Marketing a home-based business relies almost entirely on your digital presence and word of mouth, but there are still a multitude of ways that home-based businesses can market themselves in a competitive manner and make themselves appear larger and more reputable. Here are a few ways that you can inexpensively market your home-based business:

Designing a Powerful, Responsive Website
Since you cannot rely on a physical location to provide your services, it is essential that you create and maintain a complete and professional website that delineates all of the products and/or services that you currently offer. In this day, a responsive website is ever more important. Considering all of the Internet enabled devices that each potential prospect owns, you must ensure that they can properly access your website regardless of the device at hand.

An eCommerce system is crucial for those who are selling products to provide prospects with the opportunity to make a purchase without picking up the phone. Testimonials from recent clients will help reinforce prospects to your aptitude and customer service. This should be obvious, but your website must have multiple ways of contacting you from phone number to email address, to strategically placed contact forms. There are very inexpensive ways of obtaining an 1-800 number and a professional email address so that you’re not flooding your Gmail account with business inquiries, especially since that appears “small” and unprofessional from the prospect’s perspective.

SEO/Link Building Strategy
Once your website is built and you’re happy with the layout, the next step is to drive traffic to your website by using search engine optimization and link building techniques. Building a website without the proper search engine optimization is comparable to building a house without a front door – no one will be able to get in. The best way to initiate your SEO plan is to first optimize and appropriately saturate each page of your website with 3-4 keywords that properly describe your business model.  Then, begin generating relevant content leveraging these specific keywords.

Blogs, case studies, press releases, and articles are all crucial to building up content on your site for the sake of credibility and search engine optimization. Also, begin submitting your website to relevant free and paid directories which will help boost your link building campaign. Search engines rank links to pages on your website, not just your homepage, as very important, and your overall ranking will increase based on the reputation of the website linking to your website and how relevant the link is. Other methods of link building include links on social networks, blog commenting, and article submissions.

Leverage Social Networks
Do not underestimate the power of social networks and how they can improve your overall branding. Without a physical location or the ability to properly utilize social networks such as Yelp and Foursquare, leveraging networks such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are that much more important. Creating profiles and business pages can help spread the news of your up and coming brand. Also, don’t simply stand behind your accounts with a megaphone and spew self-promotion to your followers and fans. You need to leverage these networks to search and find issues and problems that your products and/or solutions will solve.

Submit Press Releases When You Have News
By submitting press releases through distribution channels, you can inexpensively and efficiently spread the news about your home based business as well as greatly work on your link building campaign. There are a multitude of websites out there that will distribute your news for free or for a small fee to thousands of outlets and publications. Make sure to post your press release on your website before you submit it to these services so that your website is credited with the original content.

There are a myriad of other ways to market your home-based business efficiently and inexpensively, but these methods should get the ball rolling and get you on the map. If you have any questions or comments, or are looking for other methods of generating leads, feel free to contact me directly at john@jbertdesign.com.