In the first part of this blog series, we highlighted the latest trends in consumer online search behavior and what they mean for your salon or spa.
In part 2, we discuss how managing your Online Presence will attract new clients to your business and how Meevo 2 can help you accomplish this critical task.
As we mentioned at the end of part 1, one of the best ways to attract new customers is to be discoverable in online search. Easier said than done, right? Well, that depends. Let’s see why!
First, here’s Google’s mission statement:
Your business has an online presence, whether you know it or not. What is “online presence,” and why is it important?
We ask questions like, “salon near me open now” or “where’s the best place to get a mani-pedi.” When we do that, search engines or chat-bots, like Alexa, answer us based on the information they know about your business – your name, address, hours, services, website, and your reviews – not just on Google, but across the web. So, how can you see what your online presence looks like today?
Our Business Listings Scan tool lets you easily input your business information and instantly see how your most critical location data appears on Google, Yelp, Facebook, and dozens of more maps, search engines, apps, and directories.
Taking control of your online presence to ensure it’s consistent and accurate is step 1 in becoming more discoverable in search!
Here’s an example of why ensuring your business information and data is consistent across the digital landscape is so important:
Imagine you’re visiting New York City and you want to find great pizza, but you’re not sure where to go. You decide to ask your friends for their recommendations on where to find amazing pizza. Tom says ABC Pizza on 1st Street. Sally agrees with Tom, but she thinks it’s on 2nd Street. Chad says the name of the place is actually AB Pizza, and it’s located on the corner of 1st and 2nd streets.
With all these mixed answers about the location of the pizza place and the name, you’re beginning to waiver on whether you should go to ABC Pizza and may decide it’s easier to visit another pizza place instead.
Search engines, such as Google, work much the same way, believe it or not! If a business has inconsistent or missing information online, these discrepancies cause search engines to think a business may not be trustworthy, ultimately hurting its search ranking results.
Going back to the example, if all your friends gave you the exact same answers about the pizza place, your confidence or trust in that business will likely increase. Again, a search engine works much the same way.
Now that you know having consistent information online helps your salon or spa be more trustworthy to consumers and search engines alike, how do you ensure you take full advantage of this opportunity to attract new customers?
70% of search queries contain 3+ words. And search queries that contain 3 or more words convert (click to your website, call your business, book an appointment) at 2.5x that of a singular keyword search. So, your prospective customers are starting their journey online with a question. More often than not, they’re looking for more than just where you are located and your business hours. And if you don’t provide them an answer, another salon or spa nearby will.
You may be thinking to yourself, “how do I answer questions online and is it really that important?” Let’s take a look at another scenario: you’re a parent with 3 kids and one of them accidentally tied their hair in a knot. Since you need immediate information, you turn to your closet device to seek a solution. Google actually refers to these as micro-moments, which you can learn more about here.
Now, to help your screaming 5-year-old, you need a salon – a good salon – that’s nearby, open now, and accepts online appointment reservations.
While we may think of this as just a simple search query, it’s much more than that. There are components of this question that a search engine or a voice assistant must understand to return businesses that are relevant to what the parent needs at this moment.
When “best” is included in a search query, only businesses with a 4+ star rating appear. (In our next post, we’ll dive more into how managing your online reputation helps you not only attract customers but also engage with them to improve repeat client retention.)
Back to this example, “salon” is your primary category, “near me” and “open now” relate to having accurate location information and hours of operation, and when a parent needs a salon that “accepts online appointments,” having more details about your salon online helps you stand out from the competition.
In fact, when a salon or spa’s online presence is complete with hours, reviews, photos, and relevant information like payment methods accepted and available services, they are 197% more likely to be viewed as a place a consumer can depend on (Google/Ipsos Media study), which means clients are much more likely to choose this business.
To wrap up part 2 of this series, let’s revisit Google’s mission statement, which is “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.” Well, the Meevo Marketing suite is built the same way. Easily control your salon or spa and all the aspects that make it unique everywhere consumers are searching online – anytime, anywhere, and all in one place.
In part 3, we will dive into the platform to showcase how you can drive more engagement and delight your customers to attract more guests and improve client retention!