What’s the number one thing most businesses want? More customers and in-store foot traffic, right? But if you think about it, your user’s experience begins well before customers visit your business. In many cases their experience of your business starts online. That’s why making a tweak or two with your online activity could result in luring more shoppers to visit your store. We’ve put together five of the top digital strategies to help you increase in-person visits to your store.
1. Show Up
User experience often begins where your prospects find you. Everyday consumers turn to search engines to find answers to what they are looking for. So showing up on Google and Bing is essential. This can be done through a combination of a well-optimised website as well as taking advantage of paid search.
Firstly, start by implementing best practices to improve your search engine optimisation, or SEO. The impact of a well-optimised site is a better user experience and helps search engines determine how your page will rank. Search engines account for everything from navigation, to page load times, fresh relevant content, images, media, and more.
Here are a few tips to get people from your website to visiting you in store:
- Use an online appointment scheduling feature – this allows for appointments to be scheduled after-hours
- Have strong call to actions – this indicates clearly what the next steps are. e.g.: book a consultation or visit us today
- Make use of special offers or coupons that can be redeemed in-store
Building your organic SEO presence is an ongoing process, so in the meantime paid advertising ensures your business is showing up for searches with high commercial intent. These ads receive preferred placement at the top of the search engine results page across Google and Bing.
Here are a few things to consider:
- Optimise your ads for mobile users
- Be sure to use “near me” keywords
- Utilise ad scheduling to bid more aggressively during business hours
2. Claim Your Local Listings
Prospects often turn to the internet for directions and general business information. These are common searches before an in-store visit takes place. While your business information may stand out on your website, a prospect might not look any further than your map listing. Remember a first-time customers can be easily deterred by something as simple as not finding your store location the moment they need it. Make sure that you have claimed and verified your local listings. Focus on popular listing sites like Google My Business or TrueLocal and also consider using industry-specific listings sites.
3. Be Savvy on Social Media
Did you know you can use social platforms to create opportunities to drive in-store visits? Facebook is a great place to start – as it hosts a wide demographic of users and you can be quite specific with your goals as well as targeting when it comes to advertising. Here are a few easy ways to encourage in-person visits using Facebook:
- Make certain your business information is accurate (including location address and hours)
- Showcase positive customer experiences
- Promote sales or store events with Facebook Ads
- Share pictures of goods and/or services
4. Reward Repeat Customers
When putting together a marketing plan designed to drive in-person visits, a great strategy is to encourage customers to keep coming back. You can do this with through special offers and loyalty cards. The best part is, returning customers can often become brand ambassadors and influencers, recommending you to family, friends, and colleagues. Because returning site visitors are often already customers, retargeting is a great way to get in front of them again. Tailor your ad message for these repeat customers and make sure you are relevant to their requirements. For example, make sure your ad is seasonally appropriate and related to goods or services they may need in the near future!
5. Utilise the Power of Mobile
We are always connected to our smartphones and you should take advantage of the amount of screen time prospects spend on their phones with mobile advertising. Geofencing is a cost-effective way to get in front of your local prospects while they are on the go. You can give your brand incredible local exposures; whether you want to target an area around your store, or target other relevant local businesses.
A few key tips to drive customers to your store with Geofencing:
- Understand your customer’s interests and behaviours so that you can set up relevant virtual fences for increased store visits
- Use coupons or special offers for enticing new prospects or even repeat customers to your store
- Be sure to use this for events (such as tradeshows or industry seminars) that would be relevant to your business as this gives you the opportunity to get your brand in front of a large number of people in the one go.
Website traffic is important – and should be a key metric that you consider when evaluating the effectiveness of your marketing strategy. But if you also want to measure conversions or purchases that are made offline, take advantage of the strategies listed here. These will allow you to drive more in-store traffic and watch your business grow.
Get in touch with us if you’d like help putting together a total digital marketing solution for your business!