6 Ways Business Owners Can Use The Internet To Get More Customers
Written by Joe Waters at Waters Web Consulting.
These six tips will show Business Owners how to use the Internet to bring a steady stream of new customers to their business.
Gone are the days that people would visit your business to determine if they want to use your services. Nowadays, people turn to the internet to help them make these decisions. Running a successful company is hard work, and you need a steady flow of customers in order to keep your business running smoothly.
If you want to bring in a steady stream of new customers then you need to learn to use the internet to your company’s advantage. The goal is to make it easy for people to look up your services so that they can find exactly what they need, and decide if you’re the business or company they want to work with.
Below you’ll find information that can help you get your business online and in the search engines so that people looking for your products or services can find and visit you.
Tip #1 for Business Owners: Claim Your Local Listings
The first step is to make sure and claim any local business listings that you have online. Otherwise you will be letting a huge opportunity go to waste. Whenever you search on Google for your products or services, the first results that pull up are often businesses in your area. Do you see your business listed?
The listing with the most importance is Google My Business. By listing your business here you will be gaining a head start against competing companies in your area. All that you have to do is submit your listing, verify it, and then customize it.
Sometimes, getting the verification code can take several weeks, so be patient! Once you have done that, you can add photos and fill out your company details such as phone numbers, business hours, address, and the areas that you service.
Additional directories to consider creating for your business include:
- Bing Places for Business
- Angie’s List
- Yelp for Business
- Yahoo Small Business Listings
- Yellow Pages
You need to be sure that the information (business hours, phone, etc.) you upload (or that is already published online) is correct. If you happen to change any important information about your business, you will then need to update it in the directories as well. Otherwise potential customers will not be able to contact you or find your business.
Tip #2 for Business Owners: Ask Customers To Review Your Business
Once you have claimed your local business listing you can move on to step two – reviews. Online reviews actually have a large impact on whether or not a person will decide to hire you for the product or service they need. The majority of consumers read online reviews before making a decision. People really pay attention to what former customers have to say about your business, whether it is positive or negative feedback.
Reviews from former customers in the areas you plan to service can help build trust with consumers that are looking for your company. While it may be easy for you to talk up your business, real life reviews can back up any claims you make.
Having a system for customers to leave reviews is important. Even just asking your customers to rate your business and leave feedback on a platform, such as Yelp, can really help out. Good reviews will help your business be more visible to locals in the area.
Posting your positive reviews in places such as Facebook, Yelp, and your business website can make a big difference. It is important to note that you are only showcasing the good reviews to your potential customers because five good reviews do not begin to compare with one bad one in regards to a person looking for a business in your area they can trust.
Tip #3 for Business Owners: Acquire Some Local Backlinks
Tip number three is all about acquiring local backlinks for your business website. You get backlinks when another website links to yours. It could be a local business or company that refers visitors to your site via a link.
Your goal is to show up on the first page of the search engines that people in your area use to look up your business or service. You can see where your business has been placed by typing “your service” + “your city” into any search engine or directory that you have claimed a listing on.
If you don’t know where to start in asking for website links then consider the following:
- Chamber of Commerce – Linking to your website here may cost a fee.
- Ask local bloggers that focus on businesses in the area to link to your site.
- A regular supplier or even a partner would be a good place to request a link on their site.
- Sponsor a community event in order to advertise or create a scholarship fund.
Tip #4 for Business Owners: Get Educated About Keywords
After you have managed to score some backlinks you can move on to finding out more about keywords. When someone needs to find a specific product or service, they are probably going to visit Google and type in the words “the service they need [your area]”, “the service they need near me”, or other relevant and related search terms. For example – “plumber Buffalo NY” or “chiropractor near me”. They will view the sites that show up near the top of the search results.
If you work on your SEO, also known as search engine optimization, then you will be able to get your business to where it ranks higher than your competitors in the area.
If you want to include keywords in your website then you can do the following:
- Put keywords in your website’s headlines, text, and also meta descriptions.
- Create pages that specify the geographical areas your services are available.
- Create pages that explain the specific services you provide.
- Include keywords for your niche in your blog or social media posts.
You should also list your place of operation on Google Maps to allow people to find specific directions to your business.
Tip #5 for Business Owners: Improve Your Business’ Search Engine Description and Headline
The fifth tip is to work on your website’s headline and description; what people see when your business is searched for online. You want your site to be appealing enough that potential customers will want to click on the link to learn more about what your business has to offer.
If you want your website to stand out among the competition, then you will need to spend a good amount of time writing a fitting description and appealing headline that includes your most important keywords, the services you provide and the location(s) of your business.
Only relevant information should be included in your title, description, and website address. If you’re trying to get local potential customers to see your listing then include the name of the city or area that your business is located in. There should also be a keyword included in the beginning of your headline.
Tip #6 for Business Owners: Start a Blog For Your Business
Finally, after you have finished all of the above tips you can move on to starting a blog for your business. Sharing articles that pertain specifically to your business and offered services is a great way to stand out among other businesses in your area.
Articles about the importance of your service, your products, or other helpful tips are some great ideas for posts on your blog. If writing is not your forte then you can always find or hire someone to do the writing and maintain the blog.
Consistently uploading new content can also drive more traffic to your company website, which means more possible customers, which means more money for your business!
Implement These Steps To Start Growing Your Business Today
The goal of these steps is to get the internet working for you to bring in more customers for your business. Use the steps above to propel your business ahead of your competitors and be more visible to potential customers who are in need of your services.
Once everything is set up, you’ll need to continue to implement SEO strategies, add new content to your site and blog, and keep your business information up to date so that you can be found by potential customers.
Are You a Local Business Owner Looking to Land More Customers? We Can Help!
At Waters Web Consulting, we specialize in helping Business Owners attract new customers online using the methods outlined in this article (and many others!). We’d love the chance to chat with you quickly about your situation and see how we can help!
You can reach our office directly at 716-581-1594 or click the image below to learn more about our services online: