When people search online for your business name or for the products or services that you sell, you want them to get a good impression of what your company offers. This is especially true when you want to be found by local searchers in your geographic area.

Having an effective online presence is no longer an option; it’s a must, as important as it was 20 years ago to be in the phone book. If you weren’t in the phone book, you weren’t in business. Or you didn’t have a business worth doing business with.

To test your online presence, enter your company name into Google and other search engines, as well as the major social media platforms. Also, search for the types of products or services your prospective customers are searching for. See what shows up. You may find you’re not in places you should be, and you ARE in places you shouldn’t be.

Monitoring your online presence is not only good for bringing in new business, but for dealing proactively with clients who aren’t happy with your services and have posted a complaint or negative comment online. If you see it, then you can correct it.

Testimonials are a very important part of a professional online presence. Even if you have positive reviews and recommendations on networking sites, be sure you also have them on your website.

When someone takes your business card or hears about you from someone else, they will head straight to your website for more information. If they find testimonials on your site it shows you’re a reputable company with existing customers who had a positive experience, and it increases the chance they will contact you to learn more.

Ask your satisfied clients for a testimonial or recommendation. You’ll be surprised at how many are happy to help. You can even offer to draft something for them as a starting point – your busy clients will really appreciate the time saver.

If someone doesn’t want to provide a recommendation, maybe you should ask why. This might be an opportunity to improve the relationship as well as your services.

A well-rounded and frequently updated online presence shows the world that you’re active in your business, you care about your professional image, and you’re running your business “right.”

Check out our cost effective web design packages and see how easy it is to give your business a professional online presence.