Whether you’re just starting out or re-evaluating your online strategy it’s important for you to get both your plan and budget right. To be successful, you need to have a solid internet marketing strategy and be realistic about the true costs of doing it properly. The rule “Build it and they will come” rarely works in online space. For example; too many businesses spend £1000’s on getting a website developed, only to find they have no money left to promote it. Here’s our top 5 list of what you should plan for with any new internet marketing campaign:
1. Microsite/Website development/design & maintenance -The development of a new website or microsite has many variables and overall cost depends on factors such as whether it’s static or dynamic, whether it includes a blog or shopping cart, is the design bespoke or a template. The functionality of your website will be determined by your overall internet marketing strategy. Remember: in the online world, all promotional activity with eventually lead to your website.
2. SEO – Search Engine Optimisation The bottom line is that the majority of website traffic comes from search engines and directories. While the organic search engine traffic is free (no click costs), you do need to invest in some sort of SEO program to ensure you’re maximizing this free search engine traffic.
3. Pay Per Click (PPC) If you’re looking for some quick wins in terms of traffic and results from your website then PPC can offer this. With a well setup Google AdWords campaign, you can have highly targeted visitors delivered to your website almost instantly. It’s a great way to ensure you’re still getting a return on your website investment whilst your SEO and other strategies take effect.
4. Email marketing Email marketing is a very cost effective form of direct marketing. The biggest challenge, especially for start up businesses is finding and building permission based contact lists. So it often comes into its own after a business is up and running for a while, and you’ve had a chance to build a decent subscriber base.
5. Blogs Hosting and authoring your own blog can be extremely refreshing and insightful as it requires a regular analysis and reflection of your business, markets, successes and failures in order to create up-to-date content; all of these are the by-product of blogs, but I think are just as much an important benefit as to the blog itself. Whether used for general news, training, product guides, promotion or notices, blogging is firmly rooted as a favourite tool for internet marketing. Guide to expected costs With the above in mind you now get a much clearer and more realistic picture of what is required in order to get serious about your online marketing. To give you even further insight we have put together a list of average market pricing (at the mid range) for the above services.