How to stay on budget when marketing a small business online

By Chris Marentis

GenNext Media Corp.


No options for local Internet marketing are absolutely free. Time and resources have to be allocated to make Internet marketing efforts for small businesses a success. Designing a realistic budget to boost revenue for local small businesses is an integral part of almost all business plans. It is important to design initial business plans that allow for flexible allocation of funds to optimize available resources and drive ROI.

Creating a realistic budget for Internet marketing and comprehensive online marketing plans can pose a number of logistical challenges for many small business owners.

Why budgets for Internet marketing can be difficult to design and follow

The landscape for Internet marketing and best practices associated with it are ever-changing. In addition, there are many different approaches to local Internet marketing campaigns that can optimize ROI for small businesses. The number of online marketing channels and the nuances associated with each can make it easy to go over budget when small business owners do not have a comprehensive online marketing plan in place.

How to design a budget that will work

A quality budget for small business marketing plans online should be dynamic and include the following three steps:

1. Have a preliminary budget to find the most effective online marketing channels.

Finding the most effective online marketing channels almost always requires some element of trial and error. Instead of struggling to make a certain marketing channel work for a certain target audience, test several promising channels to see which few yield the best responses.

2. Design a flexible budget based on the initial response to effective channels.

Create a flexible budget when pursuing the most promising marketing channels. A flexible budget in the context of Internet marketing can be defined as allocating varying amounts of funds that are dependent on ROI from each specific channel. Instead of putting more money into channels that are not productive, allocate more funds for channels that drive revenue.

3. Periodically reassess the efficacy of select marketing channels and flexible budget.

Nothing is absolutely certain, but trends in the efficacy of different Internet marketing channels almost always change. Periodically reassess current strategies and resources allocated to continually optimize almost any Internet marketing campaign.

Budgets are an integral part of business

Many small business owners can get caught in the fast-paced world of Internet marketing. It is important to always go back to the point of business and back to basics. Businesses are designed to drive revenue, and Internet marketing is one aspect of comprehensive business plans that can help accomplish that goal.