So you’ve got an outstanding business and you’re beginning to develop an online presence? Keep in mind that when you move forward in cyberspace, you’ll need to follow a few rules.
One of those rules is not to let the electronic barrier between you and your prospective customers prevent you from becoming more personable in your marketing efforts. You want everyone in your target market to feel like you are reaching out to each one of them individually, rather than constructing an online presence meant to appeal to the proverbial masses.
Get Personal Online
1. Responsive Web design
Marching forward in the 21st century, you’ll find that responsive Web design  is no longer an option. It’s an absolute necessity if you want your business to stay competitive.
Responsive Web design refers to the principle that the website is easily viewed and used on a screen of any size. It uses a technique known as a “media query ” to determine the screen resolution of the device on which the viewer has called up your site. Then it renders the output appropriate to the screen size, so every user sees a visually appealing and easy-to-navigate Web page on his or her device, no matter how big or small.
As you might have guessed, responsive Web design is implemented primarily so people using mobile devices can view websites without “paying a price” because they are not on a traditional PC or Mac.
Given the overwhelming growth of the mobile market, your website absolutely has to feature responsive Web design.
2. Customized User Preferences
Enabling customized user preferences is a great idea. It’s especially useful if your website is meant to cater to differing target markets. For example, your Web presence might be an online auction site for various types of fine art.
Some bidders might only be interested in paintings while others are primarily seeking finely decorated pieces. People with disparate tastes should be able to configure their preferences on the site so that when they log in, they see only the kinds of art they are interested in purchasing.
You can also go the extra mile with this principle and allow people to change the actual look and feel of your website to suit their own tastes, at least to some extent. The important thing is that you market to customers in a way that they find easy to customize. That’s a very good thing.
3. Use Social Media
Social media goes by that name for a very good reason. It’s an online means of becoming more social. This provides no small amount of benefit to businesses that wish to cast aside the corporate persona and opt for a more approachable “personality” in their online marketing efforts.
You might be surprised by how many of your customers take to social media with customer service inquiries. Make sure that you monitor your various social media channels consistently, so that you respond to those inquiries. If visitors see that you’re perform responsive customer service on social media, they will swiftly accept you as a business person.
4. Personalized Birthday Gifts
Perhaps you have an online business that asks for people’s date of birth when they register with your site. If that’s the case, then use that information to boost online interaction.
You can provide personalized birthday gifts. This is a great way to say “I care” to someone who is interested in your products or services. It will pleasantly surprise the recipient, because the odds are great that your competitors aren’t doing the same.
You’re giving your prospects a warm, fuzzy feeling about you as an individual and that will likely pay off for your business.
Online Gift  Photo via Shutterstock