It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that your website is a way of opening up your business to the world. But it’s just as much about finding local customers. If people are looking for a product or service in your area, you want them to come to you, and the right website can help ensure they do.
1 Site design
Your website needs to make it clear where you’re located. It also needs to incorporate the names of towns and districts in the surrounding area so that when people look for these keywords or their search engine’s geolocation kicks in, they’ll be directed to your site.
2 Local listings
When optimising a site for search engines, most people think of Google, but it isn’t the only game in town. To find local customers you should seek out local directories like Yell and specialist sites for your industry. All of these can help you reach your community – http://www.telegraph.co.uk/connect/small-business/business-networks/how-to-market-your-sme-to-the-local-community/.
Link to other local businesses with services that complement yours and set up pages on social media sites like Facebook, making sure that you make clear the area you’re operating in. A Dublin SEO specialist like http://www.rycomarketing.ie/ can help you decide which one work best.
4 Use social media
We’ve already talked about having a presence on social media but you must use it effectively. Post regularly and engage with users in order to boost your profile. Highlight success stories or recently completed jobs, or do occasional giveaways or offer discount coupons to generate interest.
5 Get reviews
Encourage people to leave reviews of your business on your own site and on social media. More important, respond to those reviews. Say thanks for good ones and, if you do get a complaint, do your best to resolve it. How you deal with problems says a lot about your business.
6 Use the media
Try to build connections with media in your area. This isn’t restricted to traditional print media, you can reach out to local bloggers, particularly those that specialise in your type of trade. If you have a restaurant, find local food bloggers, if you’re a hairdresser, look for beauty bloggers, a clothing shop, talk to fashion blogs, and so on. You can tie this to your social media strategy by offering incentives to their followers.