How online marketing affects local businesses

Guna Nadar

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The impact of online marketing on local businesses

Internet is a solution that no local business can afford neglecting. With consumers showing more confidence in mobile application and social media, it is more important to have your brand’s online presence establish solid reputation. Digital marketing appears to be of great help. In fact, statistics suggest that digital marketing has a growing significance for local businesses globally. The overall industry is estimated to grow to $42.5 billion in 2015. In 2011, the values were at $27.1 billion. Additionally, the search engine marketing industry too is estimated for a 19% yearly growth. In 2012, it was already a $22 billion market.

More and more brands are beginning to recognize the importance of web for their digital marketing efforts. Local mobile marketing platforms are putting in more money into local marketing efforts. The success of startups has been encouraging several other businesses to change their attitudes towards digital marketing. According to a survey by Manta, 74% of local businesses across the globe find digital marketing as valuable as direct networking with consumers. Some even find it more productive.

So how does digital marketing help struggling businesses thrive? For most parts, it comes down to identifying the trends and opportunities that present themselves at each step. Digital marketing isn’t a game for small business owners, but means of their livelihood.

Going digital

Though we currently survive in an internet dominated world, it might come as a surprise that only 40% of small business owners have a dedicated website for their products/services. This would mean that 6 businesses out of every 10 are missing out on huge opportunities. They are letting go off the revenue and growth to more intelligent competitors. The trend is however changing for the good. More businesses are coming to the forefront and trying to make their mark on digital platforms. The increase in consumer demands have led them not only to invest in search engine marketing but also host themselves on social platforms and some even on mobile applications.

Grabbing the local demands

Local demand will always stick to where it is. Take for example a coffee shop. There is no alternative to visit the nearest coffee shop to start the morning for a tourist. The amount of local searches made for local businesses have continued to accelerate. Mobile devices and platforms like local channels; Google Maps, etc are providing more local information than ever before. Taking the same example again, Google Maps would be the easiest way to find the nearest coffee shop. However, businesses that have listed themselves will only get the opportunity to be showcased in these searches. Local digital marketing also influences search engine results. Businesses that have worked on getting a higher rank in local searches are more likely to generate the maximum amount of profits.

Look for an IT partner

Having a cousin down the road who has knowledge of SEO doesn’t help your cause anymore. Businesses today are facing strict competition and while they certainly cannot take off their focus from the core business functions, a qualified IT partner would be highly useful. Local businesses should be looking for IT partners who have a broad range of expertise. Researching well will also lead you to an affordable service provider.

Mobile emphasis

More than 30% of web traffic today is generated from mobile searches. Tablets and smartphones are being widely used to find local businesses, directions to businesses, company websites, etc. Responsiveness is the key to ensure that their changing demands are well met. Thoroughly optimized mobile websites and applications can gain businesses a large amount of the potential traffic.

Boom of e-commerce

Ecommerce is going through a phase of mass adoption. Local businesses like plumbers, tax professionals, landscapers, boutiques and flower shops are looking up to digital spaces to market their businesses. According to eMarketer, there has been a 16% yearly growth in local ecommerce and online shopping/retail sites.

It is high time that businesses got serious about digital marketing needs of their local businesses. Internet has penetrated more regions and cultures today than it has ever been. For local businesses, understanding the trends/opportunities and using them towards business benefits will only help in maximizing the returns.

 

Category :

SEO News

Tags :

Local Business, Online Marketing, Digital Marketin

About Guna Nadar

Guna Nadar

Brief Info about Guna Nadar +

I mostly write technical aspects and not much into creative writing. For the past decade I worked along with top notch SEO & Internet Marketing professionals which naturally lured me into the world of Search Engines. When I am not writing I read from comics to philosophy.Antiques, Fishing, hunting are my passions. Currently I am working on Google Penalty protection and .... more info


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