It’s no secret today that people are marketing on the Internet and making money. Even a lot of big businesses have jumped on board. Everyone has a website and a blog, plus social media accounts.
But, what about local small businesses? Have they caught on yet? Does the local dentist have a website that is generating traffic?
Does the local hair dresser know how to use social media to get people into her chair?
Unfortunately, the answer is usually no. Very few small businesses are using online and cloud-based technology to their full advantage.
But, when you read Pew Research Groups surveys and realize that 87% of online searches result in an offline purchase, then you know: Small businesses need to be marketing on the net. Without a doubt, every small business can increase their business by marketing via the net, if only they knew what to do and how to do it.
The concepts for a small bricks and mortar business to market on the web are about the same as for any online business with minor exceptions. A bricks and mortar business needs to earn their money by getting feet into the door, rather than clicks to buy online. There are a lot of ways to do this, let’s go over a few.
Start a Blog — Yes, small business owners should have a blog and put relevant, keyword rich content in it every day if possible. Content should be updated no less than 5 times a week, at least to start. The great thing is, today a blog is your website. No need to create two separate entities.
Use Social Media — Facebook.com, Twitter.com, Pinterest.com, Google Plus, and any other social media accounts that are popular today should be employed to help send traffic both to your blog, and to your store.
Create Coupons — By opening up a Google Places for business, you can create coupons that people can print out. Alternatively, your small business can participate in Groupon.com’s coupon deals. However you decide to do it, this can be a very effective method to get the word out about your bricks and mortar business on the web.
Get Mobile — Your blog should be mobile friendly, but you should also join locally inspired sites like Yelp via Yahoo!. Sites like this offer reviews, maps, and more to your customer as well as a way for you to get your information out there to people who use mobile devices and Smartphones.
The future is here. There is no time to waste. If you don’t want to keep losing business to others, especially online shoppers, it’s time to get your name out there on the Internet so that you can attract those who are local to you to come to your store. If you sell a product or service that translates well to online sales, consider offering some items online. If not, find a way to reach out to mobile users in new ways so that the people who are looking for you can find you.