The world is changing. The way in which we receive information is far greater now than ever before. Apart from television, printed media, radio and other visual media, probably the most important form of media in our lives is the internet. It truly has revolutionized the way we think, the way we use technology and the way we gain information. Big business has seen this for years, but only in the past few years have small business started taking control of the way they are presented on the internet. Small business internet marketing is becoming the number one way of being recognized and found.
Consider twenty years ago, how was a plumber found by a customer? Perhaps by word of mouth, but generally, the first place people searched was in the Yellow Pages. Yellow Pages was the Google of the pre internet revolution. Now Yellow Pages is probably only used by 30% of searchers. The other 70% belongs to internet search engines and two thirds of those by Google.
Google is effectively the new Yellow Pages.
Thus, it is vital that small businesses need to have some form of web presence. And not only that, it is essential that they are easily found by searchers.
This is where internet marketers come into their own. For years, most marketers have tried their hands at affiliate marketing, but that industry is fast becoming even more competitive and harder to achieve good results. Rather than waste their talents and their knowledge, many affiliate marketers are coming across and marketing for small local businesses. A need is being met by experienced hardened marketers who have competed across the globe.
Now, they simply have to compete locally and this is far, far easier. In fact a local business should easily be able to be ranked on the first page of Google for its industry name along with the town it is situated in. And this is generally what customers are going to be typing in to find them.
So a search in Google for a plumber in say Atlantic City is simply going to be "Atlantic City plumber". It shouldn't therefore be hard to rank high for that keyword. Type in "plumber" without the location, and the competition is sky high.
However, a small business doesn't even necessarily need to have a website. With Google places, an account and listing can be grabbed free of charge and that business can advertise there. No cost, no website to maintain, and effectively that listing can be its web page as there are things that can be added and included on the profile.
Depending on the business type, it is more advantageous to have a web site in order to better describe services and products and to have a virtual presence that people can view and gain an idea of how professional the business is. It also allows a greater chance of a clickthrough as often the business will be shown in both the Google Places section of the result page and also the organic search as well. The more presence, the greater chance of click through and therefore the greater chance of business.
To conclude, with the way technology is improving and the way people are using technology, it is essential for any small business to have some form of internet marketing.