Latest Survey on How Consumers Are Contacting Local Businesses

Latest Survey on How Consumers Are Contacting Local Businesses

A new survey (Nov 2019) asked 500 people how they search for local businesses prior to making a decision on which one to choose.

The results will shock you!

With all the hype around having your business on Facebook these days it was astounding to see that 75% of people do NOT look at the Facebook page for a business. So, why are we wasting our time on there I ask?

Another interesting result in these days where we are told that everyone is using their mobile phone, was that 59% of people prefer to do their searches on a computer! Voice search is still in its infancy but I feel sure that if they did this survey next year the figure would be different.

We are all hung up on reviews when it comes to our online presence, but maybe we shouldn’t be. 81% of those surveyed said that they do not leave online reviews. Those that do, like to leave then on Google My Business. (Find out how to optimise your GMB listing here). Strangely though, 58% of people stated that a negative review would cause them to look at an alternative business when deciding who to use. People also only look at reviews on 1 or 2 sites as well.

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Google My Business shines again

One overriding thing coming out of the survey was that people do appear to use the Google My Business listings a lot when making informed decisions about which business to use. These are the listings at the top of Google when you are searching locally. Here is an eample:

google my business listings

When looking at these listings the No.1 feature that is deemed most important by searchers is a good description. What is yours like?!

The 2nd most important are the photos that the business has put on their listing. This is something that far too many people miss out when optimising their listings.

How do you look online?

After negative reviews, the next thing that stops someone from making contact with a business is a poor website. Still, in 2020, we see many local business websites that look like they were created in the 1990’s! Another mistake is not having a secure website (https) and also not having a mobile responsive website.

The average time someone stays on your website before they make the decision whether to stay or not is about 3 seconds! Yes really! So, your website needs to not only look professional but also convey the message of what it is that you do.

How is yours looking?

The personal touch

The overwhelming form of contact preferred by people in the survey was to call the business on the phone. Email was a lowly second. This shows that people still like the personal touch. I think that you can tell a lot about a person or business by 3 things:

  • how quickly they answer the phone
  • how they answer the phone – are they professional and courteous
  • do they sound knowledgeable

Are you in good shape for 2020?

Why not let us give you our honest assessment of your current online presence? We will tell you what is good, what needs some work and tips on how to get more visitors to your website.

Simply enter your details below and we will get started for you – the cost to you? Zero!

Hopefully you have found this Latest Survey on How Consumers Are Contacting Local Businesses useful? Let us know your thoughts.

3 Ways to Get Google to Love Your Local Business

Check Out These 3 Ways to Get Google to Love Your Business

There is only one way to get Google to love your local business and that is to give Google what it wants. That makes sense, doesn’t it?

So what does Google want from you? Check out these 3 Ways to Get Google to Love Your Local Business

3 Ways to Get Google to Love Your Local Business

  1. Relevant Keywords:

    Google wants you to use keywords that match what people are typing into its homepage all day long. Think of Google as a broker that connects your customers questions to your web content and think of keywords as the medium of currency. If your customers are using “apple” currency and you’re using “mango” currency, Google can’t help you because it matches apples with apples and mangoes with mangoes. So your job is to find out what currency your potential customers are using and use the same currency in your web content. That way Google will hook up the both of you instantly.

  2. High Quality Content:

    Google wants you to use high quality content. It has an image and reputation to maintain and doesn’t want to be seen as a broker who connects users to rubbish. If your content is somewhat useless, article-spun rehash, that’s full of backlinks to websites that have absolutely nothing to do with your business and that gives no valuable information and help to users, Google will find you out and give your more worthwhile competitors better rankings than you. Your poor content will find you out!

  3. Google Wants to See Relevant Backlinks:

    They want to meet your friends. In other words, Google gauges your credibility by who you know. Ever heard of the saying that goes “You can know a person by who they hang out with”? Well the same philosophy holds true on the internet. Remember that the “www” means World Wide Web i.e. a web of relationships between people using computers as a tool. You are not an island so practice some good hospitality and choose the very best friends online. That way you create a community of relationships that Google respects.  Connect to quality forums, social networks and websites that relate to your industry and to your business.

Using these 3 guidelines in your online marketing efforts will reap great rewards from Google for your local business. So, what did you think of these 3 Ways to Get Google to Love Your Local Business? Let us know in the comments.

Are you GDPR compliant

Are you GDPR compliant?

What is GDPR?

are you GDPR compliantUnless you have been hiding under a rock you will know that there is a NEW law that came into play on May 25th 2018 which affects EVERY business that has customers (or promotes its products and services to people or businesses) in the UK and the EU.

So even if you are in the USA and you have an online presence, you are not immune!

It is called the General Data Protection Regulation. The European Union (GDPR) directive is considered to be the most comprehensive and far-reaching data privacy initiative of the past 20 years. It contains massive penalties for non-compliance.

Click HERE to watch our FREE Video training to help get you compliant before May 25th

Just six in 10 company directors feel their organisation is fully compliant with the incoming GDPR regulations, according to a survey from the Institute of Directors (IoD).

I am not a lawyer, but!

Now I am not a lawyer and do not profess to know all of the ins and outs of the Act but having put the new regulations into place in our own business we do know a fair bit about it.

GDPR in a nutshell is all about good data handling and ironically has been thrust more into the spotlight by Facebook’s recent faux pas with their handling of peoples personal information!

It is tightening up peoples individual rites and restricts businesses in what they can do with the data they collect.

Whether you store emails, customer info, or texts you must comply with GDPR. Basically anything that you hold on file that can identify an individual!

You have to consider how you collect the data and also how it is stored and then how you are going to interact with the individuals afterwards.

If you have buying customers who you do not contact after the sale (believe it or not many businesses actually do this!) then you can store them safely under ‘Legitimate Interest’ as you require the details to be able to fulfill their purchase.

Likewise if you have contracts with suppliers or customers for services you provide you can store that data under the Contractual Necessity premise.

A little known fact

A little known fact is that you must keep your email lists uptodate. You must also set a time limit whereby any subscriber that has not engaged with you after a set period (e.g 1 year) be deleted from your list.

If you already have an email list that you send emails out to, promoting your business etc, you WILL need to look at how you obtained these people. Do all your emails have an Unsubscribe button/link on them? It was first thought that you would need to get re-consent from all your subscribers but this is now NOT the case, as per a recent article from the ICO.

The biggest thing I feel for most companies is getting their opt in forms/pages changed. They also need to add a prominent GDPR compliant Privacy Notice and Cookies Policy to your website. 

You will also no longer be able to have pre-filled check boxes on your opt in pages. You have probably seen them where the box is already ticked to receive updates etc. That is a big No-No going forward!

If you have emails for prospects within businesses then it gets even more complicated!

Now you can only send promotional emails to emails that do NOT contain a persons name. E.g johnsmith@business.com is a no go area but info@business.com is OK!). Also, you can then only send emails to companies that are a Ltd company. You will no longer be able to promote to sole traders or partnerships!

Their is loads more that you should know but this post would go on for about another hour or two!!

To make life easier for you we have teamed up with our mentor and two of the UK’s leading GDPR experts who work directly with some of the largest organisations in the UK and with the regulatory bodies themselves to break down into simple terms the GDPR regulations 🙂

The training is a must see if you want to know if you are GDPR compliant.

WHY is this so important for your business? … because knowing how to be GDPR compliant is not optional, this is a legal requirement.

Are You GDPR Compliant?

Click the image below to watch our FREE Video training to help get you compliant.

Why do small businesses not use social media

“Find Out Why do small businesses not use social media?”

From a marketing perspective and for reasons that I do not comprehend their are a large number of businesses that still do not use social media in their marketing strategies!

Now, don’t get me wrong social media IS a huge time suck if you just go on it to watch cat videos and see what your friends are doing!

BUT, if you use it the right way social media is a phenomenal way to get your business in front of a huge audience.

 

 

After all, the stats cannot lie:

  • Facebook has 2.4 billion active users
  • Youtube has 1.9 billion active users
  • Facebook Messenger has 1.6 billion active users
  • Instagram has 1 billion active users
  • Twitter has 330 million active users
  • Linkedin has 303 million active users

So, as you can see, a large portion of your prospective customers are somewhere on social media at some point each month!

And yet many local businesses do not embrace this phenomenon. Are you using 1 of these excuses?

1. Our prospective customers are not on social media?

This one has just been blown out of the water by the stats I have provided! Pew research center states that 64% of people age 50 to 64 and 37% of people age 65 and over use at least one social media platform.

2. Social media only attracts negative attention for my business

At the end of the day, you will always get some negative feedback, but it is how you deal with it that counts. There is no such thing as bad publicity!

In fact by using social media effectively you are more likely to get more customers as they will see you as a forward thinking company.

3. I get nothing from it

Lets face it, if you are not on social media your company will NOT be seen at all by your prospective clients. Those businesses that get nothing out of it are the ones that just set up a profile and then do nothing else, or do not add regular content to your social media platform.

4. Its too much like hard work!

As my old dad used to say “You don’t get owt for nowt!” Your business is your baby so why would you not put the effort in to get results which potentially will increase your bottom line.  But you cannot just post any old rubbish. You may want to find someone who knows what they are doing!

5.  I just don’t know what to do – I am stuck!

If we did an honesty poll of all the businesses NOT using social media they would probably reveal that this is their biggest reason for not using social media! Is it your excuse?

If you need help developing or revamping your social media marketing strategy, just ask! >> HERE