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How a Local Business Can Do Better Online in Five Easy Steps

by Alesia Krush  |  
February 10, 2014
  |  8,197 views

In this article you will learn...

  • How to promote/set up a Google+ Local account the right way
  • Where besides Google one finds potential local customers
  • What offline marketing tactics to use to spur online activity
  • Why every local biz needs a social marketing plan

Many local businesses turn to digital marketing to increase online sales or foot traffic to their stores (or both). And many online marketers who work with local businesses often look for new ways to boost Web traffic and online visibility.

So here are some easy-to-implement ideas for boosting the online visibility of a local business.

1. Revamp your Google+ profile

If you are promoting a local business online, chances are you already have a Google+ Local listing (the new version of Google Places). But maybe you don't.

Though a local venue may not even have a website, having a G+ Local page is a must. That is particularly true now as Google has been displaying search results for local queries well on top of all other results, thus making them even more prominent than paid ads.


Scenario 1: You don't have a G+ Local profile

If you don't have a G+ Local listing yet, the first thing to do before you create one is to check whether Google (or a fan) has already created it for you (the information could have been taken from Google Maps, for example).


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Alesia Krush is a digital marketer at software provider Link-Assistant.Com, which offers SEO PowerSuite, a professional toolset for all-round SEO, and BuzzBundle, a social marketing app launched in 2012.

Twitter: @AlesiaKrush

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  • by David M. Patt, CAE Mon Feb 10, 2014 via web

    And have a real person answer your phone and respond to callers, not an automated receptionist.

  • by Carl Tue Feb 11, 2014 via web

    I am very interested in Google Places for the reviews. However, I am very hesitant about listing my address because I work out of my home. Is there a way around this? I sell Hawaii made products online and don't have a physical store front.

  • by Alesia Krush Fri Feb 14, 2014 via web

    Carl, there is a legitimate and an "illegitimate" way to go about it. Most likely, the people you are talking about use virtual addresses.
    But, as Andrew Shortland says in a really nice article about how to rank outside your physical location on Google Places (searchengineland.com/how-to-rank-outside-of-your-physical-location-in-google-places-159043), those virtual addresses are not entirely useless.
    Another option Google+ Local gives you is to specify your service area. Once you click on the red bubble when creating a listing, you'll see an checkbox that reads: "I deliver goods and services to my customers at their location" Here is more info on Service Area - http://support.google.com/business/answer/3038163?p=service_area&hl=en
    So, maybe you could provide your approximate location and specify the service area?
    But in general, if you are not really a local business, and don't really deliver or service an area, it may be hard to get those reviews that are primarily meant for local businesses.
    Then your main Google-related endorsement could be +1's of your Google+ Page.
    By the way, I don't know the nature of your business, but perhaps you could consider Google Helpouts? Just a thought.

  • by Carl Sun Feb 16, 2014 via web

    Mahalo Alesia Krush!

  • by Zak Wed Mar 19, 2014 via web

    Nice reading, thanks! I would also add, that you have to keep up with your online presence - updating your website, profiles, social media, etc.

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