Whether you know it or not, your small business is likely listed on multiple local business directories. Many of these directories compile a list of all small businesses in an area and then display that list of local businesses for consumers when they want to find a local business.
But did you know that the information listed about your business may not be true? That’s important because a recent survey found that 80 percent of consumers lose confidence in a local business if their listing contains inaccurate information.
Can you see why it’s so important that you create and maintain your local business listings? And even more important is knowing where your business is listed. Some sites are little more than large, inaccurate business directories, and most consumers stay away from them. But others, like FindUsLocal.com, put a lot of effort into making sure consumers are comfortable on the site and can find all of the information they’re looking for.
Those are the sites you need to pay attention to and make sure your business listing information is correct.
So, what makes a great local business listing? Turns out, most consumers look for the same things when they try to find local businesses, and that makes it easy to determine exactly what should be in your local business listing.
Here’s a guide to help you create your ideal business listing.
Start with the Basics
When it comes to the basics of your online business listing, the basics are what’s most important. Consumers need the bare facts about your business before they decide whether or not they will visit your shop, restaurant, or service business.
In fact, it’s estimated that local business owners lose about $10.3 billion a year because of faulty information recorded in local business listings.
Here are what consumers are looking for you in your business listing.
Sounds simple, right? But the truth is that it’s easy to mix up businesses when the name isn’t correct in a local listing. The name you use in your local listing should be the exact same name as the name on your signage. If it’s not, it could cause potential customers to drive right by your business and end up in someone else’s shop.
Your Business Address
Another mistake made by small business owners is giving confusing information about their business address. For instance, if you have an address for your clerical staff and another one for the shop consumers use, make sure you provide the address for consumers.
If you own a service business, you don’t have to provide an exact location, but you should clarify which zip code or geographical area you service.
Your Business Phone Number
Many business owners have multiple phone numbers, and it’s mistake to include numbers that aren’t consumer-related. If you have multiple numbers, include the local store number in your business listing to avoid confusion.
Your Website Address
If you have a website, it’s important that you link to the right page on your local business listing. Depending on what type of business you operate, you could link to your pricing page, your product or inventory page, the contact page, or any other that your potential customers would likely want to see.
The category is a word or phrase that most people would identify with your business. For instance, if you run an Italian restaurant, “restaurant” is your category. Likewise, “auto repair” would be the category for a mechanic.
Choosing the right category is key to allowing potential customers to find your business.
Remember we told that you 80 percent of consumers lose confidence in a business with inaccurate information? Listing the wrong hours in your local business listing a great example of that. Many consumers will look at the hours listed in a local directory and then drive to that business. If the hours aren’t correct, it will leave a bad taste in the mouth of the consumer for that business.
Not only is it imperative that your hours are properly listed on a local business directory, but it’s also important that your holiday hours are included!
Your Business Description
When describing your business, you have two jobs: telling the consumer what your business is all about and using keywords that will help them find the listing. Think of your business description as an elevator pitch. What do you want potential customers to know about your business when deciding whether or not to visit it? Do you make the best lobster bisque in town? Use it in your description. Do you sell unique, difficult to find furniture? That’s the basis of your description.
But take it one step further and use keywords that people would use to find a business like yours. “Best lobster bisque” and “unique furniture” are just two examples.
Add Some Visuals
If possible, you should include some photos of your business. Start by adding an exterior photo of your shop or restaurant so consumers can identify it when they drive to it. Next, add some unique photos that highlight the features of your business.
That could include a photo of a dining room, window displays, your bestselling dishes, mannequins dressed in the latest arrivals, and anything else that could cause consumers to become excited about visiting your store or eatery.
Potential customers want to know what you bring to the table when deciding whether or not to visit your business, and talking about the extras you offer could push them over the edge and toward your shop. For instance, do you offer free coffee for shoppers? No charge WIFI? Car loading assistance for heavy items? Free delivery? Last-minute reservations? Tell them!
Beef Up Your Reviews
Most local business listings have at least a few reviews, but your job as a small business owner is to beef up those reviews to attract even more customers. One way to do that is to respond to all of your reviews. If someone leaves your business a great review, thank them for it! And if another person leaves a bad or mediocre review, address it in a response and tell them that you will take their feedback into consideration. (Never get defensive in your response, and never blame the customer!)
You can also encourage your regular customers to leave reviews on your FindUsLocal.com review section. Remember, most consumers trust local reviews more than recommendations from friends and family, so the more you have, the more new business you will bring in!
Are You Ready to Create Your Free Local Business Listing?
If you haven’t already gone to FindUsLocal.com and created your free local business listing, what you waiting for? FindUsLocal is one of the premier local business directories and there is a reason that consumers consistently use it to find local businesses.
Why not head over there now and get in with the crowd of savvy business owners who are listed there?