When you are trying to drive more local traffic to your website, there are several strategies you can utilize. As an added bonus, many of them are free. Understanding the area you are targeting, the people and other businesses are important. This offers improved insight. Then, you can take a strategic approach because your decisions are better informed. If you desire more local traffic, you know that attaining this goal will improve your bottom line. Here are nine tips to consider to increase local traffic for your business.
Keep Directories Up to Date
Forty-six percent of all searches on Google are local. So, if you want to be found, there is a very good chance you can be by simply keeping all online directories up to date. It is a good idea to create an account and list your business website on the relevant directories local to the area you are targeting. Google Business and Bing Business are two directories that you are strongly encouraged to get started with as soon as possible. Yahoo!, the Whitepages and the Yellow Pages are others.
Signing up usually requires the creation of an account. You will complete a form that asks for your company's information including your website's address. Adding pictures is strongly encouraged for those who have an accompanying storefront or office. When available, adding video snippets is worthwhile, too. The more complete the profile, the more legitimacy it grants your company, business and website. Legitimacy helps increase local traffic as well as the bottom line.
Before you begin driving local traffic to your website and business information, you must ensure that your website is in good shape. The tools available to website design professionals is vast, so the perfect website for your company can easily be designed and developed. While your site does not have to include all the latest bells and whistles, it should at least include a couple of features like being responsive, updated information and architecture that operates as expected. Today's consumer is demanding, has high expectations and can be fickle. If your website has broken links, information that has not been updated for over a year or a design that screams 2002, your website and company are going to lose credibility.
Again, it is not mandatory that your site consists of the latest software, but it should deliver on the basics. More consumers are viewing websites on their smartphones and tablets. This means that your site has to be optimized for tablets, smartphones, and smartwatches. This helps your bottom line because it helps retain traffic as opposed to driving it away.
Once your website's architecture is sound, think about creating a couple of social media accounts and adding them to your website. There are several social media platforms to pick from, but ideally, you will start with the ones most relevant to your company and the audience that you are targeting. Narrowing down the accounts you should create is easier because there are clear leaders in some categories.
The power of social media is undeniable. Food trucks have really harnessed this power to let their followers know where they will be on any given day of the week and time. For some of these food trucks, this is the only marketing and advertising they execute. It has been beneficial and profitable for them. It can be so for you as well.
Optimize All Digital AssetsAnother great way to drive local traffic to your website is to ensure that all of your digital assets are optimized for the search engines. Search engine optimization was not such a big deal just a few years ago. Today, it is a must. Since more than 80 percent of consumers will look up information online before completing a purchase, the search engines have become powerful, too.
Search engines are trying to keep individuals with nefarious intentions from gaming the system, so changes to the indexing algorithms are released with short notice. The intention is to keep the rankings pure. SEO is completed by melding together several tactics. Relevant keywords will be chosen, they will be added to the site's architecture and used in subsequent marketing campaigns. Within those keywords, geographic locations are also chosen.
If professionals are completing your site's SEO, they will also double-check that your company's information has been submitted to relevant online directories, content is posted, and backlinks are created. Successful SEO campaigns will attract more traffic. The beauty of SEO is that it helps find qualified traffic, too. Qualified traffic is how your website will see more interested customers that are best for closing more deals, which all help the bottom line.
As the traffic to your website begins to increase, it is a good idea to capture the email addresses of interested users. Once a healthy email list has been built, it gives you the opportunity to level up your marketing campaigns. Marketing emails are a great tool because you can announce upcoming sales, events and remind those on the list that your company exists. Email marketing helps drive local traffic to your site because you are encouraged to add a link that leads the recipients to a landing page. From there, something interesting could catch their eye and they may browse additional pages on the site. If you can get physical addresses as well, direct mail can accomplish many of the similar things with direct mail.
Study the Analytics
The amount of information available to business professionals and consumers is vast. As a business professional, you should study analytics because they are easily at your disposal. The analytics can outline the effectiveness of marketing campaigns as well as what is driving the bulk of the traffic to your website. This is important because there may be mediums where you are heavily investing but not receiving a solid return on investment. Understanding the analytics directly impacts how well local traffic is driven to your website and your company's bottom line.
Guest blogging is a great way to expose a new, local audience to your website. Guest blogging is one way to set yourself up as an authority in a relevant topic. It allows you to create backlinks to your website to bring more traffic. Plus, it allows you to enter niche markets that would otherwise be difficult to reach.
Of course, reaching out to strangers and offering them free content can seem a bit...sketchy. So if you’re looking to build a successful guest post strategy, make sure that your content offers benefits for the host site as well as your own. No one likes a self-serving guest poster, and chances are that you won’t even get a response to your initial email. Also, don’t go halfway on the content — make sure to put plenty of time and effort into crafting a high-quality post that the host’s audience will actually want to read.
Build Business Partnerships
Business partnerships go a long way for impacting how much local traffic your website receives and increases revenue. This is especially true if you are trying to, once again, reach a specific, local niche market. Plus, the partnership company benefits, too.
When you’re starting out, make sure to set clear expectations about where you want this partnership to go and what each party will get out of the relationship. That being said, be human. Include them in your inner circle and consider them an essential part of your team. Be honest and transparent with them. And, like any good relationship, don’t squeeze everything out of it right from the get-go — these things take time to nurture before blossoming.
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