Internet Marketing Strategies for Local Business by hmh123


									Internet Marketing Strategies for Local Business

Now more then ever profitable opportunities exist to promote your local
business on the Internet. Through search engine optimization, pay per
click advertising, email marketing and local listings, you can connect
with a willing audience. Your customers are turning to the Internet to
find local products and services. If your competitors have an online
presence and you don't, guess who gets to take home the prize

Below are several crucial techniques for promoting your business

Listings in local search engines and directories
 Pay Per Click advertising in Google and Yahoo
Email marketing
 Search engine optimization

Local Listings

Even if you do not have a web site you can still promote your local
business online. For example, you can list you business and contact
information with the local search engines of Yahoo and Google. It takes
an hour at the most to get a free listing on the two most popular search
engines. Your listing will include an interactive map that can direct
customers right to your front door.

Another important resource that accepts free listings is Verizon's, as does the local version of AOL.

And don't overlook regional and industry specific directories. Many
accept free listings, or charge a nominal fee.   Once again, for most a
web site is not a prerequisite.

Pay Per Click Advertising

If you do have a web site, than you need to promote your local business
through Pay Per Click on both Google and Yahoo. With Pay Per Advertising
you bid on keyword terms that your potential customers would use in a
search. An example is "Tacoma Wedding Photographer." The cost per click
depends on how competitive the term is. You only pay if a prospect
clicks on your text ad and goes to your site. This is referred to as
performance advertising, where you only pay if the ad performs.

The appeal of PPC is you can get it going within an hour. You set the
budget, you determine what keywords are relevant, and you determine your
price per click.   You can also turn it on or off in an instance. The
general consensus is that PPC generates a higher return on your
investment over traditional offline advertising.

Search Engine Optimization - Free Traffic

For those that like a challenge there is search engine optimization. SEO
is the ability to optimize your web site for high search ranking. If you
can optimize your site properly, you can benefit from an endless stream
of free, targeted search engine traffic. It takes time and effort, but
the results can take your business to a whole new level.

If you are selling nationally SEO can be cutthroat. For a local business
it can be relatively easy to rank for terms that relate to your business
and location. (ex. Richmond Wedding Photographer)

Local Email Marketing

Another tremendous marketing tool is email. For virtually nothing you
can communicate with both prospects and your existing customers. Email
is an excellent method to convert prospects to customers. It can also
significantly increase the lifetime value of your existing customers by
simply alerting them to upcoming sales and promotions.

Knowing the power of email communication, I find it hard to believe how
few use it to promote their local business. Now listen up, start
collecting your customer's email addresses today. I can guarantee they
will respond favorably to joining your list. We all like to be informed
on bargains and special offers.

The future of your local business will depend on the Internet. It is
estimated 25% of searches online are local in nature. The Internet is the
perfect resource for finding local products and services, which is why
your customers are searching online. Now is the time to get your business
positioned to reap the rewards.

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