There isn’t any question that consumers are out there looking for the products and services your business offers, the questions is how are they going to find you? At UniversityParent, we believe that an online business directory is a great way to increase exposure for your business, but there are four things you need to know before advertising in an online business directory.
Who You Want to Reach
If you are like many businesses, you may have several different target markets that you are trying to reach. The demographics and consumer characteristics of some of these target markets may lead you to several different types of advertising outlets. Before you sign up for an online business directory, make sure you know whom you are trying to reach and where they will be searching for information. Knowing whom you want to reach and choosing the appropriate channel will lead to better impressions, traffic, and conversions for your site.
Who the Online Business Directory Reaches
Advertising in an online business directory that reaches a lot of people isn’t necessarily the best indicator for potential success. Instead, you should be focusing on the quality of people that an online business directory reaches. Because you’ve already taken the time to find out exactly whom you want to reach through an online business directory, you should be searching for business directories that draw that kind of traffic.
What Other Businesses Advertise in that Business Directory
Depending on your industry, there could be a plethora of business directories for you to choose from. Before going with the first directory that you see, take time to also explore the competitive space. Too many or too few participating business could be an indicator of which business directory is the right choice for you. You should also focus on the presence of your top competitors when exploring which online business directory is right for your business.
How You Will Track Success
Ultimately, every business would like to see sales increase after implementing a new advertising or marketing strategy. You can tie some of the success from your listing in a business directory to click-through-rates and conversions. However, it is also important to take into consideration the impact of impressions. Consumers performing research online prior to making purchasing decisions is quickly on the rise, so it is unlikely that a consumer would make a purchasing decision after only visiting your website. It is much more likely that consumers are searching multiple business, multiple places on the internet. Garnering impressions throughout a consumer's research cycle and being accessible when they are ready to make a purchase is where the true value of impressions comes through. By the time a consumer is ready to buy, they may just visit your website directly instead of through an advertisement or listing in a business directory. Success can be measured in several ways, so be prepared to define and track success however makes the most sense for your business.
If you’re equipped with these four pieces of information, you have what it takes to choose the online business directory that makes the most sense for you.