If you own a brick and mortar business, it’s tempting to think you just need to focus on making your store appealing, and foot traffic will take care of the rest.
But with over 91% of consumers now using search engines to find local information, and digital retailers becoming the go-to for easy shopping, you’ll need to go the extra mile with your online presence for long term business success.
This article will give you the insights and simplified solutions that make sure people know you’re THE place to choose in the area. From using a local listing service to easy marketing tools that do most of the heavy lifting for you, the good news is there’s lots of help at hand.
To start off, let’s look at a summary of the most common marketing mistakes that local small businesses make:
Now that we’ve looked at the areas you may need to strengthen in your local business marketing, let’s get into simple ways to fill the gaps.
Your goal is to become a ‘Local Hero’. Meaning people know you’re THE place to choose in the area, because you offer great customer experience. They will rave about you to everyone they know, which means you get more customers with less advertising spend.
If you don’t have all your details listed in the right online directories, you’re making it hard for potential customers to find and get interested in your business. It may seem like a daunting task to get up to date on all the online business directories.
But the good news is you can now use a Listing Manager to make it easier than ever before. You can update your details across all directories at the touch of a button.
Ultimately if you make sure you’re listed on all relevant directories, you won’t miss out on a potential customer. And bear in mind that people who find your business through local listings tend to be looking for what you offer, which makes it more likely they’ll become customers.
Make sure to list your website, address, contact number, and opening hours. You’ll also entice more customers if you list pictures and offers. Your business listings can act as a virtual storefront. Add images and even videos of your store and products.
And for more guidance, see ‘Directory Listing Tips’ below.
Search engines rank businesses higher in search results if they have comprehensive and updated business listings on relevant platforms. That’s why using a listing management software tool is highly recommended..
Having your website included in your directory listings will also allow you to drive more visitors to your website, where you can wow people with your brand and products.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is all about bringing more people to your website. SEO is crucial for local businesses, because you want to make sure that when people are coming to your area, they’re easily able to find you.
While SEO is typically viewed as complex, needing difficult software or expensive experts, a good SEO Manager will give you a clear task list of everything you need to do to rank higher in search, with step-by-step instructions on how to complete them.
Here are some Top Tips to rank higher:
When people do a search for the goods or services you offer in the area, they’ll be more inclined to pay you a visit if you have comprehensive information to give them a good reason.
People also often leave reviews on online directories, so you’ll want to keep on top of that too.
A local listing service like RelateLocal will not only keep your business listings up to date, you’ll also be able to reply to reviews using AI suggestions, making it easy to demonstrate excellent customer service.
Good online reviews let people know you can be trusted, encouraging them to choose your business over competitors. Ask people to leave reviews on your Google Business Profile profile.
It’s wise to take a little time to thank customers for good reviews, to show you care about their feedback. And replying to bad reviews can turn a disgruntled customer into someone who sings your praises for resolving their issue. Great customer experience makes all the difference.
A tool like RelateLocal gives you the essentials to stay on top of reviews posted in directories. And if you want to take reputation management next level, a Review Manager can help you get more 5-Star ratings. To learn more, check out these guides:
Every business knows by now that social media is a powerful marketing tool. It allows you to connect with your customers and local community directly. It’s become a powerful channel for building brand awareness, as well as gaining direct feedback i.e. customer data is marketing gold.
Understandably, it can be hard for small businesses to keep up with social media as they don’t have the budget to hire professionals or the time to do it themselves. RelateLocal makes it easy, by letting you post on social media from your Dashboard.
And if you want to level up even more on your social media marketing, including using AI generated content, RelateSocial does all the heavy lifting for you.
Here are some Top Tips to get the best results from social media:
Want to know more about social media marketing? Check out these guides:
Quick Social Media Content Ideas
Getting your local listings right will be a big part of your success in driving more customers through your door. So let’s dive deeper.
Three of the most popular local business listing platforms are:
Here are some Top Tips to improve your business listing management:
With online competitors gaining ground, local businesses need to do more to stand out. Luckily, there are now a range of affordable tools that make it easier than ever before to bring more customers through your door.
From directory listings and SEO to social media and reputation management, there are a range of options available to take your local marketing next level.
But if you want a simplified, all-in-one tool, you’ll want to try out RelateLocal. Much more than just a listing management tool, it gives you everything you’ll need to make your local business shine online.