Every small business owner has received spam mail offering the greatest SEO service for the lowest rates if you take advantage of their special offer today. Before you get sucked into dealing with some guy in his mom’s basement who is more likely to get your site penalized by Google than improve your ranking, check out these tips for marketing your own business online.

Rule the Local Listings

No, I’m not talking about the Yellow Pages. Everyone else throws that out just like you do. I mean local Internet listings like Google My Business and Yelp. Getting positive reviews on Google My Business may even boost your ranking in a local search. Google hasn’t specifically said this in any of their updates, but pay attention next time you search for a local business. It always seems that the ones with ratings are listed first. Plus, while Yelp may be at the center of some controversy, you can’t deny the fact that they get tens of millions of unique visitors per month.

Encourage Reviews

You can’t stop disgruntled customers from leaving bad reviews. Your best shot at a great online rating is to get your good clients to leave a review. While asking for positive reviews is discouraged by sites like Yelp, there’s nothing wrong with signage that reminds customers to leave a review. QR codes that go straight to the review site are also a great reminder.

Survive Mobilegeddon

The latest Google update weights mobile sites heavier than ever before, and that trend is only going to continue from here on out as mobile search continues to dominate the industry. You need a website, not just a Facebook page, and it has to be mobile-friendly.

Select a Social Platform

Don’t try to tackle every form of social media yourself. Find the one or two sites that are best suited to your business and use them successfully. Instagram is by far the fastest growing platform and is currently the strongest as far as customer engagement is concerned. Of course, your business has to lend itself to posting photos.

In Conclusion

Your business must have an online presence to survive in the modern business world. Just don’t go broke paying someone who doesn’t know what your company needs while there are so many other things you can be doing to get your brand out there. Marketing your own business online has never been easier, too.