No online marketing is easy, and for small businesses, with small budgets, it can be much harder to make an impact.
For a small business which is facing this challenge, a low budget can still be adequate, and overall profitable.
Online Marketing – What is it?
What is online marketing? Is a question many small businesses ask. They might have a successful business and wish to safeguard the customers they have or expand their brand name and reach out to a further audience.
Using the power of the internet and the many places available customer awareness can be increased.
Online marketing is more about exposure to potential customers and giving them an insight of what a business offers.
Even if products aren’t sold online, local online marketing shouldn’t be ignored as there is a vast number of customers who are online and searching for what these small businesses have to offer.
Here are 7 of the best local business marketing tips to attract customers in a local area:
1 – Having an Online Presence
Many businesses fall for this misconception. If their product isn’t for sale online, they don’t require an online marketing strategy. These days, it can be the case a customers purchasing decision is made outside of a business location.
If customers search for answers on the internet, they are automatically steered toward the larger companies who have a significant presence. This, unfortunately, guides this customer away from a smaller business, even if they are in the same area.
2 – Still Capture Leads While Not Selling Online
Even if a small business has a website, they can become complacent and expect customers to arrive at their door.
Capturing leads through a company website is crucial, and it is one marketing aspect companies should capitalise on.
Customers are willing to give out their personal information so providing customers with a lead form for filling in is much more efficient than a person who is cold calling.
When businesses have an email list, they automatically have a list of potential customers whom they can offer items in sales or new arrivals. The capturing of leads should be a never-ending task.
3 – The Local Community and Engaging with It
Social media, however, can be one of the best means of engagement. Google+, Facebook, Twitter and all the other platforms are perfect places for businesses to see what potential customers in their region are talking about.
Linking to community events can be a fantastic way of building a brand in a local community and can at the same time be very affordable.
4 – Developing Local Content on Your Website
When websites are constructed, it is quite often the case the address is only mentioned a single time and can be found on the contact us page.
This page will then send signals to the search engines, so, to increase organic traffic from neighbouring cities. The inclusion of a map and the locations which you serve is a quick solution.
A business owner may serve the surrounding cities. However, this is something Google is unable to determine.
When separate pages are developed for individual cities and include the city name in the title and in the meta description for the page. The more signals are broadcast to the various search engines.
A lot of businesses loses customers as Google has no way to tell that they support the surrounding areas.
If nothing else, blogging gives a reason to post on social media. If there are social events which are local to a business, it is advantages to write about them. Anything from a local college winning a tournament or there is a community marathon happening.
A blog article of this type may outrank the website which is set-up to represent the community event. Undertaking this increases the strength of a business’s brand. This form of article marketing is beneficial for small businesses.
6 – Online Reviews Encourage Feedback
In search engines, the online reviews we see everywhere rank highly. They can also lead customers down the path and convert them into a paying customer. A good deal of local businesses has plenty of happy customers. However, the same company on most occasions forgets to ask the customers to leave a review.
It is unfortunate that the customer who leaves feedback without a friendly nudge is a disgruntled customer.
Some of which might not be the fault of the business. All small businesses should encourage customers to leave feedback for both the ranking aspect and also to make sure the only reviews they have are these disgruntled customers.
7 – Localised Digital Banner Ads
Google is the number one for displaying ads. It is easy for a small business to create a banner add and have it posted on websites within their online community. This technology is advanced enough to know the location of a specific user.
If this user lives outside the reach of the business in question, this and won’t be displayed. Both Google AdWords and Facebook allow small companies to show these ads to their local community and the areas which they serve. These local SEO techniques increases brand awareness to the people who matter most. Customers who reside in your area.
In some ways, it might not be the most cost-effective, but it can be the best way of getting your message to a higher percentage of a local audience.
Marketing isn’t easy, and it can work out expensive while carrying with it a high-risk element. Any business which believes in their product should include online marketing in their advertising strategy.
If the target market is only a small group of professionals, these online marketing tips should be included. Building a brand on and offline can be the secret elixir of marketing success.