The News is In: Local Retail Stores are Cashing in on Holiday Sales

cashing-inIt can be tough to listen to all the naysayers when it comes to local businesses and retail sales, especially during the holidays. After all, most people believe that most of American shops online and stays away from the mom and pop shops in their own neighborhood. But luckily for local business owners, that myth is just not true.

The Latest Studies on Holiday Retail Shopping

According to a study released today, people in the United States are spending more this holiday season than anyone predicted—and they’re not only buying online. Brick and mortar stores are showing a huge gain in holiday sales. In fact, the latest study shows that that this year is the largest year over year increase in the past seven years. Now don’t get us wrong, online spending is also increasing, but luckily, it’s not leaving retail spending behind.

Why all the Increased Spending?

Experts believe that gains in income, a positive outlook about the economy, and financial markets that are setting record highs are all contributing to the robust holiday shopping.

All retailers—both online and local businesses alike, saw a 0.8 percent rise in November from the previous month, which is 0.3 percent higher than the pundits at The Wall Street Journal predicted. That’s 5.8 percent higher than November last year, which means it’s the largest yearly increase since the year 2011.

But where do local businesses stand in all those numbers? Great! Retail shops had the biggest gain since 2010 with a 3.6 percent sales increase from the November before.

How Can You Cash in on All These Holiday Sales?

If you’re not seeing the great results the study shows, it’s probably due to one thing: lack of an online presence. You see, while it’s true that many more people are shopping locally, they don’t look locally to find US local businesses anymore. In fact, as strange as it sounds, most people look online when they want to find US local businesses to shop in.

How Can You Be Found Online?

Being seen online is the number one key to success for bringing new business into your store. But to do that, you have to have an online presence so shoppers can find you. How do you do that? With online local business directories.

What are Local Business Directories?

Online local business directories are just like the major search engines, except they only give the results people are looking for. When is the last time you tried to find US local businesses on a major search engine? Chances are, when you got the results, they were filled with national chain websites and informational websites that offer articles about the topic. That’s not very helpful when you’re trying to find local businesses, is it?

But what if I told you it was possible to market your local business by creating a free local business listing on a reputable local business directory like FindUsLocal.com? It’s true, and so easy you’ll wonder why you haven’t done it before.

How to Create Your Local Business Listing

When consumers look for local businesses online, they typically find local business listings that provide them with the business name, address, and phone number, along with other important features such as online reviews. And to be seen by these shoppers, you’ll need to go to a credible local business directory like FindUsLocal.com and create your listing.

Simply enter all of the details about your business, including as many details as you can, and then encourage your customers to leave reviews for your business so your local listing will have the social proof it needs to convince other holiday shoppers to visit your store.

There is a lot of holiday shopping going on out there and if you want your piece of the pie, your local business will have to have an online presence. The simple truth is that your business won’t survive without local business listings. To get one fast and free, simply go to a credible local business directory like FindUsLocal.com and create your local business now. It only takes a few minutes!

 

Why You Should Update Your Local Business Listings for the Best Search Engine Results

image06-16If you run an online business, and aren’t seeing the local results you want, the problem could lie in something as simple as making sure all of your local business listings match up. Referred to as NAP+W, which stands for name, address phone number and website address, it’s one of the most critical aspects of making sure your business shows up in search results.

Why is NAP+W So Important?

When Google decides which businesses will show up on a local search, it first analyzes the data from all of the local business directories to make sure that your business is legitimate. It’s looking for consistency in your NAP+Ws, and if there are a lot of inconsistencies, it will negatively affect your ability to be seen in the results. This is a problem for a lot of business owners, yet they don’t realize that these inconsistences are what’s impeding their ability to show up in the results. But recent studies have shown that a full 43 percent of business listings contain incorrect or missing information on NAP+Ws. In order to best increase your chances of being seen, you should build as many correct and consistent local business listings as you can as part of your local marketing and advertising plan.

Where Do I List My Business?

There are many local business directories across the web, and in order to make the most of them, you should approach the task by first listing your business in the reputable local business directories that can help you the most. For instance, FindUsLocal.com, CitySearch, and Yelp are good places to start. From there, you should make sure your NAP+W’s are listed on your local Chamber of Commerce, your Better Business Bureau page, and any other local listings that target your specific area.

How Do I Make My Listings Consistent?

In addition to listing your business on as many local business directories as you can, you’ll also need to ensure that the places where your business is already listed are current and up to date. To find out, you should Google your business name and the city it’s located in, and use those search results to check each listing individually. First, you need to make sure that your business name is consistent on all of the results. For instance, if your business is shown as Bob’s Donuts on some listings, and Bob’s Donuts and More on others, it will hurt your search engine results. Decide on a name, and then correct all of the listings that don’t show the right one.

Next, you’ll need to do the same thing with your business address. Decide exactly how you want your street address to appear, and then go through the same process that you did with your name. Remember the addresses will need to appear exactly the same. If it shows up as Main Street on some listings, and Main St. on others, it will count against you in the rankings.

It helps to create a spreadsheet as you’re going through this process. The corrections you make may not show up for weeks, so the spreadsheet will allow you to keep track of the process. Remember, it’s your business, the importance of consistency in your local business listings is key, and by taking control of your NAP+W’s on the local business directories, you’ll help to increase your chances of being found by customers.

Why Your Business Must Be Listed on a Local Business Directory

Online-Free-AdvertisingTRANSIn case you haven’t noticed, there has been a huge shift in the way today’s consumers find US local businesses. That’s because most everyone goes online when they want to find anyone these days, and that includes local shops and restaurants. Don’t believe us? Just try to remember the last time you searched for local business using a phone book or thumbing through the local newspaper. If you’re having a hard time pinpointing the last time you did that, you’re in great company. People simply don’t use those old school methods anymore, and as a local business owner, you have to make sure your business can be found online.

Why Do Buyers Look Online to Find US Local Businesses?

Today’s shoppers don’t have a lot of time, and when they want to find US local businesses, they want to do it in the fastest and easiest way. And today, that means looking online. But only a few years ago, that meant going to one of the large search engines like Google or Bing and entering the type of business they were looking for, plus the city or town name. For example, if they were looking for a Bakery in Los Angeles, they would type in “Los Angeles bakery.” This produced results a little better than a general search, but there would still be a lot of irrelevant results in the search engine listings. People tired of this quickly because they didn’t want to have to drudge through countless results to find the local businesses they wanted.

Enter Local Business Directories

To solve this problem, local business directories were created. These directories are specifically designed to show consumers only the local shops, restaurants, and service businesses in their own area. In other words, they are search engines that only show local results. For example, if someone were looking for that Los Angeles bakery on a local business directory, they would simply need to type “bakery” into the search bar and they would see a list of all the bakeries in their town or city. Can you see why most local shoppers insist on using local business directories when trying to find US local businesses?

How to Ensure Your Business Can Be Found on a Local Business Directory

If you want those online shoppers to find your local business and visit it, you need to get it listed on local business directories. Here are the steps you need to take to get your business listed.

  • Identify the most credible local business directories. Some of them are obvious like Google and Biing, but don’t discount the smaller local business directories. For example, FindUsLocal.com is an up and coming local business directory that has a huge following. That’s because it goes a step beyond most directories by offering visitors a lot of extra features and bonuses. That’s why so many local business owners make sure their business can be seen on this innovative local business directory.
  • Create your local business listing. Once you’ve identified the local business directory you want your business to be seen on, you’ll need to claim your business and create a local business listing. This listing is what consumers will see when they search for your type of business. For example if you owned a bakery business in Los Angeles, and a shopper visited FindUsLocal to find one, they would see your business in the listings after they typed in the search term. Be sure to include as many details as you can when creating your local business listing. Remember, the more information consumers have, the more comfortable they’ll feel visiting your shop.
  • Be active with your listing. Don’t’ just create your local business listing and forget about it, but instead keep it fresh by asking your customers to leave online reviews for your business and by using the unique comments feature you’ll only find on FindUsLocal. This feature allows you to use your local business to announce sales, new product arrivals or even employment opportunities.

If you want to run a successful local business these days, your shop or restaurant has to have an online presence for online advertising. And the best way to accomplish that is to create a local business listing on a credible local business directory like FindUsLocal.com. If you haven’t already created yours, what are you waiting for?

How Local Business Owners Can Up Their Game with Local Business Directories

imagesIf you read the news over the past year, you would have thought that most local businesses were going to have to shut their doors. This year of the retail store closings epidemic was dubbed as Retail Armageddon because so many national chain local stores—along with mom and pop businesses across the nation—saw hard times as more and more people looked online for their shopping needs.

Boy, have things changed just in the past few months.

As the year closes, it seems that local businesses have once again captured the imagination of shoppers everywhere, even the Millennials who are notoriously known for shopping online, are spending their holiday cash in local businesses.

What about your business? Are you seeing the uptick in sales that so many are? And since it’s the holiday shopping season, local retailers are doing gangbusters all over the nation.

If you’re not yet cashing in on the local shopping movement by doing some smart online advertising, here are some ways to get your local business noticed by holiday shoppers now.

Make Sure They can Find You

When today’s shoppers want to find US local businesses, they don’t look in the phone book or scour local newspapers for coupons to clip. Instead, they look online. And nine times out of ten, they look for local businesses in local business directories. These local directories are designed specifically for the local shopper in mind and make it easy for them to quickly and efficiently get the information they need.

For example, if a consumer was looking for a clothing store in Los Angeles, California, they would type those words into the search bar on a local business directory like FindUsLocal, and they would be presented with a long list of clothing stores in their area. They could then go to each local business listing and read details about the business such as their store hours, phone number, and even get directions to the store. Local business directories make it so easy for consumers to find US local businesses that they are the only technique that most people use.

Make Sure They can Trust You

After consumers find your local business listing, they’ll need to see some social proof that tells them your local business is trustworthy. And these days, online reviews are the social currency most of them look for. Studies show that shoppers need at least 10 positive online reviews to trust a business, and the good news is that after they read them, a large percentage of them will visit your store. The reviews aren’t difficult to get either. Just ask your customers to leave them on your local business listing and 7 out of 10 of them will do it.

Make Sure They can Reach You

Finally, today’s shoppers expect to interact with the local shops they do business with, so you’ve got to give them a platform to do so. FindUsLocal.com offers a one of a kind communication tool that allows both business owners and consumers to leave comments about a local business listing. As a business owner, you can use this unique feature to announce sales and discounts, new product offerings, flash sales, job openings, or talk about volunteer work you’re doing in the community. The people in your town or city can use them to tell others about the wonderful experience they had in your shop or restaurant, or talk about their great finds in your store. It’s a great way to interact with your community—something all local business owners need to do more of.

If you’re ready to up your game as a local business owner, be sure to follow the above steps. Start by going to FindUsLocal.com and creating your own local business listing. After that, promote it, get those all-important reviews, and use it to interact with your community.

 

Why Do Shoppers Love Local Business Directories?

downloadIf you run a local business and are thinking about creating a local business listing on a local business directory like FindUsLocal.com, you’re on the verge of making one of the best marketing decisions that you can for your profitability. Why? Because today’s consumers have fallen in love with local business directories because they making it easy when they want to find US local business.

But the allure goes much beyond that. Here are some great reasons why consumers love local business directories—and why you should ensure your business can be found on them.

Local Business Directories are Better Than Large Search Engines

For local results, that is. When someone tries to find US local businesses on one of the large search engines, they will have to dig through the search engine results to get to the local businesses in their area. That’s because there will national chain website URL’s as well as a bunch of articles about the topic they are looking for.

But when they use a local business directory to find US local businesses, they will only see a listing of the local shops, restaurants, and service businesses in their area in the results, depending on what they looked for. That’s just one of the reasons that today’s consumers love using local business directories. Let’s take a look at a few more.

Local Business Directories Offer Local News

At least some of them do, like FindUsLocal.com. It’s easy to find national and world news on the internet, but searching for the news in a local area is a bit trickier. But local business directories like FindUsLocal feature live streams of all the local news in a visitor’s area.

Local Business Directories Make it Easy to Find Local Events

When is the last time you tried to get information about the local events in your area? If you’re like most people you had to visit many websites or call around to a few venues in your town or city just to find out what was happening. But there is one local business directory—FindUsLocal—that makes it easy for consumers. It offers a live stream of all the local sporting events, theatre events, and concerts for the visitors to its site. And just to make things easier on them, it also provides links so that visitors can buy tickets to the events with the click of a mouse.

People Can Read Reviews on Local Business Directories

These days, people don’t like to visit a local shop unless they’ve first read a few reviews about it online. But that can be tricky for many local business owners because they don’t have a website to send customers to in order to leave the reviews. But if you have a local business listing on a local business directory like FindUsLocal, you’ll be able to ask your customers to go to your business listing and leave a review. And that will likely result in even more people visiting your store.

Some Local Business Directories Offer a Little Inspiration

Because so many people like to plan their morning routine with some inspiration or humor, FindUsLocal.com has created a few features to allow them to do just that. They have a funny name of the day that allows for a good laugh at the start of the day, and for those people who prefer a contemplative start to their day, a quote that will make them think. This is just another good reason why your business should be listed on this local directory. Consumers love it, and that means you’ll have a higher chance of being seen by them.

It’s not hard to see why people love to use local business directories to find US local businesses.  But what is hard to see is why so many local business owners haven’t yet created their own local business listing. Don’t get left behind. If you haven’t created yours, why not head on over to FindUsLocal.com and do it now?

Millennials Don’t Shop Locally. Or Do They?

n-MAN-WOMAN-SHOPPING-628x314If you run a local business, you’ll likely heard the commonly accepted wisdom that millennials prefer to do their shopping online, and you’ve probably resigned yourself to the fact that you’re just not going to get their business. You may have pulled back on the advertising geared toward millennials, or even worse, never even tried to make your local business appeal to them.

But if this is your philosophy, some recent shopping trends say that you’re making a big mistake.

Do Millennials Shop Locally?

In short, yes they do. But it’s not as cut and dried as you would imagine. Here are some numbers taken from a recent survey:

  • While only 57 percent of Baby Boomers visit multiple local businesses to find a great deal, 71 percent of Millennials do. That flies in the face of the accepted “wisdom” that Millennials only shop online.
  • It’s true that 76 percent of Millennials go to the internet to browse the products they want to buy, but 67 percent of them then go to a local business to make the purchase. That means that only 33 percent of them actually buy the product online.

As you can see, it’s worth your time to go after millennial business. If you ignore this generation—who loves to shop by the way—you’re cutting yourself and your business short. Here are the 3 steps you should begin today to start drawing the millennial shoppers to your local business and bring in more holiday traffic.

Create Your Local Business Listing

Local business listings are the new Yellow Pages, and those business owners who haven’t yet created one are doing their business a disservice. They serve as “address books” on the internet, and it’s where people find US local businesses to visit. For example, if you were looking for a Greek restaurant, you would go to a local business directory like FindUsLocal.com and enter the search term, “Greek restaurant.” Then you would see a list of all the Greek restaurants in your area. Can you see why consumers are using local business directories as a way to find US local businesses? As a local business owner, it’s important that you understand that online advertising is an important part of your overall local business marketing strategy.

In order to create your local business listing, go to FindUsLocal.com and claim your business. Then simply fill in all the details asked of you and hit save. Remember, you’ll need to enter your details the exact same way on every local business listing you create, otherwise the search engine spiders won’t recognize the local citations as your—and that will hurt your search engine ranking.

Drive Customers There to Leave Reviews

After you’ve created your local business listing on quality local business directories like FindUsLocal, it’s time to put it to use. Business listings that routinely add fresh content are more likely to be recognized by the search engine spiders, and one of the best ways to get that fresh content is to ask customers to leave an online review for your business. And don’t worry about getting enough reviews. It’s easy to get them because recent surveys show that 7 out of 10 customers will leave a review for your local business if you ask them. Make sure to get at least 10 reviews so your business will have the social proof that most of today’s consumers demand.

Interact with Customers Using the Unique Comment Feature

In addition to adding fresh content to your local business listing with online reviews, you can also use the comment feature offered exclusively by FindUsLocal.com. This unique feature allows business owners to leave comments that its customers can read. For example, if you receive a new shipment of a popular product, you can announce it via a comment. And if you want to announce that you’re hiring a new sales clerk or office assistant, you can let the community know via the comments. If you’re having a sale, the comment feature is also a great way to get the word out.

And what makes this feature even better is the fact that consumers can also use the comment feature to leave comments about your business. What’s the difference between online reviews and the comments section? With online reviews, people are leaving them to let others know about their experience when visiting your business. But when leaving comments, consumers may use it to communicate directly with you about something, give others a hint about a special product your carry, or even talk about the best place to find parking near your local store. As you can see, the comment feature is not only a great way to add fresh content to your local business listing, but it’s also a great way to interact with the people in your community who shop at your store.

Millennials are a special generation, and when you’re marketing to them, it’s important to keep their unique traits in mind. Your business will need to be found online, they want the social proof before visiting your store, and interaction with a business is a must. Luckily, local business directories like FindUsLocal.com check every box. Have you been ignoring Millennial shoppers this holiday season? It’s not too late to get their attention now!

Lagging Holiday Sales? Here’s How Local Business Owners Can Increase Sales Now!

holiday-salesIt’s a busy time of the year for most local business owners, but some of them just aren’t seeing the holiday shoppers they’d hoped for. And that’s a shame, because the economy is doing great, and recent surveys show that consumers are planning to spend big this year. So what’s keeping some local business owners from seeing the type of results others are?

If You’re Business Can’t Be Found Online, You Won’t See Success

Those local business owners who are doing a robust business all have one thing in common—their business can easily be found online. You see, today’s consumers don’t use the old school methods that many local business owners still rely on. They don’t use the Yellow pages anymore, nor do they look in the community newspaper or clip coupons from those old blue mailings full of local deals. Instead, they use their smartphones, tablets, and laptops to try and find US local businesses in their community.

Can they find your local business?

How to Make Sure Today’s Holiday Shoppers can Find Your Business

Until recently, local business owners had to pay someone to design and build an expensive website in order for shoppers to find them. But with the advent of local business directories, that’s just not necessary any more.

Today’s consumers don’t have a lot of time, and most of them use the internet to quickly find the name, location, and hours of operation when trying to find US local businesses. They don’t have a lot of time to look over a complicated website or dig deep just to find the information they’re looking for.

Instead, they turn to local business directories like FindUsLocal.com. These local directories are designed to give consumers quick results in an easy and efficient manner. In fact, they’re so easy to use that many people now use them instead of the large search engines like Google or Bing.

Here’s how quality local business directories make it easy for people to find US local businesses.

  • They use SEO location technology.In case you haven’t heard, it’s no longer necessary for people to enter their location when using some local directories. That’s because they use GEO location technology to automatically read people’s location. This allows them to not only create a custom homepage based on their city or town, but also guarantees that they’ll only see search results from their local area.
  • They narrow down the search results.When trying to find US local businesses on a major search engine, you’ll oftentimes also see some website addresses for large, national chains, along with a lot of articles about the topic. But when using a local business directory, you’ll only see the local results you ask for. That’s why so many of your customers are using these handy and efficient local directories.
  • They offer other things too.Because people are so busy today, a local directory that offers multiple features will be visited time and time again by consumers. For example, FindUsLocal.com offers the local news, upcoming event listings, such as theatre events, concerts, and sporting events, and then offers them a way to get tickets with a click of a button. It also offers some humorous and inspirational features that entertain them.
  • People can read reviews on local business directories. Finally, most people won’t visit a local shop or restaurant unless they’ve first read some positive reviews about it, but that can be tricky unless a business has a local business listing. Luckily, local business directories like FindUsLocal.com offer free local listings—all you have to do is claim yours and then fill in the necessary details. Be sure to enter the information exactly the same way for every local business listing you create—otherwise they won’t all be credited to your business and you won’t get the results you want. Remember, the more local citations you have, the higher in the search engine rankings you’ll appear. Be sure to get at least 10 online reviews so you don’t miss out on all the benefits.

The holiday shoppers are out there, and they’re looking for a local business just like yours. Can they find you on a local business directory like FindUsLocal.com? If not, why not take 10 minutes and create your local business listing right now?

3 Things to Do Now to Bring in More Holiday Traffic

images (2)Do you run a local store? If so, you’ve probably dreamt about the upcoming holiday sales all year long. After all, many local store and restaurant owners rely on those holiday sales to balance out the rest of the year. But not all local businesses will have a Merry Christmas this year as far as ringing in the sales because many of them haven’t yet changed the way they market their local store—and that will only lead to sluggish sales.

If you own a local business and want to see the most sales as you can this year, there are some tactics you can take to ensure that your year end sales are record breaking.

First, Make Sure Holiday Shoppers can Find Your Business Online

I know, you’re a local store, but the truth is even the mom and pop stores on Main Street have to have an online presence in order to get the attention of today’s shoppers. That’s because when people want to buy, they go online to find US local businesses, even if those stores are located around the block from their house. For example, if someone were looking for a culinary shop in New York, they would turn to their smartphone, tablet or laptop and type “culinary store New York City” into the search engine. Some of the results they see would be articles about culinary cooking, and there would be a lot of links to online, national culinary stores. But mixed in with those results would be a few local results. How did those few local culinary shops make it in the big search engine results? They took steps to make sure the search engine spiders noticed them and the way they did that was to create local business listings on credit local business directories like FindUsLocal.com.

To create your local business listing, simply log onto a local business directory and claim your listing. Enter the details about your business such as the business name, address, phone number, and website address. Be sure to enter the details the exact same way every time, otherwise it could confuse the search engine spiders and the local listings won’t be credited to your shop or restaurant.

Create as many local business listings as you can, but only on reputable business directories. Each of these listings will serve as a citation, and the more local citations you have, the better your chances of ending up in the major search engine results.

Next, Ask Your Customers to Leave Online Reviews

Online reviews are the new currency in online advertising, and the more you have, the more new customers you will have walking through your door. But many local business owners don’t know how to ask customers to leave reviews for their business. Luckily, it’s pretty easy. In fact, recent surveys show that 7 out of 10 people will leave an online review for your local business if you ask them to. That’s why so many stores ask customers to leave a review at the checkout counter. Is that a tactic you can use to online reviews on your local business listing?

Finally, Have Fun and Interact With Your Customers

The last step of the process is to use your local business listing as a way to interact with the people in your community, but there is only one local business directory that offers this unique form of communication. When you create your listing on FindUsLocal, you’ll be able to leave comments on your listing. You can talk about upcoming sales or events, job openings, or let the community know about local fundraisers you’re involved with. The possibilities are endless and the feature opens up an avenue of communication with the community you serve.

But the fun doesn’t stop there. The site also allows consumers to leave comments on your local business listing, so the communication is truly a two-way street.

The year is quickly coming to a close, and if you want to make the most of the holiday sales, you’ve got to act quickly. The 3 steps outlined above can all be implemented today, and the results you’ll likely reap from your actions will be well worth it. What do you think? Should you go to FindUsLocal.com and take the first step right now by creating your very own local business listing?

3 Ways to Use Customer Interaction to Drive Business to Your Local Shop

abc-of-driving-traffic-to-your-website1 (1)It’s the holiday season, and local business owners all over the country are doing what they can to drive as many customers into their stores as possible. After all, the more people who walk through your store, the more business you’ll do—and that makes for a very Merry Christmas.

But, unlike days in the past, you can’t just expect all those customers to find your store unless you put it in front of their eyes. And in today’s internet obsessed culture that means one thing: they need to be able to find your local store online.

What’s Wrong With the Old Way of Advertising?

That’s a question many local shop owners are asking, but they all eventually come to realize that things have changed, and the only way to make it in today’s culture is be seen online. But even that isn’t enough nowadays. Today’s consumers expect more from local business owners, and one thing they’ve come to expect is to interact with the local businesses they visit. In other words, you need to change the way you market your local business.

Social Media is So Yesterday

Most people still think of social media when it comes to customer interaction, but that’s fallen out of favor with a lot of local business owners. That’s because it takes a lot of time, patience, and money to build a loyal social media following, and that means taking away resources from your business. That’s why smart local business owners have turned to another form of online advertising and marketing: local business directories.

Local business directories are just like the major search engines, expect instead of having to dig through the results to find what they’re looking for, people only get the results they want to see. For example, if someone were looking for a garden shop on a large search engine, they would likely find articles about gardening, online garden stores, and if they’re lucky, a few websites to local garden stores in their area. But if they used a local business directory like FindUsLocal.com to look for their garden store, they would only see the garden stores in their town or city in the results. It’s no wonder consumers are flocking to local business directories to find US local businesses.

So, now that you understand how important it is to be found online, especially in a credible local business directory, let’s talk about the 3 things you can do right now to engage with the people in your local community.

Ask them for Reviews

The studies are in, and they show that most people today won’t visit a local business until they’ve read a few positive online reviews about it. And luckily, getting people to review your business isn’t all that difficult. The key is to ask—7 out of 10 people say they will review a business if asked. That means you should make it a habit to ask every customer to leave an online review when they’re checking out. And if you have employees, be sure to train them to do the same.

Leave Comments on Your Local Business Listing

When you’re a part of a quality local business directory like FindUsLocal.com, you’ll have the option of leaving comments for the people in your community. You can announce when a new product comes in, when you have a job opening, or when you’re having a sale or a special discount. As a local business owner, you should strive to leave at least 1 comment a day.

Encourage Customers to Leave Comments on Your Local Business Listing

You’re not the only one who is able to leave comments on your local business listing—your customers can too. They can talk about the great products they found at your store, give hints to other shoppers about what to order from the menu, or compliment you directly on your service or skills. And the great about these and all of your comments is that they are tied directly into a live steam so anyone logging onto FindUsLocal.com from the area will see them. Now that’s a great way to interact with your community!

Interaction is the new normal for online advertising, especially for local business owners. If you haven’t yet begun to interact with your customers, create your local business listing on a great local business directory like FindUsLocal.com and get started today. It can only help ring in those new sales during the holiday season.

 

Why Your Local Business Won’t Survive Without Local Business Directory Listings

0fa830fLocal business owners tend to fall into 2 camps: those who are still trying to conduct business using the old school methods like phone book ads, newspaper ads, and mail outs. Those are the local business owners who are struggling to make ends meet because frankly, they’re trying to bring in new business by putting their advertising dollars in places that today’s consumers don’t look to any more.

On the other hand, those local business owners who have kept up with the times and applied the current marketing and advertising methods are not struggling, in fact they’re thriving. So what makes the difference between local shops that are barely making ends meet and those that are having a stellar year? Local business directory listings.

Why Local Business Directories Can Make or Break Your Local Business

Unless you understand how the large search engines like Google and Bing work, you won’t understand why you need a local business listing in order to thrive in today’s culture. You see, when consumers use the large search engines to find US local businesses, they are only shown the local shops and restaurants that have taken the steps needed to get the attention of the search engine spiders. And those that don’t? They are placed so far back in the search engine rankings that no one will ever find their local business.

As you might have guessed by now, the best way to signal to the search engine spiders that your business is worthy of appearing in the local results is to have a lot of citations spread across the internet. Let’s talk about what those are and how to get them next.

What are Local Business Citations?

The simplest definition of a local citation is that it is a mention of your business on a site that the major search engines view as credible. For example, once you create a local business listing on a local business directory like FindUsLocal, that is counted as a citation. And the more of these citations you have, the more attention the search engine spiders will pay to your business. That’s why local citations are so important for local businesses.

But you need to be careful of where you get these citations because if you list your business on a site that’s not deemed credible by the major search engines, you could do your ranking more harm than good. For example, not all local business directories are considered credible by Google and Bing, and that’s why it’s important to be choosy about which local business directory you list your business on.

How to Choose the Right Local Business Directory

When choosing which local business directories to list your business on, you’ll need to evaluate each one to determine whether it’s truly a local directory or simply a database with a bunch of outdated information. For instance, if you look at a quality local business directory like FindUsLocal.com, you’ll quickly realize that it’s a well maintained, quality directory that provides many features and benefits for consumers. And Google and Bing agree, and that’s why it’s considered credible and will help boost your search engine rankings.

On the other hand, some local business directories simply pull in information from across the web and create a large database of local businesses. The problem is that much of that information is outdated and just plain wrong, and that will confuse the search engine spiders. For example, if your business name is ABC Computers, Inc. and the database lists your business as simply ABC Computers, the spiders won’t know whether or not the citation belongs to your business. If you have enough of these confusing citations, your business will be ignored and placed at the bottom of the search engine rankings.

To resolve this problem and get the most out of your local business directory listings, be sure to list your business on credible local business directories like FindUsLocal.com, and if you find your local shop or restaurant listed on one of those databases, simply go in and claim your listing and make the corrections. Remember, your business should be listed on as many credible local business directories as possible, but all of the details on each one should match. Once you do this, new customers will be walking in your store in droves!