We’ve recently learned an important lesson about claiming your business location online, thanks to the collaboration of one of our clients. As a result, we’d like to ask you this important question: Have you searched for your business’ address recently? Here’s why we’re asking.
After working with the business owner to claim his store’s location on Google My Business and Google Maps—along with other directories including Bing, Facebook, FourSquare, Yelp and Apple Maps—the client’s location was properly placed and pinned across these networks. Leading with his store’s name, we claimed, placed and pinned his store on all of these online networks.
Almost immediately, we noticed that his listing was performing well. In fact, amazingly well. His Google My Business metrics exploded from the minute we took control of his listings. His views have increased and held steady every month, to the tune of 190% growth from the first month to the most recent. His total actions, which add together clicks of their phone number, directions and website buttons from their Google Listing, have increased by 202%.
Like any good business, though, his marketing presence didn’t end there. Because of the nature of his business—he’s a retailer with time sensitive promotions and always-changing inventory—he also advertised in local newspapers. And at the bottom of every ad, he wisely put the address of his store.
That’s when he started to get phone calls. The problem? When potential shoppers would search for the address of his location, the pin for that search was misplaced on Google Maps and was leading his customers to another store. In other words, if you searched for the name of his store, you’d be brought to the right location. But if you searched for the address of his location, you’d be lead elsewhere. And he had concrete evidence that his customers were being misled, leading to lost visits and sales.
“My customers would search for our location on Google Maps and were brought to another area on the opposite side of our premises,” said our client, who asked for his name not to be published. “This was frustrating and confusing for all concerned. I had numerous clients tell me that they circled around until they figured out on their own how to get to us, or called us.”
When he brought this to our attention, we immediately jumped into action, contacting Google directly and requesting that they match the pin placement for the search of his address to the one we claimed for the name of their business. It took some time—exactly a month—to go from request to successful pin move. The request was actually escalated from the Google My Business (GMB) team to the Google Maps team to reflect the importance of the problem.
So, now, when our client buys advertising in print publications, he can do so with confidence, knowing that those who want to come to his store to shop will find it.
Within a month or two, we should see the impact on the GMB metrics for this listing, likely resulting in more views, as well as more calls, website visits and in-store traffic. We’ll check back in on this story and let you all know.
In the meanwhile, we suggest you conduct a search of your address and see if it matches up with your listing. If not, we’d be happy to help you set things straight—and help shoppers head straight to your front door.
Halloween is about to come and go and, with it, Christmas lights and displays will arrive. With the big shopping season just around the corner, it’s vital to think about your local marketing efforts to get your retail location ready to generate traffic.
This means ensuring that your online local business listing is updated and accurate.
Retailers are always thinking about how to increase foot traffic to their store. And with 72% of all in-store purchases made following online research, it’s vital that your business details are correct. Even more so during the holidays. As hours and other details change, you must make sure you’re optimized online.
What should be the first thing on your holiday list then? Ensuring that your holiday hours are accurately represented. This means everywhere. On your website, social networks, and local listings on search engines, maps and review sites. Consistency matters!
Inconsistencies across networks can easily lead to consumer confusion and a loss of foot traffic. During a recent bank holiday, it was found that 85% of brands never updated their opening hours online. This included not only major retailers, but also local shops and businesses that need every advantage to attract people to their door.
Back home in Canada, this can account for a significant loss in revenue. According to the CPA Canada 2016 Holiday Spending Monitor, last updated in January, 37% of Canadians planned to spend over $800 during the last holiday season. It’s easy to see just how easy it would be to lose out on your fair share of the pie if shoppers were frustrated with the accuracy of your business listings.
Something else to think about is that the shopping season starts earlier than it has traditionally. Last year, retail sales in Canada decreased 0.5% in December over November – a decline that followed four consecutive monthly increases in Canadian retail sales. Sales made during Black Friday and Cyber Monday are pulling more money into November – which gives you all the more reason to ensure that you’re all set up and ready to go with your listings before then.
So, with all this in mind, we ask you this: It’s October 19th, are your listings ready?
The phone call came last Thursday, when @IntuitBry called with an invitation to speak at the Intuit QuickBooks Connect conference in Toronto. The event is coming up in early December and we couldn’t be more excited to lend our expertise to the small business leaders and accountants in attendance. Intuit has asked us to share our expertise in local listing management and online review strategies.
QuickBooks Connect provides small business owners and accountants with an opportunity to learn, connect and be inspired to grow their businesses through breakout sessions and keynote presentations. Breakout sessions are led by industry experts and participants will have the chance to get real world advice and connect with peers.
10|20 Marketing’s Presentation Abstract
How to Improve the Odds of Attracting Small Business Clients Online
Where can an small business owner, be it an accounting practice, individual accountant or retailer, get the most value for their dollar online? What are some of the easy-to-use tools available to them that don’t require too much of their time? What should they know about these low-hanging fruit solutions that will help drive business to their doors, keep them relevant in a digitally changing world and help them build online relationships?
Also, we’ll examine which metrics they should look at to prove that their investment is bringing a return. This presentation will look at these challenges, provide solutions and outline which tools can be used to achieve these goals. We’ll look at Google My Business, relevant review sites, and platforms designed to drive phone calls, website visits and walk-ins to their locations, in addition to the metrics that make the effort worthwhile.
Let us know if you’re going to be there and we’ll be happy to set up some time while we’re in Toronto. QuickBooks Connect is taking place at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre December 4 – 6, 2017. Hope to see you there!
Our Toronto-based sales agent made some interesting points about the average retailer’s state of mind in today’s market. His points were frightening, enlightening, validating and motivating all at the same time. Here’s why.
Our agent, Stuart, speaks with small retailers all over Ontario every day and, invariably, the discussion turns to the challenges that these traditional retailers face. This includes concerns about online retailers, discounters and off-price daily deals. And they’re right to be concerned. Because, as a brick and mortar retailer, there are things you just can’t control.
However, when it comes to selling to people in an increasingly digital world, what you can control is how you use digital approaches to intercept shoppers. If you start with the premise that a segment of the population will only buy online, your responsibility is to look for buyers who will visit your store to make a purchase. Your focus should be on those who will only shop in retail stores or use search engines and online reviews to make a purchase decision.
After all, why worry about the others when they are not your target? The fact is, 85% of consumers still prefer to shop in physical stores vs. online stores and 50% of local searches lead to a store visit within a day.
So there are people looking to spend money offline. They are looking for advice on where to go. Your role, in this case, is to intercept their search and prevent your competitors from converting this online search to store visits.
But how? Here are five steps to intercepting these consumers:
- Claim your listings so that you control the details search engines and review sights present about your business. Take control of what prospective clients see about you and your physical location.
- Research what the most “winnable” keywords are for your business and associate them to your listing. Make sure that these keywords are specific enough to separate you from the pack, but general enough to cast the widest net.
- Optimize for local search by tagging your listing with the proper geo-modifiers and ensuring that people searching for your product in specific areas can easily find you.
- Monitor your online reviews to respond to any detractors and highlight your promoters.
- Capture new customers’ emails and communicate with them on a regular basis so that you’re fresh in their minds and able to reward them for being loyal.
The low hanging fruit in the retail environment is not in trying to convert consumer behaviour away from the online world, it’s using the online ecosystem to your advantage. Get found by those who are searching for what you offer, direct them to your location and give them a great shopping experience. That is what will keep them coming back again and again.
If you own a spa or salon, you know that your clients have options. It’s up to them to decide on which looks, styles, and treatments – and any combination of the three – they want when they visit your business. Catering to their desires and helping them find their look is the best way for you to keep them coming back again and again.
However, if you want to help them find their look, the first thing you need to do is help them find you. Because when it comes to search, they also have many options. There are different search engines and review sites for them to discover your business and your price list. And, if they don’t discover yours, they’ll find your competitor down the street.
So it’s important to put your business details – think address, phone number, business hours, a detailed description and your price list – on the top sites and apps that people turn to when deciding on which salon or spa to visit. This includes big players like Google, Yelp, Facebook and Foursquare, as well as more regional and beauty-specific sites and apps.
Consider these statistics:
- Google “near me” searches have increased by two times over the past year.
- 49% of local searches occur without a specific business in mind
- 72% of consumers who did a local search visited a location within five miles.
- 87% of smartphone owners make a search engine inquiry at least once a day
- 97% of smartphone users use a search engine on their mobile device at least once per week
Working with 10|20 Marketing, we’ll help you place your price list on these key sites and apps and give you one place to update your price list, specials, photos and announcements. And by placing your price list online as text, you’ll benefit from every item on it becoming a viable keyword that will help people discover your business. The more ways people can find you, the better.
With our help, we can ensure that your location is consistently presented, error-free and that reviews are aggregated and monitored, so your spa or salon can enjoy improved findability and better overall search results across a number of engines. Moving, adding photos or making a change to your business description? Easy too. Just send along the changes and the process to apply them across the web with the same consistency as your original information is as simple and efficient. You’ll never have to worry about making these changes yourself.
Not everyone is looking for your website. But they are looking for the service you provide. Our solution is an easy and cost-favourable way to market your business and get found. And if you’re already marketing your business online in some way, it works beautifully in conjunctions with those digital and social media marketing as well.
Getting found is foundational, though. And having people walk through your door, though, is always the number one priority.