This article is aimed at local business owners explaining how you can use geolocation tools to expand your business on the internet.
Firstly, Geolocation is the identification of the real-world geographic location of an object.
As a noun, geolocation refers to the physical location itself; as a verb, the term refers to the process of detecting that location. Source: searchmobilecomputing.com
This article will highlight three geolocation tools to use for your local business and why you should consider it as part of your marketing plan.
1. Google Places
Google Places tool is a must for any local business.
In 2010 Google created close on 50 million Google Places listings for businesses around the world. Often you will find the Google Places links right at the top just below the paid advertising on your search page. They often appear before normal organic search results, especially if some-one is searching for something in a specific location.
The goal for Google is to serve up highly relevant results to local search. To claim your Google listing is really essential, because it’s a free service and will get your basic information like your address, phone numbers, some images and videos of your products plus your web address online fast and relevant.
Obviously as competition increases and ranking becomes more competitive you will have to look at ways to optimise your Google Places listing, just like your website needs SEO.
2. Facebook Places
Facebook released Facebook Places, where you start sharing with your friends where you are and what it’s like. You also get to LIKE the places….
You can tag those friends with you at the time who also have a Facebook profile and thus leave your mark and recommendation of that business.
Facebook Pages is becoming more relevant now and you will find more people checking in at the office or at clients.
You can even go so far as to “help” Facebook complete Places already online in your area with info like address, phone number and website from your own profile.
This is another free way for local business to get some marketing mileage out of the Internet, put the info in your shop, on your promotional material, your e-mail signature and accumulate so miles and free publicity, soon you will be able to add incentives like coupons to your place and scare up some business.
Foursquare is a basic check-in application on your smart phone that allows you to check in at your favourite coffee shop and tell your friends, recommend a dish, post pictures of it, etc.
Up to now Foursquare focus has mainly been on the fun businesses in our day like restaurants and entertainment but other business is on the cards.
What makes Foursquare fun is that local business can attach rewards to your check-ins and give you a free coffee, after x amount of check ins, you can also become the mayor if you have the most check ins at an establishment and that business can couple rewards to that status.
You also win badges for checking in at certain types of venues and many other achievements like being out late night or somewhere more than once in a week, etc. It’s fun
Probably the most important fact about all of these is you can access them from your smartphone. It will also help, especially Google Places with your business being found on smartphones and tables, which as you might know are selling faster than PC’s and laptops these days.
These tools are definitely worth making part of your online marketing plan. Please find our Google Places Listing Guide here shoing you step by step how to claim your listing: