Traditional marketing techniques for business development involved carefully devised strategies which were a mix of customer psychology as well as smart and creative sales techniques. The salesman or the marketing people were probably directly responsible for conversions and business development. They directly reached out to the customers and clients taking the business to the next level. But with the digital revolution local SEO is fast replacing traditional business development. With customers getting more and more internet savvy, businesses are now dependent on data and technology in order to reach out to their customers. Here is the why and how of local SEO replacing traditional business development techniques:
The rise of Smartphones
Smartphones have changed the way practically everything is done. Whenever a customer wants something, the first thing they do is get on their phones and look for a service provider. Gone are the days of yellow pages – nobody wants to turn the pages of the fat book anymore. Smartphones seem to serve the needs of customers better than yellow pages. A customer can find nearest service providers, the ones with the best ratings and reviews. It has helped customers make an informed choice and thus better decisions.
SEO is revolutionizing internet visibility
Businesses that aim to increase their outreach into a local market are becoming increasingly dependent on SEO to increase their visibility. The industry is becoming ridiculously expensive and brutally competitive. Especially businesses like medical services, bars and restaurants, law offices, real estate are very much in need of an optimised search engine strategy that gives them a presence on the internet which is here the major chunk of the customers live. Businesses are reaching out to digital marketing agencies that will help them with their online presence and increase their google rankings which make them easily discoverable to customers. A good google rank that gets them listed on the top of the search engine result page is an important part of business development.
Customers today want to know how relevant a local listing is when they search for something. They also want to see how distant it is for them and how well-known the business is both online and offline.
People are now getting used to getting things done the easier way. While some of us may still find it weird talking to their phone or their computer, the fact still remains that people are moving towards voice search. Most of the mobile devices now come with voice search integrated. It has enabled customers to search on the go even with their “hands tied.” People use voice commands to look for nearest service providers, the best service providers, and ones with the highest ratings. If your business is the kind whose customers like to use voice search, then it must be optimised to answer questions when someone looking for a business like yours is on the prowl.
The near me search
When it comes to local business development, customers are ideally looking for businesses in their vicinity. An important factor in your SEO strategy should be optimising your “near me” search. Local search is not a new concept. Earlier it was the phone book and now google has revolutionised the way people look up information on local businesses.
The basic idea is that everything is now happening in the virtual world of the internet. Hence businesses need a strong internet presence for their marketing strategy. Here is how you can optimise your local SEO for business development:
- First off your foundation is built on a good website. Google turns away slow websites and it impacts your rankings. A solid website is the foundation of any good SEO strategy and is very important for local SEO. A slow website results in lost opportunities – Casey Meraz.
- Have a strong review generation strategy. As much as reviews are turning out to be spam, as a business you still need to understand the importance of reviews. Customers are using these review scores more than ever and Google is also giving review scores based on number of reviews. You should also focus on getting qualitative reviews.
- Backlinks are influencing Local SEO. Every location page must have a local backlink for which you will need to build visibility and reputation for every location page.
- Managing Citations: Businesses which have more citations rank higher on the search engine results page.
- Focus on Google My Business: The first thing about a good local SEO strategy is to have your complete information filled out. When your profile is complete with specific categories you have a better chance at ranking. If you want your business to grow, you should be dominating Google My Business.
There is no doubt that Local SEO is replacing traditional business development and revolutionising the way business is done. With the digital disruption sweeping across industries, it is best to adopt these changes to take your business forward.
Featured image source: https://thelocalbrand.com/tag/local-business/
About the Author:
Shishir is an ex-startup entrepreneur currently working on kickstarting inbound marketing for a Silicon Valley startup. Cracked the code of generating 750K monthly traffic in 10 months by using creative content.