What is Online Marketing?
Online marketing refers to the tools and strategies used to promote products and services using the internet. It is a much better alternative to traditional marketing, mostly because it offers many channels to access the target audience.
Source: Web Trainings Academy
Singapore has the highest internet penetration in South East Asia which underlines the importance of having an online presence in the country. That said, you have to implement smart strategies to ensure that your marketing campaign is successful.
Top 10 Online Marketing Strategies in Singapore
- Create a Website
- Search Engine Optimisation
- Invest in Paid Search
- Make the Most of Social Media
- Leverage Influencer Marketing
- Email Marketing
- Get Listed on Web Directories
- Protect User Data
- Participate in Online Communities
- Develop your Authority in Online Forums
Let us shift gears and look at each of this online marketing ways to increase your online presence.
1. Create a Website
The first step of having an online presence is creating a website since all age groups in Singapore use the internet. It is easy to create a website, mainly due to the availability of many platforms online. You can create a website in a few minutes even if you have no prior knowledge in computing.
The following table shows the percentage of people using the internet across various age groups in Singapore.
Percentage of internet users
55 and over
Source: Google Consumer Barometer
However, if you want to perform well, it is advisable to seek professional assistance. This is because pros have the knowledge and experience needed to create a website that excels in digital marketing in Singapore.
When building a website, you should focus on for main elements, user interface, responsiveness, content, and concise messaging.
The quality of the user interface has a significant impact on the impression your website gives to users. Make sure that you use attractive colours and images to encourage users to stay on your page. If you create a poor first impression, visitors are likely to leave your website for rival businesses.
The majority of Singaporeans access the internet using mobile devices, which underlines the importance of having a responsive website. When your website is responsive, it displays correctly across all devices, which enhances user experience. On the other hand, non-responsive sites have high bounce rates, have low conversion rates, and generate lower revenue.
Another benefit of having a mobile-friendly website is that helps you gain an edge over your competitors. This is because Google and other search engines understand that most mobile searches are local.
The following is a graph showing the most favoured research and purchase methods used by consumers in Singapore.
Source: Google Consumer Barometer
You need to publish fantastic and engaging content on your website to attract and retain visitors. The content should be accurate, relevant, and establish you as an authority in your niche. There are two types of content you can post; fresh content and evergreen content. Fresh content refers to posts that become irrelevant after a short period, while evergreen content refers to posts that remain relevant for extended periods.
Lastly, you should always ensure that you use concise messaging on your site. The information on your site must be relevant and straightforward. A website that has too many distractions such as ads and irrelevant content usually gets a lower number of visitors compared to one that has useful information.
2. Search Engine Optimisation
Search engine optimisation (SEO) is among the leading strategies used for online marketing in Singapore. It refers to the adjustments to your website so that it gets indexed by search engines and ranks high for specific keywords in search results.
91% of internet users in Singapore rely on search engines as their primary source of information, which underlines the importance of SEO. You are more likely to get discovered if your website ranks highly on search results. Also, more traffic to your sites translates to an increase in potential conversions and sales.
Keywords are the most crucial aspect of SEO. There are two types of keywords – individual words and lengthy phrases, which are also called long-tail keywords.
Short keywords are less specific and target large groups of internet users. On the other hand, long-tail keywords are more specific and target smaller groups of people. The majority of people who use long-tail keywords usually have a high intent of completing a particular action.
If you want to improve your online presence, you need to blend short and long-tail keyword phrases. You should also focus on keywords that are relevant to your business instead of using generic terms.
Another important aspect of SEO is page loading speeds. Users are more likely to leave a slow website for a faster alternative. Make sure that you optimise your site for fast loading, by removing elements that block the critical path, and reducing the number of images and videos on webpages.
After integrating keywords and optimising for speed, you can then start adding links and organising your content such that it is easy to read.
3. Invest in Paid Search
Paid search is a form of digital marketing in Singapore where search engines allow websites to show ads on their result pages. It is also known as pay-per-click (PPC) advertising since you only pay when a user clicks on your ad listing. PPC is a much quicker alternative to SEO, which usually takes several months to become effective.
Before including paid search as part of your online marketing strategies, it is worth noting that Google is the most dominant search engine in Singapore. With 96% of users preferring it over other options, it is wise to build your PPC campaign on Google.
The most significant advantage of paid search is that your ads only appear when people search for a particular keyword. This means that they are already interested in getting more information or making a purchase. In other advertisement methods, the promotional message might appear to people who are not interested in your offerings.
The first step of a paid search campaign is choosing your target audience. This refers to the location where you want your ad to be seen. After this, the next step is choosing your keywords. Since you will be advertising on Google, you should use the Google Keyword Planner because it is free. You could also use other third-party tools, provided they show you a list of keywords should target, their popularity, the level of competition for each, and how much they are likely to cost per click.
Once you choose your keywords, you need to create ads that include them. You should also make sure that the ad contains your unique selling points and call-to-action statements.
Google usually recommends the amount you need to bid to show a particular keyword. However, the given figure is only a recommendation. For instance, if Google suggests that you bid at S$3.50, you can bid at S$3.00. The only problem of bidding at a lower price is that your ads will appear less frequently on search results.
The two factors that affect the ranking of your ad listing are the amount of bid and the quality score of the ad. Quality score is a rating from one to ten that search engines assign to individual keywords in your ad. It depends on the expected click-through rate, the relevance of the ad to your keywords, and the user experience of your landing page.
The reason for introducing the quality score was to ensure that advertisers who spend the highest amounts of money are not guaranteed the top spot on search results. As a result, the ad that satisfies the three criteria mentioned above gets the highest quality score.
A common misconception is that paid search is not cost-effective. Some keywords cost well over S$300. However, this should not intimidate you because such prices are usually defined by the market. If you notice that some of your competitors are willing to pay such an amount, it shows that the keyword can generate a positive ROI.
Before you overlook a keyword, divide the cost-per-conversion by the cost-per-click. If the return is profitable, then it is a viable investment. Otherwise, it is better to look for a different option.
4. Make the Most of Social Media
Social media platforms provide an excellent means of marketing your brand to potential customers. There are currently 4.4 million social media users in Singapore, a number that is expected to increase to increase to 4.7 million by 2023.
Social media marketing refers to the process of generating traffic from social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram, and so on. Each network has its unique characteristics. For instance, Facebook supports almost all types of content, Twitter limits posts to 280 characters, and Instagram is suitable for sharing visual content.
The first step to creating a social media marketing strategy is understanding your audience. By knowing their preference, you will determine the type of content that appeals to them.
Once you know what your audience likes, you need to choose the platform you will use to share your content. Your choice should be influenced by the preferences of your customers. For instance, if they spend most of their time on Facebook, you should set up a Facebook page.
With so many people using social networks in Singapore, you must create outstanding content to capture the attention of your audience. Publishing engaging content entices users to follow your account and interact with your brand. It also makes it easier to convert them into customers.
If you are struggling to come with ideas for content generation, take a look at what your competitors are posting. You should also take advantage of the features offered by the platform you are using. For example, if you are using Instagram, you can make use of the live feature to interact with your followers in real-time.
Alternatively, you can encourage your existing clients to help you generate content. The best way of doing this is by telling them to share their own experiences with your products. User-generated content is an effective method of advertising your products since people are more likely to purchase items when they others using them.
The easiest way of running a smooth social media marketing campaign is by investing in an automated management tool. These tools allow you to prepare and schedule posts in advance. More importantly, it saves you time and allows you to focus on other online marketing strategies. Keep in mind that you should only post when you have quality content to share.
Similar to other forms of online marketing in Singapore, you should analyse the impact of social media marketing regularly. The most critical metrics on social networks include engagement levels, the number of followers, number of mentions, and number of impressions.
Engagement refers to actions taken by users, such as liking, commenting and sharing your posts. Followers are the people that are subscribed to your page, meaning that they see everything you post on their timelines. Impressions refer to the number of times your pot is seen, irrespective of whether it gets engagement. Lastly, a mention is an instance where somebody tags your social profile in a post.
5. Leverage Influencer Marketing
If you are new to social media, it can be quite challenging to build an audience. This is where influencers come in handy. Influencer marketing is a form of social media marketing where popular figures with an established audience endorse your page, products or services on your behalf. It is effective because the influencers are seen as experts in their niche and already have a significant number of followers.
Influencers are mostly popular among the younger generations. In Singapore, 51% of consumers aged between 18 and 24 revealed that influencers convinced them to purchase a particular product. In comparison, only 22% of people aged over 55 were persuaded by influencers.
The majority of influencers in Singapore have a following ranging from 5,000 to 20,000 people. This category, also known as micro-influencers are present in almost every niche. They are the best because they reach out to people individually, which makes them trustworthy. A celebrity influencer can reach out to a million people at a time, but they have the lowest trust.
Like other strategies used for online marketing in Singapore, you need to plan well before reaching out to influencers. First, you need to choose the platform where you will run your campaign. You should start with one network and then add others gradually as your campaign grows.
The industry you operate in also determines the platform you choose for your influencer marketing strategy. For instance, if you are in the beauty industry, YouTube and Instagram should be your top picks.
Once you have a preferred platform, you should set your budget. This ensures that you do not overspend such that it affects other strategies in your online marketing in Singapore. You then need to set your goals and design the message that the influencer will promote. Keep in mind that you have to balance between stifling the creativity of the influencer and making sure that they do not share unrelated messages.
The penultimate step in influencer marketing is finding an influencer. The person you choose should have experience in your industry, be reputable and show proof of legitimacy. You should look at their accounts for red flags such a low engagement to follower count ratio, as well as comments that look like spam. You should vet every option thoroughly so that your money does not go to waste.
As your influencer marketing campaign continues, you should continually measure its progress. Check if the influencer has had any positive impact and if they are in line to achieve the set goals.
6. Email Marketing
Email marketing is the use of email to develop relationships with potential and existing clients to make them aware of your offerings and eventually convert them into buying customers. It is one of the many strategies used in online marketing in Singapore.
Even with the increased use of social media platforms, email marketing is still by far the most effective of all online marketing strategies. The reason why email messages are more useful than social media posts is that people are more attentive when reading their inboxes than when scrolling through their newsfeed. Also, 99% of users check their emails every day.
While the digital marketing industry is always changing, one thing that is still constant is that you need to use strategic wording in your emails. The good thing about the mailing list is that you know everybody who signs up has some level of interest in what you have to offer.
The subject line is the first thing a reader sees when they open their inbox. For this reason, it should be interesting, genuine and relevant. This ensures that the user gets the motivation they need to read the email.
Always make sure that your emails are simple and minimal. It should be professional, straightforward and free of clutter. Moreover, each email should have a specific purpose, such as informing the reader, asking for referrals or getting them to follow you on social media.
The best way to make your content engaging is by being concise. Wordiness and fluff affect the effectiveness of your email hurting the engagement levels. Your message should reveal your intentions and show what value your business adds to the customer. Make sure that the fonts are large and legible. Also, use whitespaces properly so that the content does not appear like a block of text.
Do not forget to include a clear and compelling call-to-action in your email message. Try to think from the reader’s perspective and craft the email in a way that will encourage them to read to the end.
Once you send the first email, make sure that you follow it up with subsequent messages. For instance, if the first message was a sales pitch, include a discount coupon on the second message to move the lead down the sales funnel.
As is the case with other online marketing strategies, remember to test the performance of your email marketing regularly. Testing enables you to devise ways to increase conversions, reduce costs and lower your bounce rates, and so on.
When running an email marketing campaign, you should know the preferred client for your target audience. As of now, Google’s Gmail is the most popular option in the world, including Singapore.
7. Get Listed on Web Directories
Many marketers who do online marketing in Singapore overlook the importance of web directories. These are key sites that allow you to generate more traffic and reach out to broader audiences. They are also useful in improving your rank on SERPs, especially in local searches. Indexes for local business usually use shared data. This means that appearing in multiple directories boosts your rank on search results significantly.
When choosing a web directory, prioritise the ones that add value to your business. Some of the popular choices include Bing Places, Google My Business, Yellow Pages, and Yelp.
Despite the perception that web directories are no longer popular, Google and Yelp lead the way as the websites that consumers check out before visiting a business.
You should ensure that the details you submit to a web directory about your business are accurate. Make sure that the name, address and phone number is correct. You should also specify the hours of operation and give a short description of what your business offers.
The majority of existing web directories support review. It is advisable to respond to the comments made by your customers, especially if they are negative. Answering negative comments show that you care. Also, having negative comments on your review section gives you credibility.
8. Protect User Data
In recent years, there has been a surge in the number of cyber-attack incidents. Some of the most notable incidences have involved established companies such as eBay and Uber, meaning that every website has to implement preventive security measures.
Although it often comes across as a marketing strategy, security companies do not exaggerate when they say can hackers can easily breach your security systems. Every year, ransomware attacks increase by a whopping 350%. In 2017, 61% of hacking victims were companies with less than 1,000 individuals in their workforce.
The graph below shows how much selected countries lost in 2018 as a result of cyber-attacks.
The worrying trend mentioned above means that governments are now looking for ways to curb this challenge. Regardless you need to provide assurances to your customers that you will keep their information safe. This way, you build trust and make it easier to grow your online presence. According to forecasts, Singaporean companies will spend S$673 million on cybersecurity services by 2020.
9. Participate in Online Communities
The internet has an abundance of communities made of people who share the same interests. These groups work similarly to conventional social networks, in that they allow you to post, chat and share content with other members.
The most crucial feature of online communities is that they are overly specific – each group contains people from a particular location, a niche, languages and many other parameters. Regardless of the size of your business, you can find a group that suits your needs.
There is more to online communities than mere participation. Firstly, they are an excellent tool for increasing brand awareness. 84% of consumers are more likely to trust a referral if it comes from a friend. If you join such groups, you can significantly boost your online marketing in Singapore.
During traditional research, some respondents usually change their behaviour when they discover that they are being studied. This is not the case with online communities, which provide an effective way for customer discovery. Besides getting a better understanding of your potential clients, groups provide a platform for user-generated content, which many consumers consider as more authentic than official reviews.
Impactful communities are an invaluable source of information for their members. In these groups, members often share a passion to improve their colleagues, which explains why they engage in discussions and share useful learning resources such as books and links to articles.
Lastly, online communities foster brand loyalty. 67% of customers usually spend more on brands to which they are loyal.
The following table shows how online communities help their members worldwide.
Percentage of members
Connecting with others
10. Develop Your Authority in Online Forums
Another way of building your online presence and making your online marketing in Singapore a success is by developing authority in relevant platforms.
Online forums are platforms where members have discussions on particular topics. In most instances, posts are in the form of questions, and other members can contribute by giving answers.
By actively engaging in discussions, answering questions and posting useful content, you can establish yourself as an authority in the forum. It takes time, but the rewards are worth it. Consumers are more likely to purchase from a brand that shows that they have adequate mastery of their area of specialisation.
Benefits of Having an Online Presence in Singapore
Most businesses have a running website, which is crucial to the success of your online marketing in Singapore. If you are yet to implement the strategies mentioned above, here are the reasons why you should.
- Makes your Business Easier to Find
- Reach Broader Audiences
- Improve Brand Image
- Increase your Credibility
- Reputation Management
- Cost-Effective Marketing
Let us look at each of this benefits of having a good online presence in Singapore.
1. Makes Your Business Easier to Find
More than 84% of Singaporeans use the internet regularly. If you do not have an online presence, you are missing out on a huge opportunity to reach out to millions of potential customers.
2. Reach Broader Audiences
Engaging in digital marketing in Singapore ensures that you reach a much broader audience than marketers who use traditional methods. On the internet, you have access to powerful tools such as search engines and social media platforms, which you cannot find offline.
Another advantage of online marketing strategies is the ability to target specific audiences. With traditional advertising, marketers wasted a lot of money because ads were sent to random people. Digital marketing allows you to send ads to people who are likely to show interest in your brand, which reduces the cost and increases the effectiveness of your marketing campaign.
3. Improve Brand Image
Your brand is the primary difference between you and your competitors. People get attracted to your business because of what you stand for, the language you use and more importantly, the way you present yourself. Having a strong brand is critical for the success of your online marketing in Singapore.
The internet offers an excellent platform to build and strengthen your brand. Social media allows you to interact with clients and showcase your values and beliefs.
4. Increase Your Credibility
As mentioned earlier, 81% of consumers research online before buying a product. A company that lacks an online presence not only misses the opportunity to get discovered but also comes across as a non-credible institution. A potential customer will quickly move to the next available option if they cannot find your website online. On the other hand, if you have a professional website, you can easily capture the attention of online shoppers.
5. Reputation Management
Consumers always talk about brands, even if they lack an online presence. Whatever they say has a significant impact on your business and its performance. The advantage of investing in online marketing in Singapore is that you know the opinions that different people have on your business, which allows you to either, implement damage control or encourage them to spread the good word. Reputation management is vital since 86% of people usually prefer paying more for products from highly-rated companies.
6. Cost-effective Marketing
With plenty of online marketing strategies to choose from, you are almost guaranteed of running a successful campaign. For instance, a well-run email marketing campaign can generate an ROI of 4400%.
Having a strong online presence is critical for the success of your online marketing in Singapore. Ensure that you implement the strategies mentioned above to avoid losing the edge to your competitors. That said, it is worth noting that you can make slight tweaks so that particular strategy fits into your context perfectly.
Get in touch with us for professional digital marketing services on your budget. Our team will help you get ahead of the competition by creating robust campaign that are unique for your brand and resonate with your goals.