The purpose of a business is to serve people and make profits. However, the sustainability of the business can only be ascertained through effective promotions. Businesses, especially the local ones, need to be dynamic and follow the trends. And the promotion trend right now is the use of the internet.
Why the internet (online)?
Because that’s where life happens now, gone are the days when people get online to escape from the hustling and bustling of life. Nowadays, business operations, entertainment, and recreation happen on the internet.
Watch around, observe people’s behavior in the train stations, see what they are doing while waiting in a queue for coffee. I bet it; they are scrolling and reading content on their smartphones. You see! Online is the way to go.
In this present age, whether or not for businesses to get online is no longer a debate. Everyone that has a doubt must have changed their orientation during the covid-19 pandemic. Only local businesses that were available on the internet thrived during the challenging period.
Now that we have all accepted that getting online is the way to go. The main question now is how businesses promote their products and services online.
Do they just browse Google and say, tada, we are here? Definitely, not!!
Let’s see how successful online businesses are performing their over the internet marketing aka digital marketing.
1. Have social media pages
Almost everyone that has come of age and has access to internet phones has a social media account with either Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Statistically, every 2 out of 3 people will have accounts with two of these three popular social media platforms.
Businesses really need to consider social media campaigns because, recently, those social media platforms are now acting as search engines for people to find stores, restaurants, or service providers within their locality.
They find it easier to chat with business owners and make enquiries about services on social media from the comfort of their homes. Some even go as far as checking reviews left by customers on businesses pages or even chat up those people that left the recommendations to know their level of satisfaction.
On the other hand, businesses can utilize their pages to attract social media users, announce new products and discounts, and share their portfolios through the use of content that may come in the form of articles, images, infographics, or videos.
However, to attain success on social media platforms, local businesses need to ensure consistency, keep to a strict content scheduling practice, maintain a good relationship with their audience, and build a long-lasting online presence.
Read our article on the seven critical steps in creating an effective social media marketing strategy for more social media best practices.
2. Utilize Google My Business Listing
To fully gain a stand in the online world, a local business needs to be known and registered with Google. As at the time of writing, Google is the greatest search engine platform, and it doesn’t look like it will be displaced from the position anytime soon.
Billions of searches are made on Google every day, out of which 46% goes to local enquiries – searches of people looking for a particular service or store within their locality. Therefore, it’s essential that local businesses have an optimized Google presence to benefit from online searches.
The most efficient way to have a presence on the search engine is to create a Google My Business (GMB) profile. Registering your business on a GMB listing is free, simple and straightforward. Read more on the importance of Google My Business here.
GMB profile will make it easier for people to locate your business online. Meanwhile, you can optimize the profile to communicate your services, products, promotions, and events to people. Local businesses can also add their website to their GMB profile for people to further explore their products and services.
Another benefit of GMB listing is that it provides monthly analytics of your profile performance. It gives you a clear report of how people are finding your business and their requests.
You can get started by visiting the GMB home page.
3. Have a business website or blog
It’s essential for businesses to have a website. A website or blog can be likened to your online office, whose address is the domain name. And it’s where people come to learn more about your products, services and even arrange a physical meeting or video call consultation.
A local business can utilize a blog or website. The difference between the two is that a blog has more content than a website, and it enhances communication and relations between the business and the visitors. These contents give the blog more potential than a business website.
You can learn more about the differences between the two by reading our article titled “Blogging“.
4. Adopt local SEO
Local SEO is the short form of local search engine optimization. It’s a digital marketing strategy designed to help local businesses rank high on Google SERPs for search enquiries related to their business, products and services within or around their locality.
Having a blog or website is just the beginning of the journey. A local business needs to utilize local SEO to present its products and services before potential buyers. And for this reason, it’s called inbound marketing.
Inbound marketing is a type of advertisement in which you make your business visible for people that seriously require your service through the use of content and information that are tailored to them.
Local SEO includes writing keywords-optimized content, building internal and external links, and submitting your business NAP (name, address, and phone number) to online business directories for citation. Online business directories for example can be Yelp and Whitepages.
Read up our article on Local SEO to know more about the inbound marketing strategy.
5. Publish press release
A press release is yet another way for local businesses to effectively promote their products and services on the internet. It’s the act of publishing research reports or documentaries of an event on a public website. Through this, lots of people will come to know about your business and its relevance in society.
Examples of these press release websites are Clickpress, PRLog, and Medium.
With the huge competition that’s going around and the struggle to be relevant in the presence of the big and prestigious companies, local businesses must consider the internet to attract customers and make more sales.
These are just five of the ways by which you can promote your business on the internet. Get more by reading our upcoming article on “How can I promote my business in local areas.”
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