As a tenured Digital Marketing Consultant with RevLocal, I love helping educate small business owners on strategies to grow and enhance their online presence.
As part of this ever-rewarding education process, I often find myself overcoming some common misconceptions these business owners have about using a digital marketing strategy.
If you have some concerns about buying into digital marketing, then you're in the right place! Here are five of the misconceptions I commonly hear while in the field and why you should take a moment to rethink those worries.
Many small businesses spend thousands of dollars on 12-page websites thinking that it is the industry standard. Trust me, I've seen it time and again.
While this may have been the case in the past, consumer behavior is ever-changing and because of that, searchers no longer want to navigate a 12-page website! Instead, they want concise information to help them quickly decide whether or not a business can offer them what they need.
When it comes to Google’s local search rankings, a business’s website (part of on-page signals) only counts for about 15 percent of the equation. So, small businesses cannot limit themselves by only relying on their website!
We help educate them on what else is important.
Many business owners spend an excessive amount of time on social media or misuse valuable marketing dollars and resources to hire someone to do it for them.
At the end of the day, if done right, social media can be good for branding a business but it's not typically a lead generator.
Now don't get me wrong, social media is essential in having a strong online presence but more commonly, a searcher will check out a business on social media to see their personality to ultimately gain a personal connection and understanding of the business. This visibility is what makes a social media presence valuable!
While Google has clarified that social media interactions (e.g. likes, shares and comments) can increase a business’s prominence, which is a local ranking factor, it is unclear how important it is to local SEO.
Bottom line, social media is beneficial to your business but it's only one component of an integrated digital marketing strategy.
I often work to educate my small business clients on the difference between local SEO and organic SEO, as these are two different types of SEO, and it can be confusing to understand the difference and the influence that the two hold.
To be fair, their web guy deserves credit for helping with organic SEO! They can increase the potential to show up in the Google Maps section by working to optimize their website with keywords.
But to show up in categorical searches, I always share that it is local SEO (an entirely different Google algorithm) that will put them in front of searchers who may not know their name but are looking for their services.
So, while a website certainly adds to the online real estate of a business, a web developer will only be able to do so much for their online (local) presence.
We have a blog that talks through this specific concern in-depth, so make sure to check it out for even more information.
So, you already have a website, but does it follow best practices to help your business be found locally?
When potential clients raise concerns around the value of our website services, I always share that a general business website exists for customers to do research, but depending on who built the site, it's not always the most SEO-friendly (which also allows for mobile and voice search optimization).
Websites, are built around local SEO strategies and are tailored with the intention of ranking high in searches. They can often drive more traffic to a small business website!
Not to mention, having an optimized Google business listing, Microsite, and website can be the best of all worlds!
How could a business not want that out of their website presence? Learn more about the features that come with our website services plan by referencing the chart below:
I get it. “Buying local” is something that resonates with many, including myself!
While RevLocal has consultants nationwide, our work starts in our own communities!
We don’t do this out of our basements - we have a deep bench of specialized teams and a 10-year track record of innovation, but we are also not the big business that you are avoiding! We are your local connection to a wider network of digital marketing tools and opportunities.
At some point, the local "solopreneur" or boutique agency has to run out of bandwidth for doing all that is required on both the front-end and back-end to keep up with the constant changes on the internet.
Sometimes it is a tough question, but I will ultimately ask a business owner -- who would you rather trust with your business's online presence?
So, there are a lot of common doubts that go into digital marketing and its value, but they are worth reconsidering!
With all of the rapid change that we experience in digital marketing and on the internet, it is easy for small businesses to get lost in the shuffle. So, never underestimate the power of an integrated digital marketing strategy and established, ongoing expertise and relationships.
When it comes to the different misconceptions we discussed in this blog, it’s important to remember that while singular approaches to marketing, such as having a strong social media presence, are nice, there are many different elements of digital marketing that will actually put your business on the map.
If you are looking to learn more about a personalized and localized digital marketing strategy for your business, my fellow consultants and I have you covered!