By Tom Warthen – President, ProSite Web Design LLC – www.websitedesignersdc.com
If you own a retail or physical store, you should know that online marketing is essential to your success. Finding customers online can be just as valuable to your offline business as it is to companies that sell their products exclusively over the Internet.
Google has observed that roughly 20% of all searches it processes contain a location-based phrase1. That means that billions of customers turned to the world’s largest search engine, not necessarily to look for the lowest-cost products in cyberspace, but to find retailers just down the street.
There are some proven techniques for moving customers from the Internet and into your retail store, and we would like to share a few of them with you.
None of these changes is difficult for you or your web design team to make, yet they could conceivably multiply the amount of foot traffic you see in your store many times over.
Optimize your website for local search
If you want to sell anything directly from your store, you first have to attract local customers. This starts with your website. It is important to display information such as the full business address and phone number (with area code) prominently as this adds validity to search engines indexing your site. Make sure to use local keywords within the site content, as well.
Showcase your products and your business
The better your business, your team, and your products look online, the more interested people are going to be in visiting your store. Website design, product descriptions, customer reviews, and photo galleries are just a few of the factors to consider. Polish your presence and clients will want to do business with you when they comparison shop and see your professional image versus your competitor’s outdated website.
Include driving directions
You want to make it as simple as possible for people to find you offline. Display driving directions on your business website or link to Google Maps because new shoppers may print them out, or decide to visit your site from a smart phone or mobile device while headed in that direction.
Add a calendar of events
Special events are great way to draw local shoppers into your store, share a little bit about your products and expertise, and even grow your mailing list (whether it’s print or e-mail) for future marketing campaigns. Be sure to promote these events through your website, social media profiles, and traditional marketing channels.
Everybody likes to save a little bit of money, and adding coupons to your business website is one of the oldest and surest ways to attract traffic and repeat views. Using online coupons also has the added advantage of allowing you to track the effectiveness of various online promotions and marketing campaigns. Consider adding a limited time offer to spur immediate action.
These are just a few techniques that will help you bring traffic from your website into your retail store. If you’re looking for even more ways to increase your sales and grow your profitability, contact ProSite Web Design today for a free consultation.
Tom Warthen is the President of ProSite Web Design LLC and has been helping businesses looking for a high return on their online marketing investment since the early days of the Internet in the 1990s. To learn more about how to make your website the best it can be, and to contact ProSite Web Design for a consultation, visit http://www.websitedesignersdc.com.