How To Build Your Offline Business With
Online Local Directories
By Bonnie Jo Davis
business wants more customers. That’s why you hang signs in your
window and outside your door, to attract people’s attention and
entice them to come in. But if you are focusing solely on the
people who walk past every day, you’re missing out on the huge
market that constantly looks for services online. There are 300
million internet searches performed every day and a whopping 3
billion of them are performed on a monthly basis! About half of
these people are looking for local businesses to buy from. The
question is whether or not they can find you.
This is why it’s
worth spending some time making sure you are listed in as many
online local directories as possible. Don’t restrict yourself to
the people who are already walking down your street. Get yourself
listed online in some of these directories and you can reel in
people from further afield as well. Just imagine – there are people
out there who are driving around trying to find a business just like
yours. If you’re listed online they have the ability to find you
immediately. And, if you have more than one location you can list
them all so they can find the one nearest to where they are.
An offline business
can list all the important information quite easily online. Your
business name, address, phone number and location can all be
listed. If someone searches for your kind of business online,
they’ll find you on search engines, online directories and local
directories of all kinds. You can also make it easy for them to
find you on social networking sites, which means you don’t even have
to have a website. Simply link to your Facebook or LinkedIn profile
or whatever other social network you belong to.
In this way people
can find you by using their computers or even their cell phones.
Once they’ve got your details they can find you with their mobile or
GPS navigation devices. Could you imagine how many more customers
you might get as a result of listing your business in these local
You won’t have to
worry about customers finding incorrect information if you happen to
change phone numbers or locations for some reason either. Quick
changes are easy to make in order to keep your listing accurate.
When you consider that most of these directories are free to use as
well, you’d be missing a trick if you didn’t use them. The only
reason you would pay to use some of them is if you wanted to have an
enhanced listing to gain more visibility.
The majority of
offline business owners know how important advertising is to keep
their business going. But you don’t want to spend more than
necessary to get the results you want. These directories not only
reduce PPC costs, they also reduce your overall advertising costs.
So not only can you increase your revenue from being more visible to
more customers, you can also do it for less cash.
What kind of
savings are we talking about here? Well, think about the amount you
spend on your print advertising every month. Whatever that amount
might be, you’ll be spending a lot less getting listed in hundreds
of local directories online. These listings not only bring you
direct traffic, they can also provide you with a way to brand your
business on a consistent basis.
Having a website
isn’t necessary to enjoy all these benefits. But if you do have one
you can get a one-way link back to that site further strengthening
your position and credibility, especially with Google, with the
The best thing
about being listed in every appropriate directory is that your
customers can review your business online too. Monitor the feedback
and respond to it quickly, making changes for the better as you do.
As you gain more feedback and reviews you’ll find you get ranked
more highly in Google Places as well, so you’ll be found even more
The only question
that’s left is why you haven’t already started listing your business
with all the online local directories?
Read other articles and learn more about
Bonnie Jo Davis.
[Contact the author for permission to republish or reuse this article.]