Internet marketing in today’s India

6 min read
Shweta Saxena

Advertising has come a long way from traditional marketing channels such as television, newspapers and flyers to the new age of internet marketing. Most businesses are still vacillating between the conventional and the modern-age marketing methods.

If you are still on the fence unable to decide between the two, or don’t know exactly how to get started, this article is for you.

Top 3 internet marketing strategies for today’s India

Internet marketing, or eMarketing, is the process of promoting your business, its products and services online. It is an umbrella term that encompasses a wide range of marketing techniques. Here are three favourites.

  1. Search engine optimisation (SEO).

  2. Free Google My Business listings.

  3. Content marketing.

With so many marketing strategies where each one is an ocean in itself, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. Therefore, in this article, we shall be discussing how to kick off your internet marketing efforts starting with the easy-peasy ones. But first, a word about why your business should be online.

Why promote your business online?

Internet Marketing Diagram
You need only look at the numbers to see why eMarketing is popular in India.

Currently, more than 481 million people in India use the internet, making India the second largest online market in the world.

Out of 455 million Indians living in urban areas, 64 percent have access to the internet.

eMarketing is not just the marketer’s but also the customer’s favourite marketing channel. Instead of the one-way interruption of a TV ad, this strategy delivers the content at just the right moment — when the customer needs it.

1. Search engine optimisation (SEO)

Moz defines search engine optimisation as “the practice of increasing the quality and quantity of traffic to your website through organic search engine results.”

In simple words, SEO can be referred to as all the efforts you put in to get your website on the first page of the search engine results when someone looks for a business like yours.

A search engine is a web page where you can type your question/query and it automatically presents you with many relevant links that can satiate your query. There are many search engines; the most famous ones are Google, Bing and Yahoo!

Internet Marketing Google Search
Aim to get your business on page one of this list for your search terms.

For example, let’s say you have a retail outlet in Noida that sells kids outfits. You will want Google to list your website in the search results when someone types ‘best kids outfit shop in Noida.’

But, think of it — every Noida shop that sells kids outfits would want to be on this page. Therefore, all the search engines have an algorithm that evaluates hundreds of factors before ranking websites for a particular keyword. (A keyword is the words or phrases a person types in when looking for something on the web.)

Broadly speaking, the first step in SEO is to identify your keywords. The second step is to naturally knit these words or phrases into the text and tags on your website. Be careful not to sacrifice quality to keywords here — your content should first and foremost answer customers’ questions. Jamming your web pages with keywords is called keyword stuffing and is an absolute no-go strategy.

2. Free Google My Business listings

If you own a physical store, Google My Business (GMB) is a gift from Google to you. With GMB you can create and manage your business listing at no cost. By listing your business on Google, your store/office can automatically appear in Google maps, and your customers can reach you hands down.

Let us continue with our previous example and see what Google shows up on entering the keyword “best kids outfit stores in Noida.’ Even before the first text result, it shows you the listed shops on a map.

Internet Marketing Google Search
Google My Business is a free online business listing — all it costs is time.

The advantages of GMB are not limited to the ease of finding your business. It also extends to helping your audience decide if they want to buy from you. People can get essential information related to your business here, including working hours, customer reviews and ratings.

List your business with Google in less than 10 minutes here.

Don’t stop there. You can also get your business listed on other platforms like AskLaila, Sulekha and Just Dial. It’s like a free business advertisement.

3. Content marketing

Content marketing is the technique that is least expensive but takes the most time. It really should be used even if you are using other marketing techniques.

There could be many businesses in your niche offering the similar product/services and targeting the same keywords you’ve chosen. Content marketing is what differentiates you from the rest.

Internet Marketing Video
People everywhere love to watch video on their mobile phones.
Photo: Anomaly on Unsplash

Without going into the complex definition, you can understand content marketing as creating valuable content such as:

Best practice is to add links to your website to every bit of content you publish. This type of marketing works in a way that customers are pulled to your website.

Content marketing helps you:

Get noticed by search engines

A search engine’s primary job is to fetch the most relevant content on the internet and serve it to the searcher. If you create content that your audience refers to, again and again, the search engine will place you at the top, above the rest.

Gain authority and trust

Useful content establishes your authority and that in turn builds trust. The reason someone will buy from you and not your competitors is they trust you for the knowledge you have on the domain.

Now’s the time to dive into internet marketing

internet Marketing Chess Pieces

This is not a comprehensive list of eMarketing strategies you can employ, but it is undoubtedly a good head start. Out of the various techniques, I have carefully chosen the ones that are essential, easy to start and involve minimal expense. Each strategy discussed in this article is an ocean in itself and requires time and practice to master.

So, are you ready to pull up your socks and take a plunge into the ocean of internet marketing? The world is waiting ...