advice to avoid falling into a warning trap. If you formulate your print yourself, you should have it checked legally.
  10. Make sure that Google can also find your website: Words that your target groups search for frequently should be found in the content of your website – both in the text and in the headlines. Your content must also be relevant and unique so that users stay on your site long. Google better lists pertinent pages of the search results.

Search Engine Marketing (SEM)

Once the website has been created, you have made the “base station” for your further web activities. Search engine marketing is a must for your sales efforts. Search engine marketing includes search engine advertising ( SEA ) and search engine optimization of the content of your website (search engine optimization, SEO ).

Search engine ads usually appear on search engine sites (like Google) as small text ads next to or even above the hit list.

Benefits:

  • You can tailor the ad precisely to your needs (desired customer group, region, etc.).
  • You only pay if the ad is clicked.
  • You do not need an agency to place the ad. For example, Google provides easy-to-use software (Google Adwords) that you can access on the Internet.

Disadvantage:

  • Coveted and commonly used keywords are expensive. Anyone who sells cell phones or insurance often has to pay several euros per click on the ad.

Tip: Use word combinations

instead of expensive keywords, choose cheaper word combinations for your online advertising campaign that describe your offer as precisely as possible. This way, you reach fewer people but increase your chance of being interested in your request and becoming customers.

Search engine optimization means using the terms customers use and searching for on your website whenever possible. To do this, you have to put yourself in your customers’ shoes and try to speak their language. This is also part of online advertising.

Example: An optician in Mannheim sees himself as an “optician” and has developed his business into a “vision centre”. He used these terms frequently on his website before the optimization. The problem: Potential customers do not search for these terms. Instead, you type “optician Mannheim” into the search field on Google. The optician has adapted its page accordingly and is now high up in the hit list for relevant search queries.

Email Marketing And Banner Advertising

Email marketing is one of the most personal advertising options. Give visitors to your website (think of existing customers too!) the opportunity to subscribe to an email distribution list. You can use this mailing list to regularly send emails to new offers, information or other interesting content on your website.

Benefits:

  • The interested party has agreed to receive emails and is usually interested in information and new offers.
  • You can address each recipient by name.

Disadvantage:

  • You must constantly maintain and update the address lists.
  • There is a risk that your email will go unnoticed in the increasing flood of messages.

Banner Ads

With banner advertising – also known as display advertising – your advertising message is integrated into an external website as an image or video ad. The banner has a link to your website, so anyone who clicks on the banner will end up on your website. Banner advertising is particularly worthwhile on websites that your potential customers are interested in (e.g. topic, industry or specialist portals).

A significant advantage of banner advertising is targeting. In this way, you can place your ads in specific environments and specifically for selected user groups. In this case, the advertising banners are not displayed on a previously defined website but on all websites on which the user of a target group is located.

Example: You can woo people interested in cars with advertising banners not only on car and motorsport portals. With targeting, you can also reach these users on football sites, on news platforms, streaming portals or the websites of an equestrian club or golf club. The more accurate the targeting, the higher the conversion probability.

Tip: Use banner ads to encourage undecided buyers. With so-called retargeting, you can use an advertising banner to address all users interested in particular products in your webshop but have not yet bought them.

Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing uses social networks (e.g. Facebook, Xing, LinkedIn, Twitter) to distribute your content. Social media marketing allows you to engage in free (but very time-consuming) activities, such as being an expert on a particular topic. It is also possible to place paid ads on social media channels. Placing ads is not difficult. The platforms usually provide solutions that you can use to book yourself.

Benefits:

  • You can precisely control your advertising and tailor it to your needs. On Facebook, for example, it is possible to target users based on specific profile characteristics. The target group’s age, gender, interests, relationship status, and language can be selected there.
  • In the best case, those addressed will spread the content (e.g. new offers) themselves to friends and acquaintances within their network.

Disadvantage:

  • It takes a lot of time and workforce to feed a network with exciting information.
  • It takes a lot of tact to communicate with users at eye level.

Caution: Social media marketing does not make sense if it is not part of a comprehensive social media strategy. 

Marketing With Online Sales Partners

A registered partner (e.g. the operator of a specialist portal) publishes your advertisement (advertisement, image, text) on their website. He will receive a commission from you as soon as you win a customer as a result. Marketing with online sales partners is also referred to as affiliate marketing. 

This form of marketing is only suitable for small businesses if they sell a particular product and can fall back on a suitable partner (e.g. a specialist portal with many visitors, where online advertising is worthwhile).

Advantage:

  • You only pay when actual customer contacts are made.

Disadvantage:

  • This form of online advertising is challenging to control.
  • It would help if you first found the right partner or partner.
  • The commission statement and the constant control are complex.

Also Read: On Page Vs Off Page SEO

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