If you know anything about technology you will know that these phones that you carry around in your pocket and the technology on them has come on a long way in the past few years. If you remember “Quantum Leap” and “Ziggy” the handheld computer that Al the Hologram carried with him, then you know that technology. Maybe not as high tech as Ziggy but you can now ask your smartphone a question and get an answer and most users use it to find things using the near me location finder.
If you use Apple it is called Siri and if you use Android it is called “Now Google”, even Windows phones have Cortana software which you can ask a question of the phone and it will search and find you an answer. So what is the ‘Near Me’ thing all about I hear you cry. Well to put it simply people have started talking to their devices as they would talk to you and I, so this means that you need to be thinking like your target audience in order to get them to your site.
So How Can You Take Advantage Near Me?
There are a number of things you can do in order to take advantage of the near me technology so when someone who is looking for your service asks their phone “Find a solicitors near me” you are top of the list. Remember there are not many people doing this properly in the UK so if you get in early you will be leading the pack as it grows (and it has seen a 500% growth since 2014).
- Setup a Google Adwords Campaign and use Local Extensions to take advantage of the Directions and Call tabs which show in these ads. The ads also have “Nearby Businesses” above them to alert people to local businesses for their search. So even if someone doesn’t say the magic phrase “Solicitors Near Me” into their phone, the search for “Solicitors” will show your advert above all other results.
- Make sure you are fully optimised for local search. You need to have your Name, Address and Phone Number exactly the same on every page on your website (normally in the footer works very well). Also when you are adding your website to other websites you will notice that you get better results if you ensure that all the details of your business are the same across the board. This also gods for adding in hours of operations, products and services.
- Make sure your website is Mobile friendly. You won’t show up in the local search results if you do not get your website looking healthy on a mobile phone and tablet. More than 50% of searches now come from mobile devices, this means you will be missing out on 50% of the potential search visitors to your site if you do not get on the ball and get your website made mobile friendly. IGNORE THIS AT YOUR PERIL IF YOU WANT YOUR WEBSITE TO BE A SUCCESS! (Google are updating their calculations in January 2017 to include even more mobile specific search factors). You will also be missing out on the near me searches because without having a mobile friendly site you won’t be able to get the near me visitors to a site they can read.
- As we mentioned earlier you need to make sure your Name, Address and Phone number is the same across the board, make sure you do this on all directories and citation websites (such as Google and Facebook). This information correlates with that on your website. Remember near me is exactly that, people searching for things that are near them, mobile devices have very specific location technology for this exact reasoning.
- This is where most businesses have an issue, they don’t ask people for enough feedback. Local feedback is essential for near me to work properly for your business. A simple email to your clients with a message asking them for a review will help your review numbers go up. There is nothing wrong with asking people to do this for you.
- Advertise on Facebook using a “Local Awareness Ad” unit that allows you to target Facebook users that will be looking for your services near your location.
- Create content about your local area and events in your local area on your blog (you are blogging with relevance aren’t you?) this will aid people finding your site and bring them into your site for a number of different phrases that would cost a lot of money if you advertised on Adwords out of your local area.
These steps will help you show on the map higher for local search. No one is really using Adwords to push their business locally in the UK so this is a relatively low cost option for bringing in extremely targeted traffic to your site right now.
Looking at cost of conversion, things are fairly high in the legal industry and legal marketing comes at a cost but if you are looking to bring in clients for a smaller budget then the above steps will bring people into your website and your business without the need for a huge budget but we urge you to take a look at your cost per conversion on your marketing as you will be looking at a much better profit margin if you map out your budget properly. Make sure you subscribe to our feed in order to see our next post about working out a sensible marketing budget so you can be competitive but not break the bank.