Local Online Marketing Tips that Work for All Businesses

CEO

Local online marketing basically consists of all the marketing efforts you make that are designed to draw local traffic to your website specifically. In other words, this marketing type helps you reach your local audience.

The truth is that many people prefer shopping locally when they can. According to statistics recorded in 2021, 70% of consumers support their local businesses by shopping online or in-store rather than going to a department store or another larger chain. Around 57% of people in the United States shop locally to keep money local rather than shopping at large box stores that have stores across the country, and even during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic here, around 55% of consumers still made purchases in-store at their local stores to support these businesses.

Why Is Local Online Marketing Important for Your Business?

Let’s think about this from a customer perspective. Suppose you are looking for a new mattress and bed frame. You have looked online, but you want to see and touch the bed before committing to it. So, what are your options? You look online for beds near you and find two results that catch your attention. There’s a larger brand-name department store that you know sells mattresses on the other side of town and bed frames, and there is a small business that is just a few minutes from your house. For this example, both of these stores offer great solutions to the idea you have in mind.

So, which store do you go to? On the one hand, you’ve been to the larger store before, and you know that they offer the type of thing you want. On the other hand, they are a 45-minute drive away from your house. While you may not know much about the smaller business, you will likely give it a shot because it is much closer. This not only means you can spend less time with a mattress strapped to the roof of your car, but also, if anything ends up being wrong with the items you get, it is much easier to get support from the small business because they are close by.

Now, of course, this same principle applies to more than just mattresses, but the point is that people like to find the best solutions as close to home as possible. After all, not everyone wants to drive across the state or city to see what they are looking for. This is precisely what local online marketing is all about and why it is crucial for businesses looking to compete in the market.

The Best Local Online Marketing Tips that Work for All Businesses

  1. Use Google My Business
    Since Google is the most popular search engine, it makes sense that you’d have to give this engine a little bit of extra attention. When people look up a business name on Google, the Google Business Profile (GBP) page for that business is typically the first thing to pop up. This profile includes things like ratings and reviews, street address, phone number, and business hours. But it can also include links to the business website, questions and answers, photos, and more if you take the time to claim and personalize it.

    This way, your customers can learn more about your business more efficiently, and it gets the added benefit of showing up higher in search results. After all, Google loves promoting its own creations!

  2. Rack Up the Reviews
    We know name brands and large chains because they are everywhere. We know what to expect when we go into large department stores — which is why many of us pick these stores when we need something. Smaller businesses do not have this widespread recognition.

    Online Reviews

    People don’t know what they will get when entering your business. This is where reviews can help tip the cards in your favor. When someone is considering going to a new place, chances are, they will do some research. They’ll look up your store online and look at your website, what you offer, and any reviews they can find. According to some statistics on local shopping, 73% of consumers trust a local business more if they see positive reviews for it online.

  3. Make Custom Landing Pages
    Landing pages are one of the most important categories of pages on your website. These are the pages that your customers are most likely to frequent when they come to your website from an organic search or ad. You will want to create individual pages for each ad campaign and location if your business has a few different brick-and-mortar stores. Each of these pages should be clear, simple, and easy to navigate, with the goal being to convert your leads into customers.
  4. Create Local Content
    You are likely already familiar with content marketing and how helpful it is in attracting your target audience to your website. If you want to attract a more local customer base, creating local content is the logical next step. But how do you know where to start?

    Just like any type of good content, your local content will take time and research to create. Make good, helpful, and interesting content, and it will attract customers and Google bots as well. Make content that uses keywords that reflect your customers’ pain points and questions. This way, when they search for solutions online, your website will pop up as a solution.

  5. Focus on Local SEO
    Even if you create the best content out there, it may not be effective in attracting a local audience unless you use the right words. How do you do this? You must include in your content to make it more local is the name of your neighborhood, city, town, state, or other references to your location.

    Another tip is to use question keywords like “where to find” and “how to” as well as “near me” and “in __” keywords. When people search for solutions online, they tend to use questions or search for solutions in their area. Including these in your content can help you appear higher in search results for your customers.

  6. Use Social Media to Promote Your Business
    Social media has grown exponentially over the years. These platforms help us not only communicate with our friends and family but also provide critical networking opportunities as well as an incredible canvas for advertising and increasing brand awareness. But, one of the hardest parts of using social media for your business is choosing the right social media platform for your needs.

    Social Media

    Generally speaking, the best way to do this is to think about your target audience. Understand who your customer is and what platform or platforms they use. Those will be the best ones for you to create content on to reach your audience. Ensure that you include content that references local events, activities, or areas, as this will help catch the eye of the people in your area.

  7. Give Your Website a Re-Design
    While the appearance of your website isn’t going to get customers to land on it in an online search (this is what keywords are for), it will determine whether or not your customers stay on your website or click off. Having an intuitive and easy-to-use website is the key to keeping your customers engaged with your business.

    Include pictures or videos on your website that show the customer where you are in the community. This provides a clear reference to your local business and helps them separate your business from a larger chain store. Your primary focus should be creating a website that reflects your local community and is easy to use and understand.

  8. Make Your Website Mobile-Friendly
    Most people today use their phones for everything. With the continued technological advancement of smartphones, marketing, and social media, many people find that they can find everything they need through some quick typing and scrolling. But why does this matter for your business?

    Account manager using mobile phone

    Have you ever been on your own phone and come across a promising website only to realize that you can’t effectively access the right menu because of the layout?

    This website is likely made with only desktop views in mind and therefore is not easy to navigate on a phone or a tablet. More often than not, whoever lands on that website will get frustrated and go back to the search results to find a different website. So, if you want your audience to stay on your website when they get there, you need to optimize for mobile as well.

Learn More About Local Marketing

Whether you are just starting out as a business or you have been serving your local community for a while, it is crucial that you make use of local online marketing strategies to stay relevant and visible in your area.


Written by Lisa Nichols-Jell.
Have you read?
Three Tips that Get You Off the Highway to Burnout by Matthew Ponak.
4 Questions to Ask Before You Scale by Rhett Power.
Digitally Aided and Human Powered – How to Engage Customers in a Digital World by Joseph A. Michelli.
Shake It Off–or Not? What To Do About Criticism by Robin Landa.
Identifying Your Buyer Persona: Key Questions to Ask Yourself When Creating a Target Audience by Valeh Nazemoff.

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