Local business directories
If you are a local business wishing to advertise, then you can certainly choose from a list of directories to improve your visibility and search engine capabilities. Some leading market strategists are YELP, YELLOW PAGES and other associated networks that can help boost your conspicuousness on the internet. You can always choose to enter your business’ local contact information and even add links from external profiles yourself – there are several business listings which act as ‘third party vendors’ that might just transfer your information on to these popular directories. All said and done, they may not serve the ultimate purpose of propagating the company’s services effectively to other users in the area.
Then isn’t it imperative that we pay for such a directory listing? Is it more effective to do it yourself or choose a paid provider that will structure the listing for you with a well-drawn plan to dissipate effective and accurate information to the buyer? The answer is yes. Certainly, there is a cost involved and such providers will enable information sustenance for your business. The directories will provide you with adequate costing and planning systems that will allow you to generate revenue through local search listings that may appear in a particular region.
A business can resort to good digital marketing by adding themselves to major directories. Into most of the major directories, these services may even be free, though may not seem so effective for a small niche business. A good digital marketing strategy only means that your business in the area is probably a monopoly or with very few players in the area and/or your business services are too good to be ignored. It has to be noted that choosing categories that are not relevant to your business can actually hurt the revenue generation.
While listing yourselves into the local directories, it is also important that you analyze local traffic for a directory before advertising with them. Aggregations done through MOZlocal provide an excellent insight into the accuracy of citations and listings besides their frequency.
Is it worth it?
And so, it is understood that small business local listings are a paid service but how effective is it to invest in a local business directory. Will it earn you a place on the first page? It purely depends on the target audience and the amount of local traffic to the site. If the target keyword of your business and category is chosen well, then if is most plausible that you earn an appearance on the first page and on the top. The further down your appearance on a search engine listing, the less likely it is that your business is noticed. If you appear on the third or fourth page, your business is almost invisible to the most wanted customer. Looking at the pertinent flow of web traffic, it is imperative that the usage of a paid local business directory listing is definitely worth it.
How do you…?
As a business owner, you now know how important digital marketing is to build your customer base. Though time comes expensively for an enterprise to invest in tedious categorization and creation of a listing, it is also vital to managing your visibility. Paid services are always better for your business because the directories are large and result in numerous clicks into your website. Besides, gone are the days when the Yellow Pages were the only reference material that a user would find online. Now, many popular, paid directories are sought after because of their security and accuracy of verifications of a business. It gives the customer a sense of authenticity to use popular local business directories.
So here are a few questions – how do you know which is the right directory for your business? How do you choose the right directory? How do you list your business? Not necessarily in that order, the following are some simple solutions that can be implemented to boost your trade.
Claim your listing
Being one of the easiest modes of indicating your presence, Google your business name and see where they already appear. Start by claiming them since they are viewed frequently and especially by using your business name. And if you are a business with no website or social media bearing, then it is all the more important for you to take stock of what is available. Business directories contain links where you can initiate the listing process. If you are a business with an existing website, add a link and other appropriate information in the required fields such as images and hours of operation. Once you claim a listing you will automatically start receiving reviews and viewership updates.
Analyze a niche directory
Input some of the top keywords for your business and subsequently for the directories that they appear in. Some best ranking results will be thrown on the first page from where the top five or ten could be analyzed. A good directory will consist of a good web design which means it will have the appropriate content, the video and the images etc. It is also important to check for the dates of the directories – this is not a spam free zone, Quality directory listings will definitely require you to pay a fee.
Specify links and keywords
Once you have zeroed in on the directory of your choice, it is very important to get your link onto the site and engage your business with the directory. It could be submitting comments, having online discussions and writing articles to create appropriate visibility for your company. This will generate enough traffic to keep your business distinctively afloat. Specify keywords that can target your business in a search. Look for the top 10 results and you can find the best keywords embedded in them which you can use. By doing a local search of the keywords it might even guide you your website, business listings or a competitor’s website offering similar services. Paid advertising services and sponsorships will help your business gain the top slot due to ongoing traffic from the customers.
In conclusion, this is the 21st century and any business that wants success has to have a web presence. The evolution of the website over the past decade has been phenomenal knowing that it was just a tool used by media companies. The trend has now become stronger with the entry of smartphones and accessing local businesses at your fingertips. Pricing could be anywhere from $ 20 a month to $100 a month depending on the popularity of the directory. Some of the directories are specially designed for local small business marketing and can even cost up to $150 to $200 which may be a one-time fee while charging a monthly maintenance fee from $50 to $70.
Local business directories can prove very positive for your business. It is a great idea to improve your customer base and even build one. Do conduct appropriate and diligent analyses to choose the best directory for your business. Also, check MozLocal for some really attractive offers.