Optimize Your Small Businesses and Get Local SEO Results

Local search engine optimization (SEO) can be far more beneficial to small business owners than global SEO. Small businesses tend to thrive more on local following and patronage than anything else so ensuring that a small business is easily located and appropriately marketed to its surrounding areas is important. Here are some important steps for a small business to take online to ensure it succeeds in the local market:

Step 1: First step is to list your small business with Google Places, Yahoo! Local, and Bing Local. Training videos, tools, and tips are also offered by these search engines here to assist in making the best use of a listing. Some great tools these search engines offer include maps, driving directions, click tracking, and impression tracking.

Step 2: Assigning categories to a business listing is critical after the business has been registered. Also, editing the listing to include as much information as possible (hours, payment types taken, email address, web address, videos, photo’s, and even coupons) is recommended. Viewers love to be able to see all pertinent information in one place.

Step 3: Verifying the business listing is an important step to follow after listing the business. Search engines like Google will pull information pertaining to a business (address, phone, fax, etc.) from business aggregators, and it isn’t always correct. This is why it’s important to verify the information listed under a business name and correct it if needed. Making sure the address is listed in the same format is also important here, i.e. 123 Main Street should not also be listed as 123 Main St.

Step 4: Websites like Yelp and Merchant Circle have been created so consumers can see other consumer’s ratings and learn about their experiences with companies. It is important to ensure a small business is listed on websites like these in order to maximize exposure and drive traffic. Small businesses should encourage their customers to go online and rate and review them.

Step 5: The Better Business Bureau (BBB) history and rating assigned to a small business can be a key deciding factor in someone doing business with that company or not. Small businesses should be sure to register with the BBB and continuously supply great service and/or product to achieve the coveted A+ rating and maintain it.

Bonus Tip: When dealing with owning a local business that caters mostly to local consumers, it is a good idea to try and incorporate the business location in with the business name when choosing the website URL. This can greatly improve the speed and effectiveness of a business’ rankings within the search engines because the business will come up when the location is typed in (city, state, neighborhood, area) and also when the business name is typed in. For instance, for a business located in San Jose called ‘Noodle Surprise’ it is better to choose the URL ‘SanJoseNoodleSurprise.Com’ than just ‘NoodleSurprise.Com’.

Non-Emergency Medical Transportation Business Opportunities – Markets for an Ambulette Service

When it comes to starting a non-emergency medical transportation business or ambulette service you need to understand the market. Once you get a better understanding of the market you can then decide if you want to target a particular sector or if you want to provide a more general service.

The market is basically comprised of those who require assisted transportation from one place to another, on a one off, occasional or regular basis. It includes those who are not mobile enough to walk, drive or get in and out of public transport independently. The market does not include those who require emergency medical care and the speed and trained paramedics onboard a regular ambulance.

Let’s take a closer look at some of the markets that you may consider targeting as you set up and develop your non-emergency medical transportation business (NEMT business). You can then evaluate the potential that each of these opportunities has in your area and decide on which ones you want to go after.

Private Paying Clients

Some businesses in this industry target private paying clients. This kind of client usually pays full price and you can benefit from regular business if you serve them well and take some time to build a relationship. Profit margins with this kind of customer are great. However, you will have to do some marketing to reach them at first until you build up a good reputation and start getting ‘word of mouth’ referrals.

Medicaid Opportunities

Another great market opportunity to target is Medicaid, a federal program that provides healthcare to those on low incomes, the elderly and disabled. Medicaid also provides for these individuals to receive free transportation to and from their medical appointments if necessary.

In some states Medicaid uses regional brokers who determine who is eligible and how they should be transported to and from their appointments. In other states you will have to seek approval from Medicaid directly. Rates will vary so you will have to do a little research in order to find out if it is worth transporting Medicaid clients in your area. However, such an opportunity usually means a good monthly volume of decent paying work as well as checks that come on time like clockwork.

Medical Institutions

Many transportation businesses get contracts directly with hospitals, medical centers, dialysis centers and various other medical institutions. Such relationships can provide you with one off clients who are being discharged from the emergency room or regular clients who have appointments for treatments as often as three times a week.

Retirement Communities and Nursing Homes

Another great market to tap into is retirement homes and assisted living communities. These people who are aged or disable often require transport for medical appointments. They will also often need transport for other purposes such as shopping, recreation or visiting family members.

Opportunities with Schools

Schools often require daily transportation services for disabled students. Such a contract could provide one of your vans with several hours of work every morning and afternoon transporting these children to and from school. They may also require specialized transportation for occasional school field trips.

Workers Compensation

Many NEMT businesses also provide transportation to those on workers compensation. People who have been injured at work often need transportation to and from medical clinics for checkups and treatments.

Contact workers compensation authorities in your state to find out how you can go about applying to provide medical transportation to recipients of workers compensation.

Local Health Authorities

Once you business is set up, licensed and in compliance with local regulations you can then submit your details to health authorities in your state. Health authorities often receive requests from individuals or organizations looking for non-emergency medical transportation. If your business is on the list of contacts that is given out in cases where such enquiries are received then you can pick up some easy business without much effort.

3 Ways To Improve Your Business And Make More Money Online

For any business the most important part of continued operations is turning a profit. In order to make money a business should always be changing and innovating in order to keep up with the changes in the market as well as continuing to make their business a better one. In order to raise revenues, a business should take into account a few factors that should be considered when trying to remain competitive in an increasingly tighter market. No matter what kind of marketing you do, you have to be competitive and providing the best of everything that you can. Here are some factors that are an important part of your online or physical business:

Planning and Change:

Without a plan, every business no matter how good will fail. Planning is considered important only upon creation of the business strategies, but everyone who wants to succeed in online business needs to plan ahead. Both success and failure should be planned for, and the planning should never cease during the operations of the company. The only thing that can be guaranteed in marketing and business is the fact that there are no absolutes, and businesses need to change to meet the needs of the changing demands of the populace. Any business that plans to turn a profit and make money will need to constantly be changing, and implanting these changes requires a plan for doing so. Businesses need to constantly be on the lookout for ways to improve, and should plan to integrate these changes into their long-term business plan if they truly want to make money and be successful. Look for the latest in trends, both online and offline, and see how you can meet that need.

Cost:

Every business needs to turn a profit in order to continue the operations, but there are many ways to handle costs. If you can keep the costs of your products low, then you can charge your customers less. Having a costly product sold at a high price is not the secret to success, but providing the best services at the best prices is. If you are looking to go into online business, there will be plenty of competition that will have even more competitive prices than your site. Physical retail is at an even larger disadvantage simply because they have a number of online competitors that can easily charge less than them. A business should always look for ways to cut costs, and should try to undercut their competition if possible. Lowering prices could result in an increase of sales.

Performance:

In order to be successful at marketing your product, you need to have confidence in your product’s performance. No company can sell a product that they aren’t sold on themselves, and in order to have a high volume of sales you need to ensure that the product that you are selling provides the best quality service. Your product should speak highly of you, and you should do the same for your product. You should also have a high standard of excellence in your company, and always promise less and deliver more.