I looked at my watch while sipping a steaming tea in a moderately crowded restaurant. It is half past 10 am. I already waited for half an hour but wanted to see for another 15 minutes for my friend.
The tea was about to complete. I heard my friend’s joyful voice greeting me. Turned my head towards him with acknowledgment. He came straight in and sat on the chair opposite to me. I ordered another cup of tea for him. While we were waiting for a tea to come, our conversation started.
“How is your business doing?” I asked him looking at his eyes.
“Not doing well, as we are closing store very often due to pandemic” he replied with a low tone.
“Yes that is true, many businesses are affected”
“ Why don’t you go online marketing”. I paused for a moment looking at him for his reaction.
“Hmm, does it really works for me ?” he replied. Being a digital marketer, I got on to my toes and got ready to pitch him, setting my voice a little loud and confident.
“Hey listen to me, Let me explain the Advantages and Disadvantages of Online marketing to you, then you can take a call’.
“Currently, both old and new businesses are trying to increase revenues by using online marketing to increase sales, while also hoping to raise brand awareness.”
Online marketing has its advantages and some disadvantages too. Lets us look at both.
Advantages of Online Marketing
- It is a low-cost promotion strategy. Certainly possible to your business through website and Social Media without spending huge amounts of money. It is possible but it will take time and effort. You can also consider Pay-per-click ( PPC) ads which will give immediate results.
- With online marketing, you are not limited to your neighborhood locations, you can reach Global customers. A wider audience may give a greater chance of running a successful business
- You can reach your target audience quickly and easily. Paid advertisements are the best option to get low-hanging fruits. Alternately with continued optimization of your website, you can reach new prospects continuously by ranking at the top of Search Engines.
- Collect payments easily by enabling e-commerce on your website. You will be able to collect payments quickly and easily.
- Your business or store can is always online i.e 24/7 by establishing a Website and Social media presence. You can market your offers round the clock, even your physical business or store is closed.
- Results are trackable and measurable. You can set up an analytics tool that tracks all your campaigns provide the user data. For the campaign, you see the effectiveness, number of users who reached your website, number of clicks, number of sales that happened. You can make data-driven decisions
- Build customer loyalty. Social media and Website help you to engage your customers, answer their questions, communicate your offers, which build trust. Trust increases your sales.
- You can build your influence. When you share content online that resonates with your audience, they are likely to share it. You can increase your reach to more potential customers.
- Compare to an offline customer where a customer would have to make a call or visit physical your business to purchase, an online customer can order his requirements with one or two clicks on your website. This will increase conversion rates.
Disadvantages of Online Marketing
- Online marketing, can be time-consuming. Creation of content and optimizing your website and ranking high search engines can take a considerable amount of time. Also, it is important to measure your results with respect to ROI ( Return on investment)
- It is potentially competitive. Depending on your niche, if you want to reach a global audience, you may face a lot of completion from those who are trying to do the same. The challenge is what can you do to stand out from your competitors.
- Your customer complaints and reviews are visible. Even though your customer issue is resolved, the customer complaint is likely to stay visible forever. On the other hand, if you fail to resolve a customer issue, then your brand reputation can be damaged irreparably.
- Prone to Security and Privacy issues. You need to comply with any laws regarding privacy and data protection if you are collecting data from users with an email list or contact form.
A final word of caution, online marketing can be lucrative if done effectively. Otherwise, if don’t use effective techniques for the best results, you may find a return on investment that you are hoping for.
“In todays world, having an online presence is credibly important, its upto you to make it work for your business” I end up my pitch and grabbed a glass of water while staring at my friend’s face for his reactions.
His face was bright and dazzling with clarity in his mind
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