If you run a local business, you will undoubtedly know how hard it is to compete against other, often much larger companies in your area. When you have limited time, money, and people-power to run your business day-to-day, as well as have enough resources left over to attract new customers, it is easy to become stuck in your tracks.
Simply working harder than the businesses around you is not an option because you will become burned out and find it infeasible to work all hours for any meaningful length of time after a while.
Instead, you need to find an edge – a strategy that can catapult you in front of your local competitors and help you establish a stronger flow of customers in the long term.
Rather than chasing a silver bullet, it is best to accept a fundamental truth about modern business – customers increasingly shop online.
You might be a local business, but if you can nail your online presence, then you will find it far easier to thrive.
This is how to gain an edge over your competitors online:
Improve the quality of your data collecting
A great way of gaining an edge over your competitors online as a local business is to improve the quality of your data collection.
When you collect data on your website (such as recording how long your customers stay on certain pages or the percentage of people who exit out of your online checkout without buying the product), you gain precious information which you can use to improve your company.
However, you need to ensure that this database is kept as clean as possible, eliminating false readings, irrelevant information, and spam bots’ behavior on your website.
If this is a problem you are struggling with, it is worth looking at firms like gsa-marketing.co.uk, who offer database cleaning services.
Build a strong community online
Another way to gain an edge over the competition is to build a strong online community.
This option is particularly useful to small businesses because you can rely on your prominence in the local area to develop a ‘cult’ status. You can quickly transfer this online through a social media page and grow your audience from there.
Everyone wants to discover a hidden gem of a local business, so allowing them to follow you online will help you to establish a more consistent flow of customers.
Embrace tourism and the power of social media
While it is important to maintain your integrity as a local business, you cannot deny the power of tourism and social media fame.
If you are operating in an industry that transfers well to social media (such as a cafe or restaurant), you should aim to make it go as viral as possible.
From making the aesthetics of your premises more photogenic to tapping into the folklore of local culture, you will likely gain a lot of trade during the high season by making your business more tourist-friendly.