Because more people than ever are now searching for local businesses using both standard and mobile devices, local SEO has become essential for any business that serves a specific geographic region. While it’s something that simply can’t be overlooked, it has actually become more complicated in recent years. Continue reading
It wasn’t that long ago when many franchises were at least a little skeptical about whether or not social media could do anything tangible for their bottom line. However, thanks to the explosion in social media usage across B2B and B2C demographics, franchise social media has become a standard marketing strategy for most organizations. Continue reading
Social media is a proven way for a franchise to connect with potential and existing customers. Because that type of connection is quite valuable, social media can be directly responsible
for increasing revenue. While social media is quite powerful, it does come with some challenges. Since they have so many components, that’s especially true for franchises.
It’s amazing how many organizations and businesses still don’t use a Social Media Dashboard. When I say that it’s amazing, I really mean that. Any organization that does not already understand that social media is the key to their future success has essentially hung out the “closed for business” sign and is waiting for someone to tell them. With the myriad of networks out there that need to be worked and monitored, there are only two viable options: have a large staff devoted to social media or get software to take care of your social media tracking. Continue reading
While franchises can be found in just about any industry, they all share some common traits. One trait that all franchises share is the need to bring in new customers on a regular basis. A big obstacle for many franchises and other types of businesses is creating a strategy for consistently bringing in new leads. Since franchise lead generation can be a definite challenge, we want to focus on an approach that can work very well.
From using last-minute mobile deals to combating slow days by providing special offers through Facebook, more franchises are not only embracing social media, but seeing real results from it. Although plenty of franchises have integrated social media into their core marketing strategy, it wasn’t long ago when this type of adoption was rare. Continue reading
Regardless of their specific industry, most businesses have come to the realization that they need to utilize social media. While that rule of thumb holds true for franchises, it’s important to note that they do present some unique challenges. Although it’s important to be aware of the considerations that apply directly to franchisee social media usage, the good news is once you know about those specific issues, you can adapt and ensure you’re making the most of your marketing strategy. Continue reading
SEO stands for search engine optimization. At its core, this practice is simply a way to ensure that a business website shows up in the top group of results when someone searches for a relevant keyword phrase. Because Google is always evolving, the best practices for SEO in 2018 look quite different than even a few years ago.
To help ensure that you’re on the right track with SEO, we want to cover the 5 steps for franchise SEO success during the upcoming year:
1. Start with Key Pages
Franchisors often get overwhelmed by the prospect of diving into all of their SEO needs. That’s why we recommend starting with your most important pages. Good starting points include your homepage, About Us, main blog page and product/service pages. Investing time and resources to get these pages right can then be leveraged as a template for all other pages and online properties.
2. Create a Strong Online Footprint
The best rankings come from having a balanced and widespread online footprint. Instead of falling into the trap of chasing shortcuts, focus on ways to spread the word about your franchise online. More people knowing about your franchise will result in more people talking about it, which in turn will naturally generate the types of links that are so vital for ranking well in Google.
3. Optimize Location Pages
Some franchises have sub-pages for different locations. Others use individual websites for each location. And plenty of franchises take a hybrid approach. Regardless of where you fall on this spectrum, you’ll want to be sure that customers in each target market are able to easily find local franchises online.
4. Understand Local
This ties directly into the above point. The way that Google ranks and displays local search results differs from general queries. As more people do searches from their mobile phones, fully understanding local has become even more important. One of the main things to keep in mind is that Google wants to verify that businesses have a local presence. NAP (name, address and phone number) citations are a key way they measure this. Ensuring NAP consistency across all major directories will help local rankings a lot.
5. Grab the Long Tail
The long tail refers to keyword phrases that are highly targeted but don’t get a ton of search volume. What makes the long tail so appealing is there’s less competition to rank in the first few spots. These highly targeted keyword phrases also have clear intent, which makes them great for converting searchers into actual customers. Integrating long tail content into your SEO strategy is a very smart choice for 2018.
If you want expert help creating the right SEO plan and putting it into practice during 2018, be sure to take a look at how Web Strategy Plus can help.
Michelle Hummel is CEO of Web Strategy Plus a full-service digital marketing agency focused on Franchise Marketing. She was recently nominated for the Woman-Owned Business of the Year! She’s a passionate Social Media Trainer with 15+ years of successful online business development, sales, and marketing experience. She also holds a valuable Internet Marketing Degree however with the ever-changing world of web marketing she strives to learn something new every day.
She travels Nationwide visiting her 22 Social Media Enthusiasts Chapters she developed Nationwide delivering in-depth social media training. She also provides Social Media Certifications through founding Web Media University. A current contributing editor to The Franchise Dictionary Magazine and she has written 3 books in her series called, “The Social Media Magnet: Everything You Need to Know to Attract Customers with Social Media”, where she shares her best-kept secrets to success. She also specializes in helping Franchisors and Franchisees develop an integrated web marketing program to drive leads. She’s available for interviews via email, telephone, Skype video, news segments on location and more. Just let her know how she can help!
Most franchises are already aware that they need a strong marketing message. However, there’s often a significant disconnect between crafting the right message and having an audience to deliver it to. The reality of the franchise industry is very few sales happen by accident. Instead, the types of franchisors that are able to consistently sell new franchises do so by having a clear marketing plan that’s carefully crafted to attract a specific type of prospect. Continue reading