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Given the amount of importance the modern consumer places on being able to find information about products or services quickly and easily on the Web, small businesses can no longer afford to ignore the value of a strong online presence.

From making sure that local customers will be able to find your business’s location to creating a website that will draw in business from across the country, it’s critical that you build your online presence in order to grow.

Here are some helpful tips to help you not only establish your business online, but prime yourself to stand out above and beyond your less tech-savvy competition.

1. Make sure your site is mobile-accessible. 

Recently, Google and other search engines began to penalize websites that aren’t accessible to mobile devices by not ranking them as highly in search results—even if searchers are accessing them from a desktop.

That being said, a large percentage of searches are now performed from mobile devices anyway. Customers are using them on breaks at work and need to find information fast, or they’re checking out local business options while they’re already out. As a result, if your website isn’t mobile-friendly, you’ll miss out on a large percentage of potential business.

2. Highlight your local presence.

Have you filled out all of your Google My Business information? If you’re a primarily local company—for example, one that provides a service that can only be performed in your local area—have you optimized your page for local search terms?

Highlighting your local presence will help bring in the business you need most, especially if your business is targeted to a specific geographic area.

3. Choose the right social media channels for your business.

As a small business, you may not have the funds or the time to have an account on every available social media channel—and that’s okay! You don’t have to have a wide range of social media accounts in order to effectively build your online presence. Instead, choose the social media platforms that are right for you!

Consider where your customers are spending the largest block of their time. Nearly everyone has a Facebook account. Instagram, on the other hand, tends to be the territory of younger users. Choose the accounts that are most effective for your business.

If a specific social media site doesn’t appear to be working effectively for you, it’s fine to deactivate that account and create a new plan.

4. Build your blog.

The simple reality is that the best way to make yourself visible to people who are searching for information about your industry is to create content that will appeal to your customer base.

Any keyword that you haven’t targeted for content creation is a keyword that interested customers can’t use to find your business. Your blog—and other content, including infographics and videos—will help you build the library of pages that will bring in interested customers.

5. Develop a regular content creation schedule. 

Your accounts and your blog are only valuable if you use them. Posting regularly to your social media accounts keeps you in the public eye. Posting blog content helps keep you relevant and fresh—and in the eyes of search engines, fresh content matters!

Develop a content creation schedule and stick to it. Consider producing blocks of content all at once, then scheduling it ahead to make the job easier.

6. Remain consistent across channels. 

While you may have different people managing your blog and your social media accounts separately, you need both of them to represent your business the same way. Customers need to know what to expect from your business, and they should expect the same experience no matter how they’re interacting with you.

If several people are developing content for your business, consider developing a policy that will determine the tone of that content.

Building an online presence for your small business isn’t something that will bring you immediate success overnight, but what it can do is lay down the foundation for future growth. By being more visible online, you can tap into the way modern-day consumers seek information, products, and services and start to build something that represents your company as the trustworthy organization that it truly is.