Small businesses need to build online options

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HARTFORD – According to the Small Business Administration, the lack of an online presence is one of the top reasons why small businesses fail.

Yet, only 41 percent of small businesses have a website. Additionally, the majority of consumers, 83 percent, said that having a website and use of social media is important to their consideration and choice of a small business.

As we bid farewell to 2016 and reflect on the year, it is important to learn from our mistakes and find ways to get our business’ online presence in top shape for the year ahead. Small businesses account for more than half, 55 percent, of U.S. jobs. There are a slew of challenges in running a business, outside of economic uncertainty, concerns over consumer spending and interest rates hikes, and small business owners don’t necessarily have the time or patience to build and maintain an online presence, but there are tools, products and resources out there that can help. The more we can knock down barriers to small business success, the more we can improve the economy as a whole.

Some tips for small businesses:

  • Get online if you aren’t online already, and if you are, make your business’ website work for you. For example, be sure that your business, and your website, are optimized for mobile.
  • Tips and tricks for marketing your business online during the holidays.
  • Whether you’re a doctor’s office, or a gardening specialist your small business needs a solid flow of leads to succeed. Reanalyze your website and online presence to make sure you’re on the right track.
  • Remember that having an online presence isn’t enough – you have to be found. Online marketing partners like offer a suite of resources and tools to help you grow and succeed in the year ahead.

Carol Roth is a small business expert, national media personality, ‘recovering’ investment banker/billion-dollar deal maker, investor, speaker and author.