How Important is Local Online Marketing For Small Businesses?

Though Internet marketing provides global platform, it is also considered as the most dynamic and functional strategy to reach and positively influence the local market. It can be a good substitute for traditional offline marketing channels (like TV, newspapers, etc.) which are generally used for local marketing to reach the customers.

As market comprises of highly potential customers who are significant in driving new and repeated sales, there arises the need for local online marketing.

This article emphasizes on why small businesses should consider local online marketing as an important aspect of their overall marketing strategy.

Increasing numbers of people are using Internet to shop locally
According to a study ‘User Wave View VII’, conducted by BIA/Kelsey and ConStat, 97% of all consumers use Internet for researching products and services in their areas. These statistics prove that local online marketing is the best way to target prospective customers. Further, with almost all mobiles coming with Internet facilities, location based searches are also increasing.

Location based marketing involves customizing marketing messages as per the location and preferences of prospective customers. When a customer is looking for a business in a particular area, there are higher chances of your website appearing on the search results if your business has geo-specific content.

Consumers prefer local searches, as most of the location based search results (though small in number) are found to be more relevant to the customer.

Improves customer loyalty
As already said, customers rely mostly on local stores in times of urgent need. This makes customers become more loyal to these stores. According to ‘local search usage study’ conducted by Localeze, 61% of the local business searchers have said that local search results are relevant and 58% of them have said that they are trustworthy. Most of the businesses generate the feeling of ‘being specifically intended for the customers’ – this increases the brand recognition as well as the loyalty of the business.

Drives repeated sales
Because of the easy reach and comfortable purchasing features of the stores, local online marketing drives repeated sales. Easy reach of local businesses enables ‘in-the-moment’ action by the customers. To avail the benefits of offers and deals, customers usually prefer local stores.

Once a customer is comfortable with your store and the offer, he is more likely to visit it more than once. Further, repeated sales from a customer also assure a successful ‘word-of-mouth advertising’.

Improves customer experience
Location based marketing is very crucial in providing good customer experience because a customer is more likely to see for the nearest store for his need in the times of emergency and by localizing your website, you are more likely to come to his rescue in the time of his need.

Due to this feature, local online marketing is best suited for businesses such as, doctors, lawyers, dentists, low-cost product sellers, home appliance retailers, auto dealers, etc.

Internet marketing tactics like local SEO, PPC advertising, site submissions in local business directories and ads with location specific keywords can give you higher search engine rankings, thus making you visible for the local customers whenever, they are looking for your business.

Enables to track consumer purchasing history
Local online marketing establishes a one-to-one relationship with your customers. This allows you to track the consumer purchasing history – like for which offers are customers increasingly checking-in the store, what type of customers are usually visiting your store, how many repeated purchases were made, etc.

By measuring the impact of the present marketing strategies, you can design your future marketing plans accordingly.

Local online marketing is beneficial for both the parties – the businesses and the customers. If customers use local search to narrow down their options, businesses take the advantage of search, so that they become the first options for the customers.