How to Carve Out Your Niche in Local Advertising

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Local marketing and advertising is one of the most important things small, local business owners can do. In fact, if you neglect this all important task, chances are your small business won’t be around in the years to come.

But there’s a major problem: many local shop owners still believe that they can use the same old local marketing techniques that have worked for them in years past. The problem is, today’s consumers don’t rely on those methods to find US local businesses anymore. Instead, they look to the internet.

Here’s a brief sample of the old school local marketing techniques that don’t work anymore:

  • Yellow Pages ads. Not that long ago, a local business didn’t have a chance of success unless they took out an ad in the local Yellow Pages. But these day, shoppers almost never turn to the Yellow Pages to find local business. Don’t spend your advertising dollars on these relics.
  • Newspaper ads. Remember when clipping coupons from the community newspaper was the best way to find local deals and sales? If you’re still relying on running ads in local newspapers, your new customer base probably isn’t what you want it to be. That’s because today’s consumers look online for both their local news and for all those local coupons and sales.
  • Mail outs. In the past, some local business owners used mass mail outs to get the attention of local buyers, and these worked well for a few years. The concept was simple: local businesses would band together and send out an envelope loaded with coupons. Homeowners would go through the coupons, select the ones they wanted to use, and then visit those local stores. Unfortunately, this local marketing method doesn’t offer good results any more.

The New Local Marketing

Smart small business owners have figured out those methods no longer work to bring in new business and have moved on to use the local marketing methods that do. But before we talk about the best local marketing technique, let’s talk about why the old school methods no longer work.

  • Consumers are rushed for time. Think about your own life—when is the last time you have an extra 15 minutes to go through an envelope stuffed with coupons or to track down the bulky Yellow Pages and then thumb through it to find local businesses? It’s been awhile, huh? Guess what? Other people are just as busy and that’s one reason why they don’t find local businesses using these outdated marketing methods anymore.
  • Shoppers look on the internet to find local businesses. These days, almost everyone carries a smartphone, tablet, or uses a laptop computer, and according to the latest studies, 97 percent of them look online to find US local businesses. If you’re business can’t be found there, you’re missing out on a whole lot of new business.
  • People like to find all the information in one convenient place. It’s no longer necessary to find a business phone number in one place, their store hours in another, and driving directions in yet another. With inventions like free small business directories, it’s now possible for shoppers to find all the information they need with the click of a mouse.

How to Take Advantage of the New Local Marketing

If you’re still relying on old school local marketing techniques, today is the day you can do something about it. By simply creating a free local listing on a quality small business directory like FindUsLocal.com, you’ll talk the most important step.

These online small business directories are where 1 out of every 2 people look when trying to find US local businesses. And studies show that when shoppers find the local shops and restaurants this way, the majority of them end up visiting the establishment.

To create your free small business listing, just head on over to FindUsLocal and claim your business. Then fill in all the details about your shop. Remember, customers want to find all the information about your store in one place, so be sure to fill in as many details about it as you can.

Keep in mind that in order to make the most of your small business directory listings, you’ll need to enter the exact same information when it comes to your business name, address, phone number, and website address. In other words, don’t enter our business address as 123 Main Street on some local listings and Main St. on others. If you do, all the local business listings you create won’t be recognized by the search engine spiders as belonging to your local business, and that means a lot of time and effort would be wasted.

Free small business directory listings should be an integral part of your local marketing efforts. Remember, yesterday’s tactics no longer work and if you want to attract the most new customers, you’ll have to ensure that they can find you when they try to find US local businesses just like yours. And according to all the latest research, they’re looking online, specifically in local business directories.

 

New Statistics Show the Difficulty—and Importance of Local Marketing

Running a local business is a constantly changing endeavor, and a new study shows just how confusing it’s become for local shop, restaurant, and service businesses across the nation. The study was conducted by Capital One, and it surveyed local business owners across the nation.

We’ve decided to take apart the study and show just how free small business directories can address most of these perceived challenges.

Local Business Owners Can’t Find New Customers

41 percent of those local shop owners surveyed show that they have a hard time with local marketing because they can’t seem to find enough new customers to keep their stores running. But the solution is easy: local businesses need an online presence because 97 percent of today’s consumers look online when they want to find US local businesses.

But you don’t have to build an expensive website in order to find new customers. Instead, simply create a free small business listing and they’ll be able to find your store.

Local Business Owners Need More Cash for Local Marketing

32 percent of those surveyed say that they have a difficult time finding enough money to conduct local marketing for their business. But again, local business directories can help with that.

It costs exactly nothing to create a free local business listing, but the benefits are powerful. It will give you that all important online presence for free.

Local Business Owners Need More Local Marketing Advice

18 percent of the local business owners surveyed say they feel that they need more advice about how to conduct local marketing for their shop, restaurant, or service business. Luckily, one small business directory has addressed that issue as well. It has created 3 free local marketing videos to show local shop owners how to conduct effective local marketing. You can view the first one on the link above and the others here and here.

Overall 76 percent of those surveyed say that they face some pretty intense local marketing challenges. They perceive the growth of online marketing to be a major factor in their difficulties, but in reality, if they understood the role of free small business directories more, they would realize that online marketing is the best thing to come along for local businesses in a very long time.

4 Reasons to Get a Free Small Business Listing Today

Local marketing and advertising tactics have changed a lot in the past couple of years. Local business owners have drastically changed the way they think about attracting new business to their local store, restaurant, or service business.

That’s because shoppers don’t act like it they used to when it comes to trying to find US local businesses. Instead of using the old school ways of finding local businesses like using the yellow pages or looking for advertisements in the local newspapers, people who want to find local businesses are now looking for them on the internet in digital form.

Where to Find Local Businesses Online

Most people assume you need to have a company website in order to be seen online, but the truth is, recent studies show that shoppers don’t look for individual websites when looking for local businesses. Instead, they turn to business directories.

Local directories are a new form of local marketing that is taking the local business owner world by storm. That’s because they allow shoppers to bypass the large search engines with all of their irrelevant results and get the local listings they’re looking for.

For example, if someone were looking a kitchen store in Los Angeles, California, they could go to one of the free business directories online and find the local business they were looking for without the hassle.

If you haven’t yet created your free small business listing, here are 4 great reasons why you might want to do so today.

You Need an Online Presence

Gone are the days when you can rely on the Yellow pages or other offline local marketing techniques to bring in new business. These days, shoppers—even local shoppers—look to the internet when they want to find US local businesses. But those business owners who can’t be found online are missing out on all this because if a business isn’t listed online, today’s shoppers aren’t even going to know they exist.

You Need Higher Search Engine Rankings

In addition to having an online presence, your business needs to show up high enough in the search engine rankings that online shoppers have a chance to find your local business. One of the best ways to accomplish this is to contribute fresh content to your small business listings on a regular basis. One local business directory, FindUsLocal.com, allows you to do this by giving you the option of leaving live comments about your store. For example, you can announce—in real time—when you’re having a flash sale, need to hire an employee, or receive new product in the store. Each time you leave a live comment, the search engine spiders will view it as new content, and that will improve your search engine rankings.

You Need to Interact with Your Community

Part of successfully running a local business is becoming a part of the community so you will gain their trust. And luckily, local business directories like FindUsLocal make that possible. Remember the ability to leave live comments that we talked about in the previous section? You can also use that feature to interact with the community. For instance, you can use it to let your customers know how much you appreciate your business, be the voice for a worthy local cause, or anything else that you want to see to let your community know you support them.

You Need Credibility

Finally, as a local business owner, you need credibility in order to gain consumers trust and business. And one of the best ways to gain it is to create a free small business listing on a quality local directory like FindUsLocal.

Remember, it’s important to only list your business on credible business directories so that credibility will be passed on to your business. Steer clear of those local listing directories that are mere databases filled with outdated and wrong information.

Do you see how free small business directories can benefit your local business by exposing it to online shoppers? If you haven’t created your local listing, don’t you think it’s time? Why not head over to FindUsLocal right now and create a free business listing. Who knows? New customers could walk in your door as a result of it by this afternoon!

What is a Free Business Directory—and How Can It Get Your Local Business Ranked?

Running a small, local business is nothing like it used to be. If you think back to just 10 years ago, you could still rely on offline marketing techniques like taking out a page in the Yellow Pages, running ads n the local newspaper, or making sure local customers had your printed coupons to tempt them to visit your store.

But these days, consumers bypass all those old school marketing techniques and instead look online when they want find US local businesses.

But what if you don’t have an online presence? Chances are, most of your competitors do and when consumers want to “find local businesses near me,” they’ll end up visiting their store.

Luckily, being found on the internet, isn’t all that difficult, and you don’t have to build an expensive website to do it. That’s because small business directories are the new online Yellow Pages, and their information is listed in digital format.

In other words, when people want information about local, small businesses they go to free business directories.

What is an Online Business Directory Website?

A free business directory USA is a special search engine that is designed to help consumers find local businesses near them. It operates just like a large search engine on the internet, but instead of including a lot of national chains, articles about the topic and other irrelevant websites in the listings, a free business directory only shows you the local stores in your area related to your search.

For example, if you search for a seafood restaurant in Los Angeles, California, you would only see the business names, addresses and phone numbers for local sea food restaurants. The same holds true when you search for local stores and services businesses. Want to find a plumber in San Antonio, Texas? Use free online business listings to find them. Need a dress shop for that perfect dress? Free business directories are you answer.

How to Create Free Online Business Listings for Your Local Business

If you want to be found online by all those local shoppers looking for a business just like yours, don’t worry. You won’t have to spend hours on the project, or a lot of money. In fact, quality business directories like FindUsLocal.com are free and you can create your local business listing in under 10 minutes.

Here’s how you do it:

  • Learn the difference between online databases and true local business directories. Not all business directories are the same, and in order to be the most benefits from listing on one, you need to make sure you choose the right ones. Look for a small business directory that offers more to consumers than just a database of outdated local listings. For example, FindUsLocal offers local news, a live stream of upcoming events, and the opportunity for both consumers and business owners to leave live comments on a local business listings. Sites like these keep shoppers come back time and time to the site to find local businesses.
  • Pay attention to the details in your free local listing. When you create your free small business listing, pay attention to the details and ensure that you enter them exactly the same on each and every business listing. If you don’t, it will confuse the search engine spiders and some of the local citations you create won’t be attributed to your business. In short, enter your business name, address, phone number, and website URL exactly the same on all the free small business listings you create.
  • Drive people to your local listing by adding new content. When you drive people to your local business listing, it makes the search engine spiders sit up and take notice—and that results in a higher search engine ranking. You can drive people to your local listing by asking them to leave reviews, or communicating with your community directly by leaving live comments on your business listing. The more you interact with your community, the higher your search engine rankings will be.

Free business directories are not only the best way to increase your search engine rankings, but they’re also a great way to digitally interact with the shoppers in your community. If you haven’t already created yours, why not head over to FindUsLocal.com now, and spend 10 minutes designing your free business listing?

Correcting Your Local Business Listings: Should You Do It Using Automation or Manually?

It seems that everyone is talking about the importance of free small business listings these day—and for good reason. A recent survey shows that 97 percent of people use them to find US local businesses when they want to visit a store or restaurant.

But one important key is creating and maintaining the free small business listings is getting them right the first time, and correcting them if they’re wrong. And thanks to technology, local business owners now have the choice about whether they use automation to correct small business listings or do it manually.

But First, Why is it Important to Correct Free Local Business Listings?

A local listing does more than tell shoppers where to find local businesses. It also helps the search engine spiders identify and then rank your local business in the search engine results. In short, the more local business directories you’re listed on, the higher in the search engine rankings you’ll appear.

But that’s true only if all of your small business listings match. For example, if the name of your local business is Main Street Clothing Company, and it’s listed on one local business directory as Main St. Clothing Company and another online small business directory as Main Street Clothing Co., those local citations will not be attributed to your business because the names aren’t exactly the same. The same is true for the business address, phone number, and website that appear in the local listing.

That’s why it’s so important to continuously search for new small business listings for your business and correct them as soon as you can.

Now, let’s get back to our topic. Should you correct free small business listings manually or use the automation that is available on the web?

Using Automation to Correct Local Business Listings

At first glance, it may appear that using automation is the right choice because it will save you tons of time. After all, if you have correct each of your local listings by hand, it could take hours. But there are definite drawbacks to using automation for this important job. Here are a few:

  • Software can’t spot the nuances. Any time you’re allowing a machine to preform a task, you run the risk of it not being able to spot the nuances, and in this case, that could lead to big trouble. For example, some businesses have more than one phone number and need to list them both so that consumers can call the right number. But automated software, such as Yext, doesn’t allow for that. It will look for only 1 phone number, and if you happen to be a local business owner who has more than that, it will flag your local listings as incorrect.
  • Your fixes are temporary. If you sign up to have an automated system fix all of the inconsistencies in your local businesses and then come to the end of the contract and decide not to renew it, guess what happens? All those fixes it made to your small business listings will revert back to the pre-corrected condition. That’s right, when you use an automated system, you sign up for life, otherwise the fixes are only temporary.

Correcting Your Free Local Listings Manually

Your other option is to correct each of your local business listings manually. While this may seem like a lot of work, the benefits you’ll reap are well worth it. For example, once each and every local listing is corrected, the search engine spiders will attribute them all to your local business—and that will increase your search engine rankings.

What’s more, as you look at your business listings, you’ll be able to spot any information gaps, outdated information, or other areas that need immediate attention. Only you, or one of your employees, know your business well enough to optimize your local business listings the right way.

Free small business listings are the face of the future for local business marketing. But in order to make the most of these free and effective marketing tools, you’ll need to make sure they are updated, corrected, and optimized on a routine basis.

3 Astonishing Facts You Need to Know About Small Business Listings

Do you run a small local business? If so, how are things going for you? Do you have new customers constantly walking through the doors, or are your sales lagging and you’re wondering how long you’ll be able to keep the doors open?

Here’s the thing: every local business owner falls into one of these 2 categories. Either they have plenty of new customers to keep the business running, or they rely on existing customers and eventually have to close their doors. Which category do you fall into?

If your new customer base isn’t what it should be, it could be cured with something as simple as creating a free business listing online. Local business directories are the way today’s consumers look for US local businesses, and if yours can’t be found there, chances are you don’t have many new customers walking through your doors.

Luckily, free business listings are easy to create. Just go to an online local business directory like FindUsLocal.com and list your business there. Then, local shoppers who look online for US local businesses can find yours.

Here are 5 facts you need to know about free small business listings that will help you create the most effective one.

People Use Online Business Directories to Find US Local Businesses

A recent study shows that 97 percent of Americans use free small business directories when they want to find local businesses. Think about it,that means that almost every single person looking for local businesses turns to the handy local directories to find the shops and restaurants they want to visit. Can you see why more customers aren’t visiting your shop if you haven’t already created your free local listing?

Shoppers Require Online Reviews for Credibility

Online reviews have become so popular in the minds of today’s consumers that most of them won’t even consider visiting a local business unless they’ve first read some good reviews about it. In fact, 85 percent of people say they trust online reviews just as much as they trust a personal recommendation from a friend. And good reviews are important. Seventy-three percent of people say that in order to visit a local business, it must have at least a 4 star rating. The number of reviews you have is important as well. Most shoppers like to read about 7 reviews before making a decision, which is up from 6 reviews from last year’s survey.

Consumers Prefer Local Listings to Company Websites

A surprising fact discovered in the survey is what people do after reading positive reviews about a local business. In the past, the next step would be to go the business’ website, but most people aren’t doing that anymore. The next step for the online shoppers who read positive reviews about a business is to either contact the business by phone or visit it in person. Last year, 54 percent of people would go to the company website after reading positive reviews, but this year, only 37 percent say they would do the same. In addition, the percentage of people who will visit the shop after reading the good reviews has risen by 10 percent.

As you can see, having a free small business listing is one the most important local marketing actions you can take in order to bring in new business. If you haven’t already created yours, visit FindUsLocal.com and get started. It will only take a few minutes and may result in new customers walking into your store today.

Answered: How Can I Promote My Business for Free?

It’s an exciting time for local business owners because never before in our nation’s history has it been so easy to get your business name in front of local consumers. But if you’re still relying on the old-school methods of the past, you should know that you’re missing out on a lot of potential new business. A lot.

In fact, a recent survey shows just how much. The survey was conducted by BrightLocal and here are some of the key takeaways that, as a small, local business owner, you need to know.

If You Don’t Have a Free Small Business Listing, Today’s Consumers Can’t Find You

One of the most shocking statistics from the survey has a lot of people rushing to create local business listings on free small business directories. That’s because the survey found that 97 percent of consumers look for local businesses online. That’s a 6 percent increase over 2016, the year before. In other words, almost everyone who tries to find US local businesses turns to the internet to do so. What’s more, of that 97 percent, 12 percent of them say that find local businesses online every single day of the year. What does that mean for your business if you don’t have a free business listing?

You Need Online Reviews for Your Local Business

Another takeaway from the survey highlights the importance of online reviews. It turns out that 85 percent of shoppers trust online reviews as much as they do a personal recommendation from a friend or family member. And when a local business owner has positive reviews, it makes 73 percent of consumers trust that business even more. And when online reviews are left using the star rating system, 49 percent of shoppers need at least a 4 star rating before they will visit a business.

And if you’ve ever thought about not responding to your online reviews, the survey results just may change your mind. It turns out that 30 percent of consumers consider whether or not a local business owner responds to reviews as a key factor in how they will judge the worthiness of a business.

How to do you get online reviews for a local business? The survey gives us some insight into that, too. It seems that 69 percent of people have left reviews for a local business, but 74 percent of them were asked to do so. That means you should ask every customer who makes a purchase from your local business to leave a review on your free business listing.

And finally, today’s consumers read an average of 7 reviews before deciding whether or not to visit a local business, which is up from an average of 6 reviews the year before.

Here’s How to Get Free Business Listings and Bring in New Customers

Reading the above statistics ought to get your attention and make you think if you haven’t yet set up free business listing on a small local business directory. If you fall into this category, here are the steps you need to take to create your own free local business listing.

  • Choose Your online business directory carefully. You have a lot of choices when it comes to free business directories, but you’ll need to list your local business with one that is credible in the eyes of search engines like Google and Bing. For example, FindUsLocal.com is a local directory that works hard to give consumers a lot of features that makes them want to visit the site time and time_ again.
  • Pay attention to details when creating your free business listing. How you enter the details about your business makes a huge difference to your search engine rankings. For example, when you enter your NAP+W’s, which stands for name, address, phone number and website, you need to enter the information exactly the same on every free business listing you create. If you don’t, the search engine spiders won’t recognize it as yours and that will be one less local citation you have.
  • Ask customers to leave reviews. As you can see from the above survey results, it’s important to get as many positive online reviews as you can. And remember, a large majority of consumers leave online reviews after they’re asked to. Be sure to ask everyone who visits your local store to leave a review on your local business listing to help build up those all-important reviews.

Having free local listings is one of the most important aspects to your local marketing campaign. When asking yourself, where can I promote my business for free, think about online small business directories. And if you haven’t yet taken this important local advertising step, be sure to head over to FindUsLocal.com and get your free local listing right now.

Can Spring Shoppers Find Your Local Business?

It’s almost spring, that time of year when local shoppers begin the hunt for new household goods, clothes, and other things. Spring is a time of new beginnings and most experts agree that it creates a feeling of wanting to “start over” in a lot of people, and of course, they need to make purchases in order to do that.

That’s why so many local business owners put a lot of money into local advertising for those spring shoppers. They want to draw them in their doors, because let’s face it, if you don’t have new customers walking into your local store, you aren’t likely to cash in on the spring shopping that is about to get underway.

How can New Customers Find My Local Store?

In the past, all local business owners had to do was take out an ad in the local phone book or run ads in the community newspaper. That’s where people looked when trying to find US local businesses, but those days are gone. For example, how many people do you know who store the phone book anymore? It’s big, bulky and takes up a lot of space, and most people throw it out as soon as they get it. And the local newspaper? The days of sitting at the kitchen table and reading the newspaper are over—people now look online for their news.

So what does all of this mean for local business owners? It means they have to make sure their local shop, service business or restaurant can be found where today’s’ consumers look for US local businesses. And they look for them online.

How Can My Local Store Be Found Online?

You have two options when it comes to being found online by today’s shoppers. And while of these options will help bring in new customers only one of them is more effective—and free. Here are the two ways to help find more business for a local store.

  • Create a company website. It’s 2018, and the reigning wisdom is that every business owner should have a website so that people can find their local business, but is that really true? It may have been great advice a few years ago, but once again, consumer behavior has changed and that isn’t the best solution anymore. In addition, it takes a lot of time and costs a lot of money to create a website that is user friendly, findable, and will hold the attention of today’s shoppers. So if creating a company website isn’t the answer, what is? We’ll talk about the right solution below.
  • Create a free small business listing. When a shopper wants to find US local businesses, the first thing they do is whip out their smartphone, tablet, or laptop and log onto a free small business directory. These local business directories have taken the place of the large search engines when it comes to finding US local businesses because they make it easier for shoppers to find the local businesses they’re looking for. But in order to be found there, you have to create a small business listing. We’ll take a look at how to do that below.

How to Create a Free Small Business Listing

Luckily, the most effective way of bringing in more local business is not only free, but it’s simple to do and won’t take up a lot of your time. To create free online business listings, simply log onto a quality free business directory usa like FindUsLocal.com and use the search bar to look for your business. You will most likely find it there because most free business directories keep a list of all the local businesses in a database.

Once you find your local business, claim it and then fill in as many details as you can about it. Be sure to include all the information you can, such as store hours and product offerings, because shoppers use these listings to decide which local business they will visit.

Once you created your free online business listings, drive traffic to them by including the URL on your business cards, and asking your current customers to leave online reviews for you there. The search engine spiders like to see a lot of activity on small business listings, and reward that activity with higher placement in the search engine results.

Spring is coming and local shoppers will be looking for a business like yours to visit. Will they find your business on business listing sites, or will they find your competitors? If you aren’t sure, head on over to FindUsLocal now and create your free small local business listing now!

Why You Won’t Succeed Without a Free Small Business Listing

Times have changed in the world of local business marketing, and only those who keep up with the times will continue to attract new customers. In fact, according to most experts, local business owners who haven’t yet created an online presence with a free small business listing are likely hurting for new business.

But before you just run out and create an online presence, let’s talk about some of the changes in local marketing techniques that work with today’s tech savvy consumers.

You Probably Don’t Need a Website

You probably had to read that headline twice, didn’t you? But the truth is, company websites are still a necessity for large companies, or those who do most of their business online, but for local businesses? Not so much. In fact, all you really need to be found online is a small presence where people can find your business name, address, phone number, and a few other details like your shop hours and online reviews. And you certainly don’t need to spend a lot of money to get those details in front of consumers.

A Free Small Business Directory Will Serve You Better

Instead of paying thousands of dollars and spending a lot of time putting together a company website, why not just create a free small business listing on a credible local business directory like FindUsLocal.com? It’s simple, free, and recent studies show that 1 out of every 2 people use them to find US local businesses these days.

How to Create a Free Local Listing

Now that you understand the importance of being found online—and the best way to get there—let’s talk about how to create your free local listing so that all those shoppers can find your local business. Here are the steps you need to take.

Choose a Credible Free Small Business Directory

Don’t just list your business on any local directory. It’s important that your small business listing appear on local directories that are considered credible in the eyes of the major search engines. You see, some local directories are nothing more than databases filled with old and outdated small business information. The search engines don’t give these local directories much credence—or rankings in the search engine rankings.

Instead, look for a quality small business directory like FindUsLocal.com. On it, shoppers will not only find local business listings but also a live stream of local events near them, online reviews, and even a way to read and leave live comments about any business listed on the site. It’s a step above the databases, and that’s why the large search engines consider it a credible source for free small business listings.

Make Sure to List Your Local Business Correctly

It’s not widely known, but did you know that if you create multiple small business listings and there is even one letter or number off, the search engine spiders won’t know it’s the same business? It’s true, and remember, your goal is to list your local shop on as many quality small business directories as you can and a mistake like this could cost you in the search engine rankings.

Avoid this mistake by creating a master list of your business name, address, phone number and website address if you have one, and then following it to a T every time you create a new free local listing.

Ask Your Customers to Leave Reviews on Your Small Business Listing

Finally, it’s important to ask your customers to leave reviews for your business on your free local listing. That’s important for 2 reasons. First, the more reviews you have, the higher up in the search engine rankings you’ll appear. And secondly, most of today’s shoppers won’t even consider doing business with a local shop or restaurant until they’ve first read some positive reviews about it.

Being found online is the most important local marketing technique to concentrate on if you want to persuade new customers to walk through the door. And truthfully, the only way to get that new business is if your local store can be found online. Don’t put off this most important part of your local marketing plan. Head on over to FindUsLocal.com now so all those shoppers can find your local store online.

Can Shoppers Find Your Local Business?

Remember the days when all you had to do to pull in local customers was run an ad in the Yellow Pages or an occasional ad in the community newspaper? If you were ambitious you may have held local classes to introduce yourself as the area expert or bought space in those blue mail out coupon books that were so popular for a while. But as you probably already know, none of those local marketing techniques will work to bring in new customers to your store anymore.

In fact, those local shop owners who still rely on those methods don’t do very well in sales. That’s because today’s shoppers don’t look locally to find US local businesses—they look online.

Why Do Local Shoppers Search for Local Businesses Online?

At first glance, it seems a little strange, doesn’t it? After all, it would easy to pull out the local phone book when trying to find local businesses but compared to finding them on a local business directory, it’s not.

That’s why local shop owners who make sure shoppers can find them online do so well.

How Can Local Businesses Be Found Online?

Of all the local business marketing techniques, there is one that stands out as both the easiest and the most effective: creating a local business listing in a quality free small business directory like FindUsLocal.com. And the great news is that it’s not hard or time-consuming to create one of these local listings. Here is an easy 3-step guide to help you create yours today.

  • Decide which free small business directory you will list your business on.While you have many choices, if you want the best results you should choose a credible small business directory to list your local business on. Why? Because Google and the other large search engines don’t view all local directories the same. Some of them are considered credible, while others are not. When you list your business on a credible online business directory, the large search engines will sit up and take notice—and that will help in your search engine rankings.
  • Enter your details the same on every local listing you create.The large search engines employ bot, also known as search engine spiders, to crawl the web and look for local citations. The more credible citations a local business has, the higher in the search engine rankings it will be. Free small business listings are a great way to get these local citations, but in order to be effective, they all have to match. For example, your business name, address, phone number, and website address need to match down to the tiniest detail—otherwise the bots won’t recognize them as belonging to the same local business.
  • Ask customers to leave online reviews for your local business. Finally, those same search engine bots reward local business listings that have a lot of fresh content added to them, and the best way to do that is to ask your customers to visit your small business listing and leave an online review for your business. Every time a customer leaves a review, it catches the attention of a search engine bot, and you know what that means—higher rankings for your local business.

It’ important that today’s tech savvy shoppers can find your local business. If you don’t have an online presence, chances are they are going to visit one of your competitors that does.  Don’t lose out on potential business, but instead take the easy step of creating a free small business listing so that all those shoppers can find your local shop. Just head on over to FindUsLocal.com and search for your business. Then claim it, fill in the details and start asking customers to go there and leave online reviews. Soon, you’ll begin to wonder where all the new customers are coming from!