Contrary to what you may believe, a small business cannot become a local giant by online strategies alone. Marketing is a powerful tool to spread the word, but that’s all you’re doing. You’re just spreading the word and those who have heard of you, are yet to be contacted by you. How could this happen? By, interacting with customers in the real world. That means, having a large, flexible and very capable real-world presence. Far too often, small business owners believe they need to win the fight online before they start to physically take over the world. Not true, you have to meet and greet people in the real-world for them to know you really exist. This means, starting to fund your local business operations. Becoming the local giant before the online giant is the way to go.
Self-reliance in delivery
Many times you’ll find that new technologies and new strategies, present old problems. For example, dropshipping companies are finding out that delivery is still a case of real-world concern. How can you deliver products to clients? Dropshipping companies need to utilize traditional delivery services for their modern ecommerce business. Thus, they ultimately rely on older companies that have yet to adapt to their level.
So why not just create your own parcel delivery force in the way of a fleet? Buy or rent a few used Vans, that offers you plenty of space and are known to be reliable. Take for example the 2019 Vauxhall Movano for £18,495, or £417 per month. It’s a 2.3-litre diesel, with around 28,000 miles and plenty of space for a double size bed and more. Just two or three of this type of van, and you could service half a large city with great operators.
Optimize your appearances
Working with Google to be put on the list of ‘near me’ options would greatly increase your local exposure. Businesses that have a physical presence will appear on Google Maps. If a customer is needed the type of products and or services you offer, they will have the option of trying locally. There is still a huge market for those that would like to do their shopping in person. It does depend on what kind of business you are, but any retail business has to offer customers a chance to walk into their store and not solely remain online. Work with other search engines such as DuckDuckGo, Bing and Yahoo to be featured locally.
Be seen, be heard
Using social media to spread the word around about your local presence is highly recommended. For all your social media accounts, turn on the setting that shows your local and clearly put your address and details in your bio section. Also, use hashtags showing what city or region you’re in. Additionally, try to join in with local trending hashtags which could rapidly increase your foot traffic on days where there are festivals, entertainment events and discount shopping days.
All in all, too many small business owners focus on the online competition to be noticed. Never underestimate how important your local real-world presence is.