Small Business Tips
4 Online Tools for Branding Your New Small Business
Luckily all three of these goals are now easier to accomplish thanks to some online tools that are either free or fairly inexpensive. If you’re starting a new business or looking to bring a current one into the 21st century, here are a few sites you’ll want to visit.
Perhaps the most important aspect of building and promoting your brand these days is having a presence on social media. This not only includes developing a strategy, creating content, and investing in social ads but also requires you to nab a strong username for each platform you intend on using. While visiting each of the sites and checking to see if your ideal name is available would require a ridiculous amount of time and plenty of frustration, Namechk allows you do so in a matter of seconds.
All you have to do is enter your potential username into Namechk and it will verify that handle’s availability across dozens of sites (including plenty you’ve likely never heard of or wouldn’t use for business). This is super helpful especially if your top choices are taken and you need to experiment with other options. Be advised that in some cases you may find that a good name is available on one site but not on another, necessitating a decision as to whether it’s better to have everything uniform or take what you can get. It’s also worth noting that Namechk looks at domain availability as well just in case you haven’t secured a URL for your business yet.
Admittedly the idea of building your own website for your small business can be intimidating to say the least. It may seem like your only choices are to shell out for an expensive web designer or settle for a subpar product but that is no longer the case. Thankfully, even if you know zero HTML, you can likely build a more than decent website with Squarespace.
Squarespace offers a number of templates and options that are require little more than dragging and dropping to customize and design. If all you really care about is having a presentable website that will pass along important information about your company (including what you do, where you’re located, and when you’re open) to customers, that can easily be achieved with the service. However, if you want to build an e-commerce site, that can also be arranged but may take a little bit more technical knowledge on your part as well as some thought-out logistical planning.
If you aren’t familiar with it, Fiverr is a site where freelancers offer up their services with many of them starting at just $5. Granted the work you get for $5 can sometimes be a very small portion of what you will ultimately need but you can still obtain many services including logo designing, proofreading for your web page, or various content creation needs for a fair price. If nothing else Fiverr gives you an easy way to find several services in one place and view several samples and examples to help you choose a direction for your business’s branding.
Is the DIY approach to design a little too intimidating? If you prefer to let the pros do most of the work but have a limited budget then PeoplePerHour could be your savior. On the site you can hire designers, developers, even marketers to help build your online brand. Although you can find many of the same services on Fiverr the quality tends to be higher on PeoplePerHour. Of course the prices reflect the professional marketplace but you can still find many bargains. Make sure to look at the examples and read the feedback before choosing a vendor but the good news is your payment is held in escrow until you are satisfied with the work so you have built in protection for ensuring quality work.
These days the branding of your small business extends to the internet. Because of this you’ll want to make sure you secure a good username for your social media profiles, create a website that’s both functional and professional looking, and consider outsourcing for a logo design or additional content. With Namechk, Squarespace, Fiverr, and PeoplePerHour you’ll be able to do all this and more without spending a ton of time or money.
Also published on Medium.