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Improving your local online visibility is a very simple process. You achieve this primarily by filling out a profile for your business on various online directories. Some directories, like Google My Business, will even send you a monthly email to let you know how many times people viewed your profile and clicked to your site.

You’ll have extra chances to be seen by people who currently don’t know you when they search for your business type. So, don’t forget to include your niche on each directory, when applicable.

To register, simply go online, fill in your business information, and then wait for an approval email or postcard in the mail to verify that you are who you say you are.

Both Google and Bing have business pages, which help get your business found. Social networking sites often have company pages. Even Nextdoor.com, a very local social personal website, started a business/company section that’s currently free.

Below are a few places where I recommend that you post your business information.

If you’re a financial advisor, lawyer, etc., check with your compliance people or regulatory agencies before you add your business to these directories, to learn which parts of these sites are allowable (or not) for your business.

Maria’s Recommended Business Directory Sites:

Google Business: https://www.google.com/business/

Bing Business: https://www.bingplaces.com/

LinkedIn Company Page: https://business.linkedin.com/marketing-solutions/linkedin-pages

Next Door: http://www.NextDoor.com

Facebook: Article on how to set up a page https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/309107

Alignable: A local networking site.  https://www.alignable.com/

And in case you want to go nuts putting your business online, here’s a list I found from a reputable website. Note that some of those sites give you a trial, and then you pay for your listing. y C But for most business owners these sites are nowhere near as important as the sites I’ve listed above.  Main thing to do before you spend your time adding your business to online lists or social networking site is to ask yourself “Are my ideal clients using “x” site”.

50 Online Business Directories: http://https://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/10322/the-ultimate-list-50-local-business-directories.aspx

ACTION STEPS

Create an Excel spreadsheet to keep a list of the directories and social networking sites where you’ve listed your business. This way, when you move, change your hours, are ready to update your logo/photo, or offer new services, your assistant can easily update all the directories.

I’d use these titles for the columns of your Excel spreadsheet: Site Name, URL Link, My ID, My Password, Special Codes.

Don’t forget to add the names of the social networking sites where you’re currently listed, too.  (Like LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, etc.)

Having this spreadsheet will allow your office manager to change things FOR you in the future.

Remember: If you’re not visible locally, you’ll be overlooked by many online prospects who are researching for services that are right in their own backyard!