• Wirya Hassan

Online Advertising: What Options Do I Have?

Online advertising is easier than many believe. Because even if you do not use the Internet directly with your own online shop as a sales channel, online advertising can help increase your sales! A clear website and targeted online advertising can increase the number of potential customers who are aware of your offer on the Internet.


Online Advertising: The website as a base


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

Therefore, regularly publish promotions, information, offers and events on your website. This will allow you to lure prospects from the Internet into your brick and mortar business or into your online store and move them there for purchase.


Search Engine Marketing (SEM)


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, or SEO for short).


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


Advantages:

• You can tailor the ad exactly to your needs (desired customer base, region, etc.).

• You only pay when the ad is clicked.

• You do not need an agency to switch or modify 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. If you sell mobile phones or insurance, you often have to pay several dollars per click on the ad.


Tip: Use long tail keywords

Instead of expensive keywords, choose cheaper word combinations for your online advertising campaign that describe your offer as accurately as possible. While this will help

you reach fewer people, it increases your chances of them becoming interested in your offer and becoming customers.


Search engine optimization means that you use the terms that customers use and search for on your website. To do this, you have to empathize with your customers and try to

speak their language. This is also part of online advertising.


Example: An optician in Manchester sees himself as the " largest optician" and has developed his business into a "vision centre". He has often used these terms before optimization on his website. The problem: Potential customers are not looking for these terms. Instead, they type "Optician Mancheste" into the search box on Google. The optician has adapted his page accordingly using local search SEO techniques and is now at the top of the results page for corresponding search queries.


E-mail marketing and banner advertising

E-mail marketing is one of the most personal advertising opportunities. Give new and existing visitors to your website the opportunity to sign up for an e-mail distribution list. You can use this mailing list to regularly send an e-mail with new offers, information or other interesting content on your website.


Advantages:

• The interested party has agreed to receive e-mails and is therefore generally interested in information and new offers.

• You can address each recipient by name.


Disadvantages:

• You must maintain and update the address lists constantly.

• There is a risk that your e-mail will not be noticed in the growing flood of news.


Banner Advertising

In banner advertising, your advertising message will be included as a graphic, image or animation file in a "foreign" website that you want to promote. The banner is linked to your website with a link, so that anyone interested who clicks on the banner ends up on your website. Banner advertising is especially worthwhile on websites which are in some way of interest to your potential customers (eg topic, industry or specialist portals). Disadvantage: You usually need very large traffic in order to increase your sales.


Social media marketing

Social media marketing means the use of social networks (eg Facebook, Xing, LinkedIn), messaging services (eg Twitter), and interest or specialist portals for the dissemination of their own content. You can engage in free (but very time-consuming) activities, such as an expert on a particular topic. In addition, it is possible to display paid ads in social networks. Publishing ads is not expensive. The platforms usually provide solutions that you can use to book yourself.


Advantages:

• You can control your advertising exactly and tailor it to your needs. On Facebook, for example, it is possible to specifically target users based on specific profile characteristics. There, the age, gender, interests, relationship status and language of the target group can be selected.


• In the best case, the addressees themselves propagate the content (eg new offers) by sharing with friends and acquaintances within their network.


Disadvantages:

• A lot of time and manpower are needed to provide a network with interesting information.

• It takes a lot of tact to communicate with users on an equal footing.

Attention: Social media marketing is not sensible except as part of a comprehensive social media strategy,


Marketing with online distribution partners

A registered partner (eg the operator of a trade portal) publishes your advertisement (advertisement, image, text) on its website. He will receive a commission from you as soon as you gain a customer. Marketing with online distributors is also known as affiliate marketing.


This form of marketing is only suitable for small businesses if they can sell a very special product and have access to a suitable partner (eg a particularly well-frequented specialist portal on which online advertising is worthwhile).


Advantage:

• You pay only when actual customer contacts come about.


Disadvantages:

• This form of online advertising is difficult to control.

• You must first find the right partner(s).

• The commission statement and the constant control are complex.


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