Hometown and neighborhood support can keep your small business going through difficult times, and it creates benefits for our community. The people who live in our community aren’t just friends and neighbors; they’re also clients and customers—or they should be.
If locals don’t know your business exists, it’s time to put some effort into building your small business presence locally using all of your options.
Visibility in Local Search Results
When people want to locate a good salon or activity, they check their smartphone and do a quick search for what they want. 25% plus of Google searches have what's called “local intent”. This means they’re aimed at finding nearby results. Showing up in search results shouldn't be left to chance. Take advantage of Google Places for Business, Bing Places for Business, and even Yelp to get into local search results.
After signing up, you can manage your listings. Include photos, provide important information and even add specials You should include hours of operation, business contact info, and your web address. If you dobn't have a web address, you are limiting yourself. Most search engines and directories allow for social media now as well. Once you're all setup, ask your happy customers to add a review.
Paying it Forward
Six of ten entrepreneurs feel giving back has made their businesses more successful over time. 89% of them donate to charities personally and often give through their businesses. How much you give and how will depend on the type of business you have. Don't forget, you can always find many small ways to give and help.
Potential ways to pay it forward include volunteer days, sponsoring a team or event; offering an internship through a local school; and in-kind giving. If at all possible, find a way to donate that’s unique to your local business.
Earn Local Trust
It's petty basic, but conducting your business in a trustworthy manner will give you happy, repeat customers, positive online reviews and more. Trust from your community requires more than just delivering on product promises. Local businesses must build more personal relationships with their customers. Learn your customers’ names, and use them. Send customers postcards with special offers for being loyal.
As a local business, you have the unique opportunity to really listen to and address the concerns of your customers. Keep communication flowing, and always follow up with your clients. These are perks big businesses can’t offer, and they’ll go a long way toward building your local reputation as a trustworthy business. There are lots of great ways to do communicate including email, social media and news on local website. Word of mouth is face to face and digital too.
Want to know more? Contact us today for a free consultation!