Location Based Services Are Crucial to Your Business
|Mobile is Booming
2011 was the first year that time spent reading on Mobile devices beat print. What this means to your business is there are now additional ways you can target your customers. For example, Android, iOS, and Blackberry all feature some type of browser support with built-in ways to detect your location; and because most smart phones today have GPS, it makes location based services that much better.
|Here’s a Scenario
A hungry family is coming to your area and they’re not familiar with what’s good, so they pull out their trusted friend — the smartphone. This particular family has your “everyday” smart phone equipped with GPS and is able to quickly see the area’s restaurants. After doing some price comparisons and looking at the reviews they decide that your establishment is where they’d like to eat. And to think that all of this was possible because they had a mobile device. Outside of word of mouth, your best referrals may now stem from a simple web search.
|How do I get my business this type of exposure?
The first required step is to put your business online if you haven’t done so already. One of most effective ways to achieve this is to setup a website for your business. Next you’ll want to consider getting yourself listed on multiple search engines. Claiming your business on Google is crucial, and in time your business will begin showing up to the masses.
Don’t worry about the technical aspect of location tracking, because the mobile device and service(s) being used will take care of that. As a business, your only concern is to make sure you appear on the major apps, services, and search engines.
|A hand full of services/apps you want to be listed on
Everything below is a service that can be accessed on the web, or through an app on your phone. Most everything works with Android and iOS.
Zagat (focused around food of all types)
Facebook Pages (this works for all types of businesses)
Yelp (an all around good tool that’s similar to Google Places)
Foodspotting (this service is not as large as the others, but is still relevant in many areas)
Google Places (good for all types of businesses)
Bing Places Business Portal (good for all types of businesses)