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Online visibility is the new word-of-mouth. These days, everyoneis online, including your potential customers. Traditionalmarketing strategies alone aren’t enough to attract newbusiness.

As a small-business owner, with a small budget and limitedresources, you may wonder: How can I boost my online visibilitywithout spending a lot of time or money? And in a way that willactually bring business through the shop door?

You need to learn about local Internet marketing – onlinemarketing that’s designed to drive business not just to yourwebsite, but into your establishment. “We know that 86 percent ofconsumers who use Internet search engines to find a local productor service follow up with a phone call or an in-store visit,” saysJay Bean, CEO of OrangeSoda, experts in local internet marketing.”And 61 percent end up making their purchase offline.”

You need to get your business listed online, and OrangeSodaoffers these five tips for getting the ball rolling:

1. Get your business listed on Google Maps.

Google Maps are visual and draw potential clients. When someoneuses Google Maps to search for a local business, the first three toseven listings display a company name and phone number. Searcherson-the-go, who are ready to come in and make a purchase, also useGoogle Maps to find local businesses from their smart phones. Tohelp you make the list, you need a strong profile and peopletalking about your business online.

2. Use search engines to run local ads.

Search engine ads can drive business to your door moreefficiently because potential customers who see your message arealready searching for your product online. With traditionalmarketing tactics, you can only hope that your product or serviceis relevant to some of those who view it; with search enginemarketing, you know it is relevant to viewers. Google offers textads that return results related to the words someone types into thesearch engine. You can also buy ads set to trigger when someonewithin a defined geographical zone types in a search term thatrelates to your business. Or, you can set your ad to appear whensomeone adds a specific city name or state to their onlinesearch.

3. Improve your search engine ranking.

LocalSEO drives traffic to your website. You can influence whereyour business appears in a list of results when someone searchesfor terms that relate to your business, product or service. Yourgoal is to be in the right location on the search results page, soyou get the most customers.

4. Get listed in online business directories.

You’ll find countless websites, including the well-knownYellowpages, where you can list your business. Listing on the rightsites means someone can quickly find your business name, addressand phone number when they search for your business name or whenthey search for a category that relates to your business.

5. Get listed on social networking websites.

Google indexes videos from YouTube, news and images fromFacebook, Twitter and other content from social networkingwebsites. When someone does a search, these references are usuallyat the top of the list, right near your website. Social media getsyour business more visibility and offers ways for people to reachout to you directly. You can also customize the address of yoursocial media sites so that it helps your search enginerankings.

If you’re not sure how to go about it, local marketingcan be a time-consuming process. Fortunately, it’s easy to findhelp.

“We cover every aspect of Internet marketing – paid listings,organic listings and maps listings on the search engine resultspage,” says Bean. “We’re a one-stop shop and we do everything soyou don’t have to waste your time doing it yourself.”

To learn more about local Internet marketing,

Courtesy of ARAcontent