The new year is a good time for brands to review their business goals and evaluate the effectiveness of their existing marketing efforts across downward distribution channels. For a brand to see the benefits of a brand-to-local strategy, channel partners need to leverage every digital opportunity to increase visibility, engagement, and sales in the year ahead.
One way to positively influence in-store purchases? Optimize local online listings.
Refine Your Local Presence
Take a minute to think about the last thing you searched for online. Did your search yield the right results? Did you get in your car and drive to a location near you? Did you make an online purchase?
Or, did you abandon any part of that process because you couldn’t find the right store location information? Were there low ratings that prompted you to assume the service or products weren’t good?
Consumers act quickly after their local search activity. Although more than 88% of transactions still happen in-store, people make purchases after getting information online. Those in-store buys are heavily influenced by local search efforts.
To help brands make the most of local search activity, Ansira recommends a local listings audit to ensure what’s out there is not only accurate, but also optimized.
Local Searchers Spend More
According to Google, 35% of people who conduct searches on their phones spent more time than they expected in the store. Consumers who consulted a Google search ad before visiting a store spent 10% more, on average.
In addition, the number of consumers using “near me” searches — as well as voice, product videos, and ratings or reviews — to influence where and when they make purchases is not going to slow in the year ahead.
The Right Mix for Marketing Success
How do you determine the right mix of local marketing to facilitate digital discovery, engagement, and conversion? There isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer. Geography, target audience, and service offering all play important roles.
Ansira can help by prioritizing digital marketing opportunities and using data to orchestrate, personalize, and contextualize customer experiences.
For example, an evergreen search strategy that connects to up-to-date listings and local information is crucial to the brand’s being discovered in consumer searches. Once this foundational tactic is part of the mix, the brand can take the necessary actions to ensure the online reputation is an accurate representation of the location and service.
To that end, brands should also focus on improving star ratings and customer reviews, and the local listings audit can uncover areas for improvement. Although changes won’t happen overnight, the brand can hire a reputation management firm or proactively solicit reviews from shoppers to help with the effort.
Local marketing amplifies the brand voice. When those marketing efforts are strategically planned and optimized to meet business objectives, the results are seamless customer experiences.