Free Local Business Advertising Ideas

If you are looking for affordable small business marketing ideas, the internet has a great deal to offer. Even if people are not buying your products or services on line, most people now do their research there first, before going out to shop. This is especially true for more expensive items. There is also an increasing use of smartphones with map features when people are out and about. If you can make it easier for customers who are looking for what you have to offer to find your website, this can only be good for your business. Here are a few free local business advertising ideas that require only minimal technical know-how to implement.

Put your business on the map!
Often internet search results will include map results near the top of the listings. Google Places, Bing Local Listings or Yahoo Local are all useful in getting your business higher up your clients search results pages, and adding your business to these listings is effectively completely free local business advertising!

Is your website search locatable?
If you’re a local business providing a service for local customers, your physical address is a major part of what many potential customers are likely to be searching for. Your website needs to include your address, ideally on every page. You could include it in a footer for example. It is also worth including a paragraph on your website that lists nearby locations also served, so you’ll have a chance of appearing in those locations too. If you have a testimonials page, you could include the location of the customer in the testimonial heading too. This all helps the internet search engines bring people looking for exactly what you have to offer, directly to your website.

Can Facebook work for your business?
Small business marketing includes everything to do with engaging with your customers, and Facebook is now the largest social media site with over 500 Million users, that is one in every 13 people on earth! It is not just for youngsters anymore either, 30% of Facebook users are in the over 35 demographic, and this segment is growing! This is a place where a lot of your potential customers hang out, chat with their friends, and go to get news and information.

Having a Facebook page for your business is a great way for you to engage with customers and potential customers, and if your posts are interesting, funny, or both they are more likely to ‘like’ your business page in order to see more posts from you, and this will keep you in their minds. Your Facebook page should contain a summary of what’s great about your business, and a link through to your main website. Try to make the page interesting and personal, rather than focused on your sales pitch. Facebook is a place to be sociable, and if you think about the way you communicate on there as if you were in a real life social situation with all your potential customers you won’t go far wrong.

It is advisable to think carefully about how you use the site; people do not react well to overt selling on Facebook any more than they would react well if you walked up to them at a party and started selling straight away before they had got to know you at all. People are more likely to buy from you if they know, like and trust you. Mix in occasional posts about your business, offers etc. with a larger proportion of interesting and personal posts about yourself, and share snippets of your expertise relating to your business too. Try to be as open, transparent and honest as you can. The internet is a very public place and people will soon see through any attempt at deception.

Invite your existing customers to check out your Facebook page. Add Facebook buttons to your website to encourage visitors to like you, and ask them specifically to click on these! Each time they do, you are posted on their wall which is visible to all their friends, and furthermore, they will see any future posts you make on Facebook.