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digital marketing basics, Retail Digital Marketing, Small Business Digital Marketing

Digital Marketing for a Local Business

Digital marketing is a low-cost way to market a business and creates a vast amount of visibility for low cost especially if done right. The areas that digital marketing covers is extensive and includes the following Branding, PR, and Advertising. The areas that are encompassed in digital marketing are your website, PPC advertising, social media, content, and email.


In this day in age, the website is the equivalent of a digital storefront. The content on your sites equals the sales rep greeting new customers and providing that interaction for visitors.

If your business doesn’t have a website (looking at all of you only have a Facebook page) get a website to show you have a digital presence which validates that you are a real business and a business that cares about convenience for your customers.

In order for your website to be the best marketing tool you have, make sure you say yes to all of the following….

  • Do you have a welcoming/ user-friendly site? In short, this means most, or all items on the site can be reached in 3 clicks. It means you have appropriate use of whitespace (e.g., don’t have too much going on any one page or too much blank space either), and don’t use more than three colors families on your site.
  • Do you list your business hours and address if your local business has a physical location that customers can visit? This helps your customers know when you are available. Make sure that it’s updated on Google Business as well so that they don’t waste time driving to your location or calling when you’re not there.
  • Do you list your contact information? Each customer has a preferred method of contact so make sure you have a phone number, email address, and social media links so they can communicate in a variety of ways that suit their lives.
  • Is your website mobile-friendly so customers on the go can use your website with ease? This includes having a responsive website that will adjust to the size of the phone, making links at least 3mm for ease of clicking, and make sure all contact information is linked so customers can call, email, message on social media from their phone.
  • Do you have one apparent call to action? This is usually the biggest button on the home screen. So if you’re a local bike shop and you want people to purchase bikes through your website as well, you’ll have a big “SHOP” button. Or if you’re an auto shop you might have “Make an Appointment” as your big button.
  • Does each webpage have a header description? The more content you have on your website, the more SEO capability you have and the more traffic your website will receive. If you have descriptions over 600 words, it will help with SEO traffic even more (which I will go into more detail below).
  • Lastly, do you have a blog? No matter what your product or service is, create a blog and if you don’t like writing, find someone who can contribute content for your local business.

Once you have your website squared away, focus on areas that drive traffic to your site:

PPC/ SEO Marketing

One of the easiest ways to drive traffic to your site it by using Google Adwords or Moz to search for keywords and key phrases that people are using to search the internet. Find what those keywords and phrases are (make sure they will be attracting the right customers) and then fit them into the content you have on your site appropriately. In addition to adding them in the content on the site, you would add them to the page name, page title, and meta name. Also, bid on the keywords and phrases so your site will show up at the top of search results (if you aren’t already the organic first result which you should aim to be by using these keywords and phrases in your content.

After you’ve beefed up your keywords and have a PPC plan running that you update every 6 months, focus on building a social media presence.

Social Media Marketing

Depending on the type of products or services you provide you can choose the social media channels that fit best. For instance, if you’re B2B then LinkedIn and Twitter might be best while Facebook and Pinterest should be saved for later. Start a posting schedule and make sure you are posting the appropriate amount for each site. For instance, Twitter you should be posting a minimum of two times a day while Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Quora, and Reddit, you should post at least once a week (but preferably one a day).

For the content you post, you should have a good balance between your own work and promoting other’s work. If you only post your own work then it looks like you are egotistical but if you post only other people’s work then it looks like you have nothing to contribute. Find a solid balance of what clicks for your audience.

You can use Google Analytics to help you decide which sites are driving the most traffic to your website and then focus on posting to those sites most.

Once you have an organic following built on your social media channels you can start using the advertising tools on those sites to gain more followers. Wait until you have a following though so you can use the tools that find people like those who are already following you.

Being honest, this in and of itself is a lot of work but is manageable. Once you have your website set, your PPC running and are posting to your blog and to social media you will have your hands full, but your digital marketing is still not complete.

Content Marketing

At this point you should start looking to set up a stronger content marketing plan that includes posting more frequently to your blog, asking guests to post to your blog, and asking to guest post to other people’s blogs. This is called linking. By having more sites with similar topics/focuses link to your site, Google views you as an authority and ranks your site higher.

Email Marketing

After adding more content to your site, start creating monthly email newsletters that promote products and content that you think your customers/prospects will like. Ease into this and if you find your customers respond well to emails look into a more complex and automated email marketing program to get the most traffic from your email efforts customized to each prospect journey.

Business Partnerships

Finally, but in no way least important, look for companies around your community who you can partner with. For instance, my gym offers a discount to a massage spa which is perfect cause you are sore after a week of their workouts. Look for relationships like and run joint ad campaigns online and on social media allowing you to tap into their market and them to tap into yours. The benefit is you don’t have to do as much work to bring new people to your shop because they’ve already done one of the hardest parts, which is finding a person who fits your market.

All of those are the basics for your digital marketing strategy or course each digital marketing strategy could have its own article so it’s most definitely not an easy task but this should give you the foundation to start on your digital marketing strategy. If you find you need help contact us at Collab.ink and we will give you a free consultation to assess your needs.

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