You have a business… perhaps a bar, a coffee shop, or maybe a consulting firm. Regardless of the business type, if you have a brick and mortar presence then you need to get your business listed in some of the popular online, location-based resources and search tools. Even more important is being found via mobile search. Your customers are online constantly, mostly via their tablet or smartphone. In order for them to find you it’s critical that your business turns up in ALL the popular local search tools and map engines. Recently I was attempting to locate a local business on the web. I had a name and rough location, attempted a search and couldn’t find anything at all online about the business – talk about a fail! The following are 10 places you need to be listed if you want to be found.
Google is crucial for your business success online and having a good business listing with Google is also crucial. Get started with Google Places for Business where you can create an account, add your business, enhance your listings with information and photos. Be sure to also get your business a Google G+ place as well! http://www.google.ca/business/placesforbusiness/ or jump directly to add your place http://www.google.com/local/add/businessCenter
Need help with Google+ – See Get into Google+
With 500+ million people using facebook is your business seriously not listed yet? Be sure that you have a proper facebook business page (even if you don’t use it) that way loyal customers and clients can at least mention and link to you to show their loyalty! Facebook has some handy resources to help your business get started. Anyone can easily and quickly create a free page, link it with their twitter account, and even offer specials or a contest. See https://www.facebook.com/business – need a little more help? See this blog post from Hubspot
This awesome guide (Free) from Hubspot is also a must have! How to Attract Customers with Facebook
Foursquare for Businesses
Businesses need to be on foursquare.. heck, why not? It’s free and the service provides business owners with valuable tools like the ability to monitor stats and traffic and also reward customers with rewards and loyalty gifts. As a page owner you can also take ownership of your listing (crucial) providing visitors with accurate information and get valuable SEO – see more at http://business.foursquare.com/business-tools/overview/. Owners are encouraged to claim their business (http://business.foursquare.com/business-tools/claim-your-business/). All you need is a foursquare account and an email address to get started. See
Business owners who cater to the food, beverage and tourism industry need to take ownership of their Yelp listing. Perhaps the most popular feature of yelp is the reviews and as a business owner you HAVE to know what people are saying about you and your business. Merchants can optionally take part in Yelp advertising for enhanced positioning as well. Get started at https://biz.yelp.com/
Yelp isn’t the only game in town for restaurants – enter OpenTable. This popular service is also a must use for restauraunters and merchants serving up food and drink. The service is ideal for any restaurant looking to increase reservation and fill those empty seats. Start with OpenTable at http://www.opentable.com/info/affiliates.aspx.
OpenTable also offers an affiliate program for those who are interested in sending traffic and getting a few bucks in return – http://www.opentable.com/info/affiliates.aspx
Yes indeed Yahoo! also maintains an inventory of businesses. You can start with a basic listing (always a good idea) or purchase an enhanced listing that will provide folks with additional information about your company or services. http://listings.local.yahoo.com/overview.php
The Yellow Pages aren’t just for using as a door stop of prop-up for an old PC monitor! YellowPages online is still a valuable goto and search resource for millions. Thus, your business, particularly you brick and mortars NEED to ensure that you are listed correctly and accurately. YellowPages offers valuable advertising opportunities and also offers up a free business listing option as well – see here – see also the advertising options at http://www.yellowpages.com/about/legal/advertisingchoices
Mapquest is still alive and well and is a must use for any business. The company has a handy blog post that will help guide any business through the process of getting listed and how to navigate the business center – see the blog post HERE or get started immediately with a merchant account at https://listings.mapquest.com/apps/listing
Nokia Maps – Here
Nokia maps are widespread in use, particularly in mobile apps (think Navteq) and with the recent roll-out of Here (was Nokia Maps) there’s now a resource called “Prime Places” where you can add your business and enhance your listing with quality, accurate information. Get started at http://here.com/primeplaces/
Navteq maintains a resource at https://mapreporter.navteq.com/dur-web-external/ where users can provide information about updates, omissions, or errors in the Navteq map database. Additionally, business owners can add details of their business to a POI database. In addition to adding contact information, owners can ensure the address is correct, leave a comment, and upload photos.