How to Dominate Local Online Marketing with Your Small Business
by Arina Smith Small Business 04 February 2019
In the late 19th century, people first started using billboards to try to catch the eye of local audiences. Although you’ll still see billboards when you drive down the street today, local online marketing is now the cutting-edge way to get the customers you want.
Even though the internet has connected the entire world, many shoppers still want local results. They aren’t looking for a store or restaurant in a different state: they want one in their area. Local online marketing is how they’ll find it.
Wondering how to market online? This guide will help. Keep reading to learn how to use this online marketing strategy to get results!
What is Local Online Marketing?
Local online marketing is basically the modern way for companies to appeal to people in the area.
Location-based marketing has been around for many years. This strategy is very effective for specific types of businesses like restaurant marketing. In addition to billboards, companies have long used strategies like mailings, flyers, signs, word of mouth, and more to connect with the people in their community.
Today, people can access information about any business, anywhere, from their phones. But you don’t need to compete with companies all over the world. You only need to compete with the companies in your area. Location-based online marketing helps you win those customers over.
For example, people today often use their phones to do searches like “restaurants near me.” They don’t want to see restaurants in the next city over. If you use local online marketing strategies for your restaurant, they’ll see it in the results of that search.
This strategy is particularly important for small businesses. You might only have one location, and you definitely don’t have nationwide fame.
But with local marketing, you don’t need fame — you can simply connect with the people who are already in your area and looking for a business like yours.
How to Use Local Online Marketing:
Now, let’s delve into some local online marketing tips that will help you connect your brand with the right people.
1. Claim Your Google My Business Listing:
This is one of the simplest and most effective ways to start with local online marketing.
Your Google My Business listing is free and helps your business by showing essential information about it when people search for it online. You just need to complete the verification for your listing. Google will send you a postcard with a PIN number on it, and you’ll enter that number online to get verified.
This is Google’s way of proving that your business exists and that you really own it. Once you’ve claimed your listing, you can fill out all the relevant information, including your hours and contact information.
The more detailed you are with your listing, the better. For example, you need to carefully choose the business category that matches your company best. Add at least one high-quality photo and write a detailed description.
2. Work Your Email:
Email marketing can do wonders for a small, local business. It’s the much-improved modern version of a mailed flyer.
Your goal is to get the email addresses for your customers so you can put valuable content in their inboxes. That content might include discounts, new product launches, store events, and more. It helps you stay connected with your customers and gives them new reasons to visit your location.
To get those emails, you need a web-based strategy. For example, when someone visits your site for the first time, you could have a pop-up that invites them to enter their email for exclusive offers. Make it enticing, and you’ll get many more emails from your site visitors.
3. Build a Blog:
Blogging isn’t just for people who want to share updates about their lives online. Today, it’s an essential part of company success.
Blogging is part of the wide world of search engine optimization (SEO), which we’ll talk more about next. But it also helps your company by proving that you’re an expert in your industry. With a good blog, your site becomes a resource for valuable information that will keep people coming back for more.
Focus on creating content that’s both useful and interesting. For example, you could devote one post to answering a common question about your product, and another post to giving creative tips on how to use what you sell.
4. Invest in SEO:
Blogging is one aspect of SEO or the strategy of getting search engines to rank your site higher. Basically, search engines like Google look for certain things to prove a site is valuable. The more value you can show, the higher Google will rank your site when people search for relevant terms.
A high-quality blog that uses the right keywords will help, as well as posting other content, like videos and images. It also means having an easy to navigate, a well-constructed site with different pages for things like your blog, services, and more (for an example of a nicely designed site, visit https://www.digitalhitmen.com.au/services/).
5. Get More Reviews:
When people search online for business or store, one of the first things they’ll look for is reviews. If your company has none, they might try a competitor instead.
Encourage your customers to leave reviews in different online spaces, like social media and review sites like Yelp. You may also want to post the best ones on a “Testimonial” section of your website.
If you get a few negative reviews, you can respond to them to try to address the concerns stated. But the best way to handle negative reviews is to bury them under lots of positive reviews, so keep working to get your customers reviewing you online.
Ready to Try This Small Business Strategy?
Local online marketing isn’t just an optional idea for small businesses. It’s essential if you want to stay competitive in your area. Use these tips, and watch your business grow.
Looking for more online marketing tips? Check out our guide to brilliant website design!