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Online Branding Best Practices

Online Branding Best Practices
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Online branding is extremely important – mistakes in the way a company presents itself can hurt the bottom line. Online branding mistakes can keep customers away and worse … cost your business money.  With a strong Internet Domain name registration -– and your business name in the address — you can create a solid company brand. Avoid online branding mistakes and check out these tips:

1. Choose an Easy to Remember Business Name

Keep it short and easy to spell. The “sound” should be pleasant to the ear when the company name is spoken aloud. If people cannot easily identify the product, that is your first online branding mistake.  A short, descriptive name of the product or service is more appealing than a long, personal name.  People won’t know you, but they’ll know what the item or service is. Promote your businesses and product first (your personal name can come later if you really must add that to the branding).

2. Find the Right Domain Name for Online Branding

Domain names absolutely MUST be short and descriptive; if possible, three words or less. For example, if you were to sell something at reallylongbusinessnamegeenowIcannotrememberwhatIwanted.com, it becomes very tiring to write that in a URL link or search engine. Most likely, the shopper will have a number of typographical errors that send him back to Square One. Thus, it is important for you to take as much time as needed to create something easy to remember (and easy to spell); it means a quick access to your website.  The biggest online branding mistake is an Internet Domain name that doesn’t tell the searcher what the product or service actually is or does.  While you’re at it, register as many brand name domain extensions as possible so that, for example, if people find a “.biz” they’ll be redirected to your “.com.” A great place to start is the Rebrandly Domain Search Tool

3. Facilitate Communication Among Your Employees

Does everyone know what the term “branding” means?  Do they know how to utilize the potential of turning words into sales?  Sales people, marketing teams and technical support must be kept in the loop on how to advertise the product or service. Everyone is part of the process; online branding mistakes can occur from a situation as simple as a sales person giving out erroneous information to a customer.

4. Communication Leads to Consistency

When the presentation of ideas changes from one format to another, the result is confusion. Consistent messages lessen the enigma and allow customers to better define why they need this product or service. Make sure all email blasts, Social Media posts or other advertising contains the same branding communication techniques.

5. Go Pro

Is copywriting your passion? Can you string words together in a way that promotes, excites, motivates and calls your reader to action?  Can you design logos?  If the answer is no (and that’s OK because content and web design is not your business), then hire a professional writer and designer to handle the very important online branding of your website.  Don’t make the mistake of thinking it’s too expensive or it just doesn’t matter. Branding is everything!

6. Produce fresh content

Online branding and business blogs go hand in hand in today’s marketing world.  Have your professional writer on standby; produce fresh content and SEO words at least once a week or two.

7. Stick to Business

It is a major faux pas for a business to use its website for too many personal items. An “about us” page is generally OK — if it’s written by a professional who knows how to tone down the folksy (uninteresting) content — but stay away from anything too personal.  When shoppers are looking for a service or item, they’re not all that drawn to how cute your kids or grandkids look in the “grown-up” shoes or dress. Keep the focus strictly on what your company has to offer a potential client. Save the cutesy stuff for a personal page or Facebook.

8. Take care of your Social Media Channels

Social media is a major source for online branding; it would be a grave mistake to post poorly written content on any of your pages. Facebook, for example, is an extremely useful tool to promote sales and services but online branding of your Social Media page must be consistent with your website. For all kinds of Social Media (including Twitter, Pinterest, Google and the rest), make sure that posted content is written, punctuated and spelled correctly. Casually and informally engage your readers (and potential customers) with professionally-crafted ideas. Also, be selective of the comments you allow to appear on your pages.

9. Use great Logos, Images and Print Font

Get the job done, and actually, online branding of fonts and images deepens the visual experience you bring to your potential customer.  Think about how many products you see advertised everyday and how their logo or branding images affect the way you remember them. For example, when you think of … Apple (computers, iPhones and the like), do you see the apple?  Nike, do you see the swoop?  Goodyear, do you see the winged shoe? Yes, these companies have spent a lot of money on their branding images and it’s taken some time for people to associate specific products or services with those businesses.  But you don’t need to sponsor a sports stadium to create images and logos that tie in with your product. Drive customers to your business brand with specialized logos and print fonts. Then, stick with it these images for (there’s that word again) consistency!

10. Spend Money to Make Money

Hiring professionals to create and implement the proper branding for your website is part of the cost of doing business.  From links to content, expertly marketing your site, including the best words for Search Engine Optimization, is what will get it to the top of the list.  While you’re at it, check out Rebrandly.com to help your company increase its brand awareness (and it’s affordable, too!)

 

A couple of other points to remember:
take your site offline if you don’t have content on it.  Online branding suffers when “coming soon” pops up on a page that has no actual items or services to sell. In our “I want it and I want it now” Internet world, the customer isn’t interest in a business that cannot deliver.  Also, because shopping software becomes out of date with the constant changes of the Internet, be sure your system can handle all mobile apps and platforms by giving it a periodic technical upgrade.

Brand smart and you’ll sell smart!

Further Reading:

This Article is About:

  • Online Branding.
  • Online Branding Best Practices.
  • Online Branding with Links.
  • Branding Your Links.

 

Maurizio Tiberi
COO at Rebrandly. Directing, administering, and coordinating internal operational activities of the organization in accordance with policies, goals, and objectives established by the CEO.