3 essentials to keep your digital platforms up to date
As part of Telstra’s partnership with Small Business Australia, Executive Director Bill Lang shares three quick, practical tips to help small and medium-sized businesses stand out online.
5 minute read
Having an up-to-date online presence is essential for awareness of your business, and it demonstrates your reliability by showing that you regularly monitor your digital channels. However, the task of staying up to date with tech trends is a job in itself and not one that many business owners think they have time for.
This isn’t something that you can let slip if you want to stay competitive but the good news is that it’s easier than you think.
Here are my top three essential tips to keep your digital platforms up to date.
1. Embrace Google My Business
As you probably know, your business’s Google listing is managed within a free Google tool called Google My Business. Many business owners consider their Google listing and Google My Business account to be a “set and forget” situation, but this is a mistake. While you may not need to alter your listing day to day, it’s essential to keep it in mind when any of your business’s details change, from opening hours and products to prices and how people can reach you. It’s as simple as this - if you change something about your business, change your listing.
For example, your hours might be affected by COVID-19 restrictions or lockdowns, public holidays or a change in your personal circumstances. There’s nothing more frustrating for a customer than visiting a business at its advertised opening hours, only to find it closed. By keeping your information up to date, it can help cement your business’s reliable reputation.
What to update in Google My Business:
- Business name
- Opening hours
- Contact details
It’s also worth noting that the general public are able to suggest edits to your profile and these notifications are easy to miss. Another reason to regularly check your Google My Business account is to find and revert any unwanted changes.
Once your Google My Business is up to date, it’s important to check that your other directory listings are consistent, including your website and Facebook Business Manager.
3. Get the most out of testimonials
Getting informal positive feedback is great for any business. But to certify your worth to new customers, it’s important to gather formal testimonials and use them to your advantage.
One way to welcome formal reviews is to ask your customers to score you out of ten on how they found their experience with your business, such as receiving a product and using it, or receiving a service and how well it lived up to their expectations. Then, depending on the gap, (say you receive a score of five ) review what you could do to improve. What parts of your business could you focus on refining?
The best testimonials are those where the identity of the reviewer is authenticated, meaning you’ve proven they’ve used or purchased your product or service. You can do this by including a photo or some basic information about the reviewer, like their name, age and location (with their permission). If you’re using a platform like Amazon to sell your product, the platform itself might authenticate reviewers on your behalf. A significant number of legitimate reviews (with a high average rating) are likely to encourage a new customer to consider your business and potentially spend money with you.
If you’d like more information on this topic, my book Scores on the Board further explores how to get the most out of testimonials.
Managing your business’s digital platforms doesn’t need to be time consuming. Build on the platforms, systems and testimonials you already have in place and expand when you’re ready. Running successful digital platforms is about maintaining regular, achievable updates that keep your customers informed and interested in your business.