As a business owner, regardless of size, it’s imperative to take the time to set goals and review your business as a whole prior to marketing your services or products online. Why? Because you need your business to be running seamlessly before marketing it across the largest advertising medium today – online. Then, and only then, should you work up an online plan of attack including seeking help for trusted link building services, which will send traffic to your website or landing pages simultaneously improving your organic search engine results.

Having clear, well-defined goals before any marketing takes place can:

● assist your business to grow

● helps you work up strategies that will achieve your objectives

● improve or develop teamwork and enhanced collaboration aiding supply and demand – and positive customer journey experiences.

● help everyone understand the direction your business is heading in so everyone is on the same wavelength and not working to different goals costing you time and money.

Your overarching business goals should form part of your business plan and will more than likely become your business objectives. It sounds so simple and it is – but you would be surprised at the number of new small to medium business owners who do not even work up a business plan which greatly affects profit margins and success rates.

Before you write down your goals, have a clear understanding and consider what areas your business needs to improve in, or could improve in.

Here are a couple of pointers you may find useful in evaluating your business before you implement a marketing strategy:

● SWOT analysis – determine your business’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.

● Benchmarking – research comparable businesses, or businesses in your industry or location, and parallel industry averages on income and expenses. This can help you measure how your business is performing. To do this, seek out credible sources, like this.

Market research – do your homework and research the market and industry your business resides in to identify customer needs, trends, and overall changes in the market or technology. Statistics and market research intel help you make informed, strategic decisions about the advertising and marketing of your business.

Get SMART

Get and set SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and timely) goals to help evaluate the targets you aim to set. Are they realistic? Jot down your goals in your business plan to help keep you on track so you can ultimately accomplish them.

Here are a few SMART inspired tips to reflect on when setting your business’s aims:

● Specific – be crystal clear about what you want to achieve and succeed in.

● Measurable – make sure all goals can be measured and tracked. Otherwise, how will you know if you’re on your way to reaching them?

● Achievable – ensure your end goal/s have sufficient time, money and resources to be met.

● Relevant – ensure all goals are appropriate to the direction you want your business to head in. For example, increasing profit, employing staff, growing brand awareness.

● Timely – set a realistic timeline for fulfilling your ambitions.

Need an example of a SMART inspired goal?

End goal: I want to grow my accounting business.

Specific: I will win five new clients for my business.

Measurable: I will measure my progress by keeping track of how many new clients I gain while maintaining my current client base.

Achievable: I can gain three new clients, as I currently have three available spaces in my fortnightly client scheduling diary.

Relevant: Adding clients to my customer base will allow me to grow my business and increase my income.

Timely: I will have three new clients within three months.

SMART Goal: I will gain three new clients for my accounting business within a three-month period; filling my current available diary places. This will allow me to grow my business and increase my revenue in a timely manner.

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Once you have applied yourself to your initial business goals and you have achieved them, then consider your online marketing options like link building and costs associated with such activity.