Step 1: Capitalize on Consumer Search Behavior
What’s the very first step most people take when they need to find a product or local service?
They search the Internet for it. Right? Of course they do, in this day and age, there is really no easier or faster way to find what you are looking for.
While I could elaborate on this point for days (including statistics), it’s just not necessary. Even my senior relatives rely on the Internet to provide answers to their questions.
So naturally, If you own a local business in 2018 and want to reach the majority of your potential customers, your business website needs to appear every time someone searches the Internet for the services you provide.
If you don’t, your competitors who do appear – will take these potential customers away from you. I see this every single day.
The struggle for many local businesses however, revolves around the fact that most people are in a big hurry.
We live in a microwave world where patience is as rare as a magical unicorn.
In fact, studies indicate most people who search the Internet, rarely search beyond the very first page of their search results.
If your business website doesn’t appear on the first page of search results, most people will never even know it exists. That’s a big deal.
What is Search Engine Optimization?
Search engine optimization or SEO is a technical process used to increase a website’s rankings in Internet search results.
While some very misinformed (incompetent) marketers have suggested SEO is dead in 2018, they couldn’t be more wrong.
SEO is NOT dead. In fact it is the MOST effective way to acquire a steady stream of Internet traffic to your website in 2018.
Simply put – it just works.
Unfortunately, the Internet is plagued with a plethora of inexperienced “bedroom SEO wannabes” who are out to make a quick buck by conning local businesses into hiring them.
Many local businesses have been burned by Internet marketing companies and believe hiring an SEO company is simply not worth the risk of losing more money.
Solution: Hire a Proven Expert
The good news is… legitimate SEO specialists DO in fact, exist.
I happen to be one of them. In fact, many SEO agencies actually outsource their SEO work to me.
The point is, whether you have been taken advantage of or not, a well executed SEO strategy will put your local business in front of the majority of your potential customers.
Step 2. Compel Your New Website Visitors to Take Action
This is where a lot of business owners fail.
All the website traffic in the world is “worthless” if your phone isn’t ringing as a direct result of it.
As a seasoned web developer, I have worked with many business owners who want a website that looks and functions exactly the way “He or She” wants it to, regardless of how it will impact their customers.
Please understand… “Your business website should be built to entice potential customers NOT yourself!”
Of course you will have some preferences such as color, media choices, content wording and so forth. That’s to be expected.
However, it would benefit you to leave conversion rate optimization (CRO) to the experts.
For instance, when I optimize a web page for conversions, I do so in a way that is “proven” to turn more website visitors into customers based on a variety of factors. My personal preference isn’t one of them. Yours shouldn’t be either.
Some optimization examples: easy navigation, a clear message, enticing calls to action, fast page loading, etc…
Would you rather have a website that actually brings you more customers or a website that simply looks exactly the way you want it to?
Step 3. Prove Your Business is a Better Choice Than Your Competitors
Why this step is missed by so many local businesses is beyond me. It is so very obvious.
Let’s say the website listed as the first search result has 1 positive customer review and the one under it has 50 positive customer reviews…
Which website do you think will get the most traffic? Pretty darn obvious, right?
It’s a nobrainer. Why? Because the website with 50 customer reviews is more “trustworthy”.
Trust is HUGE!
Most people would much rather do business with a company they believe they can trust, than a company they are not sure about.
Not getting what you pay for is a very “real” threat.
Proactively Acquire and Market Customer Reviews
Statistics indicate unhappy customers are much more likely to take the time to leave a review than happy ones are.
Not that positive reviews never happen on their own, but if you want to stay ahead of your competitors, you need to have a process in place for consistently acquiring new ones and… showing them off.
What is Reputation Management and Marketing?
If you are serious about growing your business to its full potential in 2018, investing in a “proven” reputation strategy should be a nobrainer.
Reputation management generally consists of a process where you ask every happy customer for a 5-star review and ask every unhappy customer for feedback, as well as a platform for managing and monitoring the entire process.
Reputation marketing generally consists of a process for displaying and advertising all your positive reviews using video, social media and your website.
Many businesses fail and even more simply just get by. It doesn’t have to be that way!
Look at it like this: If you knew spending $2000 per month for marketing could bring you $6000 per month in profit… would you do it?
There is a very good reason all the big brands invest so much money into advertising.
Marketing that works is NOT an expense, it is a profit-driving investment that pays for itself many times over.
Recap: In today’s digital landscape, most of your potential customers are looking for your business online. Find a way to make sure they find you, compel them to take action and prove to them your business is, without a doubt, their very best choice.
Want to learn more? Schedule a free consultation with us at a time that is convenient for you.
We would love to answer any questions you may have.