Tag Archives: business directories

3 Benefits of Listing Your Business on a Local Business Directory

finduslocal-logo-sept2014Do you own a small, local business? If so, you may be confused by the enormous task of drawing new customers to your business, especially considering that the old way of advertising, such as newspaper ads, radio spots, and local television commercials, have basically become ineffective. Today’s consumers consume almost all of their content digitally, and that creates a challenge for local businesses who rely on foot traffic rather than internet shoppers.

Luckily, there is a solution. Local business directories are experiencing a surge in popularity because consumers want a reliable way to find local businesses in their area. If you haven’t yet listed your local business on our directory, FindUSLocal, here are three reasons why you should drop what you’re doing right now and do it.

It Makes Your Local Business Discoverable

The only way new customers are going to be able to find you is if your business is discoverable. And since they’re not looking in the local paper anymore, you’ve got to find another way to get your business name in front of them. Enter local business directories.

More and more consumers are using the Internet, and specifically their mobile phones, to find local businesses when they want to shop or eat. And they’re looking to local business directories to do that.

Get Much Needed Reviews

Local shoppers are fiercely loyal to their local communities, and that’s why they tend to leave more reviews for local businesses. They want to sing the praises of great businesses and warn their community about those businesses that don’t offer quality or good service. But they can’t leave reviews for your business if it’s not listed on a local directory!

Take Advantage of Free Marketing

What would you say if I told you that it’s possible for your business to be marketed in a passive way, and that activity could bring new customers into your business? That’s exactly what local business directories do. Once your business is listed, it will come up every time someone in your local area searches for a business like yours.

If you haven’t already claimed your business profile, head on over to FindUSLocal right now and do it. Who knows? It may bring you a good amount of new business this week.

The Real Deal with Local Business Directories

directories2If you keep up with internet marketing, then you’ve undoubtedly heard about the rise of local business directories lately. In fact, if you’re a regular reader of this blog, you know that we believe local directories are one of the best ways local businesses can get seen by the mass of consumers looking for businesses.

But a recent study puts some numbers to our claims, and we couldn’t wait to share them with you. Here are the biggest takeaways from a study conducted by Quantcast and I’m using the numbers from their “People per Month” data.

Here are the three biggest takeaways from the study.

There is an Uptick in Use

Two years ago, there was a 35 percent decline in traffic to local business directories, but then something strange happened: consumers began to understand how easy it was to use them—and get the information they needed without all the hassle—and the usage began to climb. In short, as more and more of the local members of your community realize the ease and effectiveness of using local business directories, the more effective they’ll become. And according to the study, that realization has already begun.

Big Local Directories aren’t Better

During the time that local directories lost traffic to their sites, it appears that small local directories didn’t do any worse than the bigger guys. In fact, the larger directories lost about 18 percent of their traffic before the turnaround, but the smaller directories only lost about 13 percent. It seems that consumers don’t care whether a directory is small or large, but they care about whether or not they can find what they need at the site.

Fresh Content is Key

When looking at what makes some local directories do better than others, it seems that it comes down to fresh content. And the important content a local directory can post is reviews. Those sites that have a constant steam of relevant reviews posted do better than sites where the reviews are stale. In addition, sites that keep consumers updated on local events by consistently refreshing data about new concerts, sporting events, local news and other events will do well.

How to Use Local Business Directories to Get Business

If your local business isn’t yet listed on a business directory, isn’t it time you made the change? More and more local consumers are looking to business directories to find businesses in their area to do business with.

If you haven’t yet claimed your free business profile on our site, do it now. All you have to lose are those potential customers who looked for a business like yours on our site and didn’t find you.

 

How to Get Reviews from Your Local Customers

boost-rankingToday’s consumers rely on online reviews before deciding whether or not do business with a local company more than ever. In fact, numerous recent studies show that more and more consumers rely on the reviews, and if a business doesn’t have good reviews—or any reviews—they’re not likely to do business with them. According to experts, the reason businesses that don’t have any reviews do as poorly as those with bad reviews, is because in their eyes, that business is unproven.

In other words, if your local business doesn’t have online reviews, you may not ever get the chance to win a new customer’s business.

And although it’s vital that your business gets good reviews, you can’t control what consumers say about it. But the one thing you can control is getting as many reviews as possible.

Here are three great tactics for getting your customers to leave reviews for your business.

List Your Business Profile Where You can be Found—and Reviewed

Local business directories are becoming the go-to place for local consumers these days. That’s because they don’t like having to sift through national stores just to find a retailers in their local area. For example, when consumers want to find a good bakery in their community, they don’t want to see listings of bakeries all the country.

This trend is what makes it so important that your business is not only found on local directories, but also reviewed on them. You likely ask new customers where they heard about your business, and when they tell you they found you a local business directory, be sure to ask for a review.

Link Your Local Directory Business Profiles to Everything

Another great way to get more business reviews is to add a link to your profile on the local business directory in all your communications with customers. For instance, you can add it to your email signature, put it on your website, brochures and other marketing materials. When customers see the request, along with the link or URL of your directory profile, over and over again, it may spur them to take action and leave a review.

Ask Them in Person

Finally, one of the best ways to get reviews for your local business is to simply your customers for one. Start by explaining how important it is, and then ask them to leave an honest review so other people can make an informed decision about whether or not to patronize your business.

Reviews these days are just as important as branding and marketing campaigns. And in a world where other consumers either recommend your business or not, you should be doing all you can to get those reviews.

The three tips listed above should help. And stay tuned because tomorrow, we’ll talk about 3 things you should avoid at all costs when it comes to asking your customers for reviews.

6 Ways to Draw Out of Town Visitors to Your Local Business

newyorkcity_tourist_001p-300x236If you’re a local business owner and have been concentrating your marketing efforts on the residents in your area, you’ve been missing out. We all know that local search is hot and it’s how most local residents find the businesses they want to do business with. And recent studies have shown that the trend is only increasing: 95 percent of mobile users use their phones to search for local businesses.

But wait—things are about to get complicated.

A new case study shows that a full 33 percent of all local searches are made by people who are only visiting a city. That’s a lot of tourists on their smartphones looking for businesses just like yours. That same study shows that out of town visitors tend to spend about double what local residents do.

Do you want to put your business name in front of all those visitors? Here are six tips to help you do just that.

List Your Business in a Local Business Directory

If you haven’t already, it’s time to get your business listed in a local business directory. Sure, local residents use them to find the businesses they want, but out of town visitors also rely on them because they’re unfamiliar with the area and a good local search directory is just like a recommendation from a local resident.

Mix and Match Your Keywords

When you’re marketing to local residents, you want to use long tail keywords because they’re familiar with their options and are much more specific in their local searches. But an out of town visitor who doesn’t know the city will likely use a more general keyword in their search. For instance, if you own a bakery that specializes in cream puffs, you might use “cream puff bakery” to attract local residents, but “bakery” for out of town visitors. Mix them up to attract customers from both pools.

Make Sure Your Listings are Consistent

It would be a shame to put a lot of money and manpower into getting your local business ranked in the searches only to find that it doesn’t even show up in the listings. One of the biggest reasons that happens is that business owners aren’t careful to ensure that all of their business listings use the exact same name and address. Even something as simple as leaving out your suite number on your Facebook page can cause problems. For every local business directory you’re listed in, as well as your social media platforms and My Google Business, make sure your name, address, and phone number are exactly the same.

Optimize Your Site for Mobile

When out of town visitors look online for a local business, they do so with their mobile phones. That’s why it so important that your website is optimized for mobile phone use. Otherwise, those visitors may pass up your listing and go to a competitor because the information is easier to read.

You Need Reviews

When people visit a city, they want to have the best experience they can so they’re more selective about the bed and breakfasts they stay in or the restaurants they eat in. And one way they ensure to pick the right business is to check the reviews of the businesses they’re thinking about going to. But what if you don’t have reviews? Ninety percent of people say that if they were asked to leave a review they would, but only about seven percent of them have been asked. If you don’t have plenty of good reviews for your business, begin asking your customers now so that when an out of town visitor is deciding between you and your competition, you’ll get the business.

Use GEO Targeting

GEO targeting is the latest way to target those customers looking for businesses in your area and point them to yours. It’s a system that “reads” where a searcher is located, and then builds a custom page for them that shows all the latest news and happenings in that area. It also includes a search directory where visitors can search for the specific restaurants they’re looking for. Our directory, FindUSLocal, uses this technology, so if you’re not already listed on it, do it right away to attract those out of town visitors.

Don’t miss out on all that business from out of town visitors in your area. Instead, make use of the tips listed above and get your business on the map so visitors can find you.

Five Ways a Local Business Directory Helps You Save the World – Number 3 Is HUGE!

I’d love to save the world, but I don’t know what to do… – Ten Years After

If you’d love to save the world, the sustainability and green living movement has one word for you – local. Whether your favorite issue is the economy, healthy living, saving the environment or global warming, doing business locally offers one very important way that anyone can make an impact. When you use an online local business directory to find local merchants and vendors, you are actually helping to save the world. Here are five ways that shopping local can help you make a difference in the world around you.

Reduce Carbon Emissions

Every extra mile that your groceries and goods travel adds extra carbon emissions into the atmosphere. When you buy from local grocers – especially those that source produce, meat and dairy locally – you reduce your carbon footprint and cut down a little bit on the emissions and pollution in the air.

Support Local Businesses

When you buy from local businesses, you’re putting money back into your community. That money improves your local economy and supports your friends and neighbors. You’re putting money into the tills of local stores, who may then be able to hire a few more people, who will then have money to spend in the local economy – it’s one big, beautiful snowball.

Find Alternatives To Big Box Stores and Chain Restaurants

Big box stores may offer low prices, but so very many of their business policies are toxic to the environment and the economy. When you look for groceries, restaurants and services on major search engines, the top listings will be for the big corporations because they have the money to pay for those top spots. That’s not true on local business directories, which are havens where small business owners don’t have to compete with the big boys to get noticed.

Save Paper

Online business directories don’t use paper. No trees are harmed in their production. It’s becoming more and more common for businesses to avoid paying for listings in paper directories and phone books.

Improve Your Health

Locally grown foods are more likely to be grown with a minimum of pesticides and other harmful chemicals. They’re picked at the peak of freshness and don’t need artificial preservatives to keep them looking and tasting their best – even better, you’ll find local farms, farmers’ markets and farm stands that sell directly to the public listing their businesses and products on local business directories like FindUsLocal.com.

Buying and doing business locally is one of the best ways to support your community and make the world a better place to live. Using an online local business directory makes it easier for you to find the local companies that are doing business in ways that work for you.

Free Concert Listings: One Reason Your Customers Love Social Business Directories More Than They Like Google

The latest news on the technology front is that people are deserting Google. After years of dominating all types of search listings, the search engine behemoth is slowly losing its grip as faithful users find other services that are more useful. If you’re thinking Bing and Yahoo! here, you’d be wrong. In fact, the big winners these days are social business directories like FindUsLocal.com.

Taking their cue from the popularity of professional service directories, these social directories make it easy for local businesses to hook up with customers and clients. They do this using a two-pronged approach with one goal in mind: providing a place where local customers and businesses can find each other.

Why Customers Like Social Business Directories

The front page of FindUsLocal.com features customized content based on the website user’s location. Instead of being greeted with a generic greeting and a request to enter your location or search, visitors to the website find a page of information about their local businesses, hometown news, and nearby community events. They can check the current weather, see what local Twitter users are talking about and check out the latest coupons and specials offered by businesses in the community. One of the biggest draws for the local community, though, is the local event listings which are featured right there on the front page where they’re easy to find. Users can easily find listings – and buy tickets for – upcoming concerts, theater performances and sports events without searching a dozen different websites for information.

How It Works

Local business listings on business directories like Find Us Local are powered by the magic of geo targeting, a technology that uses your browser’s location information to customize the information you see on your device. It’s most often used by marketers to serve geographically appropriate ads when you surf the Web, but it has other uses – like showing website visitors local theater, sports and concert listings, local weather and weekend information.

Why It’s Good for Your Business

There are dozens of “business directories” on the Web, but most of them are virtually useless, either because no one visits them or because they bury your business listing under pages and pages of results. This latest twist on local business directories gets customers to come back again and again when they’re looking for local businesses and events, and offers you the tools and exposure you need to reach local customers with your website and online presence.