Four steps to help families take a business idea online

families

By now, endless card games, movie marathons and communal baking sessions are probably a familiar sight for families in lockdown together. However, recent GoDaddy research has revealed another Australian family bonding activity – starting or growing a small venture. Research found that 30 per cent of those surveyed had started or grown a business during the COVID lockdown.

So, if you’re looking for a new activity or a way to bond as a family, why not embrace your entrepreneurial side and set up a business of your own? If you’re intrigued and inspired, here are a few steps to help you start.

Choose a domain name

A domain name is your business’ unique address on the web, so it’s important that it’s easy for your customers to find and remember. To help, consider choosing a name that represents your venture in one or just a few words. For instance, if you’re setting up a hamper delivery service, consider a domain name such as “fasthampers.com”. Consider also registering a variety of iterations of it – like .com, .com.au, .org, .melbourne – so that a competitor cannot register a similar name.

Get set up with a website

A website can act as a business’ online home. It’s where you tell your story, showcase your products and services, establish credibility and, if marketed effectively, it could expand your reach, too. But before building your website, consider what you’d like to achieve. Do you want it to inform? Inspire? Generate leads? Or sell products or services? 26 per cent of Australian consumers make purchases via mobile, so it’s worth using a website builder tool that optimises websites for smartphones and other mobile devices, all at the same time.

Get your website found

Once you have set up your website, take a few extra steps to boost its visibility online through search engine optimisation (SEO). SEO is the process of refining a website to get higher search engine rankings and organic visitors to your site. Each search engine has its own set of ranking criteria. However, unlike paid listings or sponsored advertisements, organic search results are “free” and based on, among other things, the website’s content and how closely it matches the keywords being searched. So consider filling your website with keywords or phrases that describe your business using words that your customers might search for, like “hampers Melbourne” or “gift boxes” or “presents for colleagues”.

Get active on social media

Almost 80 per cent of people use social media, so developing a presence on platforms like Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram, could be a great way to help your business raise brand awareness, and engage with current and potential customers and ultimately drive traffic to your website. In real life, you can’t be everywhere at the same time, and the same goes for social media. So, figure out where your target customers are spending their time, and be active there. For instance, some platforms, like Pinterest and Instagram, specialise in visual content, which can be great for product-centric businesses. LinkedIn, on the other hand, can be a great platform for more commercial ventures like a business consultancy.

The potential of an online business is not just for lockdown, though. In fact, GoDaddy’s research found that 93 per cent of respondents would continue their new online well beyond the lockdown. And despite restrictions easing, the ‘new normal’ could see people using the internet to interact with their favourite brands and businesses more than before. So as the ‘new normal’ becomes the new normal, why not consider where starting or growing an online business could take you?

Suzanne Mitchell, Australia Marketing Director, GoDaddy