Opening a new location for your business soon? Congratulations! Expanding a business for any small business owner is a great sign that customers want what you have to offer. But in the middle of making sure your location is physically prepared to handle new customers, the importance of making sure online consumers know about your new addition may slip by you.
So, in order to make sure that both current and potential customers know about your great news, here are seven ideas to help you prepare and promote your new business location online, too.
1. Claim Your New Location on Local Directory Listings
Claiming your business on local directories is a simple and effective way to promote your new location for several reasons: local listings often have high visibility in search results for your business name, they are easy to set up, and the larger ones are tied to maps, which show up on both desktop and search results on mobile browsers and apps.
Three of the most common directories you should pay attention to are Google+ Local, Bing Business, and Yelp. With more than 67% of explicit searches on Google sites, claiming your business on Google+ Local will help ensure that Google searchers find your new business location when they search for your business name and for your top products and services. Google+ Local is directly tied to Google Maps, and Google prioritizes business locations that have claimed their business on Google+ Local. As Bing and Yahoo! share the same network, claiming your business on Bing Business will help consumers using these search engines to find your new location as well.
Claiming each of these directory listings will also allow consumers to find your business location on mobile search for each mobile search engine. But to enable people searching via Apple Maps, make sure you claim your new location on Yelp, which provides locations, pictures, and ratings to consumers searching on iOS devices. Plus, with the latest partnership of Yelp and Yahoo!, Yelp reviews and locations will now appear in Yahoo! search results, too.
2. Add Your Business Locations to Your Website
Your website is one of the most important places to add your new location, as this is where consumers will typically find information about where to find you. When you add your new location, make sure to follow the same format as your previous locations. For example, if your other listings include different hours of operation, a phone number, and an address that links to a map, make sure the new location includes these elements, too.
3. Create a New Facebook Page or Update Your “About” Section
There are many benefits to having an individual Facebook business page for each of your locations. For example, having an individual location page allows you to post content specific to each location, such as discounts, product availability, or relevant news and events. So if your business already has individual Facebook pages for your locations, then make sure you take action today and build a page for your new location.
However, if managing multiple location pages isn’t practical for your business, then worry not (you’re not alone!). A simple way to feature your business locations on your business Facebook page is to include the locations in the “About” section. Once in your page settings, update the “Long Description” to add information about each of your locations, such as the general location, phone number, and operating hours.
4. Add the Geographic Area in Your Search Advertising
There are many reasons you should use paid search advertising to promote your business, one being that it allows you to target consumers within a specific geographic location. If you currently run paid search advertising, make sure that you update it so that you target the new location. You can either create a new campaign for that specific location, or simply add geo-targeted keywords to a broader campaign. For instance, you could campaign within a certain geographic radius and leverage special “Grand Opening” offers to entice local consumers to visit your website and hopefully become a new lead or customer. In either case, make sure that your landing page is optimized to include messaging or details about your new location so that you don’t lose consumers along the path of contacting you or visiting your new location.
5. Promote Your New Location on Social Media
Opening a new location is a celebration, so why not share it with your social fans and followers? For example, if you break ground on a new location, consider posting images on Facebook or Instagram that show the progress from the ground-breaking ceremony to the ribbon-cutting ceremony. If you have special offers or sales for your grand opening, share them as posts or create images that your current fans can share as well. If you have press releases or other write-ups announcing your new location, share them on Facebook. Plus, you can use Facebook advertising to target ads to your audience within the geographic area of your new business location.
6. Send an Email Announcing Your New Location
If you have a current email list, sending an announcement email is a quick way to share information about your new location with people who are already interested in your business. This could also be a great way to convert leads who may not have chosen your business because of proximity into customers. Make sure to include all the information people need, including details about the store location, opening date, hours of operation, phone number, and any grand opening specials or offers they should take advantage of.
7. Host an Event and Invite Local Bloggers
For some businesses, hosting a “Family and Friends” event before the official opening of your new location can be a great way to generate buzz about your business within the area. Invite current customers, fans, and other people you know who live in the general area to check out your new store, sample products or services, and share their experiences online. This can also be a great training opportunity for new members of your staff and help you detect any issues you can change before the big opening day.
If you know of subject matter experts, bloggers, or others who have influence within the community, this event is a great time to have those people visit your new location and share the news with their own fans and followers.
Overall, opening a new business location is a huge success, so take a deep breath and realize that you’re on the right track! Promoting it with some of these ideas is just the beginning to adding to that success.
Have you opened multiple locations already? What other ideas do you have for promoting it online? Share your ideas in a comment!