Local Online Marketing: 6 Ways to Draw in Local Customers

February 8, 2021

About 97% of search engine users look online to find local small businesses in search results. If your website doesn't appear in local searches, you could miss a chance to reach customers. Instead, you need a local online marketing strategy to appear in relevant search results.

What is local marketing, exactly? Local marketing refers It's a blend of different strategies that can help you reach consumers in your area. With local online marketing, you can appeal to the specific interests that your future customers are looking for in their local area. When they see other businesses listed alongside your business, you want to make sure your Google business profile stands out to give a positive first impression and build brand authority.

Then, you can boost brand awareness, draw them to your store, get more foot traffic and generate more sales! Having the right local marketing strategy will greatly improve your chances of getting potential customers.

What Types Of Businesses Benefit From Local Marketing?

The three main types of businesses that benefit from local marketing include: restaurants, retail stores, and service providers. All these businesses have physical locations but without online marketing, they will have very low visibility.

Restaurants benefit from local marketing because they need customers who live nearby to visit them.

Retailers also benefit from local digital marketing because it provides better customer service than national retailers.

Service providers such as plumbers, electricians, etc., benefit from local marketing because potential clients trust local businesses more than national brands.

Lawyers' offices and accountants' offices should follow the same local marketing strategy.

Let's Dive In!

Want to start reaching nearby customers? Give these tips a try! With this local online marketing guide, you can expand your reach and set yourself up for success by targeting people in your local area.

Don't let competitors snatch up your local customers. Instead, start marketing with these local search engine marketing tips today! 

1. Update Your Website

website design local marketing

Before you start investing in local online marketing services, take a look at your website.

In some cases, your business website makes the first impression on your customers. Many of your potential customers are going to want to view your website before they decide to visit your local store. What impression are you leaving behind? If your website doesn't have a positive impact, consumers will leave your site.

They'll take their business elsewhere, giving your competitors the advantage.

These local digital marketing efforts won't help you if your website isn't ready to impress customers. Instead, consider updating your website for a better user experience.

Invest In Your Website's Design

User experience (UX) design trends can offer users a unique, easy, convenient online experience. The easier it is for them to use your site, the more likely they'll explore. As they explore and click around, they'll learn more about your business. The local store design is reflected on your website. While many transactions still take place in local stores, an online presence helps customers find the business and decide to visit.

You can then show consumers your unique value proposition and draw more people to your brand.

Your dwell time and clickthrough rate will improve as more people click around and linger. Meanwhile, your bounce rate will drop. A lower bounce rate can boost your search engine ranking.

A higher local search engine ranking will help you appear in front of more customers! In return, this will increase foot traffic to your physical location.

UX Design Tips

To update your website with UX in mind, try:

  • Infusing your brand (including your logo, font, color scheme, voice, tone, and personality)
  • Maintaining brand consistency across every page
  • Updating broken links or buttons
  • Making sure forms are short and easy to use
  • Choosing easy to read fonts and colors
  • Organizing your content with headings and subheadings
  • Making sure you're mobile-optimized
  • Adding an SSL certificate and improving your security
  • Improving your page load times

You will see an immediate improvement in your local marketing efforts after using these tips.

If your website is slow, people will leave without clicking around. Your bounce rate will rise as a result.

More people are checking for local businesses from their smartphones. If your website isn't mobile-optimized, you'll fail to reach these customers.

You can use Google's PageSpeed Insights to determine what's slowing your website down. Use Google's Mobile-Friendly Test to make sure your website is optimized for mobile devices.

Core Vitals

Google wants to provide its users with the best possible experience. In fact, it considers the user experience as part of its search engines algorithm. If you want to further improve your website, consider Google's Core Web Vitals.

For example, you can:

  • Choose better hosting
  • Optimize your images
  • Use a content delivery network
  • Leverage page catching
  • Minify your CSS and Javascript codes
  • Minify and compress Javascript files
  • Delete unwanted Javascript files or code
  • Optimize your local landing pages
  • Enable browser caching
  • Eliminate unnecessary third-party scripts
  • Split long Javascript tasks up
  • Preload custom web fonts
  • Set fixed dimensions for your images
  • Limit embedded content and iframes

Updating your website with these core vitals in mind can help you further improve your ranking. 

2. Create Location-Based Content

local online marketing strategy

When determining your search engine ranking, Google looks for high-quality, informative, engaging content. It also looks for unique content. Don't duplicate what other people are posting online.

Sign up for local listings and directories so that when people search for local business online, they can easily find your website.

Instead, use the skyscraper method. Look at the highest-ranking posts on Google for keywords that are relevant to your business. Then, gather the best parts of each post.

Local Online Marketing Strategy for Local Businesses

Create your own post on the same topic. Make your post even more informative than the existing posts. Make sure to reference studies, statistics, and other data in your posts as well.

Don't forget to add location-based pages to your website, too. You want to appear in the top results for local searches.

For example, do you have multiple business locations? Create a dedicated page for each location. Then, mention information that's relevant to each location, including the:

  • Area you cover
  • Business name
  • Address
  • Phone number
  • Contact person
  • Email
  • Services or products you offer
  • An embedded Google map
  • Parking information
  • Customer reviews and testimonials

Location-based content will help you appeal to local customers.

Take the time to learn more about your satisfied customers, too. Who are they? What do they care about?

What problems can you help your customers solve?

Compile psychographic and demographic research. For example, consider their age, gender, and marital status. You'll find people who fall under different demographics have different priorities.

For example, you'll probably want to create different content for an 18-year-old male versus a 42-year-old mother of three kids. 

Create content in different forms, including videos, ebooks, infographics, polls, and quizzes. Then, start sharing your content online.

Make sure your content appeals to the user's search intent. What are they looking for?

Understanding your customers' needs and wants will help you appeal to that intent by using these local marketing techniques.

3. Use Pay-Per-Click

digital marketing advertising

Nearly 50% of businesses are already using pay-per-click (PPC) advertising. You can create PPC ads for Google, Instagram, Facebook, and other platforms. As part of your local online marketing strategy, PPC can expand your reach.

In addition to helping you reach local customers, PPC can also help you:

  • Generate brand awareness
  • Increase traffic to your website
  • Boost leads, conversions, and sales

With PPC ads, you'll pay each time someone clicks on one of your ads. Make sure to create a strong PPC advertising strategy before you get started. Otherwise, it could get costly. By using this local marketing strategy, you will reach more potential customers who are searching for local businesses like yours on search engines.

For example, it helps to use precise targeting for your local online marketing campaign. You can pinpoint your ideal customers based on demographics and relevant keywords. That way, your ads only appear in search results in front of people who will have an interest in your local business. 

Instead of a PPC campaign, you might want to consider Google Local Services Ads.

These ads will appear in front of consumers who are looking for a local business. For example, if someone searches "Los Angeles locksmith," Google will display a list of locksmiths in the area.

With PPC ads, you'll choose what keywords to use to target local customers. With Google Local Services Ads, Google chooses the keyword.

One of the benefits of Google Local Services Ads is the "Google Guaranteed" trust mark that appears beside the Google business profile listing. This trust mark can help you look more credible in front of customers. 

4. Optimize for Local Search

local seo

About 30% of all mobile searches are related to location. Consider this statistic: 30% of people would choose a competitor if they were unable to find a business online. Meanwhile, over 75% of people who search on their phones for something nearby visit a local business within 24 hours. About 28% of those searches result in a purchase.

With search engine optimization (SEO), you can appear on Google each time someone searches for your product or service. With local SEO, you can appear in front of more local customers. They'll see your website or Google business profile listing during a search. By engaging with customers through local store marketing, businesses can increase their profits.

Marketing Strategies for Your Local Audience

Unlike traditional digital marketing services, location based marketing focuses on a local audience rather than just anyone searching online. This means customers can visit your website, find directions to your physical location, or call you directly. 

With a local digital marketing plan, you can:

  • Generate brand awareness
  • Increase your online visibility
  • Generate more traffic to your website
  • Gather high-quality leads
  • Increase brand recognition
  • Become a thought leader in the industry
  • Establish your credibility
  • Rank ahead of the competition
  • Build brand trust and loyalty
  • Increase conversions, leads, and sales
  • Improve your ROI

It's not enough to improve your SEO ranking, though. Instead, you need to reach the top of the first page. Otherwise, people might not find your business.

In fact, only 0.78% of people look at the second page of the results. By improving your local business ranking with local online marketing, you can reach the top of the page. Then, you can boost your online visibility and generate more awareness. 

There are a few ways to optimize your digital marketing strategy for local SEO.

First, make sure to update your website. Google uses many ranking factors to determine rankings. If your website is slow, outdated, or insecure, your ranking could drop.

You can use email marketing strategies for relatively low costs compared to many other types of marketing strategies.

Here are a few tips that can help you improve your local search results.

Update Your GMB Listing

One of the most important components of a successful local online marketing plan is an updated GMB listing. Your GMB listing will show customers your:

  • Business name
  • Phone number
  • Business description
  • Address
  • Directions
  • Hours
  • Customer reviews
  • Website

It's important to keep your GMB listing up-to-date. Otherwise, consumers might get confused if you display inaccurate information.

For example, did you change your hours in light of COVID-19? Are you still open? What if customers visit your store and find you closed?

Updating your GMB listing will give consumers easy access to information about your business. They can use the listing to find directions to your store or call you with questions. They can also use your business listing to find customer reviews.

Manage Customer Reviews

About 95% of customers read reviews and most consumers rely on what other people say have to say before making a purchase. Meanwhile, 92% of customers read online reviews about local businesses to determine their quality. Customers want to do business with a business they trust, which you can demonstrate through positive reviews.

Google uses customer reviews when determining your local SEO ranking. If you want to develop a strong local online marketing plan, you need fresh reviews.

Customer reviews can benefit your business by:

  • Making a strong first impression with new customers
  • Helping you receive helpful insights from previous customers
  • Boosting your local business visibility
  • Helping you build brand awareness and recognition 
  • Acting as a form of social proof 
  • Helping you recognize your loyal customers
  • Establishing your credibility in the industry 
  • Helping you generate more website traffic
  • Ensuring you remain transparent and honest in front of customers
  • Helping you remain competitive
  • Informing the customer's buying decisions

How Effective Are Customer Reviews?

The more people know about your local business, the more likely they'll feel like they can trust you. As brand trust grows, you can turn it into brand loyalty. Then, you can retain existing customers to improve your ROI. It is imperative that you optimize your local listings.

About 95% of customers tell others about their bad experiences. Meanwhile, only 87% share their good experiences. In fact, 89% of customers take their business to a competitor after a negative customer experience.

It's important to learn how to manage your Google reviews. For example, you shouldn't delete negative reviews outright. Instead, respond to the comments you receive and show people you're willing to change.

Consumers will see you want to help them and come back for more.

It can take a lot of time from your schedule to manage your reviews manually. Instead, use a review management tool. Equipping yourself with the right tools can improve your local online marketing strategy. 

5. Stay Social

social media for small businesses

As you start using these local online marketing tips, don't forget to check your social media sites. Social media is a great way to keep your local customers engaged. Your local community

For example, social media can announce sales or offer coupons to your local audience. You can use social media for organic and paid opportunities, too. Remember, you can create PPC ads using platforms on Instagram and Facebook and reach leads interested in your goods and services.

Utilize Social Media

Running social media ads will help you draw in new leads.

For example, you can use Facebook hyperlocal ads. Also known as local awareness ads, these ads are ideal for targeting small areas. For example, you can focus on a single zip code for each local online marketing campaign.

As you create location-based social media posts on your website, share it on social media. Then, you can generate more traffic, which can boost your local marketing success and establish your social media presence. As your ranking improves, you can generate even more traffic in the future. 

6. Make Sure You're Mobile-Friendly

mobile friend local seo

Remember, most customers are using their mobile devices to find local businesses. If you want to use local online marketing, make sure you're mobile-optimized. 

If you're not mobile-optimized, you could frustrate website visitors. They'll leave your website without clicking around, which could hurt your SEO ranking.

You'll need a mobile-optimized website for PPC advertising, too. Otherwise, people will struggle to navigate your pages. 

Don't miss an opportunity to connect with your local consumers. Instead, use these six local marketing strategies. With these tips, you can boost brand awareness and traffic to your business.

Then, you can generate more leads, sales, and conversions while improving your ROI.

Want to grow your reviews and grow your local business? We can help.

Explore our pricing today to get started.

Final Thoughts On Local Digital Marketing For Local Business

Digital marketing ideas are valuable because it helps you reach people interested in your products or Services. Simply follow the above strategies, and be consistent in your actions. Schedule your GMB posts and obtain leads that turn into conversions for your business.

At the same time, we know that shoppers don’t always make purchases based solely on price. They consider factors such as brand reputation, product availability, customer service, and even location. As a result, companies must adapt their strategies to meet changing consumer demands.

This is where local marketing comes into play. By understanding what drives consumers to choose certain retailers over others, you can take action to improve your store experience, increase revenue, and build loyalty. Local digital marketing is no longer just about selling stuff—it's about building relationships with consumers.

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