Today approximately 82 percent of local businesses own a company website. It is evident that more businesses are understanding the importance of having an online presence, but it also means there is an incredible amount of competition in the online space.
Online marketing is no longer about just having a website with a basic run down of your business, the services or products you offer and the company contact details. Firstly people have to find you, the website has to be easy to use and function on all devices and you have to be creating fresh, engaging content before you can even make a dent in the online community. If you want to stand out in front of your competitors, generate more traffic and convert those online visitors into profit, then avoiding these top 4 mistakes will help you get started.
1. They Do Not Have a Complete Directory Submission
Gone are the days of simply submitting your business details in the yellow pages which is distributed to everyone’s doorstep. The internet is the primary tool for people to search for businesses and when attracting new clientele can be a challenge to any local business it is essential for your company’s success to be listed on the many popular directories.
Inserting a business listing with your company details on the major listing sites is easy to do to, but it is important you are listed in every directory possible particularly the top listing websites such as Google, Bing, Yahoo, Foursquare, Merchant Circle and Yellowbook to capture a larger audience. If your business is not listed, it won’t come up in a search and you will be missing out on a great opportunity of establishing an online presence.
2. They Do Not Have a Mobile Website
Over 90 percent of American adults today own a mobile phone and of that 90 percent, 95 percent of smartphone users use their phone to look up local information. Creating a website that is optimised for mobile and tablet viewing is vital in ensuring you can capture the attention of potential customers. If a visitor to your website can’t find out about your products or services on a mobile device, they will not wait until they have reached a computer to take another look, instead they will find a competitor who can meet their needs right at that moment.
Not having a mobile friendly website, isn’t only going to frustrate your targeted audience, it is also upsetting Google and your precious business ranking. Those websites that experience issues on mobiles will not rank as highly as those that are optimised for the devices in Google’s mobile and smartphone search results.
A mobile optimized website will improve the search experience for those mobile users, make your customers happy as they can search and experience your content fully and will ultimately generate new traffic leading to new business.
3. They Are Not Using Pay-Per-Click
Many small-to-medium local businesses rely on new customers finding them solely through organic search rankings. This could potentially be a big mistake. Even if your business does rank well and can be found in the first page of the search engines listings, pay-per-click (PPC) is a great tool to capture a larger audience, build brand exposure and target those who want what you offer or in the locations your business services, particularly as it is often cheaper and faster to implement than SEO.
PPC advertising gets your brand in front of your targeted audience through the keyword capability. When a customer searches online for a special offer or a particular product using the keywords that you have linked to your campaign, then your site will come up on the search results. This is vital in the situation of start-ups or if your SEO is lagging behind. And if you have a limited marketing budget, don’t worry. The beauty of PPC is you only pay when someone clicks!
4. They’re Not Using Video
YouTube is growing exponentially and with more than 1 billion unique visitors to YouTube each month you are crazy not to start creating video content to market your business. Today, we are seeing more and more local businesses using video as a medium to advertise their services or products to a greater audience.
Engaging videos are influencing the purchasing decision of over 53 percent of consumers in the U.S. Your videos don’t need to be created by a professional production team, but they do need to be captivating, unique and specific to your brand, product and/or service.
What’s so good about it, is it’s free to sign up and get a YouTube account and instantly upload videos – and what’s funny is that videos will probably rank highest on your website.
Today, local businesses need to be proactive when it comes to establishing an online presence. Don’t fall behind the competition by making the top 4 mistakes and missing out on driving potential business to your site!