We’re fast approaching the end of the second decade of the 21st century. Unless you’ve been hibernating since the Y2K bug threat, you’d have realised that we’re well established in the internet age. There’re literary two planes of existence today – the physical world and cyberspace. Everything exists in these two worlds. Everything from education, entertainment, employment, shopping, and literary how we live our lives. Unfortunately, not everybody has caught up with the times… Yes, we’re talking about cyberspace presence for businesses…
You Don’t Exist Unless You Have Cyberspace Presence
As of June 2018, 55.1% of the world population has internet access. And it’s not gonna stop growing anytime soon. Hence, it’s not surprising that more and more of life’s activities are now moving into cyberspace. Even the world’s largest media, social media, exist exclusively on the internet. So if you want to be to be seen, and to be noticed, you’re gonna have to establish your presence in cyberspace.
Herein lies the problem… Almost every individual have personal profiles on social media, and a large portion of that also have their personal blogs too. This makes them very visible in cyberspace. However, the same can’t be said about businesses. Only a handful actually takes full advantage of what internet offers to spread their presence. The rest of them… well… choose only have a token presence, or worse, none at all…
Token presence?… Well, back in the day of telephone landlines monopoly, telecom companies publish an annual telephone directory. It’s a thick book that lists all of their customers’ names and phone numbers. Why?…Well, so that you can search for the person’s number that you want to contact. Kinda strange concept today, but back then, you want to be contacted.
There was one directory (white pages) for individual listings, and another one (yellow pages) for business listings. You want more exposure than a mere business name and phone number? Well, they also offer media space for you to advertise your business there too. Businesses will try to come up with attractive advertising designs there to attract attention. What you can do is to display your business name, a visual logo, address, phone numbers, perhaps a short description of what your business is all about. But that’s about it… There’s only so much you can display on a small piece of real estate, on the printed of paper.
The Cyberspace Version Of The Yellow Pages
While most businesses realise the importance of establishing a presence in cyberspace, not many are actually doing much about it. At least not effectively. Most will be satisfied with having a static corporate website (read: undead website). It’s essentially a yellow pages listing and advertising on the internet (a uni-directional message on a multi-directional platform)… It’s like viewing an old black-and-white portrait of your grandparents on a virtual reality goggles, capable of displaying ultra high resolutions 3D images, and 360º surround sound with sub-woofer…
You could purchase additional advertising space (not cheap) on the yellow pages directory, to stand out from the sea of boring text listings. Likewise, you could also purchase web hosting, and a unique domain name to stand out from the rest of the boring undead websites. But why stop there?… The internet platform is capable of so much more than merely displaying a static image. You’re already paying for the privilege of having direct access to your cyber presence. So why not maximise it’s capability and use?
What You Can Do To Maximise Your Cyber Presence
You’re already paying good money to get your business presence online, so you might as well get your money’s worth. Ensure that you’re using all the facilities and amenities offered by the platform and the host. There are steps that you can take to maximise your presence in cyberspace :-
(1) Design An Intuitive Website, Not A Pretty Looking Website
This is the main problem that most web design clients have. It’s rather unfortunate that most clients are so myopic that they don’t see beyond a pretty looking façade.
Accept the fact that less is actually more. The simpler the visual design is, the easier it is to get your message across. Don’t waste too much resources to design a densely packed, brightly coloured and attention grabbing visuals. Instead, concentrate on making your website easier to navigate. The easier it is for visitors to move around to find the information that they want, the longer they’ll stay there.
(2) Fill It With Information That Visitors Seek, Not Your Life History
It’s gonna be tempting to fill in as much information as possible into your website, since there’s almost limitless space. But keep a level head, and exercise restraint over your excitement. No, they’re not interested to know how your business started, who inspired you, your favourite band, your favourite pizza, your best friend, your dog’s name, your cat’s name, etc.
There’s generally a consistent type of information that most visitors will seek when visiting a website. This includes a short description on what’s your business about, what you do, examples of your products or services, and how to contact you. If in doubt, ask yourself what information would you seek if you’re searching for something that you’re interested in yourself.
(3) Make Sure That Visitors Know You’re Still Alive
Most corporate websites out there are undead. They’re technically still alive, since they still pay for their hosting plan and domain name. But aside from that, there’s literary no indication that they’re even alive… Hooked up to life support perhaps?…
Keep your website active, and commit to a consistent update interval. No, we don’t mean to redesign your website every month. The most effective method is to maintain an active blog, preferably a new article every week. How would you feel, if you visited a website that was last updated six months ago?… Or worse… three years ago, when they first commissioned a web designer to design their website?…
(4) Participate In The World’s Largest Media Platform
Everybody who’s just about anybody is on social media. Hence, it’s not surprising that social media presence is of utmost importance if you want to be knows to the masses. The buzzword for this is social media marketing.
Whilst social media isn’t a platform for you to host your cyber presence, since you don’t own the platform. But if managed properly, it’s an effective platform for you to reach out to the masses. After all, it’s the world’s watering hole, and literary everybody in cyberspace hangs out there regularly. Think of it as a strategic location to put up your advertising posters.
So Do You Think Your Business Is Internet Ready?
There’s no denying that business exposure and transaction traffic will only keep increasing with time. So is your business ready to hitch a ride on this internet wave? Or are you potentially being left behind, and losing out to your more internet savvy competitors?
If there’s one thing that you have to remember, it’s that even the status quo is always changing. The only thing constant in life is change itself. So if you were to rest on your laurels, not only are you not gonna stay where you are right now, you’re actually gonna be moving backwards. With your competitors racing forward all around you, the finish line will forever be shifting further and further forward.
Need help getting your business internet ready?… Treat us to a cup of coffee, and we’ll share with you all the intricate details on how to do it.