4 Things You Can Do to Increase Online Visibility During the Holiday Rush
The holiday season is here! Consumers are already busy with their holiday shopping, and whether they’re buying online or in stores, the buying research process is entirely digital. What is your multi-location business doing to stand out and win new customers? If your online presence isn’t optimized, your business will likely miss out on sales opportunities – but it’s not too late to change that. Throughout this blog, we’ll dive into which local search and social strategies your multi-location business should focus on to boost online visibility and stand out when it matters the most – during the holiday rush.
1. Ensure Your Local Presence is Optimized
One of the most important and straightforward ways your multi-location business can improve its online presence on Google is to focus on optimizing your local listings and reputation management efforts. According to Whitespark’s 2021 Local Search Ranking Factors, Google Business Profile, formerly known as Google My Business or GMB, is the top-ranking factor when looking at the local pack/finder ranking factors, with reviews coming in second. If your business wants to appear in Google’s coveted 3-Pack or at the top of Google’s Local Finder results, an emphasis on local listings and reputation management is vital.
Your multi-location business must first ensure that your local listings are claimed across business locations. Once your local listings are claimed, it’s critical to update them with the most accurate business information. For instance, your business’s name, local address, phone number (NAP), and hours of operation must be correct in your local listings. Once those are updated and accurate, you can begin including more details like business attributes, categories, photos of your local business, and more. For additional insight into optimizing your local listings, check out our blog on the topic.
As previously mentioned, focusing on local reputation management efforts is essential as well. So what exactly does this mean for your multi-location business? Our 2021 Localized Marketing Benchmark Report breaks it down for you. The report looks at leaders in localized marketing and analyzes what they’re doing to crush various areas of localized marketing, including reputation management. The report found that these leaders had an average of 303 reviews per location on Google, 65 on Facebook, and 30 on Yelp. When responding to reviews, the multi-location businesses studied responded to 31 percent of reviews on Google, 26 percent on Facebook, and 13 percent on Yelp. While responding to 100 percent of local reviews your business receives is ideal, meeting or exceeding these averages is critical. Get more insights on creating a winning reputation management strategy that can help you stand out on Google, here.
2. Invest in Digital Advertising
Investing in digital advertising is another great way to boost your multi-location business’s online visibility. With organic reach on the decline, digital advertising can help your multi-location business reach a wider audience and promote your products and offerings during the holiday season. One of the best ways to promote your business through digital advertising is on Facebook. Facebook advertising is managed through the Facebook Ads Manager tool. When it comes to multi-location marketing, Facebook has the tools you need to create ad campaigns across business locations. For instance, you can deploy localized creative, copy, CTAs, etc., for each location you serve with various campaign objectives. Facebook ads have five goals – reach, traffic, conversions, catalog sales, and video views.
For more insight on creating a digital advertising campaign that will help your business stand out online during the holiday rush, read our blog on the topic. If you don’t find success in your advertising campaigns right away, give it time. It can often take a period of trial and error to get your campaigns up and running effectively. SOCi Ads PLUS is also an excellent option for businesses looking for support in managing their ad campaigns across 100s or 1,000s of business locations. SOCi Ads PLUS allows your business to deploy a single ad that will auto-populate with local text and images across all of your locations. The tool also enables your business to track and compare social advertising spend for regions and individual locations, and gain critical insights to allow national and local marketing teams to optimize campaigns across business locations, improving visibility.
3. Speak to Your Target Audience on Local Social
Although organic reach isn’t as effective as it once was, it shouldn’t be overlooked entirely. Investing in local social efforts is still a critical component of boosting your multi-location business’s online presence. Similar to local listings, your company should have local social pages claimed for each business location. Once your business claims its social pages, it’s time to consider a content strategy. So what type of content is most effective? Data from our Localized Social Content Guide found that localized content performs 12x better than content that is not localized.
When developing a local social strategy, an emphasis should be placed on location. How you would speak to a potential customer in San Diego might be different from how you speak to a customer in Austin.
When planning content at the local level, you can share various types of content, including:
- Special promotions or discounts that are happening at your location
- Positive customer reviews from local customers
- Pictures of live or virtual events happening at your local store. If you hosted a Zoom wine tasting event, share those images on your local social media accounts.
- Current events that are happening in your local area. Is there a snowstorm headed your way? Did your city’s sports team win a big game? These are things you can incorporate into your local content.
- Ways your local business is giving back to the community. If you’re helping frontline workers during this time, or have an annual food drive for your local community, highlight these events on your local social channels.
If a consumer sees that your multi-location business is taking the time and effort to create content relevant to them and their local community, they’ll likely remember when the time comes for them to make a purchase.
4. Focus on Mobile Optimization
While the previous three tactics will help boost your online visibility, mobile optimization will improve the user’s experience online and help drive more sales. Seventy-six percent of local smartphone searches led to an in-store visit within 24 hours. If your local pages aren’t optimized for mobile, think of all the sales your business could be missing out on. While mobile can often lead to an in-store visit, it’s also crucial to streamline the mobile experience so consumers can easily purchase products on your website through mobile.
When optimizing your check-out process for consumers, consider the following:
- Allow consumers to check out as a guest. Creating an account can become challenging from a mobile device and may cause consumers to abandon their cart.
- Your multi-location business should also prioritize the search bar. Often it can be challenging to navigate a website from mobile, so having an easy-to-find search bar helps.
- Ensure images have a quick load time on mobile devices as well. Product images can often appear small on mobile, so a website that supports interactive images that can be resized and load quickly is key.
Following these tactics will allow consumers or potential consumers to have a positive experience with your business on mobile, increasing their chances of doing business with your company.
Now that you understand what it takes to strengthen your localized marketing efforts to increase your business’s digital presence, it’s time to get started. With the holidays less than a month away, it’s essential to get started right away! While managing these efforts across business locations can seem daunting, SOCi is here to help! From local listings to reputation management to digital advertising, local social, and beyond, SOCi is here to help! For more insight into how SOCi can help you crush your localized marketing efforts and win more sales during the holiday season, request a demo today!