Which online promotion option should you choose? What will give a greater influx of quality traffic – social networks, your own website, or electronic catalogs? These and other questions arise before novice businessmen who are looking for their clients on the Internet. Know how to promote your local business on the Internet.
Social media pages
According to the analytical agency Statista in india, almost every second resident of the country (47%) has accounts on social online platforms, and in total there were 67.7 million registered accounts in 2018. Indians actively use the opportunities of YouTube (63%). The third place was taken by Facebook – 35%.
The rapid growth of their popularity leads to the fact that representatives of any type of business, from local business owners to large companies, go to look for their target audience on the Internet. And many young companies operating in the regional market (for example, cafes, restaurants, pharmacies, car services, and the like) do not see the point in creating a website, limiting themselves to attracting customers through social online platforms.
The main reasons for this choice are as follows:
- lack of understanding of the difference between SMM and search engine promotion;
- quickly establishing contact with a huge target audience;
- no financial costs – creating your own page costs nothing;
- minimum requirements for experience and knowledge – a student can create it.
Using the page of a social Internet platform allows you to quickly form a warm target audience interested in your brand, product or service.
The benefits of SMM promotion include:
- ample opportunities for targeting;
- increasing the growth of CA by reaching a larger number of users;
- indexing of pages in search engines.
You can attract users to your group or page by sending an invitation to acquaintances and their acquaintances, leaving comments in thematic groups, posting posts that are interesting to people and reposting them.
Cons of social media promotion
The absence of the need for special knowledge when creating a page leads to increased competition and the emergence of template approaches – almost cloned business pages with minimal differences. The design of the online platform also sets a certain framework, not allowing you to add, for example, an online calculator or a payment system.
The disadvantages of using pages on the social network include the limitation of promotion opportunities by the rules of the social network. Therefore, in order to be effective in promoting a group or business page, you must first of all understand their algorithm of work, which will reduce the risk of getting banned. You also need to take into account that users have the ability to prohibit inviting themselves to groups and communities, which limits the growth of target audience.
If you do not have a website, then the way of communication with the target audience is possible only if the user leaves their contact information: they like it on the page, like the content, write to the messenger, and become so interested in the product that they find out all the details in the chatbot. For communication with the client by phone, when calculating the conversion, it is recommended to allocate a separate phone number for each social network or each launched promotion.
Electronic catalogs – pros and cons
The owners of local businesses (beauty salons, medical centers, veterinary clinics, car services, fitness clubs, yoga, dance, vocal and other schools) often underestimate such a promotion channel as online catalogs. And completely in vain, because they have an audience that knows exactly what they are looking for. The main advantages of catalogs are the relevance of information and constant updating of data.
Since these sites are divided into sections, the visitor can easily and quickly find the one that he needs – medicine, tourism, education, cars and others.
The advantages of catalogs include:
- the maximum amount of information about the company and its products;
- simultaneous presentation on dozens of sites – in addition to the catalog, these are affiliate programs, Google maps;
- some portals, for example Zun, allow you to manage campaign marketing from a single personal account.
An obvious plus for catalog visitors is the availability of reviews about the company from real customers and buyers.
For example, Zuna has over 60 million reviews! Resource employees daily check 20 thousand reviews and over 3 thousand ratings, selecting and removing fake ones. Therefore, people who are really interested in a product, service or business receive verified information about the quality of the company’s work and demonstrate a high level of trust in it. It is better to start a statement about yourself on aggregator sites with leaders with the largest audience coverage.
The advantages of these resources include the presence of their own analytics – for example, when connecting to a premium account on companies will connect call tracking, which allows you to track the proportion of calls from the site by phone. Analytics allows you to track call conversions, get feedback reports, information on competitors, and more.
Cons of directories
Each guide declares its own rules. Some restrict the ability to download price lists, information about employees, and some include this in an extended paid service package. The disadvantages of using electronic catalogs include a high level of competition – firms have to fight for a client using service, quality of goods and services, and competitive prices. Paid services can also be attributed to disadvantages.
Why is a personal website good and bad?
A web resource is the owner’s personal territory, for which he pays when choosing a hosting.
Its benefits include:
- freedom of action – design, interface, fullness, functionality and other criteria will be the way the owner wants them to be;
- the ability to monitor user behavior and website conversions is incomparably higher;
- additional earnings by placing someone else’s advertising or content.
The site is a corporate business card that presents the brand on the Internet . If you have a web resource and launch contextual, banner or teaser ads, the owner can use Google Analytics and other online tools for analysis and statistics. The absence of a corporate website in the age of the global Internet looks undignified and makes people feel like a one-day company that did not even bother to invest funds and efforts into its own resource.
So which online promotion channel should you choose for your local business?
The answer to the question depends on the goals that the business sets for itself, as well as resources – the availability of knowledge and experience in the field of online promotion or the ability to hire a competent specialist . If you have a small budget, and your company employs no more than 2-3 people, the easiest way to start is by creating a page on a social network – it’s free, and you can also practice your skills in creating ads and posts.
A long-term local business should start by registering on an aggregator – with low financial costs, you can declare yourself in the regional market and start quickly interacting with an interested audience. Companies that care about their prestige, are aimed at long-term development, manufacturers, online stores that are building their brand – cannot do without a corporate business card website.
To get a hot target audience and at the same time minimize the time and money required for online business promotion, we recommend combining promotion methods in such a way that they do not duplicate, but complement and reinforce each other. For example, a local business can combine work in social networks with aggregators, an online store can attract users to its site using SMM marketing techniques. Starting to take the first steps in online marketing, an entrepreneur raises his business to a qualitatively new stage of development, and the selection of tools suitable for promotion tests and corrects in the process of work based on his experience.