For your business to succeed today it’s crucial you develop a plan for online local marketing. Today many people are using the internet for locating local businesses to serve their needs. This means that if you haven’t been working on your local marketing you’re missing out on income and not getting your share of the market.
It’s Not Hard!
There is a perception among small business owners that it’s difficult to establish an online presence in the midst of all the big corporations and companies on the web. That just isn’t the case, the smallest of operations can establish a formidable online local presence by taking a few easy steps and then doing consistent maintenance of their site.
How to Be Number One! Local Marketing Strategy
Online local marketing doesn’t require a web site but it’s most powerful if you have one. Once you have one established take the following steps. Remember you aren’t trying to become a mega-corporation (yet), just trying to improve your local marketing.
- If it isn’t already, make sure your web site is optimized for mobile handheld devices. More and more people are turning to their smart phones and tablets to find local businesses. A Website that appears on the screen in correct proportions and doesn’t need to be manipulated will be much more appealing and keep people on your site longer.
Also, consider establishing a Facebook page, Twitter account, or Instagram page to advertise local deals and specials. Link these accounts to your web site to get long term followers.
Make sure you have submitted your web site to the important search engines for local optimization. These sites include Google, Yelp, City Search, and others that will list you as a business in your local area. Also make sure you have submitted to local online newspapers and influential sites.
Local Marketing SEO Strategy
- Enhance the landing page ( the first page visitors see) of your site with good Search Engine Optimization (SEO) phrases. For instance, if you own a lawn mower repair shop in Anytown then include phrases like “Anytown lawn mower repair” or “lawn mower repair in Anytown”. Make sure that the phrases flow naturally when they are written and aren’t choppy. Remember to list things like your address including the zip code and state. You may want to include your county in a header or even mention some famous or popular nearby landmarks, highways, or intersections.
- Offer specials that are only for the local area you are targeting. This will get local residents attention plus it will also show you are trying to become part of your local community.
- Establish a blog on your site and contribute to it on a regular basis. Be sure to mention where you are locally and expand on the services that you offer. Write helpful tips that will be of interest to readers. Also, mention local businesses that are complementary to your business. For example, if you run a party planning business then you might mention a party supply business that is nearby. The other business will appreciate the free advertising and it increases the authenticity of your blog by letting people know you want to help them even if then don’t use your services.
- Don’t neglect offline, traditional advertising that directs people to your site. For instance, if your business is Joe’s Auto Parts, then sponsor a banner at a local event that simply read “Get the Best Deal in Auto Parts at Joe’s” then put your website on the banner. Remember those mobile devices I mentioned earlier? People can search your website right away, they don’t need to wait to go home and get on their computer.Get involved in the community you are targeting. Support charity causes, schools, sports teams and any other event or venue where you can get the name of your web site in front of people whether it be on a banner, ads, or the back of a team t-shirt.
- Encourage, but don’t pay for, reviews from happy customers. A legitimate customer review on a local business review site is like gold because people want to know how prior customers felt about your business. It’s like word of mouth advertising, a good recommendation makes people feel comfortable about dealing with you.
- The final thing you should be doing, and what most businesses don’t do, is pay attention to which ads are working and which aren’t. Use the metrics from your online advertising to determine where most of the traffic is coming from, how long people stay on your page and what they do while they are there. You can use that information to fine tune your advertising and see what it takes to keep people looking at your site.
Question: What other ways are you marketing your Business Locally?