“Doing business without advertising is like winking at a girl in the dark. You know what you are doing but nobody else does.” Anonymous
Once you have set up your home based small business you need to promote it through advertising. Advertising your small business will ensure consumer, customers and general public are aware of it.
Paid advertising is expensive but the good thing is you can get free advertising from many places across the internet.
Best Places Where You Can Advertise Your business For Free
1. Google+ Local (Formerly Google Places)
Google places was a business listing service that was owned by Google. It was tailored to provide searchers with information on local businesses. Business provided information like, address, telephone and contact person. The more information your business provided on its Google Places page, the more likely the business ranked high in local searches.
Google places is now integrated with Google plus. A business owner will need to set up a Google plus account and set a page for his business.
The main advantage is Google+ Local pages are indexed by Google. That means, when people search for “Jewellery Shop in New York”, your Google+ Local page will appear on search results.
2. Attract more customers to your business through Facebook Fan Pages
Facebook Fan pages for businesses are free to create. You only pay if you want to promote your page across Facebook platform. By creating a Facebook fan page for your small business you heighten your exposure within the social network. Your page will be listed on Facebook search results when people search for information related to your page.
People who find you on Facebook.com will probably be interested enough in your product or service to click on a link that will take them directly to your website.
3. Create A Video Channel on Youtube
YouTube.com is now the second largest search engine after Google. Millions of people use Youtube to find out how products work.
Create short instructional videos on what you do or how you help customers. Make your business website URL visible inside the videos. Have it on the background and refer to it in the audio. Make sure to end the video by urging the viewer to visit your business website.
Yelp.com is the leading small business directory in the US. Yelp.com has more than 71 million monthly visitors.
Listing your business contact details is free on Yelp. Businesses may advertise with Yelp for preferred search result placement and extra listing features.
You can’t talk of free advertising without mentioning craiglist.com. It allows anyone to post a free advertisement. It has over 50 million unique monthly visitors in the United States alone.
TripAdvisor.com is a travel website that assists customers in gathering travel information, posting reviews and opinions of travel-related content and engaging in interactive travel forums. It is visited by 50 million visitors each month and has over 20 million registered members.
It is the perfect listing for entrepreneurs operating a hotel and restaurant. Being listed is free of charge. If your business is already listed you can log in to confirm your business and add images and important contact details.
Dmoz.org or open directory project is the largest website directory in the world. They claim to list all websites in the world. At the beginning it was easy to get listed but now it is a bit hard. If you believe your business website is the best then it is worth trying to getting listed with them.
Gumtree.com is provider of free online classified. Classified ads are either free or paid for depending on the product category and the geographical market. Sellers may promote their listing through featured placements on the homepage or under product categories.
Gumtree covers 60 cities across 6 countries – the UK, Ireland, Poland, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
Another innovative trick of getting free advertising for your small business is participating in forum discussions related to your niche. All most all forums in the internet allow members to place a web link pointing to personal websites. Every time you leave a comment in the forums, readers will see a link pointing to your site. If they link your advice, they will be compelled to visit your business website.
10. Search engine listings
This is the mother of all places where you can advertise your business for free. Search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing are the largest providers of free visitors to 90% of business websites out there. If you want people to find your small business website when they do a search on Google, you have to make sure your website is search engine friendly.