Let’s chat about mobile devices, and how they can help your business connect with customers nearby.
We’ll show how mobile phone technology—from maps to apps to paid advertising that targets people nearby—can help bring more customers to your door.
Today, many people walk around with a smartphone in their pocket. As a business, you can take advantage of this to reach nearby customers.
First, let’s take a look at how local and mobile work together.
We’ve all used our mobile to find, say, the closest shop to where we happen to be. Say you’re riding your bike around town when suddenly your chain breaks. If you’ve got your mobile on you, you’re probably about to do a search for a bike shop that’s really close.
So if you own that bike shop, or any other kind of business, what can you do to improve your chances of showing up when people need you?
Of course you’ll want to make sure your business is listed in local directories, review sites and search engines, and you might want to take advantage of some local advertising opportunities, but let’s talk about how you can harness the power of mobile devices for local customers.
The first thing you need to do is make sure your site looks good on mobile devices and includes contact information.
Next, you can take advantage of some things that only mobile devices tend to have. For example, many people allow websites and mobile apps to use a GPS function that can detect where they are and direct them to where they want to go (like that bike shop).
Or, if the bike shop has an app that people install on their smartphones, it could use that GPS functionality to send messages—like sales alerts—when potential customers are within a certain distance of the shop.
Depending on the capabilities of the app, it could allow customers to schedule appointments for repairs, find answers to common questions or even order accessories. The app could also send reminders of cool events taking place at the shop, like a monthly group ride or free tune-up clinic.
Another common way GPS-enabled devices work with mobile is in local advertising. Paid advertising programs help you target the right customer, at the right time, and now, in the right place.
Say someone who doesn't know you exist happens to be nearby searching for bicycles on her mobile. With local search, your ad could appear high in the search results because your shop is nearby, and a relevant result for what she’s looking for. Your ad could include a click to call button or even what's known as location extensions to guide her right to your shop.
Think about your business. How well are you serving mobile and local customers?
To get started, make sure your customers can find you online, using any device, and have a good experience whether they’re on a laptop, desktop, smartphone or tablet.
Then, think about leveraging the unique capabilities of mobiles to reach and engage customers.
And finally, if you’re advertising locally, you can target people nearby and on the go with your campaigns.
- the importance of being found in local search results
- making the most of mobile features, like calls, GPS navigation and applications (apps)
- using paid advertising to reach a local audience on the go.