The Key To Having A Strong Online Presence
Free Advice That Could Save Your Business A Lot Of Money
There are many ways to promote your business on the internet. Many of these are expensive and not always that effective. Pay-per-click advertising has been the method of choice for many businesses who want their websites to show up for those all-important web searches. But for many smaller business owners, pay-per-click has become too expensive.
Smart business owners have discovered that the key to advertising online is with the use of SEO and Target Marketing (we'll get into Social Marketing at another time). With Tarket Marketing, it is possible to reduce expensive PPC campaigns with a much more affordable and just as effective search results in the more popular 'organic' search engines results. (Most online shoppers will click on organic links before Sponsored Links, in the hopes of finding better online deals - after all, those businesses using Sponsored Ads have to adjust their prices to pay for those ridiculous par-per-clicks, right?!)
The best way to get your business showing up under those coveted organic links is to link your business to the businesses already showing up at the top of those search results....if possible! The businesses that have the most success are those linked to the most popular sites. Here's a perfect example; go to Google and type in any celebrity's name. Any movie star, TV star, game ahow host, you name it - 9 times out of ten the first organic link you will see on the search results page is a link to IMDb.com - which stands for Internet Movie DataBase. If you were an actor or actress, and you wanted to promote yourself, you could either create a website for yourself, then spend lots of your movie star money on promoting your website. Or, you could just list yourself on IMDb, and you will shoot to the top of the organic search results every time. You can then have a link to your own website on IMDb, so they can find out more about your movie star self. IMDb is a very, very popular site that gets lots and lots of internet traffic. Why not take advantage of that?!
So, let's say you've created a business and you want to promote your business. You can spends lots of your hard-earned money on advertising yourself, or you could link yourself to websites that have already done the hard work for you. The trick is finding a website that you can link your business to. In most major cities, they are available. You just have to look for them.
The best thing to consider is finding a local site that is marketing itself locally. If you sell widgets, and you want to spend your advertising dollars on pay per click ads so that you show up at the top of the Google searches, that's fine. Spend your money. Chances are, you might just have a local online business directory that you can list your business on - for a monthly fee, instead of Google AdWords where you can spend that same amount on a daily basis - that will present your widgets to a local, targeted audience. This is primarily useful for retail storefronts. You have a much better chance of having a new customer find you through a local search, than through a Sponsored Link search result. Spend a little time looking for a local business directory in your local market. Most likely, you'll find several.
We are based in the San Fernando Valley of Los Angeles county. Los Angeles is a huge market. The pay per click ads are more expensive in a huge market than they are in a smaller market. All the more reason to start advertising locally. Here in the SFV, we recommend PagesLA.com. This company is smart, because not only do they know to target a local market, but they even take it a step further and target ethnic communities. They allow local businesses to advertise on pages dedicated to Jewish, Hispanic, Armenian, and Asian communities. After all, if you sell widgets in a big city that is compromised of 30% to 40% Hispanics, wouldn't it make sense to try to reach out where those Hispanic shoppers are shopping? Of course it does.
To sum it all up:
This is free advice. If you try it and find that it saved you a boatload of money. consider giving something back. It's a nice thing to do.
Check your local search results for your main keywords.
- Look for a business directory that shows up in the organic search results.
- Advertise on that site for a small monthly fee.
(Most even offer discounts for annual contracts).
- Cut back on, or cancel your expensive PPC campaign.
- See if you don't get the same or even better results, for a lot less money.
- Pat yourself on the back for a job well done.
For more info on a very effective marketing site, check out our LocalAdLink page.
Or request information here.