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How to Dominate Sales in Your Area with Hyperlocal Marketing

  • Conversion Rate Optimization

You’re probably already familiar with local marketing. For years, brands have been zeroing in on their geographical area, particularly with search, in hopes of reaching local consumers within their region or city.

Even though digital marketing allows brands to advertise to consumers all around the world, sometimes it’s simply more effective to reach consumers nearby.

But a technique that takes local marketing to a whole new level and zeroes in on an even narrower segment of the population is hyperlocal marketing.

This is where you target a specific city or even neighborhoods within a city.

Hyperlocal marketing is laser-focused and designed to reach prospects while they’re right near your business.

In this post, I’ll explain the basics of hyperlocal marketing and why it’s effective. I’ll also discuss some specific techniques you can use to dominate sales in your area using hyperlocal marketing.

Here we go.

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A Brief Overview of Hyperlocal Marketing

Simply put, hyperlocal marketing is the practice of targeting customers who are based in your immediate area.

Unlike traditional local marketing that goes after a fairly broad region or city, hyperlocal marketing aims at reaching prospects in a highly specific, extremely narrow geographical area.

Here’s a quick example.

Say you own a luxury fashion boutique in Portland, Oregon. With traditional local marketing, you would likely be trying to reach prospects in the entire Portland area and potentially neighboring cities like Beaverton to the west and Gresham to the east.

But with hyperlocal marketing, you would be targeting prospects in a far more geographically restricted area—say the area between the Pearl District to the north and downtown Portland to the South.

As you can see, it’s a much smaller radius.

The Correlation Between Hyperlocal Marketing and Mobile

So what’s the big deal about hyperlocal marketing?

Why would you want to focus on such a small area and potentially miss out on nearby prospects that aren’t within your immediate area?

It boils down to one main thing—mobile.

The majority of people now access the Internet on mobile devices. Statista places it at 63.4 percent penetration as of 2019, and that number will likely continue to grow in the future.

With nearly two out of every three people performing searches on a mobile device, it only makes sense that a huge amount of those searches are hyperlocal.

This is evident by the fact that 82 percent of smartphone shoppers performed “near me” searches in 2018, with the most commonly searched categories being:

  • Food (84 percent)
  • Entertainment (56 percent)
  • Banking (50 percent)
  • Apparel (41 percent)
  • Personal care (38 percent)

As for retail-specific lookups, they were as follows:

  • Product research (63 percent)
  • Price comparisons (62 percent)
  • Search for coupons/deals (56 percent)
  • Store hours (54 percent)
  • Store locations (52 percent)

People performing “near me” searches are looking for businesses right in their immediate area—often within walking distance.

What’s perhaps even more interesting is Think With Google explains, in 2017, “Search volume for local places without the qualifier ‘near me’ has actually outgrown comparable searches that do include ‘near me.’”

This suggests that many users now expect Google to identify their current location and take it into account when displaying search results.

The bottom line is that a growing number of shoppers want and expect search results from businesses that are within an extremely close proximity.

Hyperlocal marketing is a strategy that’s designed to reach those consumers and make them aware of relevant brands they may be interested in that are located close by.

Now that we have a basic understanding of what hyperlocal marketing is and why it’s beneficial, here are some of the top strategies for using it to generate qualified leads.

Optimize Your Google My Business Listing

The first place I recommend starting is with your Google My Business listing.

With Google having 92.42 percent of the worldwide search engine market share as of April 2019, it’s the number one place shoppers will turn to when looking for businesses in their area.

Creating a comprehensive listing that’s fully optimized gives you a considerable advantage over other local competitors who have skimped in this department.

It’s also key for getting your business featured in Google’s Local Pack, putting you front and center.

Check out, for instance, some of the top luxury fashion stores in Portland that pop up in the Local Pack when I search for “luxury fashion portland oregon.”

Click on any one of these stores, and you’ll see that they’ve spent time thoroughly filling out their listing and including critical information like:

  • Shop information
  • Address
  • Hours
  • Phone number
  • High-quality images
  • Links to social media profiles

Here’s some of the information that’s listed by designer apparel company Mario’s.

You’ll also want to add relevant keywords (e.g. “Portland” and “Downtown Portland”) wherever possible.

Scroll down just a bit more, and you’ll notice their review summary, which brings me to my next point.

Get Customer Reviews (And Plenty of Them)

Online reviews are huge these days.

“Research shows that 91 percent of people regularly or occasionally read online reviews, and 84 percent trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation.”

One of the first things many people look at when deciding whether or not they want to check out a local business is customer reviews.

I know I do.

I can’t count how many times I’ve selected one business over another simply based on the strength of their reviews.

So getting a good quantity of positive reviews from satisfied customers is massively helpful for increasing both leads and conversions.

Just check out some of the great reviews Mario’s has.

But it goes deeper than that.

Review signals like review quantity, review velocity, review diversity, etc. account for 15.44 percent of how Google decides to display results in its Local Packs, according to Moz.

If you’ve got a bunch of great reviews like Mario’s does, you should be well positioned to flourish with hyperlocal marketing.

Now getting Google reviews is a topic in and of itself that I don’t have time to fully discuss here.

But let me 15.44 percent I think is helpful from the digital marketing company, Blue Corona.

It lists 10 effective ways to get more reviews and is jam-packed with solid information.

Optimize Your Site for Hyperlocal Customers

In addition to improving your Google My Business profile, there are a couple of things you’ll want to do with your website to reel in more local shoppers.

One is to include some robust contact information, which is something Mario’s also does well.

They have multiple shops throughout Oregon and Washington state but feature detailed contact information about their Portland location on their site.

They include their address, phone number, email, hours, as well as provide a link to get directions and view events in the Portland area.

Also, they wisely include “Portland” three times in the contact area, which no doubt helps search engines understand where Mario’s is located.

Besides that, they feature the addresses of their three stores in the footer section of their site as well.

Another technique is to carefully incorporate location-based keywords into your website’s copy.

Here’s how Mario’s does that on their “About Us” page.

And besides just using the city name, you can include anything else that relates to your city.

For instance, a business in Portland might mention Voodoo Doughnut, the Portland Trail Blazers, the city of roses, etc.

So get creative with your website copy and include any keywords that will help search engines figure out your precise geographical location.

Editor’s Note

One way to optimize your website for local customers is to create a popup campaign that targets visitors from a specific geo-location. Here’s an example of a Sleeknote campaign I made:

Missourian Geo-Targeting Example

 

Sam Thomas Davies
Head of Content

Create High-End Local Content

Content marketing is still red hot in 2019 and isn’t likely to go out of style any time soon. And this is largely due to its awesome ROI.

In fact, “Content marketing generates over three times as many leads as outbound marketing and costs 62 percent less.”

A great way to round off your organic hyperlocal marketing initiatives is by devoting time and energy toward creating high-end local content.

Sometimes known as geo-marketing, this involves developing quality content that’s specifically tailored for your local audience.

This kills two birds with one stone because it gives you the opportunity to provide local customers with valuable information they’re interested in, while at the same time naturally incorporating hyperlocal keywords into your content to appease search engines.

For example, Mario’s might create a blog post featuring a list of the top upcoming fashion events coming to Portland over the next few months.

Or they could make a video on how to look great in rainy weather—something that would be useful considering Portland receives over 36 inches of rainfall each year.

It’s all about being creative and coming up with interesting ways to create content around a hyperlocal audience.

Use a Tight Radius for Paid Ads

Up to this point, I’ve strictly covered the organic search side of hyperlocal marketing.

But what about paid advertising on Google, Facebook, Instagram, and so on?

You’ll want to run your campaigns so that ads are only shown to people in a very small radius.

So if you were using Google Ads, you would want to enter your business’s address and use a target radius of one mile, which is the lowest.

Any ads you create would only be shown to shoppers in and around the downtown Portland area like this.

That would be far more preferable than using a larger radius—say 10 miles—which would look like this and extend into neighboring cities.

By using just a one-mile radius, you would be well positioned to have your ads seen by potential customers who are right in your area within just a few minutes of your store.

Target Hyperlocal Keywords

It should go without saying, but you’ll definitely want to use hyperlocal keywords in your paid campaigns as well.

Focusing on geographical keywords in your immediate area will help get your ads seen by a select local audience located right near your store.

Going after specific neighborhoods is an effective way to do this.

For instance, Mario’s might use “Pearl District,” “Nob Hill,” “Goose Hollow” and “Downtown Portland”—all neighborhoods that are close by.

Include Negative Keywords

Equally as important as selecting the right geographical keywords, is knowing which ones to avoid.

These would be classified as negative keywords, which you can use to avoid having your ads seen by prospects outside of the specific area you’re targeting.

Let’s use an example to show you how this works.

Say that Mario’s was only looking to reach shoppers within a one-mile radius of their store like I showed you earlier.

Anything outside of that blue circle they don’t want to target because it would no longer be hyperlocal marketing. It would simply be local marketing.

So they may use negative geographic neighborhood keywords like “Northwest District,” “Irvington,” “Sullivan’s Gulch,” “Kerns,” “South Portland,” and so on.

They may also want to include nearby cities like Hillsboro, Beaverton, Milwaukie, and Gresham as well.

They would just plug those keywords into the “Negative Keywords” list on Google Ads or whatever platform they happen to be using like this.

That way they would have much more control over the visibility of their ads and avoid wasting money on non-hyperlocal leads.

Free Downloadable Bonus

Want More Conversion Rate Optimization Strategies?

Get access to our free CRO toolkit and skyrocket your organic traffic, on-page conversion rate and more (includes resources not found in the blog post).

Conclusion

A huge part of effective marketing is simply connecting with the right demographic. You need to get in front of the targeted leads who are most interested in your products or services and likely to buy.

And in many cases, that’s the prospects that are located right in your immediate area.

Hyperlocal marketing takes similar concepts as traditional local marketing and amplifies them so you don’t just reach shoppers within your region or city, but in nearby neighborhoods or even people right down the block.

The end result is an influx of ultra qualified leads for increased conversions and revenue.

Do you expect search engines to take your location into account when you’re searching for something? Leave a comment below.

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