We’ve all loaded up our search engine and made an inquiry looking for a business, whether it’s the location, contact information, hours of operation or if we’re just looking for something to do locally.
In fact, Google processes around 40,000 searches per second on any given day, which translates to over 3.5 billion searches per day and 1.2 trillion searches per year.
Of those searches, 46% are specifically looking for local information.
But how is the directory specifically beneficial to our alumni or business owners? Are there tangible benefits to your business?
What are the Benefits of an Online Business Directory?
Simply put, an online business directory is a comprehensive registry where potential customers, fellow business owners and professionals come to discover and contact organizations appealing to them.
So how do they help you?
1. Enhances Your Online Presence
In today’s world, you need to have a relatable, easily identifiable presence online. Putting your information on our directory associates your business with the school, which ultimately will help your business’s authority (see the section below for more information on authority).
Once you put your business on a directory, you’re more likely to appear on other directories, according to BirdsEye. The more directories you’re on, the greater chance you have of reaching potential customers.
2. Improves Visibility Locally
Putting your information in an online business directory greatly increases your online presence, but it also helps local customers find you.
Remember when we told you 46% of Google searches are specifically looking for local businesses at the beginning of this article? Well, 28% of those local searches result in a purchase, which is around 4.5 million people worldwide.
According to WebFX, the number of people using the “near me” search term drastically increased in the past couple of years, growing over 500%.
As clearly outlined above, people are searching for local businesses and in order to meet your potential customers where they are, we recommend registering your business with our new directory.
3. Improves Your Discoverability
There are numerous studies exploring the effectiveness of online searches and how it relates to your discoverability.
With regard to the 28% stat above, it proves the effectiveness of online business directories as a marketing tool.
Utilizing the registry as a tool will also improve your chances of ranking for broader terms, such as “Best restaurants in Tanzania” or “Best place in Dar es Salaam to get my hair cut”.
4. Boost SEO with an Authoritative Backlink
Online business directories give your website and business extra validation from search engines. And through the submission of your business’s information to the online business directory, there’s no need to go out and seek a link swap from other organizations, a traditional strategy to gain authority from search engines.
This backlink, coming from a site with authority and respect from search engines, will better the chances of your site receiving the label: relevant and useful. If you list your information on our business directory, you will benefit from our established SEO and better your chances of appearing on the first page.
5. Create Brand Awareness
The ultimate goal of businesses is, yes, to make money, but it’s also about ensuring people recognize you as a brand.
Creating brand awareness makes people trust you and the more they trust you, the more likely they are to purchase your goods or services and become a repeat customer.
The benefits of a business directory include ensuring potential customers see your information pops up when they use a search engine, which inherently leads to brand awareness.
To support local businesses and the entrepreneurial endeavors of our alumni, and create a sense of community, we are developing an IST business directory. Now that you see what the benefits are for your business, we invite you to join today!