local marketingMarketing locally, to people within your geographical area is critical if you are a business that can only serve a limited reach. Doing this properly online isn’t expensive, it just requires an understanding of how to do it. When done right, you will see more people visiting your website, more phone calls and of course more business – which everybody likes.

As everybody begins to understand the concept of social media (Facebook, Twitter) and even SEO (search engine optimization) what they often fail to recognize is whether they are marketing online to locals. How is this done? Most commonly, this starts with a Places page via Google, Bing and Yahoo.  What is a places page? If is the listings you see when you type in a place plus a town and it pops up along side a map.

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With the above example, I typed in “Scottsdale Golf Resort”. A number of listings came up on the first page along with a location marker on the map. What better advertising could a business have than a listing like this showing up for them? These listings are not part of Google Pay Per Click, they are free.  Bing and Yahoo have something similar.

How do you know if you have a listing or not? Beyond  just Googling yourself, there is a great tool called GetListed.org. Go to their website and fill in your company name and website address and find out how you are showing up on the Internet, if at all.

If your company’s physical location isn’t showing up in the search engines when people look for you within your community you are missing out on tons of free leads and traffic.

Other tips for marketing yourself online within your community include:

1. Using location based mobile apps and coupons. This can include Foursquare and Yelp. Being listed on these phone apps along with a coupon or offer can capture local’s attention.

2.  Pay per click advertising. This includes Google Pay Per Click. With Google ads, you can set up your ad to only show within your community or people searching within your community. This is a wonderful feature that can save you tons of money and really narrow your target. With Google PPC you can even narrow your target to certain demographics or a handful of communities. The parameters are almost endless.

While there are countless ways to market to your community online, just starting with these few steps will take your business leaps and bounds above your competition.