If you run a local business, chances are that you’ve undergone a huge change in the past few years. While it was once easy to get customers in your door, that’s no longer true. In fact, without local business directories, local stores and shops wouldn’t have a chance to survive—much less thrive.
But there is a lot of confusion surround local business directories. What are they, exactly and how does a local shop owner use them to their advantage? Those are all great questions. We’re going to answer everything you ever wanted to know about local business directories in this comprehensive guide.
Are you ready? Follow along as we show you how to use free local business listings to transform the way you market your local business to consumers. We’re not talking about a run of the mill explanation article that regurgitates common knowledge. In this guide, we’re going to expose the secrets only known to industry insiders and those who run professional marketing campaigns.
Are you ready to take a deep dive into how to advertise a local business online?
Let’s get started.
But First, Why Are Local Business Directories Necessary?
To understand why local business directories are necessary, you need to go back a couple of decades. In the past, when someone wanted to find a business phone number, they opened the Yellow Pages. This large book contained all of the local phone numbers for both residential houses and businesses. And it was the place to look when trying to find local businesses.
But those businesses had to pay top dollar if they wanted an ad in the Yellow Pages that would catch consumer’s attention. Some of those ads ran thousands of dollars. But if a business wanted to attract new customers, they had no choice but to pay the expensive prices and run ads.
Here’s an old Yellow Pages ad to add some humor to your day:
But then came the internet. Instead of opening the Yellow Pages, people began to look online when they wanted to find a business. The problem was, many local businesses didn’t have a website. And that caused a lot of consumers to begin shopping at online stores.
And the local business owners felt it.
Soon, most local businesses set up websites so consumers could find their business. But unfortunately, not many of them understood how to create a website that wouldn’t’ get lost in the maze of all the others.
And so local businesses began to fail because they didn’t understand online marketing.
But then came along local business directories.
How Local Business Directories Saved the Day
Local business owners quickly realized that the Yellow Pages had become a huge waste of money. So, instead of running ads in it, they began handing over thousands of dollars to online marketers. Unfortunately, those online marketers didn’t have a good solution for local businesses. At that point, the internet only drove business to online stores.
But then some smart marketing person realized that consumers still wanted to find local businesses. So, they created the first local business directory.
And retail stores haven’t looked back since.
An online local business directory operates just like the Yellow Pages, with a few important distinctions. They are:
- Local business directories are free — it’s no longer necessary to pay thousands of dollars to get your business seen.
- Local business directories are easy to use — anyone can set up a free local business listing.
- Local business directories don’t carry any listings for online businesses — all consumers see are the local businesses in their area.
How Do Local Business Directories Help Drive Consumers to Local Shops?
By now, you’re probably thinking that a local business can’t thrive in the marketplace unless they have a free local business listing on a local business directory. And you’re right. You see, while it was common for those in the past to use the Yellow Pages, today’s consumers almost always use local business directories when they want to find local businesses. In fact, studies show that almost 100 percent of them do.
And local business directories use something called GEO location technology to make it even easier for consumers to find the local businesses they want. Here’s how it works: When a consumer logs onto a local business directory, the software on the site automatically pinpoints their location. Then, instead of making the visitor tell the site where they are, it automatically shows them a home page that is based on their local area.
Keep in mind that not all local business directories use this cutting edge technology. Only credible sites like FindUsLocal.com offer this convenience to its visitors.
Once the consumer is the on the site, they enter the type of business they’re looking for in the search bar. Then, almost like magic, a list appears that shows them all of the related businesses in their area.
For instance, if they were looking for local banks in San Antonio, Texas, the local business directory search engine would pull up a list of all the banks located in that city. The consumers would have at their fingertips all they needed to go to the local bank. The listing would show them the address and phone number of the bank, along with any other information they might need. And it works this way for all type of local businesses.
Can you see how local business directories are a game-changer for local business owners?
Quick! How Do I Set Up My Free Local Business Listing?
After reading this guide about local marketing and local business directories, it’s only natural that you would want to learn how to set up your free local business listing. And while you may think that it’s complicated, the truth is that anyone can do it.
Simply follow the steps outlined below, and soon, consumers will be finding your free local business listing. And once they find it, they’ll use it to drive to your shop or restaurant and do business with you. Isn’t that better than spending thousands of dollars to pay someone to reach out to consumers?
We thought so, too.
Watch this quick video to learn why local business directories are so important to local businesses:
Start By Finding Yourself
Your first step in the process is to go to a credible local business directory like FindUsLocal.com and find your business name. You may be surprised that it already exists on local business directories, but it does. These directories index every business in the country. But if you don’t find them and update your information, consumers could get the wrong phone number or address and that will hurt your brand.
Now, Update the Details
So, after you find your company, claim it as the business owner. This will allow you to make any necessary changes to the information on your business listing. Once you’ve claimed your listing look over it and delete any incorrect information. Now, fill in all the details about your business. You should include—at a minimum—your business name, address, phone number, fax number, website address, store hours, and anything else people need to know to successfully find your business. For instance, if you have an unusual parking circumstance, let them know in the details of your local business listing.
The more information you upload, the more consumers will have to decide whether or not to visit your business. For instance, if you run a local restaurant, try including some of your most well-loved dishes so visitors can see what kind of food you offer. And if you run a local dress shop, include the brands you carry.
Local Business Directories Are the Key to Your Success
As you can see, local marketing is based on local business directories. The Yellow Pages are obsolete, and that’s why savvy business owners ensure that consumers can find them in local business directories. If you haven’t already set up your free local business listing, what are you waiting for? Consumers are out there looking for local businesses, and if they can’t find yours, they will visit your competitors.
Why not go to FindUsLocal.com now and set up your free local business listing? It will only take about ten minutes and the rewards you reap from this simple action will continue to roll in for years. Go there now!