Over the years, the way how customers shop has flipped from browsing through stores on streets to researching the product and store online before they even consider going to the store.
And with internet users spending more than 3 hours a day online, it has become essential for brick and mortar businesses to have a good online presence.
We talk about “good online presence” because it is necessary you have a good reputation on the web. This not only affects how customers perceive your product or service before they even talk to you , but also has a role to play in whether your online avataar ( read website) is even shown to the potential customers.
SEO or search engine optimization is the process of “optimizing website to improve its position on the search engine results pages”.
A further dive would also lead you to terms like off page SEO, on page SEO, link building among other things.If you are a online business or planning for an expansion ; SEO is the term you should understand along with all that is associated with it.
For brick and mortar stores aiming to improve their footfall or customer base, it becomes essential to have an online presence or in simple words a website. We summarized our learnings on why small business require an online presence in the article below
NowFloats have been designing and improving ways to get these brick and mortar business online and help them build a reputation leading to greater footfalls and customers. With more than 200,000 businesses using NowFloats, we have learnt what works for a store which wants to go online.
We understood , for a local store with single or multiple outlets , more than just SEO a variant of it Location based SEO works best and in actual terms does wonders.
What is Local SEO?
Local SEO is a branch of digital marketing which concentrates on pulling local customers to the business at exactly the time they are looking for the product or service provided by you. It makes local businesses visible to local customers when they search for the services/products online.
Most search engines take into consideration the location of the user before showing any search result. The job of Local SEO methodologies is to make sure that the business listing or website shows up when a search happens.
A much more detailed definition and step by step guide is present in the following link
- Learn How What is Local SEO, Why is it important and 5 easy steps to implement it for your business
- Local SEO checklist that you should know
- 7 SEO strategies you should try for better results
- 7 Best Practices for Awesome SEO results
Off all the things mentioned in the Local SEO article above, content is one thing that can have an everlasting effect on your search rankings. One of the foremost example is Wikipedia, not only they have never done any marketing , the wikipedia team never has done planned SEO optimization either.
Steady stream of content naturally interlinked to one another made sure that wikipedia stands on top of search engine results without much exclusive effort.
In our case though, it is almost impossible to achieve wikipedia’s scale without a content strategy. Some of the best practices to start blogging and the content itself, have been mentioned in the articles below
Once your content is set and starts driving traffic from search engines, the next step is to convert them to customers. This is achieved with what we call CTA or Call to Action, this can be a form you want customers to fill or a phone number they can call.
A more detailed information on how to build CTA is presented below, along with some best practices to generate leads
- What is CTA and Why is it Important?
- How To Get More Leads For Your Business Using SEO And Content Marketing
SEM and Online advertising
SEO has always been a long term strategy, though Local SEO takes much lesser time (about 45 days) or more, a lot still depends upon the competition in the market.
One way to skip this waiting period is to advertise online. Also called search engine marketing or SEM, it includes ads on search engines and social channels.
We have summarized SEM best practices in the articles below
- What is Online Advertising and how to get started
- How to do Search Engine Marketing- AdWords Guide
- Things You Should Know About Keyword Research
All of this makes sense, if you have a working website with the ability to add new content into it. For entrepreneurs just starting out and looking to start an online business, our guide to starting online business should be the first read How to start an online business
If you are now sold on the idea of being online, the very first step would be to build a website. Once done, follow the suggestion present in this article for ultimate SEO glory.