7 Easy Marketing Ideas for Your Plumbing Businesses

7 Easy Marketing Ideas for Your Plumbing Businesses

Ways to get your business more traffic.

1. Start With A Great Landing Page
2. High Volume Keywords With Low Competition
3. Offering Discounts
4. Social Media
5. Online Directories
6. Google Ads
7. Updating Information

When trying to get more customers, it is important to have a great landing page that gives the customer the information they need and have a way to get in contact with your plumbing business. Now comes the tricky part of getting them to go to your landing page. Keywords will get your website to come up in a search, but you will need more than that to show up at the top of the list. I will go over some useful marketing tips, to get your website to be seen and ways to get more potential customers. Joining companies that advertise your discounts can help drive more traffic to your site. Different social media options will help broaden the number of people you reach and give customers a more personal look into your company. There are a few successful paid ad services that can help boost you to the top of searches. Also, there are ways to list your business for free on search engines that will increase the number of people that see your company’s website. Using sites that are for the local area will help get your business in front of more local people.

Start With A Great Landing Page

Let us start with some basics that your website needs. Your landing page is a key deciding factor for the customer if they are going to reach out for possible business. Your page needs to be simple, clean, and easy to navigate. If your web page is hard to navigate and your information is difficult to find, the potential customer will move on. The top of the page should be your logo, with a color scheme that represents your page and should match or compliment a well-branded look. Alongside the logo, should be your header text along with the business phone number with area code. Make sure the number is active for mobile users, so they can tap and call. Below the header and phone number should be a hero shot. For example, a picture of someone in action, the company car with the logo on it, or a business place picture. Next, to the image, it is important to have a call of action to catch the viewers’ attention, like a contact form for an estimate. There needs to be a list of the services you provide, and state if your company is for residential or commercial work. After a glance, the customer should be able to know if you have the service they need. Also, if possible, you want to include customer testimonials to help back your company. Seeing other customer’s testimonials of your company’s work helps put them at ease that your team is good at what they do.

Additionally, having a marketing company create or look over your company’s website can help. They will be able to spot problems that would put off a potential customer, like broken links. Also, they can suggest a layout design that is clean and user-friendly. Not to mention they can update your logo, or have the site match the color theme of the logo unifying the page.

High Volume Keywords With Low Competition

To get your site seen, you will need both common and uncommon keywords that relate to services you provide that a customer might search for. The more keywords you have that apply, the more often your company shows up in a search. Popping up in so many searches using the most common keywords allows your company to stay fresh in the customer’s mind. Some keywords a customer may use such as residential plumbing, commercial plumbers, toilet repairs, emergency plumbing, water heater, and septic tank services. Be sure to include all the services your company offers as keywords. Also, include your town or city name in the keywords to get local business. For uncommon keywords try to think of alternative words a customer might use, like home plumbing, house plumbing, drip repairs, and pipe repairs.

Example List of Plumbing Services:
– Installation, Inspection, and Replacing
– Drain Cleaning
– Leak Repairs
– Toilet Repairs
– Pipe Laying
– Irrigation
– Fixing Clogs
– Water Heater Services
– Septic Tank Services
– Sewage Line Repairs

It is also important to go after keywords that are high in searches and low in competition. A great tool for this is https://www.semrush.com. It lets you know how much volume a particular keyword has and how much competition there is for that keyword.

Shipping boxes piled up

Beware of Keyword Stuffing

One thing that the search engines don’t like is when web pages try to do “Keyword Stuffing”. This is where you try to put too many keywords under one web page. This will make it difficult to rank for any of the keywords. It is best to optimize your page for one keyword and have that page go into full detail about that keyword. For example, the main keyword for this web page is 24-hour plumber as a result, Google will recognize that the web page is about people looking for a 24-hour plumber. You are more likely to rank on the search engines for your chosen keywords if you have dedicated pages to your preferred keywords.

Offering Discounts

There are companies you can advertise discounts and special deals offered for a limited time like Groupon. Groupon is an effective way to get new leads to your site by providing coupons for services. It is a great way to bring back old customers. Using discount marketing strategies to focus on returning customers for yearly maintenance on plumbing jobs. The downside is Groupon usually takes 50% of the sale as its service fee depending on the business. On the upside, you can customize your campaign, limit the number of coupons, and set the length of time that the deal occurs. Groupon does the work of researching and advertising to help get you seen. They are most effective in the short term and with limited-time deals. Other coupon sites you can go through our SlickDeals and RetailMeNot.

Similarly, you can offer coupons on your landing page to entice customers to use you. Your business’s website will come up in more searches by adding keywords to your site for the discount. Also, if you use ads advertised on other websites you should use the same ad on your landing page to help tie it in. The key is to capture a client and make them happy, because your money will be made from repeat business and referrals.

Male hand circling avatars with a marker

Social Media

Some other effective ways to get more traffic to your website are through using social media. It is an easy way to reach a wider base of potential clients and free. The top social media platforms for plumbing businesses are Facebook and Instagram. Being on social media platforms gives customers a more personal view of your business and a way for you to get reviews.

Facebook is a free platform to advertise your business that helps potential customers to learn more about your company and drive them to your website. It is also a great way to advertise when you have deals with posts and hashtags. Hashtags are a way to list keywords related to the post. Anyone looking for a local plumbing company will see your business in the search results on Facebook. Facebook is also a good way for connecting with your local community on other local Facebook pages. By joining these pages, you can list what you do, and future customers can connect with you. Also, word of mouth helps even more here. If someone posts for help regarding a plumbing issue and someone else end up recommending your business, not only will the person asking to see it, but several others who might use the information in the future to contact you. Additionally, you can respond to a post or a comment on your own posts.

They also have an option to show your ad for a fee. What is nice about Facebook ads is that you can set the daily amount for your ad, and it will give you a rough estimate of the number of people it will reach. Also, you can customize the settings to get the ad to appear in front of the audience you want. Facebook uses an algorithm to get your ad in front of people based on who they are and their interests. When you go to promote your page for the “goal”, use the “Promote Your Business Locally” option. Define your audience by selecting the area you wish to be seen in, the age range, gender, and special interests. You can then choose “Ad Create”. When creating your ad Facebook will offer a picture and text to use, but it is best to customize it with your images. Then you choose a call of the action button. Which can be to Like, Follow, or the option to open a link to your company’s website.

Designers choosing colors
The duration of the ad would be better over a longer period like seven to fourteen days as opposed to one to three days. Shorter times are good for ads that are about a limited-time promotion. For short-term promotions to reach more people in a shorter amount of time you can scale up the budget for the ad. Facebook used the example that you can budget $100 for a one-day ad or use the same $100 for a four-teen day ad and have roughly the same number of people will view it. It just depends on what the ads for. There is also the option to leave the ad running long term until you choose to shut the ad off.

Online Directories

Google My Business

This is by far the #1 online directory. In fact, don’t be surprised if up to 85% of you overall traffic will be coming from Google My Business. With that being said, it is critical that your Google my business is fully optimized. This means you will want to make sure you have a complete profile. Make sure you have the following completed:

• Complete Name of Your Business
• Phone Number
• Service Area
• Services Offered
• Open Date
• Description
• Logo
• Cover page
• Posts
• Website address
• At least 20 photos
• Address
• Categories
• Hour of Operation
• Attributes
• Date Opened

Yelp Directory

Yelp is another great platform for businesses to be seen and get reviews. Yelp is also free to list your business on, but they do have a paid service. With the paid service you can remove competitors’ ads from your Yelp business page and stand out in search results by listing what is unique about your business. The downside, the pricing starts at around $300, so you need to decide if it is worth it for your business. There is also a paid service called Yelp Ads. This allows you to easily create an ad, have your ad appear on competitors’ business pages, and you only pay per click.

Nextdoor Directory

While normally to be able to use Nextdoor you need an invite code to register, businesses can sign up on Nextdoor’s Business section. Simply create an account on their business page and set up your free business page. Much like Facebook, except it is only for your local area in close-by zip codes, you can engage local customers and give a more personal view of your company. They also have two ad types, Sponsorships for Business and Nextdoor Ads. The sponsorship allows you to interact more with people by sharing your expertise in the field, answering questions, and engaging the community by creating things like polls. Then, there are Nextdoor Ads, which are easy to create that you can link to your business’s website. You can customize the ad to target a certain age group, area, gender, household income range, and homeowners. Also, they track your ad progress and show you a report of how many times your ad appears and how times the ad was clicked on. The report can help you to optimize your ads, so they are seen by the right people at the right times. You pay for your ad based on the number of times the ad is clicked on.

 Person holding a miniature shop cart while online shopping

Pay Per Click Google Ads

Google Ads also has a pay-per-click business model. They use keywords and smart technology to help get your ad to the top of the search results when customers are looking. Your business website and contact number will show up both on Google Search and Google Maps. You only pay when people act either by clicking on the ad to go to your website or click to call. You create your monthly budget for ads which you can decrease or increase as you like. When setting up, decide whether you want to focus marketing on getting more traffic to your site or phone calls. There is a way to customize what areas your ad will appear. For example, just in your city or for the county. You can start and stop ads at any time. Also, Google Ads tracks your ad’s performance and makes a report for you.

If you do go the ad route, think of what you want in the ad. Use pictures you have taken or stock images you have purchased. It helps to target seasonal needs to ramp up business. You can focus some of the ads on what tends to need to be fixed in the Winter, like pipe breaks. During the summer, you can gear ads towards common summer plumbing issues like sprinkler issues, and clogged sewer lines. Do not forget, ads for semi-annual services like septic tanks. Also, if your company specializes in a certain area having ads that highlight this will help.

Often your area of service will have a local listing website to list your surrounding business on there. There is usually a free section to list your business. Some offer a paid option for an ad for your business to show up in multiple places on their listings. The great thing about using a local page is it will get you in front of local people.

Updating Information

Something easy but important to do is, to make sure to update your company data, and not only on your website. Using places like Google or Yelp, you can make sure the current address, phone number, and email by ensuring if you have your company’s information/ location listed correctly. If you move or have a new phone number, you want to get your information updated as soon as possible. There is nothing worse than losing a customer because they cannot find or contact you.

Finally, remembering to clean up your company website landing page, allows you to clearly list your services, show customer feedback, and use searchable keywords. By, choosing to use companies to advertise discount deals to get a short-term boost in leads and to possibly get old customers to return. Use social media to drive traffic, get seen, and give customers a more personal view of your business. Estimating if the cost of certain additional paid features will benefit your company such as Yelp Ads, and Google Ads. Make use of free services that will list your business. Lastly, check to make sure your contact information is up to date on all sites that have your business listed.

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Sources:

Elements of a Great Landing Page

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GevNNLSm4ek&t=38s 

Groupon

https://www.groupon.com/merchant

Quora

https://www.quora.com/search?q=What%20percentage%20does%20Groupon%20take%20of%20sales%3F

Google My Business

https://www.google.com/business/

GoogleAds

https://ads.google.com/home/#!/

Yelp

https://business.yelp.com/products/yelp-ads/

Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/business/learn/lessons/promote-your-business-locally?course_id=353295105351345&curriculum_id=1855777264527194

Visalia Local

https://visalialocal.com/submit-listing/

How To Start An eCommerce Store -step-by-step Guide +7 Tips For Starters

How To Start An eCommerce Store -step-by-step Guide +7 Tips For Starters

This may be the best moment to learn how to start an eCommerce business! Partly because of the pace technology evolves, but also because of external factors such as the COVID pandemic.

According to information from eCommerceCEO the online sales market will reach $6.8 trillion by 2023. That’s why this is the best moment to start your own digital business.

Let us draw you a road map with this step-by-step guide.

1- Choose The Right Products

If you feel stuck on this stage, you are not alone! Most of the people who desist from starting their eCommerce business never get through this stage. And there are good reasons for that.

Finding the right product to start your eCommerce business is not an easy task. You have to do a lot of research and pay attention to new trends.

Start Simple

Think of the niches and communities you’re already in. Are you a member of a soccer team, a chess club, or a manga community? Think about the things you and your team struggle with the most… is there any product that can help you put the uniform quicker, draw faster, or store your chess set better?

Avoid The Generic Route.

Shipping boxes piled up
We all remember that guy who was going to be a millionaire, but now only has thousands of fidget spinners rooting in the garage. Keep in mind if a product is already booming, it’s probably too late to start a business about it.

Instead, go for products that are hard to find on Amazon, eBay, or any popular eCommerce website. As we mentioned before, you can find products right away if you think of the niches and communities you belong to.

2- Find The Right Niche For Your eCommerce Store

Male hand circling avatars with a marker

Not all products will work for all audiences. The search for a niche has to be tied up to the product from the beginning. Even if your product is a brand new invention that everybody should have.

Let’s say you decided to sell a smartphone lens to take photos. Start following photography profiles on Instagram or join a photography community on Facebook!

One great way to find both: niches and products is by joining online forums, like reddit.com

Reddit homepage screenshot
If your product is, let’s say, a magnetic knife holder, you can go to Reddit and join forums like FoodPorn or JapaneseKnives.

Finding the right niche is important! Because it is an excellent place to find people already interested in your product and because getting community feedback is an unending source of ideas for new products.

3- Set Up Your eCommerce Brand And Business

Male hand circling avatars with a marker

People keep choosing apple products over more generic brands because we all know what quality to expect from them. That’s what a well-built brand can make for you. Here are some of the steps that will help you build a strong business and a good brand image.

Pick Up A Name

Your store name doesn’t have to be the legal name of your business, but we suggest you keep them related. Remember your niche research and use a name related to that.

Register Your Business

After choosing a name, you need to register your business. This can offer huge benefits as legal protection and tax benefits.

Get All The Licenses And Permits Up To Date

Getting all your business documentation in order is the best way to avoid unpleasant surprises.

There are a lot of resources you can access at the Small business Administration, including a guide to help you register your business. You can also find mentors and information about almost anything related to the start-up world.

Develop Your Brand Identity

Designers choosing colors
Try to answer this question, Which was the reason why you started this business, that is NOT money? Maybe you found a product you thought everybody should have, or a device so unique you haven’t stopped recommending it to everyone. That is the line of thought you should follow to write a strong brand identity.

This is an important part of the process if you want to stand out from the competition. Developing a brand identity can also help you connect with your audience at a more personal level.

Develop A Good Content Strategy

This is going to sound counterintuitive, but the best way to sell is by not trying to sell.

Let me explain. We all hate when people try to sell anything to us, right? But -you may ask- how can I connect with my customers if not by selling them something?

And the answer is very simple: Trough high-quality content.

The hard selling “push” strategies that our parents used in the ’90s don’t work anymore. People are tired of brands trying desperately to get our attention. Instead of that, what you should do is develop a “pull” strategy.

That means, instead of using ads as a spear to hunt your customers… develop good content that works as bait, and let them come to you. Do not push your brand on them, let them fall in love with it.

Remember, good and abundant content is the reason why you have never seen ads for Instagram or TikTok.

4- Set Up Your Ecommerce Platform

 Person holding a miniature shop cart while online shopping
After deciding on which products to sell and creating a brand image, the next step is to create an online store. There are three different ways to do that: By your own, using an eCommerce platform, or hiring a professional web designer.

Let us break the pros and cons of those three options.

By Your Own

This is the best option for people with advanced developer skills. You can have control over everything from the domain to the payment methods, to the server. Keep in mind this is also the most time-consuming option since you need to take care of things like copywriting and graphic design.

Pros

  • Ideal for people with coding skills
  • You can choose the exact features and plugins your store needs

Cons

  • Need to know to code
  • Time-consuming
  • You also need copywriting and graphic design skills
  • It can become very expensive

Using an Ecommerce Platform

There are eCommerce platforms that do some of the heavy liftings for you, so you can just focus on delivering a great experience to your customers. While some of them offer great advantages for starters, if you choose the wrong one, you can find a lot of limitations when you want to grow or diversify your business.

Pros

  • Easy for beginners
  • Some of them also offer payment and shipping methods

Cons

  • Some of them present limitations to grow or expand
  • You need to pay a monthly fee or a commission for every product sold
  • Your e-store is not entirely yours

Hiring A Professional Web Designer

Team of web designers around the table
This is by far the best option either to start or to grow your online business. The only real downside is how difficult it is to find a good professional. But once you find one, they can do whatever you want with your eCommerce. You can choose the server, the payment method, the shipping service, you can change domains, switch the design, add and take out products, etc. This is also a great option for people who want to have complete control over their business.

Pros:

  • Absolute control of your e-store
  • You can have the exact features you want
  • They take care of everything
  • No coding skills needed

Cons:

  • Good professionals are hard to find

Whether you choose any of those options, here’s a roadmap with a broad view of the things you may need to take care of before starting.

Get Your Domain Name And Url

The best thing you can do is to choose your business name and domain at the same time. This way you can be sure it will be available. Although if you already have a brand and just want to get the domain, you can play a little with characters and words.

Remember to keep it simple and short. That’s the best way to make sure people will remember your brand.

There are many ways to look for a domain. If you are creating your e-store on your own, you can use Google Domain or GoDaddy to check availability. If you are using an eCommerce platform, some of them can help you get the domain you want, and many also include this as part of their service.

If you have a web designer it’s even easier because they can take care of everything and even present you with creative options for a domain.

Questions To Find The Right Platform

Raised hands with question marks

If you are using an eCommerce platform, there are a couple of things to keep in mind to find the right one for your business.

As always our best advice is to hire a professional, but if you want to start with an eCommerce platform, here are some things you should ask first.

  • Is this platform easy to set up?
    Be careful to choose a platform that offers ease of use for your skill level, or at least good customer service.
  • Is it easy to design and navigate?
    Check the templates they offer and take a look at the actual stores built on that platform to be sure the stores work and the pages are easy to browse.
  • Is it secure for my customers?
    Check your page has “HTTPS” instead of “HTTP” and also check the lock icon on the address bar. If you don’t have those, people won’t trust you with their card numbers.
  • Does it integrate with other platforms?
    Not all eCommerce platforms are compatible with all apps and platforms. Check yours can integrate with the other sites and services you want to use.
  • Does this platform allow me to use SEO?
    This is a really important aspect since SEO is one of the best ways to drive people to your website. Make sure the platform you use, allows you to run SEO campaigns.
  • Is my store responsive?
    Most online purchases are made on a mobile device. That’s the reason why it is so important to make sure your page looks good on all of them.
  • How easy is it to talk to someone at tech support?
    Get ready to find all kinds of technical problems mostly at the beginning. Make sure you can contact someone to help you, or at least to check if they offer any type of learning resources.

You can also check these 5 key aspects you should consider to start in eCommerce to get a better idea of all the things you need before starting.

Experts Choice: Woocommerce

Woocommerce website screenshot

After many trials and errors, a lot of professional web designers choose woocommerce. This platform is well known because of how easy it is to use for starters, but also because of its robust features that make it an excellent choice for everyone.

Here are some of the reasons why as professionals, Woocommerce is the best option:

  • User Friendly
    It’s interface was developed to help everyone get the job done easily. It is easy to download and install, and it’s learning curve is way friendlier than the other ecommerce platforms.
  • Customizable
    Because it is an open source system, you can customize it to work exactly as you want. The best part is that you can customize it by using plug-ins, which means you don’t even need coding skills.
  • Open Source
    As it is an open source system, chances are the plugin you want has already been developed by someone else. It will work even better if you have coding skills or a web designer who knows how to add and remove them.
  • Affordable
    Woocommerce is free to download and install. This is undoubtedly one of the main reasons behind its popularity. However there are thousands of plugins you can use, and some of them may have a cost.

5 – Develop An Ecommerce Marketing Strategy

It won’t matter if your product is the best invention since the internet if nobody hears about it. That’s why you need to develop a marketing strategy.

Let’s say your store is all about technology and gadgets. Then maybe you want to join tech and gadgets groups on Facebook, or start posting videos of your products under the #Technology hashtag on Instagram.

Social Media

Social media icons collage
Develop a social media strategy only after you find your niche. This way you can focus all your efforts and budget on campaigns with high potential.

One big advantage of using social media to promote your store is how easy it is for starters. You can start investing as little as $10 and get some results.

Although you don’t need to invest in paid advertising. You can Look for Facebook groups, Instagram profiles related to your business and use related TikTok sounds to get more people interested in your business.

SEO Strategy

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is about using search engines to reach more potential customers.

Let’s say your product is artistic candles. You want to develop an SEO strategy that shows your store every time somebody types “colorful candle” in google.

How?

The best way so far is with high-quality content. Start a blog about your product, and take advantage of the available SEO tools. Let us share with you 4 tips about how to write SEO-optimized articles for your blog.

Use The Right Words In The Right Places
Look for the keywords related to your product and write about that. You can use tools like Answer the public to find out.

Answer The Public screenshot

Write Concise Titles And Meta Descriptions
The Meta description is the short text under the URL in the google search results page. It doesn’t have a direct influence on SEO but is vital to let people know what your article is about.

You can use the SERP preview tool High-Quality to get the right size for your headlines and meta descriptions

SERP screenshot

Deliver High-Quality Content
Google algorithms always favor high-quality content. Avoid copy-pasting from other sites since google sees that as plagiarism, and it can damage your Google ranking.

If you want to learn more about how to write great pieces of content for your SEO strategy, we wrote this guide to help you write better content.

Before You Start -7 Advanced eCommerce Tips

Now that you have all the basics, let us show you some tips before you start your eCommerce journey.

1. Better Ideas Lead To Better Products And Services

And the only way to have good ideas is by trying a lot of them. Don’t be afraid of trying new things. Keep in mind some of them won’t work but can give you valuable insights.

2. Focus Not On Your Product But On Your Customers

Woman on laptop smiling at the camera
When writing copy for your audience, avoid talking about how wonderful your product is. Instead, tell people what that product can do FOR THEM.

Also, remember customers value the products and services that deliver a broadened experience. Weather is a unique packaging or a socially responsible brand.

3. The Importance Of A Good Brand Identity

Developing a brand puts a name behind the products you are selling, but it also has huge benefits! You can access tax and legal benefits as a registered business. But it also helps you develop brand awareness and reach much more customers.

4. People Trust Reviews More Than Whitepapers

No surprises here. We are more eager to trust our neighbor’s opinion before getting a new lawnmower, than a hundred salesmen.

Many commerce platforms allow you to show your reviews from Google or Yelp. And most of them ask your customers to leave reviews. Don’t be afraid to show the best ones and share them on social media.

5. Good Web Design Always Wins

Many devices showing the same website
Although you can start an eCommerce business using any platform, getting a professional web designer is the best strategy in the long run.

6. Read Your Audience’s Mind

Remember your audience won’t necessarily write the description of your product. They will write what they want. For instance, if your product is a purifier water bottle, don’t use the keyword “purifier water bottle”

Use instead
“The best way to get drinking water in the wild”

7. Don’t Underestimate Your Seo Strategy

The correct SEO strategy can put you right where your customers are looking for. Remember to follow the guidelines and avoid any type of plagiarism since it can affect your ranking in Google.

Conclusion

This is maybe the best moment in history to start your own online business. And now, you know exactly which steps to follow.

If you are interested in automation tools for your online business, check this article about the best automation tools for eCommerce

Let us know which step you liked the most, and follow us on social media to ask anything about the article! We’ll be glad to help you.

How To Use Google Ads To Reach My Business Goals -the Complete Guide

How To Use Google Ads To Reach My Business Goals -the Complete Guide

In today’s world, Google is the go-to place to find all types of business and products. After all, this is the best way for your audience to find out about your brand and products. That’s why it is so important to get familiar with Google ads and learn how to make the most out of them.

In this brief guide, we will show you why Google ads are so important, and how to use this service to reach your business goals.

Let’s get to it!

Google Ads -What Is It?

Formerly known as Google Adwords, this is an online advertising service provided by Google.

The way it works is by connecting people looking for products and services, with the brands and merchants that offer them.

For instance, look at the search results page for “Google ads”

google ads screenshot

As you can see, that first result is an ad. These ads are on top of the Search Results page and look almost identical to the organic search results. The only way to tell them apart is by the little “Ad” that appears at the corner.

You have to keep in mind that purchasing advertising from Google doesn’t necessarily mean that you will appear at the top of every search result. And the reason is: that’s what everyone wants. And that is exactly the reason to learn how to use the platform correctly.

How Do Google Ads Work?

Cartoon magnifying lens over a website on a laptop

Google ads work on a bid system. Let’s break it with an oversimplified example.

Let’s say you sell sneakers and want your store to pop up every time someone searches for the keyword “sneakers”. As you may imagine, you won’t be the only one there!

What happens next is, you and the others that want that keyword, place a bid for it. And the one with the biggest offer gets to appear in the first position on the Search Result page. To make things easier, you can decide your maximum bid when developing your campaign, and the algorithm takes care of the rest.

Of course, many other parameters affect this result. While setting up your ads campaign you can also decide a maximum daily budget, the demographics you are interested in, and many otter settings.

Google ads offer you three options to place bids

  • Cost-per-click. This is the cost you pay when someone clicks on your ad.
  • Cost-per-mile. The cost you pay for 1000 impressions.
  • Cost-per-engagement. The cost you pay per conversion. (subscribe, purchase, follow, signs-up, etc)

There is another factor you must keep in mind. The quality of your ads.

When someone types in your keyword, the algorithm will consider all the factors we mentioned before to determine if your ads pop up or not. But the algorithm will also be affected by the quality of your creatives.

This sounds threatening at first, but it is something you can use in your favor. That is because the higher the quality of your ad, the lowest cost you’ll pay per impression. Not to mention you will also be shown in a better position on the Search Results Page

Which Type Of Google Ads Campaign Should I Choose?

There are some campaign options for you to choose from.

  • Search campaign
  • Display Campaign
  • Shopping campaign
  • Video campaign
  • Other campaigns

Let’s take a look at what each one of them does.

Search Campaign

Search Campaign

This is one of the most cost-effective types of campaign, mainly because this means your results will only appear when people actively search for them.

Shopping Campaign

Shopping Campaign

This type of campaign shows your products directly into the shopping tab, but it also can show images of your products directly on the Search REsult page. These Campaigns work great for eCommerce businesses who want their products shown to potemntialñ buyers.

Display Campaign

Display Campaign

This campaign makes you appear on various websites across the Google partner network. This can include ads in Gmail or third-party websites.

Since the Google partnership network reaches more than 90% of all internet users and has more than two million websites, this option can help you reach broader audiences. However, a display campaign can make you appear in places you don’t want to be.

Video Campaign

Video Campaign

This is the one you need if you have or will produce your video ads. This option allows you to appear on Youtube at the beginning or in the middle of some videos. Your ads can also appear as discovery ads on the Youtube search results page.

Other Campaigns
This can be video, image, or text ads and will be shown in the Google Display Network, although these campaigns can be more specific.

The best part is you don’t need to design your ads. Google takes your app to store text and images and creates ad pieces, then the algorithm tests different combinations and chooses the ones with better performance.

Take your time to decide the type of campaign you need, or start by testing and measuring results. One of the best features of Google Ads is the amount of data you can get and analyze.

Using Google Ads For My Business -step-by-step

Let’s take a closer look at how to start using Google ads for your business.

Step 1: Get Your Google Ads Account

Google Ads Account

The first thing you need is to open a Google Account for your business. You don’t need to use a google email address (Gmail) but if you do, it offers some advantages and integrations.

Once you have it, go to the Google Ads website and click on Start.
esults you want and also the way they can use your bid money.

Step 2: Define Your Goals

The next step is to click on the “Start Now” button. This will take you to the dashboard, and there you need to click on “New Campaign”

On the next screen, you need to choose your campaign goals. This helps Google know what type of results you want and also the way they can use your bid money.

Google Ads

One of the best things you can do is to be clear about your goals. For instance, if you are starting your business it may be tempting to start a Sales campaign; but people won’t buy if they don’t know about your brand, quality, and products, so, it may be better to choose a Brand Awareness Campaign.

Step 3: Set Your Keywords And Business Name

You need to set your business name and a URL for the landing page your customers will be directed to when clicking on your ad.

Then you can choose the keyword themes that match your brand or ad. If you are not sure about how to choose the right keywords, take a look at the Google Keyword Planner.

Step 4: Define Your Target Audience

Cartoon magnet attracting people

This is one of the most important parts of the whole process. Here you need to choose where your ads will be shown. You can choose the people who’re in proximity to your physical store, a whole city, or a zipcode.

Step 5: Write And Design Your Ads

This is the part where you need to show your copywriting and graphic design skills. Of course, you can hire a Web Design Agency to take care of that.

You can get a preview of said ad before publishing it, and if you feel lost on the creative part, the Google assistant can become a great help.

Step 6: Set Up Your Billing Method

As clear as that. You just need to specify the paying method you will use to bid for the search results or to get displayed in the Google network, depending on the type of campaign you choose.

Google Ads Best Practices

Man taking notes on board

As you can see, creating the perfect Google campaign can be challenging. Sometimes you even need to find the adequate balance between using keywords and being readable. But what you need to do for sure is to plan your ads, set your landing pages right, and always measure results.

So yes. That’s a lot of factors to take on the count. The good part of all this is, when well done, Google ads can become your business best friend.

In this section, we are going to answer some of the most asked questions about Google Ads, and share with you some tips and many of the best practices that can help you to get the best possible results

What Is Natural Language Search And Why Is It So Important?

Voice search screen on a smartphone

Natural language search (NLS) is becoming very popular since it involves expressing keywords in the most natural possible way. The reason behind NLS popularity is because voice search is becoming more and more common and it represents a big share of search traffic.

It may sound confusing, but let us show you an example: Have you ever stumbled upon ads that sound like this?

“Incredible offer, get 10% off with this great offer for a limited time!”

This sounds unnatural, repeats words (offer) and it’s no solution focused.

If you write something like this:

“Get 10% off on Tacos every Friday at Antonio’s”

It is clear, straightforward, doesn’t overuse keywords and it has more chances to be considered “natural language” by the Google algorithm.

Introducing BERT

Google BERT’s blog page screenshot

This is a neural-network-based algorithm used for natural language processing, and it helps Google (and computers in general) to understand the way people use language. This little guy is the one that decides to show you recipes, after you type something that doesn’t have the keyword “recipes” in it, as “easy way to prepare chocolate pudding”

Keywords with more than 3 words in them are known as long-tail keywords, so most natural language keywords belong to this category.

Data shows that even when they have a lower search volume, people who use natural language are more prepared to subscribe, purchase, click or like, than the rest. That is also the reason why Google is giving a higher priority to natural language keywords.

Develop A Mobile & Desktop Strategy

Woman using a laptop and smartphone

Over 70% of web traffic happens on some sort of mobile device, that’s why it is so important to consider this as part of your ads strategy. And of course, we are talking about making them look right on all devices, but also about your audience and its behavior.

According to Smart Insights, most of the clicks on ads come from mobile devices, but most of the conversion comes from desktop.

That is the reason why you want to develop different strategies for those audiences. For instance, you can develop a brand awareness campaign for mobile, while using a sales campaign for desktop.

But you can also set IF variables, to make it even simpler. For instance, you can set your campaign to show a Call To Action that says “Visit Website” for mobile users, while it says “Purchase now” for desktop users.

How To Use Negative Keywords In Google Ads?

Up to this point, we have a good understanding of natural language, bidding, and types of campaigns, the next step in that field should be to pay attention to the limits of who can see our ads.

Negative Keywords allow you to set which searches you don’t want to appear in.

For instance, if you have a car repair shop, maybe you want to use “Vehicle repair service”, but if you don’t service motorcycles, you can set “Motorcycle repair service” as a negative keyword.

 

Pay Attention To Your Landing Page

Generic webpage on a laptop screen

This is one of the most common errors when creating a Google ads campaign. Many people direct customers to their business homepage or Facebook pages. The problem comes when the page does not match the ad.

For instance, let’s say your ad is about a special sale, but the place your customers are directed is your Instagram page, where there is no mention of said sale. Some people may look for it, but most of them will just leave.

Your landing page is also a crucial component of your whole campaign since people will decide if they trust your offer or not, based on it.

Your landing pages should be clear, have clear calls to action, and/or conversion buttons. It should be a very clear and precise roadway that shows your customers what you want them to do next.

Always Measure Results

Laptop with funnel

As Adam Savage would say, ‘the only difference between science and fooling around is to write it down”. You need to measure your results always so you can understand which parts are working and which ones don’t.

Google ads offer you some ways to measure results, and you can always choose to connect your analytics engine. Another step many people skip -and later regrets it! Is to check analytics regularly and make adjustments to the ads campaign accordingly.

Besides, all data you can gather around your ads, products, and services, can become amazingly useful when put to work. You can use this information to reach new audiences, understand better your customers, and even create new products and services.

This brings us to the next title

Be Flexible With Your Google Ads Campaign

The bad news is: There is no right answer to develop the perfect strategy for your business.

The good news is: You can (and should) find it out.

Keep in mind there are thousands of variables to consider before launching a campaign. The best thing you can do is to keep an open mind and remain open to tweaking some things here and there when the campaign is running. Sometimes you will even need to call out a campaign if it ends up costing more than what it delivers.

The goal here is to learn which strategies and keywords are delivering the best results. Sometimes you can start a campaign with one keyword that seems relevant at the moment, only to end up using completely different keywords a few weeks later.

Frequently Asked Questions About Google Ads

Business owner in front of the store

Before you start testing your new Google ads campaigns, here are 5 of the most asked questions about this service.

How Do Google Ads Help My Business?

The service that Google ads provide can help you reach people who are searching for your specific product or service. Google ads can also help you set specific goals like web traffic, app downloads, subscriptions, or purchases. It also helps you keep track of your results so you can improve your campaigns and get closer to your business goals.

Why Are So Many Businesses Using Google Ads?

One of the big benefits of this platform is that you can connect people who sell something with the people offering that something. But this service also allows you to change, tweak and modify campaigns on the go, based on real-time results.

Is Google Ads Any Good For Small Businesses?

Google ads are one of the best options for all types of small businesses either digital goods or physical stores. There are many reasons for the possibility to reach people already interested in our business, but one of the most important ones is cost-effectiveness.

How Much Does A Google Ads Campaign Cost?

There are many variables to consider before you can come up with the cost of your campaign, but the Google Ads platform is very clear and transparent as to what it is charging and why. The average cost-per-click up to 2020 was $1 – $2. Keep in mind you also need to develop a marketing strategy, a landing page and then copy and design your creatives.

Should I Use Google Ads Instead Of Facebook?

The thing is, there isn’t a yes or no answer. Think of the different platforms as ice cream flavors. It’s not about finding the best one, but the one your customers like. So, as we mentioned before, one of the best approaches you can take is to test, and then decide based on results. If your audience happens to be on Facebook or Instagram, it may be worth investing in those platforms.

Conclusion

As you can see, there are some things you need to consider before developing a Google ads campaign. And if your strategy is about eCommerce, you may want to take a look at these 5 key aspects of eCommerce Digital marketing.

If you still have any questions about how to develop an effective Google ads strategy, contact us! Let us help you get it right on the first try!

20 Steps To Increase The Audience Of Your Blog For Free

20 Steps To Increase The Audience Of Your Blog For Free

Contrary to what many people think, blogging is still relevant! Maybe even more than when it started, although not for the same reasons.

Today’s internet is based on search engines, after all, which better way to find what we want quick and easy?

And because of that fact, the good and abundant written content is more valuable than ever. So, if you were having second thoughts about continuing or starting your blog: Blogging doesn’t seem to be going anywhere!

We prepared for you 8 steps that can help you reach a bigger audience. Let’s get to it!

Improve Your Blog’s Content

Web designers choosing colors

First of all, make sure yours is great content. In today’s world, Google decides who is worth visiting and who doesn’t. If your content is scarce, inconsistent, or offensive, people will leave, and your rank in Google will go down. On the other hand, if people stay or even share your content, your rank will go up organically.

Let us break some of the steps to create amazing blog articles for you:

1. Use Seo Keywords

One of the best ways to drive readers to your blog is by using SEO strategies and to do that, you need to start paying attention to keywords and search results. Don’t worry! There is a whole section about it ahead.

2. Writing A Good Headline Is Key

Your headline is the first thing people will read about your blog. Not only that, the headline is the main reason why people choose to write or not a piece of content. So it’s not overestimating to say that your header may be the most important part of your post.

Remember the goal of your title is to catch your audience’s attention, so keep it simple. If they see complicated words or ideas, it is probable they just leave. Remember your headline is bait.

Still not sure about how to write a good header? Check out these 5 Simple Steps To Write SEO Headlines That Increase Click-Through Rate.

3. Find The Right Niche For Your Blog

Hand pinning a post-it on a board

One of the most common mistakes everybody makes when starting a blog, eCommerce, or brand webpage is to think they will sell to anyone. Spoiler alert: They won’t.

To succeed in today’s competitive digital world, the first thing you need to do is to find the right niche.

What Is A Niche?
To put it in plain English: Niches are groups of people with similar characteristics and interests. For instance:

  • Classical Music Lovers
  • Skaters
  • Cosplayers
  • Tech-lovers
  • Gamers
  • Foodies

And an unending list of etceteras

Finding the right one for your blog is important because it can lead you to grow exponentially. Besides, within a niche, a satisfied customer can turn into 3 more customers. And if you manage it correctly, your brand, blog, or product can even become part of the community, leading to even more growth.

4. Pay Attention To Trends And Take Notes

When doing research, you’ll find many topics that are present across different blogs and pages within a niche. Those are the topics you want to write about. There are two main reasons:

  • It is a proven topic since it is already out there
  • There is already an interested audience across many blogs and web pages

5. Choose The Right Topics For Your Blog

There are many ways to find good topics for your blog, let us give you some ideas!

Comment Section
If you already have a blog, webpage, or Facebook page about your business. You can go to the comments section and look for the most asked questions or the topics everyone seems to be interested in.

Quora
Quora is a community specialized in asking questions. Because of that, it can become a great source of fresh ideas to write.

Quora.com screenshot

Facebook Groups
Remember what we mention about niches? Facebook groups are niches. The best part is they are really easy to find and join. If you are struggling to find the right niche for your brand, this is a great place to start

Facebook groups screenshot

SEM Rush
This tool provides valuable data about keywords, like how many people are searching for them, or which keywords are related. You can even find how difficult it is to rank in google with each keyword.

SEMrush.com screenshot

6. Take Advantage Of Text Formatting -use Bullets And Lists

As readers, we all avoid dense blocks of texts, but as writers, we sometimes forget that. Break the information as much as you can, in small, but relatable chunks of information. A great way to do this is by using bullets and lists.

And when you think of it, it’s a pretty simple and elegant way to break information into reader-friendly paragraphs.

7. Add Images To Your Blog Posts

Images can help you connect emotionally with your audience. Take the time to choose the right images to illustrate your blog post.

Sharing your photos and images is always the best option, but if you don’t have images to share, you can use stock images.

8. Proofread And Double Check All Your Content

Do not skip this part! Proofreading is important because people always prefer to read well-written content, but also because of the Google Search Engine, which favors grammatically correct blogs and websites. Grammarly is a great tool for all types of writers.

Grammarly.com screenshot

Use Social Media To Promote Your Blog

Undoubtedly, social media is one of the first options we all think of when trying to promote a webpage or blog. According to eMarketer, 73% of internet traffic comes from social platforms, so it won’t hurt to try!

However, you’ll find quickly that using social media for your business is different than just scrolling around. Let us help you come up with a social media strategy that increases your audience.

9. Bring Something Valuable For Your Audience

Have you ever googled, let’s say, pink curtains out of curiosity… just to find a couple of hours later, every one of your social apps showing you pink curtains ads? That is pushy and a little bit creepy right? So let’s avoid any type of push strategy and let’s focus on developing an effective pull strategy.

The best way to catch people’s attention is by giving out valuable content upfront. And don’t worry! This sounds way harder than what is.

Bringing valuable content to your audience, sometimes is as easy as connecting dots. Let’s say for instance you want to get into a foodie community on Facebook.

Of course, you could start by asking strangers:

“Hey! Visit my blog where I talk about international food”

BUT…

People will be far more interested if you start by OFFERING one of your favorite french dessert recipes… that happens to be hosted in your blog.

See? Just by choosing the right post to share and by switching the mindset, you can turn the posts you already have into valuable content for any new audience.

 

10. Develop Visually Appealing Content

Different devices with the same web design on screen

Social media is a visual experience, and there is no better way to catch people’s attention than with good visuals. Sometimes you can even use the same images from your blog.

This is an important part of your social media strategy because people are more willing to share images, gifs, or videos than any other type of content.

11. Interact With Your Audience

One crucial aspect of social media is interaction, pay attention to your audience and help them have a great online experience. Spark conversations, like their comments, and answer their questions.

12. Make Your Content Shareable

Of course, we meant paying attention to all of these steps, but also to add social media buttons to your blog. This way, people who love your posts will be able to share them instantly. We suggest using only three social share buttons to avoid excessive visual distractors.

Remember adding images, videos, or gifs to your content can also make it more appealing.

13. What To Share Across All Your Social Platforms?

You may already be doing this, and if not, start right away! Remember all platforms work differently, and even if the content you share is the same, the message should be adequate for each platform.

  • Facebook & Facebook Groups
  • Due to this platform format, the best way to share something is by using mixed media. For instance, you can share an image from your blog and a little extract from your most recent post. Try and keep it aligned to the community rules, if that’s the case, and avoid sharing in groups that don’t allow link sharing

  • Instagram
  • Same formula, but give priority to the image. Try to keep the text as short as possible and if you can avoid it, better. Use hashtags related to your niche and content.

  • Twitter
  • If your blog has anything that may sound controversial, Twitter is the best place to share it! You can also use images and brief text. Do not forget to use hashtags.

  • Youtube
  • VideoBlogging is not going anywhere soon. If you feel comfortable in front of a camera, you can start turning your written content into video content and reach different audiences.

  • TikTok
  • The best part about TikTok is that you can be as creative as you want! You can talk to the camera, use animation, filters… share images of your cat while you read your content. Just keep it under one minute.

    14. Post Consistently

    One crucial aspect of social media is interaction, pay attention to your audience and help them have a great online experience. Spark conversations, like their comments, and answer their questions.

    Develop Digital strategies to reach more readers

    Sometimes we forget the internet is way more than social media, and there are many other platforms and strategies you can use to promote your blog for free. Here are some of them.

    15. Optimize Your Blog Posts For SEO

    Man holding a laptop with the message “SEO” on the screen

    The best way to promote your blog is SEO optimization. The reason is simple: SEO optimization can help you reach audiences already interested in the topics you write about. But the best part is you can do that organically. Another big advantage is that you can even optimize your old blog post to drive more visitors.

    Consider these aspects if you want to start using SEO optimization:

    Pay attention to permalinks

    Instead of this:

    www.myblog.com/Yr0kC-Wg5KQ5MdhV8bnQ1uH1dwbdj.html

    Your Blog’s URL should look something like this:

    www.chavezwebdesign.com/12-strategies-to-grow-your-restaurant-with-email-marketing/

    This is the best way to tell search engines what your blog is about. All web hosting platforms allow you to change your permalinks settings. If you are a WordPress user, here’s a video guide that shows you how to do it.

    Youtube video guide screenshot

    16. Improve Your Meta Descriptions

    One crucial aspect of social media is interaction, pay attention to your audience and help them have a great online experience. Spark conversations, like their comments, and answer their questions.

    The meta description is the small text that appears under the URL on the search results page. This text has no direct influence over SEO metrics but is vital to give people a glimpse of the content they are about to click on. Think of it as a Netflix synopsis about your blog post.

    We recommend this tool in many posts because it works. The portent Serp Preview Tool allows you to check exactly how your URL and meta description will look on Google before you publish.

    Portent SERP Preview tool screenshot

    17. Use Online Forums And Groups

    Online forums are another great tool to find niches. It doesn’t matter how specific a niche can be, almost sure they have a community on Reddit.

    Keep in mind many forums won’t allow you to share your blog link just like that. Let’s say you have to earn it. And that is great! Because that is exactly the mindset you must follow in all your other strategies: Try to become part of the community first.

    Not sure how to find a forum about your specific topic? Easy: Type “Your niche + Forum” in Google and that’s it!

    If you are not familiar with online forums, you can start by joining Facebook or Linkedin Groups, which cover a very similar function.

    18. Develop An Email Marketing Campaign

    This is one of the oldest strategies, but amazingly, it still delivers very good numbers when used correctly. If by any means you happen to have a mailing list, that’s the best place to start.

    This is also a great tool if you have an eCommerce store since regular blogging and regular newsletters are a great way to keep your customers coming back.

    If you are interested in developing an email marketing campaign, this article is loaded with email marketing strategies to make the most out of those old mailing lists! check it out here.

    Chavez Web Design Blog screenshot

    19. Promote And Interact With Other Content Creators

    Sharing another creator’s content is always a smart choice. There are so many!

    • Excellent public relationship tool
    • The best way to spark conversation in a new community
    • Great Link Building strategy
    • It gives you certain authority within the community
    • People you mention may mention you back

    Would you like a personality within the community telling their followers to read your blog? Promoting other creators’ content is the best way to achieve it.

    Another great way to interact with other content creators is to guest blog. That means you can write one post for their blog and they can write for yours. This can help you both increase your audiences.

    20. Promote Your Blog On Less Conventional Platforms

    So now that you are ready to develop your marketing strategy, here are ten tools you can use to promote your blog

    Medium

    Medium.com screenshot

    An online publishing platform where you can host your blog. This is one of the most famous platforms for bloggers and its reach is around 100 million visitors a month. A lot of thought leaders across many fields host their blogs here.

    But Medium is also the favorite place for freelance journalists and writers, maybe because they can publish freely without any filters and because Medium allows you to use SEO in your posts.

    But you also can appear on the Medium home page and get your content recommended to other users by Medium for free. To achieve that, your blog posts need to meet all Medium Standards.

    Flipboard

    Flipboard.com screenshot

    This platform is a content aggregator site. Here the user can choose from a selection of content from multiple sources. And as a creator, you can create an account and start posting right away.

    Each time you publish a new post, readers are redirected to your site. This way new readers can discover your blog regularly.

    BuzzsProut

    Buzzprout.com screenshot

    This is a platform where you can record and publish your podcast. Just as with youtube, you can turn your content into an audio podcast and share it with the world. One of the best things about this platform is that you can reach millions of listeners! This is because they make your podcast available in Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, and other platforms.

    You can also record episodes and schedule a day and time to release them. This is an excellent tool to reach a different audience and get more visitors.

    Conclusion

    Blogging is more relevant than ever! The trick is to have high-quality content. Remember to take a look at these 6 strategies to write the perfect blog post, to find even more tips and tools.

    Do you still have questions? Ask the experts! Click on the green button at the bottom right of your screen and we’ll be glad to answer all your questions!

    Restaurant Marketing: 6 Ways to Bring Customers Back in Your Doors

    Restaurant Marketing: 6 Ways to Bring Customers Back in Your Doors

    The greater population was not prepared for the issues that were coming in 2020. The pandemic has upended much of our daily lives, but experts are predicting that the end may be in sight.

    As the world continues to reopen, many businesses and industry professionals will be looking for ways to rebuild what they once had. One industry that will need to do some extra work to return to its pre-pandemic state is the foodservice industry. Many diners are still wary of going out amongst other issues.

    Without further ado, here are six ways to ensure that your marketing efforts bring customers back into your restaurant!

    1. Expand the Department

    For many businesses, budgets, unnecessary expenses, and overhead costs were all slashed and kept to a minimum last year. In fact, experts state that at least 43% of marketing budgets were cut due to the pandemic. Once the recession started, it was apparent that business owners had to shore up expenses if they wanted to remain in business.

    While these industry-wide budget cuts were necessary to stay open in the interim, they can be damaging to a company’s long-term success. As the world returns to a semblance of normalcy, so too should your restaurant’s operational makeup. It is time to reinvest in the marketing department if budget cuts were made. Even if your restaurant did not need to cut the marketing department, it is still a good time to expand the department and dedicate some resources to its growth.

    Expanding a marketing department can be done in a few different ways. You can invest in the people who make up the department, or you can invest in the tools that the department uses every day. Let’s walk through what this may look like for your restaurant.

    Hiring

    Hiring more marketing professionals can be a great way to expand on the current capabilities of the department. Marketing today is so fragmented that having at least a digital specialist and a traditional marketing specialist is a must. Much more than that can be overkill for a restaurant. To speed up the hiring process, it may be worth looking into a human resources platform. HR software allows you to automate many tasks associated with hiring, onboarding, and even offboarding employees.

    Splitting the marketing work into two separate categories will help lighten the workload each member of the marketing team has. This lightened workload will allow your marketers to focus on the tasks that they feel most comfortable with. Having more than one specialist will also lead to more collaboration and diverse ideas that pull in both traditional and digital marketing strategies.

    Gear

    Besides hiring additional help, you can also expand the department by purchasing new equipment and gear for the team. Post-pandemic, your marketing content needs to look and feel like it’s professionally shot. You will not be the only restaurant trying to bring customers back in the door. If your marketing content looks stale or dated, it will be hard to stand out in the newly crowded market. To best combat this, your marketing team should have brand new gear and software to create the best content possible.

    Some marketing equipment to consider investing in is; a new camera, a new laptop, the Adobe Creative suite, social media schedulers, other photography materials (props, greenscreen, etc.). Each of these items will help your team put out robust content that will grab the customers attention. Remember, your team’s gear will only take them so far. Having a dedicated marketing plan will help amplify your new efforts.

    As the world begins to grow more crowded, so too will the business space. Getting out in front of the demand for new content will only help your restaurant get back on track!

    2. Ditch the Third-Party Support

    One of the silver linings of the past year is, the pandemic forced people to try new things. You could not achieve a task the same way that you would before, so new methods were being tested everyday to achieve goals. With so many people trying new things, this could also be the case for your marketing department.

    As you begin to think about how you are going to bring customers back in the door, maybe you don’t have to. Amidst the pandemic, restaurant owners started to diversify how their business operated. This led to the massive adoption of restaurant delivery services across the country.

    For most restaurant owners, this means working with third-party applications, such as GrubHub or Uber. These third-party apps often have predatory terms and contracts that can negatively impact the restaurant’s bottom-line. Due to these growing concerns, 70% of consumers actually prefer to order from a restaurant that offers their own delivery service, according to a recent survey. This is a huge number, as 60% of consumers now order takeout or delivery at least once a week.

    To combat this, your restaurant should offer a delivery service that is completely built for in-house use and managed by your marketing team. The front-end costs of paying an app-developer to build your application will be costly, but the money you save in the long run from avoiding third-party fees will be worth it.

    The estimated cost of building your own delivery app can range from $15,000-$30,000, but it will be dependent on the features you want to include. Obviously there is some sticker shock associated with this number. It may be wise to use funds from a small business loan to ensure that you have the money necessary to build a powerful app, while not taking away from other areas of your business.

    After building your app, remember that you will need to market your new offering across all platforms. Meet with the marketing team to discuss how you want to feature this new addition to your business. Also, keep in mind that you will need to staff and maintain the costs of offering delivery after the initial investment.

    3. Continue to Invest in Digital Trends

    Up to this point, most of our advice has been centered around digital marketing trends in the food service sphere, and for good reason. More consumers are looking online at recommendations and reviews than ever before when choosing a restaurant. Something as small as a one-star difference on a company’s Yelp account can shift profits by as much as 9%.

    Restaurant owners have seen how impactful the online community can be when determining which restaurants in an area are good or bad. Investing further in your digital presence will only help you take advantage of this opportunity.

    For restaurants, there are a few elements of digital marketing that are a must if you want to make an impression on your target market. Here are some areas of digital marketing that you should be focusing on if you are not already.

    Local Search Engine Optimization

    As mentioned, the local community can play a huge role in determining your restaurant’s success. With more locals turning to Google and other search engines to find nearby restaurants, having a presence on these search engines will be increasingly important. SEO is growing at a pace that has never been seen before. Many companies want to do SEO, but do not know how to due to the technical intricacies of this form of marketing. To best leverage SEO for your business, check out some of the ways that we can assist you!

    Email Marketing

    The connection between email marketing and restaurants may not be apparent right away, but if you think about it, most of the bigger restaurants conduct email marketing, just in a non-traditional way. These larger restaurants often have customer loyalty programs that automatically send a newsletter to each and every subscriber. These newsletters serve as a form of email marketing as they effectively inform a consumer about something new at your restaurant. The logistics of gathering leads, sending emails, and everything in between can be rather time-consuming. That is where we can help! Contact us today to see how we can help you get your email marketing campaign off the ground.

    Web Design

    The continued shift to online shopping has flooded the foodservice industry as a whole. Restaurants need to have well-designed online sites that are both user-friendly and nice to look at. Consumers want to have the option to order, cash out and have their food delivered all from an online storefront. Even if delivery isn’t offered, some consumers prefer to order online. Web design can be a fickle beast to take on alone. Bringing in an experienced web developer can help assist with any website design services you may require. 

    Digital marketing is an ever-changing, ever-growing industry. The trends can be difficult to keep up with, but if you do, the results you field may exceed your expectations. Make a concerted effort to continue investing in digital marketing trends this year and after the pandemic is officially over!

    4. Showcase Your Changes

    Over the past year, your restaurant has likely undergone major changes, There may have been a period of time where you were closed. Perhaps you had to rearrange your decor. Whatever it may have been, now is the time to broadcast these changes to the world.

    The age-old mantra, “people hate change” is sometimes true. Other times, change can be the driving force to get people interested in an established brand. This is why you need to showcase how much change your restaurant has undergone.

    If you market your evolution correctly, it should drum up excitement amongst two groups. First, old customers may have felt like they had seen everything your business has to offer. The hope is that the changes you made spark the initial interest that they had in your business. The second group of customers you are hoping to capture is the crowd who was never interested in your business in the first place. Your new changes could be a catalyst to get them in the door, but you need to advertise these changes first.

    A well-produced social media campaign is the best way to display the updates you have made. In fact, social media is where many foodies and locals go to get their local business news. The major platforms, Facebook and Instagram, are great for video spots, which is the perfect way to show customers what to expect when coming back to your business. The advertisement doesn’t need to be over the top, just a quick 2-3 minute video that shows any changes you may have made. A voice-over would be wise to include, as would a walkthrough of out-of-store changes, such as website updates, or delivery options.

    Don’t let this one video be your only exploration of video-based content either! Breaking up the monotony of pictures will be refreshing for followers of your page.

    5. Start a Loyalty Program

    While the pandemic outlook is starting to appear promising, the negative impacts will be felt by many for a long time. The stress and financial burden that the pandemic caused did reignite a hometown support feeling in many communities. As a restaurant owner, you need to harness this support and convert these new customers into loyal lifelong customers.

    One way that you can take these current customers and turn them into lifelong customers is by creating a loyalty program. Loyalty programs are nothing new, but with the heightened desire for closeness, customers are primed to be marketed to using emotional tactics. A loyalty program makes the customer buy into the idea that your restaurant is somewhere that they see themselves coming too often. There needs to be an enticement to get customers to that level of loyalty though.

    Standard loyalty programs usually include some sort of visitor bonus. This means that when customers return to your store, they receive some sort of mark to signify how many times they have been in. Eventually, when they reach a certain number the customer will get a discount of some sort. These programs are easy to maintain, but may not be enough to convert a large number of customers.

    Other loyalty programs to try would be either a referral program or a social media program for members. The referral program would be simple; customers can refer a friend using an app or your new website and when they hit a certain number, they get a discount.

    The social media program is a bit more creative and difficult to track. This would be the most challenging, but could have a really cool payoff! Essentially, you establish a check-in process where customers snap a photo of themselves enjoying a meal at your restaurant. They need to post the photo on a major social media account and tag your business. If they do, they receive a discount or free item. These programs are great because if they work well, they can serve as a mini-marketing campaign that was completely organic!

    6. Engage with the Local Community

    As mentioned above, customers are craving a sense of community right now. Emotions are high as people get back into the world and normal events begin to return. Right now is the time to strike if you want to insert yourself into the community. Integral members of any community always work with other businesses and organizations in the local area. Your marketing team needs to get together and think about possible local partnerships that could cement your business as a key member of the community.

    The first thing you need to identify is the type of partnership your business will fit with. If you are a local pizza shop, then sponsoring some high-brow event is probably not something that will benefit you or the event. Think within your target market; the pizza shop should try to get in with any and every local sporting event, outdoor festival, concert venue and more.

    If people begin to see your brand at every city event, it will just increase brand traction and recognition. People will also know that your brand is putting money back into the community, as you have to pay to be the sponsor of major events.

    Getting into the community will not be as easy as just asking. You should have a business pitch prepared for each and every community or event coordinator you meet with. Other businesses in the community will be vying for the same sponsorship opportunities as you and spots will be limited.

    Once you do land some partnerships, the marketing efforts will not be over. Your team will need to create some promotional materials to use at these events. Everything from pamphlets to facade wraps will need to be created so that your business looks legit. If you need some assistance with any print projects, we can help you. Our team can handle print projects large and small for businesses of any size. Contact us today to see where we can help your business!

    Well there you have it! 6 actionable steps to take to get your business back on track. Marketing will be the lifeblood of your business as the world reopens. Strike while the iron is hot! People are wanting to get out and live again, and restaurants are often high on people’s lists of things to do.

    With the summer looking more and more like it will be somewhat relaxed, hopefully, your restaurant will regain the success you once had pre-pandemic!

    Contact us with any digital questions you may have!

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