IN YOUR SHOES Tips For Small Business

Online Advertising Tips

Diana Pohly

Utilize a Localized Marketing Checklist

Are you covering all the bases in localized Internet marketing?

“The Web offers a great opportunity for local businesses to acquire new customers,” Michael Koploy writes on his Software Advice blog. He also offers a checklist of steps that small businesses should take to assure that they will be found when customers search for local companies by using localized search terms like “landscaping services New Orleans.”

I’d urge you to spend some time reviewing the complete checklist. But until you do, here is a summary of the strategies he recommends:

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  • Get listed. Set up your company’s localized business listing on Google Places, the Bing Business Portal, and Yelp. Also create a Google Maps location listing for your business.
  • Track results. Use a Google Analytics tracking code to analyze where your traffic is coming from, and to understand which pages on your website are receiving the most traffic and the longest interactions.
  • Post your contact information prominently. To make sure that your customers can easily find you, post your address and phone number prominently on your homepage. Also put your contact information on an internal "Contact" or "Location" page on your site.
  • Optimize your website by inserting HTML, meta tags, and copy that is optimized for local searches. This is a job for your website designer.
  • Add localized schema.org markup to your site. Schema.org is a free online service that generates html tags that help your website be recognized by major search engines. Again, this is a job for your webmaster.
  • Enrich your website with localized content that can include a blog to discuss local happenings and links to other regional businesses. Also consider creating an opt-in email newsletter that is tied to local clients and events, and add a sign-up form to your website.
  • Connect with people in your area by featuring local content on your Facebook page and in your Twitter tweets. Be sure to link to your Facebook page from many places on your website.
  • Connect online with your community. That means listing your company on local online business listings, online community forums, and other localized listings.

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