Tag Archives: local business marketing

Only 5 Days Til Christmas: Are Holiday Shoppers Finding Your Local Store?

shoppers_2101364bThe Christmas countdown has begun, and as of today, there are only 5 shopping days left until the holiday. That means shoppers will be out in the streets looking for those last minute gifts and they will find US local stores to do it. Despite the fact that a large percent of people shop online for Christmas, there is no time left to get those gifts online because of shipping restraints. What about you? Have you seen your fair share of holiday shoppers this year? If not, it’s not too late to take some steps to get those last minute shoppers—and their holiday cash—into your local store.

How to Draw in Last Minute Christmas Shoppers to Your Store

Just because local shoppers are out there, that doesn’t mean they’ll come to your store. The truth is, today’s consumers look online to find US local businesses, and that’s true even if that local business is located just around the corner from their house. They use their smartphones, tablets, and laptops to find the local businesses they want to spend their holiday cash in.

And most of those shoppers look in local business directories to find local businesses. That means if you want your local business to be found, consumers will have to be able to go to your local business listing, which should be found on a local business directory.

What are Local Business Directories?

Not too long ago, people tried to find US local businesses on the major search engines when looking online, but they quickly became frustrated because the large search engines aren’t very good at showing local results. Along with those results, people would see website address for large, national chain stores and even articles and blog posts about the topic related to their search.

And so local business directories were invented. These directories allow people to find US local businesses with the press of a button. They simply enter their search term into the local directory—just like they do in a major search engine—but with local business directories, the only results that pop up are for local businesses in their area.

Can you see why creating your local business listing in a qualified local business directory is so important? All those last minute holiday shoppers will be searching them to find where to spend their dollars, and if your business isn’t listed on them, they’ll visit your competitor’s store instead.

How to Create Your Local Business Listing

Now that you understand the importance of being found on a local business directory, let’s talk about how to do it. Start by logging onto a good one like FindUsLocal.com. This local business directory is one of the most innovative local business directories online because it not only shows consumers local results, but it offers them a plethora of other features as well. It allows people to leave online reviews, leave live comments about the business, view a live stream of local news and upcoming events, and even get a laugh with the funny name of the day feature it’s so well known for.

Once you’ve logged on and found your business name, claim it so you can make the necessary changes to it. The key to creating an effective local business listing is to include all the details about your business that you can. Be sure to stay consistent with your business name, address, phone number and website on every local business directory you list on, otherwise you could do your business more harm than good. These are called NAP+W’s and they are a crucial part of online marketing for your local business.

You Only Have 5 Days Left—Be Proactive and Create Your Local Business Listing Today!

Just because there are only a few days left to shop for Christmas, that doesn’t mean you can’t end the year with great sales numbers. There will be a lot of cash spend in the next few days, and you should do all you can to ensure a good portion of it comes into your business. Start by logging onto a quality local business directory like FindUsLocal.com and then creating your local business listing. But you’d better hurry because those holiday shoppers are almost finished buying their gifts!

 

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 Consistency is Key to Effective Local Business Listings

2015-Lets-grow-your-business-togetherBy now, most business owners understand the importance of having an online presence in a world where almost everyone goes there to find US local businesses. And while most local shop and restaurant owners have already taken the step of creating local business listings to help buyers find them, many of them aren’t doing the most important thing when setting them up: staying consistent.

In fact, most local business owners believe that all they have to do is create a business listing in a local business directory and the new customers will pour in. But it’s not that simple. In order to a business listing to be successful, it has to be created in just the right way—and consistency is the foundation of a successful listing.

Let’s talk about which areas of your local business listing you need to pay particular attention to, and then we’ll show you how to create a local listing that will help boost your sales.

But First, You Need to Choose the Right Local Business Directory

Before we tell you how to make your local business listings shine, let’s first talk about why choosing the right local business directory is so important.

The Right Local Business Directory can Make all the Difference

As you’ve probably discovered, there are a lot of local business directories to choose from, but when you are planning your local business marketing campaign, you’ll need to be choosy about which local directory you use. That’s because not all local directories are created equal. Some of them are simply data bases disguised as local directories, but most of the information contained in these databases is out of date or just plain wrong. So when the search engine spiders “read” this information and tries to classify it, it confuses things and can actually hurt your local business search engine rankings.

The way around this problem is to choose a local business directory that is up to date and designed to make the lives of consumers easier. For example, FindUsLocal.com allows you to claim your local business listing, update it, and at the same time, offers its visitors an array of handy features such as local news, live comments from local business owners and their customers, and links to all the latest happenings in every local town or city.

How to Make Your Local Business Listings Consistent

Now that you’ve chosen the right local business directory, here are some tips about how to make your listings consistent.

  • Your business name. It may seem like a simple thing to list your business name, but there are a few ways to get it wrong and cause your search engine rankings to drop. Consistency is the key, and that means you should enter your business name the exact same way on every local business directory you list on. For example, if you run a roofing business and your business name is Fast Roofing Services, Inc., you will need to decide whether or not to include the word “Inc.” in your business name. If you do it on some local business listings and not on others, it will confuse those search engine spiders and all of your business listings won’t be attributed to your local business.
  • Your business address. The same concept is true when you enter your local business address—keep it consistent. That means if your business address is 123 Highway 50, you can’t list it that way on some local business directories and as 123 Hwy 50 on others. The address has to match completely in order to all the local listings to be attributed to your business.
  • Your local business phone number. A phone number is just a phone number, right? Not always when it comes to local business listings. Some business owners choose to list their area code on local business listings for out of town visitors, while others assume people will automatically know it. You will need to decide and then either include it or not on all the local business directories you list on.
  • Your website address. If you have a website, you will need to decide whether to list the complete website address, including the http:/, or if you will simply enter the basic name plus “.com.” However you do it, remember to make sure you do it the same way every time you create a local business listing.

Local business directories are a great way to draw new visitors to your local restaurant or retail shop, but they won’t work unless you remember to keep them consistent. Follow the above tips and remember to only list your business on quality local business directories like FindUsLocal.com.

15 Online Marketing Statistics Every Local Business Should Know

Pressing Online Marketing IconHow important are local business directory listings to business success? Do a lot of people really use voice search to find local businesses? How do people decide where to shop after searching for local businesses online? These questions may not be at the top of ever local business owner’s mind, but there are people who make it their business to collect and compile those statistics. These and other statistics related to local business marketing can help business owners create and follow an online marketing strategy that will boost their in-store customers and sales. Here are 15 local business marketing statistics that show what local marketing and advertising can do for storefront businesses.

Why Local Businesses Need Online Visibility

  • 81 percent of people do online research before making a large purchase
  • 72 percent of people who search for something online visit a store within 5 miles
  • 78 percent of mobile searches result in an in-store purchase or sale
  • 18 percent of local mobile searches result in a local purchase within a day
  • 33 percent of local searches were made right before an in-store visit

Add one more statistic to that list – 60 percent of U.S. adults use smartphones and mobile devices to search for information on local products and services. Businesses that can’t be found online are at a distinct disadvantage when it comes to bringing in new customers – and may even lose existing customers to competitors that take the time to brush up their online directory listings and make sure they show up in online searches.

Pro Tips to Increase Online Visibility for US Local Businesses

  • Get listed in US local business directories. Every listing in a high-quality, relevant business directory increases a business’ likelihood of being listed on the front page of Google search results when people do a local search for the services or products they provide.
  • Pay attention to local SEO when building or updating a website, creating social media postings and writing directory listing descriptions. Research the search terms customers use to find the specific type of business, and use them in local business directory listings, social media and website content.
  • Add location-specific keywords to business websites, social media profiles and local business directory listings. Dive a little deeper than city or town names. With most local searches resulting in a visit to a business within 5 miles, it’s also important to include local names for neighborhoods when trying to attract customers to your local business.

What Are People Searching for When They Do Local Searches?

  • 50 percent of people who do local searches on mobile are looking for the business address
  • 71 percent of people who search for local businesses online say they check the address before visiting a business for the first time
  • 68 percent of those who do local searches use the “get directions” or “click to call” link if it’s available
  • 40 percent want to know if a business is currently open for business

The takeaway for those local search statistics is simple: businesses should make sure that their US local business directory listings include their name, physical address, telephone number and hours of operation, since that’s what most people are looking for when they do a local search.

Those five statistics are for general local searches. When looking at statistics for specific types of local businesses, there are some slight variations. Someone searching for a local restaurant, for example, might want to see menus, while those looking for hotels and lodging might be more interested in knowing about nearby attractions. There is, however, one more thing that people are looking for when they search for local businesses.

What Local Businesses Need to Know About Online Reviews

  • 84 percent of people trust online reviews as much as they trust personal recommendations from friends
  • 74 percent of people who read reviews say that good reviews increase their trust in local businesses
  • Google places businesses with better reviews higher on the search page results than those with poor reviews or no reviews at all
  • 87 percent of people who do local searches say they won’t consider a business with bad reviews
  • 90 percent of consumers read fewer than 10 reviews before making up their minds to patronize a local business

In case it isn’t obvious, business reviews are increasingly important to local SEO marketing. Businesses with good online reviews are seen as more trustworthy and better than those with bad reviews, and those with no reviews, or very few reviews may not even make it to the front page of the search engine results.

Tips for Leveraging Online Reviews for Local Business

  • Get listed at local US business directories, like Find Us Local, that allow customers to leave reviews.
  • Encourage satisfied customers to leave reviews on major review sites and business directory profiles.
  • Link to or feature good business reviews on the business website and social media accounts.