In this article we will look at how you can use local information to enhance your conversion rate. This will be of particular interest to small businesses which have a physical store and an online presence. If the two support one another, it will boost conversions both online and for your local store. If your business doesn’t include e-commerce facilities then it is going to be even more important to direct customers to your physical store.
Collect the relevant local information
What sort of things should be included? Your store’s physical address is the obvious one but if your store is difficult to find you might want to consider giving directions, and a physical store description as well. Include a phone number for the local store too so that people can contact you easily. If you want make your information less corporate, you can even include the first name of the contact person (i.e. business owner) to add a personal touch!
Make your location information prominent
These days, people are busy and have short attention spans so it is important to have the information easily accessible. If you don’t include local information on your landing page then make sure there is an obvious link to it. You could add a link in your main navigation bar and when appropriate also include the details in your webpage header or footer.
Something often overlooked is making sure your website is mobile-friendly. That means making sure your local information is integrated into your page in a way that works for small devices like smartphones and tablets.
Multiple landing pages
If your business is lucky enough to have several physical stores, then you should have a separate landing page for each. Remember, customers are looking for least-effort shopping and it’s common for them to buy within 20 minutes of their home.
Separate landing pages can help them locate the closest store. Each landing page can be optimised for the store it represents with relevant keywords. You can include specials that are common to all your stores as well as special offers particular to individual locations. Be sure to use consistent branding so it is obvious that these individual stores are all part of your overarching company.
Consider using visual features
If your physical store is difficult to find, giving an address in text form only may not be the best idea. Don’t assume that all your customers are locals, so include well-known landmarks and locations as part of your guide. If appropriate, consider including some photos to make navigation easy. Include downloadable or printable directions too. You could embed Google Maps into your website or use video directions too. Just ensure that your map is as simple as possible and displays well on all devices.
Don’t forget other services
If you haven’t done so yet, add your business to Google My Business. Your information will be directly tied into Google Search and Google Maps. Make sure your profile there is kept up-to-date. For example, if you have a motel you’d want to include additional information like what facilities you offer, as well as the motel’s outside appearance and photos of the rooms and bathrooms. Do some research to see what other online directories might be suitable, particularly local or regional ones.
Develop a local guide
People love free things, especially if there is no catch. You could develop a small local guide relevant to your business niche. Using the above motel example, you could include all of the local attractions and landmarks. Are there activities for families nearby? Can you include local sports facilities? In the content you can showcase your offerings together with your address and directions. If your guide is well designed and useful people will share it on social media so be sure to include share buttons for social networks like Facebook. Make it downloadable as well as viewable online.
Monitor and analyse
Finally, it is important to always be monitoring your progress. For example, try tweaking the format of the local information included on your website and see if you notice an increase in people visiting your physical store. Ask visitors to your store if they used your website and what their experience was like. Customer feedback is one of the best indicators of whether you are doing things right.
It is also worth keeping an eye on your competitors to see how they include local information.
Have you recently made improvements to your local information to boost conversions? What worked for you?
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