Years ago the only way to advertise local businesses was through ads in local newspapers and Yellow Pages…
Then the internet came along. The problem is that even now, few businesses I talk to have much of an understanding of just how effective internet marketing can be for them.
Many still pay a fortune to Yellow Pages and other print directories in the hope they still work as well as they used to.
So let’s compare costs. A typical spend for a local business in one of the print directories is around 400 a year (and that is for a very small ad). Now look at what the public is doing when searching for you…
They ‘Google’ your type of business. And as humans we learn very fast, so 10 years ago we may type in ‘dentist’ and see what comes up, then read the local directory instead. Now we type in ‘dentist in Bedford’ or something similar and up pops loads of ‘Google Places’ results plus a few other bits and pieces.
You are spoilt for choice, and once you have tasted the nectar of instant search (and smart phones are making this even simpler) your habits will change fast.
And that is exactly what is going on today. So the question is, why isn’t your site on page 1 of Google? And the answer is, because you have no idea how to get it there.
Well here’s a quick snapshot of what to do:
1. Register an exact match domain. Eg. ‘BestDentistInBedford.com’
2. Use a CMS system like WordPress to create an instant site
3. Use the front page of your site like a business card – include your telephone number, address, and a simple story of why you care for your customers
4. Optimise the site further by adding photos of popular buildings etc. of your town so local people recognise it and start to understand and trust your service (makes even more sense for a local photography business – add in a church or two)
5. Add more pages, each with a title that reflects relevant keywords, eg. ‘tooth implants in Bedford’
6. Add backlinks to your pages on a regular basis
7. Set up Google Places so your site is shown automatically
I can pretty much guarantee within a few weeks you will hit page 1 of Google. From there you just need to do a little more work to move up the ranks to the top position.
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