You can use your free Google My Business page, and a website if you have one, to promote your business. You don’t have to spend a fortune, but you do have to think carefully about what information your customers need.
This is not rocket science, so why not jump in and give it a try.
Every day, local customers use their smartphones to search for businesses like yours.
Google lists your business using any information it can find. You need to check that information and make sure it’s valid.
The good news is that you can list your business on Google for free. And you don’t need a website.
Google wants to list your business in its search results pages. You can do that for free using Google My Business. (See below.)
Keep it Simple
Promoting your business online, in print, or by word of mouth, will be more successful if you keep it simple. First make sure you’ve got a clear message that everyone can understand. Include all the information your customer needs. Be concise and get to the point without waffling.
Your marketing message needs to be easy to understand. So use ordinary words that are short and simple.
Keep it Simple: don’t use fancy words.
Google My Business is essential
A Google My Business listing is essential if you want to attract local searchers to visit your business premises, or you want to find local customers for your service business.
Get a Google My Business listing, that’s the best small business marketing advice I can give. And it’s free.
Citations are essential too
When a website refers to or mentions your business, Google considers that to be one citation. Usually a citation consists of your business name, address and phone number.
You need to add your business to good quality citation listing sites such as Yelp and, if you’re a member, the chamber of commerce. There are many free websites where you can list your business. A citation does not need a link to your website. But if you can include a link, all the better.
Check all websites where your business information is listed. Make sure they all use exactly the same words to describe your business, it’s location and your contact details. Even a slight discrepancy can confuse Google, so be consistent.
Small Business Marketing Advice
These are some of the useful pages you’ll find on this website…
Google My Business
This is a free service provided by Google
Your website should be the hub of all your marketing ventures.
SEO & Blogging
Writing good quality content brings visitors from Google.
Are your customers active on social media?
Real relationships built up over time trump all else.
Leaflets, flyers, handouts. Are there any ways print could help?
A website is not essential but it’s good to have
Although a website is not essential, having a website would help your chances of finding new customers. And a website makes it easy for old customers to recommend your business to their friends.
Expert small business marketing advice for free
Luckily, some well-respected experts give their advice for free via their websites. Promoting your small local business is not expensive. And you need not be a computer wiz kid either.
Be clear and keep it simple
If you stick to a few simple rules, you can promote your small local business cheaply or even for free.
Write as if you were talking to a friend, give them all the information they would need to use your business.
Aim to be clear not creative. Fancy advertising slogans might work for world famous brands like Apple or Nike, but a small local business is almost always better off using simple words and clear language.
Your elevator pitch
How would you describe your business if you only had thirty seconds. For instance if you were in an elevator with someone? Your potential customer wants to know…
What do you do. For who, and what’s the benefit?
- Are you a one-man band or an organization?
- What do you do?
- Who do you do that for?
- As a customer, how will I benefit from this?
- What do I do next, how do I get your products or services?
For your business website, ordinary but clear always trumps creative but vague.Gill Andrews
The text in your navigation bar
Your navigation bar should be very clear, and the link labels should make it obvious what happens when you click that button. Using links labeled home, about, services, portfolio, blog and contact, make it obvious what information is available on each page.