How to Promote Your Small Business Online

Posted: March 15, 2021

In the increasingly virtual world we find ourselves living in, having a solid online presence can often determine whether or not a business sinks or swims. While online e-commerce sites and social media marketing campaigns are a given for large, multi-national businesses, promoting a small business online can seem overwhelming and complicated.

If you’re a small business owner and find yourself struggling to advance your business online or want to better promote yourself through digital channels, take note of our five-step process below.

Step 1: Find your niche online

There are various online channels you can use to target customers and better promote your business. One of the first steps is to understand which of these channels will best fit your niche.

You may have already identified your niche, but you’ll also need to figure out where these people spend time online. For example, if your target audience is youth, then Tik Tok or Snapchat are great platforms to reach them; if your audience is older, Facebook may be better suited to your needs; and if you run a B2B business, LinkedIn may be your platform of choice.

While identifying which platforms your audience uses is key, it is also important to consider your own skills and expertise. If you’re good at content creation and video editing, YouTube may be the perfect fit for your skills. If you’re a fashion retailer, you can use Instagram to post outfits and style inspirations. Whatever online niche you choose, keep your content unique to you and your audience and you’ll find success.

Step 2: Create a website

Creating a website for your business is a must when it comes to promoting a small business. It stands as your digital footprint, the place where potential customers can find out more about your business and the products/services you sell.

There’s a misconception that creating a website is costly, time-consuming, and something only a trained web designer can do. While designing a website can be all those things, it does not have to be. Thanks to highly advanced web tools, anyone can now launch the perfect website to fit their business needs and become equipped with the tools to maintain it.

Here are some sites to help you design and launch your own website:

Step 3: Integrate a buy online tool

More and more, customers are looking to purchase products and services directly online and this demand has certainly heightened since the COVID-19 pandemic. When integrating an e-commerce platform to your website you’ll want to consider the features that are must-haves for your business – whether you will need multiple payment options, order management, or inventory tracking.

If you find yourself struggling with choosing or implementing an e-commerce website or would like some help in getting started, ShopHere may be for you. Powered by Google, ShopHERE allows you to bring your store online in as little as two weeks. You’ll get a customized website, hands-on assistance, plus training and tools to build, launch, and manage your online store—all at no cost to you.

Step 4: Become active on social media

Once you have created your website, the next step is to promote and drive traffic to it. Social media is free, far-reaching, and a great way to promote your small business online. Platforms like Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook are great to speak with your customers directly and in an authentic way.


With over 1 billion monthly active users[1], Instagram is one of the most popular social media platforms. Increasingly, this social media is becoming a hotspot for small businesses to grow their audience. With Instagram, you can track who is visiting your profile, interacting with your posts, and launch promotional ads.


As the largest social media platform, Facebook is a must-have for promoting your business online. Creating a Facebook page for your business is a great way to increase brand awareness, plus it can aid in driving traffic to your website and other social channels.

Other social media sites to consider

While we’ve only highlighted two social media sites that can help promote your small business online, there a number of other channels worth considering. Each social media site comes with its own unique audience to tap into, which can help better promote and grow your business. If you have the time and capability, being active on multiple social media platforms will only further help your business to grow and thrive.

Step 5: Other ways to promote your business

When it comes to promotion, another way to reach different audiences and grow your overall customer base is through external channels. Find other communities, websites, and channels that will promote your business on your behalf.

One program that helps promote small businesses in Halifax is Access Local. Access Local connects businesses to consumers through the vLife app, a social enterprise platform connecting people who are passionate about experiencing and supporting local, with more small independent goods and services providers in the local community. Through vLife, users are able to promote their business and drive people to their website and social channels.

So, there you have it—five steps to help you better promote your small business online. Keep in mind when it comes to online promotion, your biggest investment may not be money, but rather time. When it comes to promoting things online it requires energy—whether it be updating website stock, posting new photos, creating social content, or responding to users—constant monitoring and updating is key to ensuring your business stays relevant in a space that is literally changing by the second.



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