Tag Archives: local business

Do You Have a Local Business Listing? If Not, Here’s What You’re Missing

If you run a local business, you have to do all you can to bring new customers through your door. After all, a small business can’t successfully operate unless it has a constant new flow of new business. But the world has changed. So, how do local business owners get new business? By creating a USA business listing on a credible local business directory.

What’s Changed in Local Marketing?

Ah, the difference a decade makes. A mere ten years ago, local business owners could rely on the marketing tactics they’ve come to rely on over the years. For instance, the Yellow Pages were still in use in some areas of the country. Also, some people still looked to their local newspapers for coupons they wanted to use at the local businesses in their area.

But all that has changed.

Now, when people want to find US local businesses, they go online to do it. But the way they find local businesses online has even changed.

Big and Small Search Engines

When it became popular to find local businesses by using a search engine, most people used large search engines to find those local shops. But they quickly became frustrated. That’s because the large search engines aren’t great at identifying and showing local businesses. Instead, searchers would input a keyword to find a local business and instead of finding the shop or restaurant they needed, they would get a list of national chains, articles about the topic, and other nonsensical things.

There had to be a better way.

And that’s when local business directories were invented.

What is a Local Business Directory?

A local business directory operates just like the larger search engines—with one exception: instead of retrieving national results, it only retrieves results from a specific area. For instance, if you wanted to find a Mexican food restaurant in Los Angeles, California, and you look on a large search engine, you would see all kinds of things in the results. You would find national Mexican food chains, recipes for Mexican food, and perhaps a local restaurant thrown in there somewhere. But you definitely wouldn’t find a list of all the local Mexican food restaurants in your area.

But if you used a local business directory, your results would be quite different. After entering the keyword “Mexican food restaurant” into a local business directory search bar, you would find a list of all the Mexican food restaurants in your local area.

Pretty cool, huh?

How Do Shoppers Use Local Business Directories?

Before we explain why your shop or restaurant needs to be on a local business directory, let’s talk about how shoppers use these handy tools to find local businesses. First, they log onto a credible business directory like FindUsLocal.com.

It’s true that there are many local business directories to choose from, but most people use the business directories that provide them with the most benefits. And FindUsLocal does just that. When shoppers log onto this business directory, they will instantly see a customized home page that is designed around the area they are logging on from. For instance, if they logged on from Los Angeles, they would see a home page that had the following features:

  • Local news from the area
  • A list of local theatre events
  • A list of local sporting events
  • A list of all local concert events
  • A way to instantly purchase tickets to any local event
  • The local weather
  • Live comments from local business owners
  • Online reviews from other people in the area about various local businesses

Once they’re on the home page, shoppers can use the search bar in the top right-hand corner of the website to find local businesses. All they have to do is type in the keyword so the local business directory can give them the results they’re looking for.

For instance, if they want to find a local auto repair shop, they would simply type “auto repair” into the search bar, and they would see all of the local auto repair shops in their local area in the results. No articles about auto repair and no national chains that aren’t even in their area.

Why Local Business Directories Should Be Part of Your Local Marketing Campaign

As a local business owner, you know you have to work hard to create a marketing campaign that brings in a constant stream of new business. And for it to be successful, you need to concentrate on the areas that consumers use to find local businesses.

For instance, did you know that almost 100 percent of consumers use local business directories to find local businesses? It’s true. These innovative business directories have taken the place of all the old school methods of finding local shops and restaurants.

Here’s a quick video that shows the importance of local business directories:

Here are some other reasons why you should use local business directories to get the word out about your local business.

It’s Where the Customers Are

In order to get the most new customers you can, you should “hang out” where they do. In other words, new customers can’t find your local business unless you hang out where they can find you. And we’ve already determined that when people want to find local businesses, they turn to local business directories to do it.

And that’s why you should ensure that your business can be found on one of them.

But just any local business directory won’t do. The truth is that there are plenty of local business directories that exist—but shoppers don’t use them. That’s because they contain outdated information or are difficult to navigate. And that’s why you should create your business listing on a credible business directory like FindUsLocal.com.

You Need Online Reviews

Another great reason to create your free local business listing is that it gives your customers the ideal place to leave those all-important online reviews. Today’s consumers insist on reading a few good online reviews before deciding whether or not to visit a local business. And if you can give them a place to find those reviews, you’ll be one step ahead of the game.

You Need an Online Presence

Another great reason to create your free local business listing is that it gives your local shop or restaurant an online presence without the expense of a website. That’s important in today’s culture because most shoppers don’t consider a business legitimate unless they have some sort of presence online.

How to Create Your Free Local Business Listing

Now that you understand the importance of creating your local business listing, let’s talk about how to do it. Here are the easy steps you should take:

  • Go to FindUsLocal.com.
  • Look for the “Add My Business” button on the top right area of the page. Click on it.
  • Fill in all the blanks with information about your business. Enter as much information as you can. Remember, the more information you provide to shoppers, the more likely they are to visit your shop)
  • Ask your current customers to leave reviews on your new local business listing.

Are You Ready to Build New Business?

If the answer to that question is yes, then it’s time to head on over to FindUsLocal.com and set up your local business listing. It’s free and only takes about ten minutes to do. What are you waiting for? New customers may be there looking for a business like yours as you’re reading this!

Local Business Marketing in the Online Age

If you own a local shop, chances are you’ve noticed a big change in how customers find your business. In the past, you could run a Yellow Pages ad, send out mailings to draw in new business, or run coupons in the local newspaper. None of those techniques have worked since the dawn of the internet. Luckily, local business directories have filled in the gap.

Why Is It So Difficult to Get Consumer’s Attention?

Things used to be easier, didn’t they? But these days, we’re constantly surrounded by 24 hour news, nonstop activities for us and our kids, and most of us work full time jobs in addition to all of that. It can be exhausting.

That’s why so many people turn to the internet. They can simply find a website they like, order products with a click of the mouse, and then sit back and wait for those products to appear at their door. It’s fast, easy, and online stores are booming because of the convenience.

And if you listen to the doomsayers, you’ll hear that the internet has killed the retail business.

But that’s not necessarily true.

People Like to Shop

As easy as buying things online is, studies show that people still enjoy stopping in their local shops and buying things. Why? There are many reasons.

Here are a few.

Touchy, feely

If you’re going to buy a new shirt, don’t you want to touch it and feel the fabric? The same goes for a pair of earrings, that new wheelbarrow, or the new pillow for your bed. So many people buy things online and then have to return them because what they received isn’t what they expected.

And that goes for color options, too. When is the last time you tried to buy something from an online shop and had to select a color? You probably quickly learned that the way a color looks online is not how it looks in person. In fact, that red you see online may turn up maroon once the product reaches you.

And those are just a few of the many reasons why people like to buy from their local shops.

Money talks

Another reason people like to go to their local shops to make purchases is that frequently, they can save money. Because here’s the deal: just because something is sold online, that doesn’t’ mean it’s less expensive.

In fact, by the time you add in shipping, consumers often pay more for something than they would have if they’d gone to a local store. Many online retailers now offer free shipping to overcome this barrier to sales. But let’s be honest — consumers are smart. Most of them understand that if they’re getting free shipping on an online good, that shipping charge is built into the sales price.

So, get the idea out of your head that shopping online is less expensive. That’s just something the online retailers have attempted to drill into people’s minds.

Return this

One of the biggest reasons why people prefer to shop locally has to do with returns. We all make mistakes when shopping, and if we have to return something to an online store, the process can be overwhelming. For instance, you will have to get in touch with the online store’s customer service department and ask for return instructions.  This can take some time, depending on the store. Next, you will probably have to repackage the item, address it to the online store and take it to the post office. Some online stores offer to pay for returns, while many of them don’t. So, you may have to spend extra money to return the item.

Next, you will have to wait for the online store to receive the product and credit you for the sale. Again, this can take some time.

But when you need to return an item to a local shop, things are easier. Many stores only require that you save your receipt and bring back the item.

Of course, there are always exceptions to the rule:

People need people

Finally, another reason why people like to shop locally is that they get to interact with people. Consumers spend so much of their day online at work, when reading the news, or doing other fun activities. And all that online time results in a lack of human interaction.

But when they shop locally, they talk to people, get other’s opinions about their purchases, and even form relationships with the sales staff. None of this is possible when shopping online.

As you can see, there are many reasons why consumers like to shop at local stores. And local business directories can help these consumers find the right store for them. But before we talk about that, let’s take a look at the elephant in the room: the retail Armageddon.

What About the Retail Armageddon?

The death of retail stores has been all over the news lately. Experts are speculating that local shopping is dead, and soon, people will buy everything they need from online stores. Amazon and other large retailers are surely doing all they can to ensure that comes true.

But not all consumers are okay with that plan.

The truth is that yes, many local stores are closing across the nation. But let’s take a closer look at what’s going on.

Many of the stores that are closing also have online shops associated with them. In those instances, their customers may have decided that buying from them online was preferable to driving to the store. After all, many of these big box businesses don’t hire employees that can match the customer service skills and friendliness that family run local businesses do.

And we can’t ignore the fact that some of the stores that are closing simply don’t offer the goods or selection that today’s consumers want.

But perhaps the biggest thing we should look at is local marketing. In other words, did the closing stores employ local business directories in their local marketing efforts?

What Are Local Directories?

We’ve established that the Yellow Pages is dead. And people no longer look for coupons in their newspapers or check their mail for announcements about store openings. But one thing they do is look online when they want to make a purchase.

And almost 100 percent of them go to local business directories to find the stores they shop in.

The New Yellow Pages

Local business directories are the Yellow Pages of the internet. It’s the place where people go when they want to find local businesses or restaurants. And if a business can’t be found on local business directories, most consumers will never even know they exist.

Chances are, all those stores that are closing don’t have a business listing on any local business directories.

Here’s a short video that shows you exactly how local business directories work:

How to Get Your Listing on Local Business Directories

If you’re a consumer, you already know how to find local businesses on a local directory. You simply log on to the directory and type a keyword in the directory’s search bar. You can look for specialty shops, bakeries, restaurants, car repair shops, clothing stores, or any other local business you want to find.

But if you own a local business, you need to know how to create a free business listing on local business directories.

Here’s how to do it:

Yes, it’s mine!

Your first step in the process is to search for your business on the local business directory and then claim it as the owner. This will give you the right to take the next steps in the process.

Give them what they want

Consumers use local business directories to get the information they need to decide whether or not to visit a business. To make that decision, they need the business’ name, address, phone number, hours of operation, and anything that makes that business unique. For instance, if you own a local coffee shop, you might list the fresh pastries you offer or provide a list of your coffee flavors.

Fill in as many details as you can. The more you offer, the better your chances that customers will come to your store.

Tell us how you feel

Finally, once you’ve created your free listing on local business directories, it’s time to get some reviews. Customers trust reviews, and the more you have, the harder your local business listing will work for you. Ask happy customers to leave a review at every check out transaction.

Here is one more short video that walks you through the process:

Local Business Directories Are the New Marketing Tool

If you want to prosper and not just survive, you need to think like today’s consumers when it comes to local marketing. They aren’t looking in the same places anymore, and that’s why you need to take your marketing efforts online.

If you haven’t already set up your free local listing on local business directories, what are you waiting for? The time to bring new customers into your shop is now!