As a small business, your growth is dependent upon people knowing you exist, what you have that relates to them, and why they should come to your place for that need. This means word of mouth and local visibility are paramount. Whether you are already utilizing some online marketing to increase traffic and leads to your website or you are considering implementing an online marketing plan, read on to get some valuable tips to help your business grow!
Local Search Engine Optimization
Optimizing for search engines is both a long and short term strategy for success. For small businesses that are going after a local market, it’s important that your website has the area that your company serves clearly stated in the page titles, descriptions and content. Utilize other keywords within your website content that are specific to your business as well, such as industry related terms, your services and product names.
Search and Social Paid Advertising
A great short term strategy to generate leads online is to use search and social paid advertising to target your local audience. Utilizing paid advertising gives you the opportunity to target your specific audience, making sure your ads reach the location and demographics that are best for your business. Search advertising means paid ads on Google or Bing. Social paid advertising is on Facebook or Instagram. Both advertising strategies are helpful to generating more traffic and leads in a short period of time.
For your paid social advertising, you may want to start off with more general ads about your services, leading to landing pages or website pages that relate to what the ad is discussing. You can also get creative and develop content such as guides, eBooks and other valuable tools that your target audience would find interesting.
Utilizing landing pages will help not only increase your ranking for specific keywords but also help you generate online leads that are looking to speak to you about your services. Create a landing page with a summary of your company and service with a few related images that will help to visually represent your brand or service. Include a form on the page asking for basic contact information so you can collect leads. Your landing page should include the location of your company or service area in the page title, header, meta description and content.
Is your business on Yelp? Yelp is a great place to generate new local business because people are using it to find great companies near them. Having a Yelp business page will help you get found on search engines quicker and also give you the opportunity to show off how wonderful your business is with great reviews!
Get your business page up and running for free and then encourage past and current clients to write Yelp reviews. Make sure they have a Yelp account so that their review shows on the page and don’t ask for too many all at once or Yelp will catch on and “hide” some of the review.
You can also experiment with locally targeted Yelp advertising. They have the ability to place your business ads on Yelp search and on competitor Yelp pages as well as targeted to consumers nearby that exhibit behavior of “likely to purchase”.
Local consumers are on NextDoor.com for their community, discussing neighborhood news and referring business to local companies they trust. Next Door has the option for local advertising, which can help get your business in front of the right people quickly. You can also organically promote your business by responding to questions and posts throughout your community’s page and providing valuable advice and information to people asking questions related to your services.
Google My Business Listing
Creating a business listing with Google is a very effective way to make sure your company is found on search. The listing should include your company contact information, description, some related photos of your team or about your services, and a website url. You can also have clients review you on here in order to make your listing even more appealing and credible to potential new business.
Create a list of past clients, current clients and leads (if you have them) and develop an email marketing strategy to stay in front of your best audience. Past and current clients are a great target audience for new referrals or repeat business. You can create a monthly newsletter providing valuable tools and information as well as local news and events. For leads, you can provide them with similar information but include a little about your services and how you can help solve their specific problems. After a few months of sending out your newsletter, be sure to review the data on click rates and opens and get some feedback from recipients about what they like or don’t like (this can be in person or in a personal email). You should experiment with different strategies when it comes to emailing your lists and be sure to always be helping and providing them with content they appreciate and want to read. Becoming a valuable resource to anyone in your database will help keep your business top of mind!
As a small business, you need marketing tips that produce results and won’t take up too much of your time! While many of the tactics above can be short term plans for lead generation, there is much more that can be done to nurture and move leads down the buying cycle to becoming customers. Automated marketing, content creation, social media and paid advertising campaigns are just some of the many ways you can generate local business from online marketing. If you are ready to discuss your plans for growth, reach out to us today!