Even with the widespread growth of ecommerce, in-store purchases still account for a large share of spending. According to research, Americans still spend more than 60% of their shopping budget in-store.
Despite the convenience of online shopping, in-store shoppers may be hesitant. Reasons range from high shipping costs, complex return processes, uncertainty about the product, or a personal preference for in-store purchases instead. Local stores can explore hyperlocal marketing to convert as many of these customers as possible.
Besides, research shows that many of these customers are already searching for your local store online. Recently, Statista published survey results from a study on the frequency of online searches for local businesses.
- 21% of the respondents surveyed said they searched for a local business daily
- 35% researched multiple times every week.
Usually, local searches have high purchase intent, and most prospects end up visiting the store. Hyperlocal marketing can be instrumental in creating awareness and reaching out to local customers who are probably searching for your business.
In this guide, we’ll cover:
- What is Hyperlocal Marketing?
- Why Is Hyperlocal Marketing Important?
- Hyperlocal Marketing Tactics
- Hyperlocal Marketing Examples
What is Hyperlocal Marketing?
Hyperlocal marketing is a strategy that focuses on reaching prospective customers within a particular geographic area. As a result, you gain more visibility when people perform local searches for the services or products you offer. Generally, a well-executed hyperlocal marketing strategy increases your visibility in local search and improves your overall online presence.
For instance, if you search for a particular service or product on Google, you get suggestions of the nearest relevant businesses or service providers at the top of the results. Say you’re in a new city and want to find the nearest restaurants. All you need to do is enter the search query. For example, if you search “best restaurants or best restaurants near me”, you get recommendations for the top restaurants in that area.
This is not by coincidence. It means businesses have optimized their online presence for local search using some of the hyperlocal marketing strategies we’ll discuss below.
Note that hyperlocal marketing is not limited to search engines. You could also optimize your social channels to increase your discoverability by people looking for the services or products you offer. Alternatively, you could serve ads to people within your location using geotargeting.
Why Is Hyperlocal Marketing Important?
Hyperlocal marketing is highly beneficial (especially when compared to other forms of marketing) for various reasons. The most notable are:
Generally, traditional marketing methods acquire leads and then nurture them over a period of months to convert to sales. Depending on how effective your marketing strategies are, they may or may not convert.
On the other hand, hyperlocal marketing reaches prospects with high purchase intent, making it easier to convert them. This is because a customer searching for a local business is usually at the final stages of buying. As we mentioned earlier, most of these customers visit the store within the same day or a few days of searching.
Cost-Effectiveness and High ROI
Since hyperlocal marketing involves targeting a small geographical location, it doesn’t require a huge ad spend. This is because you only target prospects within your locality, which eliminates wasting the ad budget on people who might not be in a position to visit your business.
Because hyperlocal marketing targets prospects with high purchase intent, you increase the possibility of conversion. Consequently, netting hot leads translates to a higher return on investment (ROI) compared to other marketing methods.
To calculate your marketing ROI for your local campaigns, you can look at the number of leads you attracted compared to the number of conversions. This is also known as the lead-to-customer or lead conversion rate. For instance, if 100 people clicked on your ad and 35 of those made an in-store purchase, that would be a 35% lead conversion rate.
Hyperlocal Marketing Tactics
As mentioned, there are various hyperlocal marketing strategies you could employ. You might focus on getting discovered by those searching for your business or increasing brand awareness by geotargeting prospects within your location. From local SEO optimization to location-based marketing, there’s a bagful of strategies to explore. Let’s look at some of the most popular that you could try right away.
Google My Business Listing
Google My Business (GMB) is a Google tool that helps you manage your presence across Google products.
Ideally, the listing allows you to determine how your business appears on Google Search, Google Maps, and more, so you can increase your discoverability. At Goodway, we don’t manage GMB listings, but they help local businesses build a strong foundation for search marketing.
Getting a GMB profile is free and is usually the first step toward optimizing your business for local search. Google will look at three main components when showing your GMB listing in search:
- Relevance – How well does your Google My Business listing match with local search queries?
- Distance – How far away is your location from the person that is searching?
- Prominence – How much brand awareness does your business have? (This depends on many factors like–years in business, number of reviews, star rating, and share of search.)
In addition to managing your information and boosting your local ranking, a GMB profile provides a platform for you to interact with your customers, e.g., through reviews. But most importantly, it helps you get discovered by new customers. In other words, creating and optimizing your GMB presents a ripe opportunity for attracting high-quality leads.
How Do You Optimize Google My Business Profile?
Once you choose to create a GMB profile for your business, you need to optimize it. Otherwise, if unoptimized, it could get ignored in favor of other complete profiles.
Customers are 2.7 times more likely to view a business as reputable if that business has a complete Google Search and Maps profile. Let’s look at the step to follow to optimize your listing.
- Complete the profile – According to Google, a complete profile makes you look reputable, and customers are 70% likely to visit your business.
- Verify your location – Verified locations are more likely to show up in local search results.
- Provide accurate hours – You should keep your business hours updated, including a notice for any holidays and special events. Providing accurate information gives customers confidence the business will be open when they plan to visit.
- Manage reviews – Reviews are one of the resources customers rely on when making purchase decisions. Always reach out to your customers (especially the most loyal ones) and request them to leave a review on your profile. Then ensure you respond to the reviews, including the negative ones, as this shows your brand values customers.
- Add photos – Google says adding images to your GMB increases your chances of receiving direction requests and website clicks. These could be your logo, cover photo, plus business photos (products and event photos).
Local Content Marketing
Creating local content is another highly effective hyperlocal marketing strategy. Ideally, local content allows you to rank for local related search terms. There are many ways of generating localized content, including creating blog posts about local events and festivals or participating in local activities and posting the photos with appropriate captions and hashtags.
You could also write posts around relevant popular search phrases. For instance, a tour company in New York could write a post about the top ten tourist attractions in New York City.
On the same note, if they have an office in Buffalo, they could optimize it for local search with a post like six best B&B in Buffalo City and so forth.
Also, you should create city-specific landing pages to give individual branches a chance to attract local traffic. That is, if you have offices in New York City, Buffalo, Rochester, etc., having a landing page for each location raises the chances of appearing in local search, which would not be likely with only the main company landing page.
PPC Ads and Location-Targeting
Alternatively, you could use PPC ads and location-targeting. Thanks to technology, you can easily locate prospects within your area and send them relevant ads inviting them to your business. This relies on IP addresses, Wi-Fi, GPS, or Bluetooth technology.
Platforms such as Google or Facebook allow you to target prospects based on triggers such as their search queries, places they have visited recently, and more. You could then deliver the ads through text messages, email alerts, paid search ads, and app notifications.
For instance, with a location targeting solution, you can select the area, e.g., city, within which you want to show ads. Then when someone enters the mapped geographical location, the ads get triggered.
Generally, you can run hyperlocal marketing with Google ads, social ads, or even on traditional channels such as magazines and newspapers. Of course, Google ads and PPC can be much more complex than this, so you may want to consult a PPC expert to set up campaign targeting.
Near Me Searches
There has been a massive growth of near me searches over the years. With a significant share of searches on Google looking for local businesses, it’s no surprise near me queries are so popular.
With most searches occurring on GPS-enabled smartphones, some people drop the qualifier ‘near me’ in their searches, though it doesn’t change the search intent. This is because they assume Google will detect their location and display the most relevant and closest businesses.
For instance, if someone wants to find a coffee shop near them, they are likely to search for a coffee shop without necessarily adding near me, though they expect Google to display the closest coffee shop based on their location. Google has also reported an increase in the variant of near me phrases plus more specific near me searches.
In other words, “near me” searches are the core of local search, no matter what phrases people use to find the business. This is the case for almost every brick-and-mortar business, with food, entertainment, and banking taking the lead.
Hyperlocal Marketing Examples
There are businesses that have nailed hyperlocal marketing – both small businesses and large enterprises. A few examples include:
McDonald’s Local Menus
Though famous for chicken nuggets, cheeseburgers, and BigMacs, the global restaurant chain has localized menus across different parts of the world. For instance, you could get McKroket in the Netherlands, Patatas Deluxe in Spain, and a Dosa Masala Burger in India.
McDonald’s is intentional about which products it offers in each market. For instance, there is a vegetarian-only McDonald’s in Amritsar, a city in India that is home to the Golden Temple. Due to religious beliefs, many that visit this area do not eat meat, so McDonald’s knew that they needed to adjust their menu for the local area.
Coca-Cola’s ‘Share a Coke’
Beginning in Australia, Coca-Cola’s ‘Share a Coke’ campaign personalized customer experiences by replacing the regular coke wrappers with ones that included names. They used hyperlocal marketing by researching popular names in different regions. Then, included those names on bottles and cans along with a ‘Share a Coke’ phrase.
This led to customers sharing photos with Coca-Cola bottles and cans that featured their names. That summer in Australia, Coke sold more than 250 million named bottles and cans. To put that in perspective, the population of Australia at the time was just under 23 million.
Stumptown Coffee Roasters
This coffee bar chain continues to wow customers through creative marketing. When you search for a coffee shop while in New York City, it pops among the top list. That’s pretty impressive for such a general query. When you visit Stumptown’s Google My Business listing for the Ace Hotel location, it has over 1,300 reviews.
In addition, they have done a fair job describing their service (dine-in and takeaway, no delivery), then provided sufficient address and contact information. We also like how they have detailed their business hours. Overall, the profile has adequate information to guide a prospect to the business.
Setting Up Hyperlocal Marketing for Your Business
Hyperlocal marketing presents brick-and-mortar businesses with an opportunity to attract customers with high purchase intent at little to no cost. With a strategy as simple as optimizing your Google My Business profile, you can boost your ranking, enhance your reputation, and increase your chances of earning visits from profile viewers seeking businesses like yours.
If you have a challenge setting up your hyperlocal marketing, including optimizing your GMB, creating local content, or staging PPC ad campaigns, we can help. Contact us to set up a consultation and learn how we can build and implement hyperlocal marketing for your business.