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11 Reasons Why Your Business Should Go Digital

Name a business that does not have a website, a blog, or even its own account on Facebook or Twitter.  Yes, there’s probably none. Going digital is a convenient and effective marketing strategy because of its low start-up costs, extensive reach and popularity.

A recent Nielsen survey found that mobile device users spent 30% of their time on social media.

  • It is no wonder that research firm IBISWorld identified social games as the industry with the highest potential growth.  It registered over 180% of explosive growth over the past five years.
  • Coming in at second are virtual data rooms that are increasingly becoming popular.  Managers meeting in a room to talk about business proposals are a thing of the past now as more and more companies create virtual teams from all over the world.
  • Rounding up the top three are online shoe sales.  Yes, you got that right.  The online business of the footwear industry grew more than 16% a year on average.

The top three “trending” industries prove that online visibility translates to business visibility.  Everyone is online so why aren’t you? Here are the reasons why you should ditch that fax machine and go digital:

11 Reasons Why Your Business Should Go Digital

#1. What are you looking for?

If it’s not on Google, it does not exist, at least according to 89% of consumers who turn to search engines to find information on products, services, and businesses before making a purchase.  This was the result of a 2012 Digital Influence survey which points to the dependence of consumers to internet and shopping research.

The study also found that the pairing of content marketing and social media marketing effectively helps businesses reach more consumers.  It found that 79% of consumers follow brands on social networking sites to get more information.

#2. Measuring success

It is easier to track the progress and success of a business when it is online.  Using analytics or the basic website tool provided by your hosting company, you can easily track how many clicks, views, or responses your product or campaign got at a very low cost.

#3. Meet your market

Administering surveys and focused group discussions to get to know your niche or your target market is a long and tedious process.  By having online presence, you will get valuable information such as the number and demographics of your visitors — what they like, where they are from, and so on.

You can even track the bounce rate, which tells you how many visitors clicked on your website but left.

#4. Need for speed

How long does it take to print a document, walk it over to the fax machine or to another office and wait for receipt?  This traditional way of office communication is a colossal waste of time.  Having a digital communication system will allow employees to be more productive and focus on other tasks sooner.

#5. What a mess

Filing and archiving information the old way does not only take too much time but highly inefficient.  How many filing cabinets would a business need to keep all important documents?  How do you keep them safe?  How long would it take an employee to browse through them whenever necessary?

There are a lot of computer software and applications that are available to help you get more organized and get rid of the mess.

#6. Going paperless

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates that some 5,260,000 tons or 10.5 billion pounds of paper products were wasted and recycled in 2010.  On the business front, the average employee goes through 10,000 sheets of paper per year or $80 cost per employee per year.

Going paperless will not only save your business money but will also save the environment.

#7. Price is nice

The digital shift is also easy and affordable.  All data and paperwork could be stored in a computer system, backed up with an online storage or an external drive.  This is much cheaper than keeping loads of files in a cabinet or storage.

Maintaining a website does not require a huge workforce. There are also enterprise collaboration systems that you can download for efficient communication with people in the workplace or even virtual teams scattered all over the world.

#8. Profit and momentum

With more and more customers doing online research before making a purchase, the returns on investment for online marketing is on a roll.  A report by the Altagamma-McKinsey Online Observatory found that 20% of online and in-store sales were driven by online marketing.   It also found the total sales from pure digital marketing generated a $12.5 billion optimal profit.  The momentum is also on the digital’s side as these numbers are expected to reach $27.8 billion in the next five years.  This could even go higher as new technologies are incorporated into the lives of customers.

#9. Content is king

Going digital will also allow a business to embrace a confluence of trends such as social media, search engine optimization, and display advertising or what is called content marketing.  Its techniques are preferred by a growing number of brand marketers because it tells a story.  Through the years, content marketing had grown to a $44 billion industry in 2013 according to the Custom Content Council.  That is no surprise since it also found that 61% of customers say they feel better and would likely to buy from a business that offers custom content.

#10. Blogging rules

Another online marketing strategy is creating and maintaining a blog.  The thing about blogs is they are simple, engaging and easily builds connection with consumers.  They offer a creative way of providing information with reviews and testimonials and encourage discussion and comments from readers and customers.  By blogging on a regular basis, brand connections are strengthened.  Blog marketing helps your business become a trusted source of information.

#11. Interaction in action

By going digital, a business or company provides its customers a varied reading experience.  A digital content may contain links, visuals, videos, and other multimedia.  Readers can engage using the platform that suits them best.

The influence of the Internet and digital media is undeniable.  If a customer searches your business on Google and didn’t find it, chances are he will look for another one.  That is one of humanity’s absolute truths — people are impatient, people are hungry for information, and people want it with just one click.  If you’re not yet online and digital, you are missing out on a lot of opportunities.  Help your customers find you, help them appreciate what you do, let them talk to you, and make the experience quick and easy.

Images: ”Advertising concept: computer keyboard with word Digital Marketing on enter button background, 3d renderShutterstock.com

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I am a futurist who spends most of her time monitoring social behavior in search for new consumer and trends. I use the information to create viral and useful content. I mostly address young professionals, educating them easy to digest content about investing, technology, and home improvement. I also share the latest and upcoming trends in the global market. http://www.safetyinvestor.com

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Comments
  • Thanks for another great post Kimberly. Digital is definitely the way to go nowadays – if not you’re being left behind in the dark ages. Thanks for sharing these tips with us and I look forward to your next post

  • intouchcrm

    Great post Kimberly! Many small businesses struggle with the idea of moving to the digital domain but your article makes it very easy to understand the fundamentals of moving online, the benefits and the first steps. here at InTouch (http://www.intouchcrm.com/) we strongly recommend to SMEs the importance of being where your customers are- online! Great post!

  • Sandra Crowe

    Nowadays technology keeps rising up. So do the business you really need to go digital in order more people will attract to your product. Rather than direct selling. Starting a business is hard at first but the more you commit the more you’re going to get out of it.

  • Grandstad Merchandising

    The biggest issue with companies about not going paperless is not knowing how to do it. You can go all day stating WHY companies should go digital… but where to start? What needs to be done? What kinds of software are the most ideal for certain types of businesses? Just a repeat article that can be found everywhere if you ask me.

  • Great post, Kimberly. Thank you for an enligthening and encouraging post. Hopefully, the day when businesses finally come to realize that digital is their best armour in expanding their business today is only hours away. But, that we cannot assure of since there are businesses that does not know what to do and where to start.

    I have to agree with Grandstad Merchandising that may be one of the biggest challenge why businesses shun away from going digital is that they don’t know where to start and what to do.

    What us, digital marketers should not forget apart from convincing businesses to go digital is to give them the assurance that we are with them every step of the way and that they don’t have to worry about where to start and what to do because we’re here to explain it to them and do it for them.

  • Thanks for sharing these tips Kathy. I know someone considering developing an app so I will pass it on to him as I know he’ll find the info really useful. Looking forward to your next post for us

  • manjit_mohanty

    Thanks for the post Kim..here are 5 more reasons why businesses should go online:
    http://www.inceptup.com/#!blog/hdb2t

  • Julia Baron

    Thanks for this article! Maybe you could help me? We are launching mobile game on a small budget and several people suggested we should buy incentive traffic, because it’s cheaper.

    have some of you tried rewarded installs for app promotion? Does it work when you need a install volume boost?

    Regarding providers – I heard good stuff about Appbooster platform http://gowide.com/appbooster. Any feedbacks/ other recommendations?

    thanks!




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