Top 3 Lessons from Google – Or Be a Micro Business Boyscout
As some of you know, I'm in the middle of a doctoral program in entrepreneurship. So instead of sitting at the beach this summer, seven weeks were devoted to Google. Specifically, writing a 70 page ode to Google's sustainability and strategy.
And what's that got to do with you, the self-employed micro business owner?
At first, I didn't want to research Google because I tend to stick with all things micro. But what I learned about Google is applicable to every single micro business out there.
And it boils down to Be a Micro Business Boy Scout! Be Prepared!
Lesson #1: Mobile Will Rule the World
Fact: Mobile internet searches are expected to overtake computer-based searches by 2015 (Mergent First Research, 2013)
This means that if you're website isn't designed for mobile platforms, no one will be able to find you. This is no joking matter. Google is spending a ton of money buying mobile technology including Android and Motorola. They are designing advertising platforms for mobile including sending relevant ads to your location (because they can track you through GPS).
Make sure your website is mobile ready and you've claimed your Google listing. Try searching your business on iPads, iPhones, & Android products to see how your info looks.
Lesson #2: Have a Long-Term Strategy
Fact: 97% of Google's profits are from paid advertising placement (Boyland, 2013)
I knew the number was huge. But 97% from advertising revenue? CRAZY!
However, they don't want to rely on advertising alone. It will always be the bulk of their business model, but they are expanding their business in new directions.
The lesson is don't rely on one revenue stream, even if it's your most profitable. Create a long-term strategy that will help you diversify into new areas. Times change. Don't get caught unprepared.
Lesson #3: Build Your Business with Value in Mind
Fact: Google dominates because it focuses on users first. It gives users value.
Here's what Google can do better than anyone on the planet: connect users to relevant advertisers. It's an incredibly simple formula. And since approximately 60% of all internet users around the world use Google, they connect more users to relevant ads than anyone else.
But here's the key: I said relevant ads, not general ads. Huge difference.
Here's the top thing Google knows to be true: Focus on the user and all else will follow. They keep growing, creating, and designing products that are focused on the user first. Their entire business plan is created on this principle.
And this is why they are winning.
The lesson here is to give your clients/prospects value. Build your business around this principle first. Do not try to sell them on things they don't want or need. Find new ways to deliver value and you will create a strong, loyal customer base. Focus on value first, and everything else will follow.
Learn From the Big Boys
Although my Summer of Google is at an end, I admit I learned more than I thought I would. I've seen how Google is preparing for the future, and I'm nervous that the vast majority of micro businesses and solopreneurs are not prepared at all.
It's tough being self employed. Who has time to be a Boy Scout when you're running in a hundred different directions?
But here's the thing…if you don't prepare your business for the future, who will?
Liesha Petrovich is passionate about micro business education. Doesn’t sound sexy does it? But teaching micro business owners how to create success and freedom is. Learn more at Micro Business Essentials and follow her on Twitter