Digital marketing is at the heart of many businesses today. However, what works for big organizations like Nike or Apple might just not work for your local business. One of the best ways to grow your business in your city is to transition your global digital marketing efforts and focus more on local online marketing. By doing this, you can position your business as one of the best in your local area.
What is Local Online Marketing?
Local online marketing refers to a number of marketing strategies that local businesses can use to engage with new and potential customers within a specified radius. It is typically used by businesses that have a physical storefront, such as bars, restaurants, cafes, etc. By reaching out and focusing on a targeted area, local online marketing provides businesses with a competitive advantage to win over the local market.
Local Online Marketing Tips for Small Businesses
1. Create a Local Business Page
Your local business should show up in the search results whenever people search for businesses of your category in your region. By creating a local business page on Google+ Local Pages, Facebook Pages, and Bing Places, you can do exactly that. Take the time to fill out all your local online business information. Here is some information that you can include in your local profile:
- Photos and videos
- Product offerings
- Business hours
- Contact info
- Response to customer reviews
Some other common local business pages where you can set up your business page are YellowPages, Yelp, LinkedIn Company Pages, and Foursquare. By creating these local pages, you will help potential customers find your business. Also, remember to update these pages frequently and monitor them continuously for improvement.
2. Encourage Reviews from Local Customers
Once you set up your local business page, make sure you take advantage of reviews from local customers. Not only will positive reviews establish social proof and credibility for your business, but they will also boost your SEO. One thing that you can do if your business is fairly new is to get proactive and ask your local customers to leave reviews. Encourage reviews with coupons and promotional offers and asking for feedback via social media and local mailing lists. You can also add invitations to review in your email signature and your website.
3. Use Local SEO Keywords
To take this step, you need to find which search terms people are using when searching for businesses in your area. You may need to experiment with a number of keyword combinations and uncover which ones will gain you the highest level of conversion. Also, include city names in your title, headings, metatags, and content. You can find some more local SEO tips in this article.
4. Use Geotargeting
Geotargeting or geo targeted advertising uses location data to reach consumers based on an automated or assumed knowledge of consumers' location. In case you opt for pay-per-click campaigns, use geotargeting. Here are some geotargeting tips that you can use:
- Research local keywords
- Target events or venues in an area
- Prioritize specific locations
5. Rank High for “Near Me” Searches
A “Near me” search by a customer refers to searches for products and services near his or her location. An example of a “near me” search is when someone types “cafes near me” into the search bar. Here are some ways to rank high for “near me” searches:
- Include local keywords in all your content
- Get cited in the local media
- Include relevant local links
- Make your website mobile-friendly
6. Optimize Your Website for Mobile
Ensure that your site/ page is well-optimized for mobile users as well. As most local searches are done on mobile devices more than desktops, you want to provide a mobile user-friendly experience that enables potential customers to engage with your business.
7. Leverage the Power of Social Media
When you’re shaping your local online marketing plan, ensure that social media marketing is a big part of it. Depending on your audience, you can determine which social media site is the best fit for your business. For example, if you are a hip cafe in town, you can focus on your Instagram profile and post aesthetic pictures to attract people.
Each social media site has its own paid advertising program that you can leverage to target your audience better. Set up specific audience parameters like demographics, age, etc., to ensure that you’re reaching the most relevant leads.
8. Backlinks From Other Businesses
A backlink is an important SEO tactic which links one website to another. This is a regularly used tactic in local online marketing as well. The key is to search for local businesses and websites and ask for relevant links. One great way to get backlinks is to join your local Chamber of Commerce and get listed on their online directories with a link back to your website. This will add more value and social proof to your website. A gradual accumulation of backlinks from other businesses will build up your SEO significantly.
That was all about local online marketing
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Here’s What You Can Do Next
In this article on local online marketing we learned, local marketing efforts, if done right, can generate huge benefits and sales for your business. Ultimately, every business is different and your local online marketing techniques should be based on your product, service, and industry. There are many strategies in digital marketing that you need to include in your local online marketing strategy and a few that you should avoid. The only way you’ll know that is to get a thorough understanding of digital marketing. If you are interested to learn more about digital marketing, Simplilearn’s Post Graduate Program in Digital Marketing in partnership with Purdue University and co-created with Facebook will help you learn top digital marketing tools and techniques. This course will help you get an in-depth knowledge of the fundamentals of digital marketing and get a real-world experience through Harvard Business case studies and projects on Google and Facebook. Get started with this course today to get started on your journey to success for your local business.