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The Ethical Small Business Search Engine Optimization

The big push online is for small business owners to get with the program and start marketing their local businesses instead of using many of the old traditional marketing techniques.

1. Claim and Optimize Your Google Listing

Google was nice and “gave” local business owners all over the world free web pages to showcase their business information.

Google and Local Businesses, by the numbers:

More than 4 million business listings on Google claimed by business owners (using the Local Business Center, now Google Places)

Nearly 2 million listings have been claimed in the United States

20% of searches on Google are related to location

There are 50 million Place Pages

These cover all types of places, ranging from businesses like tailors, restaurants, and optometrists to locations like dog parks, transit stations, and baseball fields.

Place Pages are viewed millions of times each day.

This was taken from Google Press Release and what does it mean to you as a local small business owner?

MORE POTENTIAL CUSTOMERS!

Claiming your local business page is not difficult. Optimizing does take more time.

2. How to Optimize Google Places Page

Add all information they are looking for.

NAP= Name, Address, Phone Number is a very important step when optimizing your page. Make sure this information is correct.

Categories – Google will let you have up to 5 different categories. Use these to your advantage and as close to what your business services/products that you have.

DO NOT use local words in the category area. If you are a plumber in Toledo Ohio, don’t put Toledo or any other cities you serve in the categories.

This is against the Google Places guidelines. Sooner or later you will get “Google Slapped” and could get your Google Places Page banned.

If you are looking at an SEO firm to take care of your marketing online, take a look at their places page and see if they added any location-based information. If they do have this in their Google Places Page, you may think twice about using them as this is not an ethical technique. If they are willing to do this for their own company, how are they going to be marketing your business online?

3. CATEGORIES

When choosing your categories, use Google keyword tool to see what people are really searching for when looking for your products/services.

Take time with this.

Look at what your competitors have for their categories (if they do).

4. COMPANY DESCRIPTION

Take time with this also. Look at your competitors. Do not keyword stuff but give people enough information about your company to make you stand apart from your competition.

5. COUPONS

Make a few coupons for prospective clients. In this economy, people are looking for deals. Give them something of value to get them into YOUR BUSINESS. Because once in, you can (hopefully) keep them as repeat customers.

6. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Add additional information, do you service or carry certain brands? Do you have off-street parking? Any additional phone numbers for your company? Think about when potential clients call your business, are they asking the same questions?

Use this space to your advantage.

7. PHOTOS

Google allows you to upload 10 pictures. Find pictures of your brands/products/services, a picture of your store front, the inside, and your employees, etc.

8. VIDEOS

You are allowed to have five videos. Make some presentations in Microsoft PowerPoint or make a video of services you do, or even the inside and out of your store and upload those to YouTube and link them to your places page. The videos do not have to be long. You can make them 1 – 2 minutes long just to get your message out.

Are you a small business owner?

Have you taken advantage of this online advertising for your local business? If you haven’t, you need to.

Don’t forget to optimize your business information on Yahoo and Bing local also.

I realize there are not enough hours in the day to get every thing done that needs to be done, so if you can’t, find a local search engine optimization firm that will help you with your business online marketing.

Not sure where to find one?

Check out Google Places.

Just type into Google Internet Marketing, your city, state and take a look at the maps tab and see which one you would like to work with.

Quit losing customers and let the internet become your 24/7 salesperson.

How to Have a High Impact Marketing Using Business Phones

There are few people that are brave enough to venture into small businesses and those that do will need to be business savvy and ready to really work at making their business work. Most small business have tight budgets, which means that they do not have the means to use expensive high impact marketing. It is for this reason that many small business owners look for cheaper alternatives that are just as good for high impact marketing.

Many small businesses have found that using business phones to market can be considered high impact marketing for cheap, if done correctly. There are a large number of businesses that offer cold calling services for you and your business. This type of calling can be costly and time consuming if you are choosing to have an in house calling center, but you can save a lot just by outsourcing.

Outsourcing your marketing through business phones is a very smart idea for the small business owner. These outsourcing companies are fantastic. They offer to find the numbers needed to make cold calls so you do not have to. All you will need to do is give the outsourcing company a business and marketing plan or idea and they will do the rest for a very reasonable price.

Outsourcing your business phones as a high impact marketing is the best option for small businesses because it is a much cheaper option and it is less time consuming. As a small business owner you do not have time to find interested consumers to call and you certainly do not have the time to accrue enough numbers for cold calling to be considered high impact marketing.

You will need to do some research before you decide on an outsourcing company if you have decided to use business phones as a high impact marketing strategy. To find the best agency you should begin to ask trusted friends, family members, and colleagues for names of good companies. The names collected will really help you save time as there are a great many outsourcing companies that offer cold calling for large or small businesses. Once you have collected a few names you will need to go to their web pages to acquire more information. You will need to look for the company’s customer service record, prices, and services offered. If you like what you see you should call and make an appointment with a representative.