If you have ever decided to take on the daunting task of a move for your business, you know how stressful it can be. There is a lot to take care of, but what many business owners forget is that it is really important you don’t compromise your online ranking in the process. You have to make sure all of your bases are covered when it comes to your online move.
Top Online Aspects to Consider When Moving Business Locations
There are so many aspects and platforms to consider from your website to social media and online advertisement. While every specific business differs, below lists some of the major platforms and considerations for seven of the main areas that you need to “move” online along with your new business location:
You will presumably keep the same website domain that you were using with your previous location. However, there are some other aspects of updating your website that you need to consider:
- Be sure you update your address (and phone number—if that is changing with your new location too) anywhere it appears on your website.
- Don’t forget to update any links that you may have for directions such as maps, embedded maps, written directions or PDFs with maps, etc.<
New Location Online
One of the most important aspects of moving is making sure that your new address and location is easily found through search. In order to make sure this happens you need to update the major locating (map style) sites as well as rating and review sites that you are on. Below offers some examples of sites you will need to update:
- Online Maps. Update your address with the major online mapping services. This includes: Google Places, Bing Places, Google Map Maker tool, Yahoo Local, MapQuest, Apple Maps, and the OpenStreetMap.
- Online Ratings and Review Sites. These are obviously critical your new location. Again, make sure your address and contact information for your new location is current. A few ratings and review sites include: Yelp, Angie’s List, InsiderPages and Citysearch.
- Online Directories. The best way to update online directories is to just do a search for your business name and look for any directories that may list your business. Some examples of where you may be listed include: Business.com, Hoovers, Whitespark Local Citation Finder, and Yext tool.
Okay, this is a big one! There are likely several social media platforms that your business is managing. For each of these platforms you are going to want to update specific information about your new location. Below offers some suggestions and why it is important by platform:
- Facebook. The check-in feature on Facebook is probably one of the most important reasons to update your new location information. Additionally, your physical address affects your visibility on Facebook among people who are located near you.
- If you include your address in your Twitter bio or on your banner photo you will want to update this. You may also need to change the information in your Location field.
- LinkedIn. Update your company page for those who may be considering employment with your company in the future.
- Google+. This may already be taken care of for you if your Google+ page is tied to Google Places (remember, you updated that when taking care of online location/maps), but always double check.
- Wikipedia. If your company has a Wikipedia page, be sure to update location information here. This is especially important because Wikipedia typically gets top search rankings.
- Social Check-ins. Some people still love to “check-in” at business’ physical location via social media. Consider any application that has this feature. Foursquare is a great example.
- Blog. Write a blog post announcing your relocation and provide all of the details of the move. You may even want to announce a Grand Opening (but I’ll cover that towards the end of this article).
- Social Updates. Use your social media platforms to announce the move. Link to your blog post for more information.
- E-Commerce Sites. If you take part in e-commerce this is especially important to consider. You will want to be sure to update all your address information within those systems, including any return instructions that may be embedded in auto-response emails.
You will want any online marketing campaign or effort to easily be linked to your new location, which you can learn more about here. Some of your online marketing may already be updated through social media, but there are also additional aspects to consider.
- Advertising. If you are running any ad campaigns, you will want to update your new location, including both zip code parameters and content. If you’re unsure how this works for PPC, check out this article from the Miami SEO Company.
- Business Data Providers. This often gets overlooked in terms of online marketing, since businesses may not directly set up the account. Business data providers collect business data and license it to other businesses like search engines, directories and review sites. Some examples of the biggest data providers are: Acxiom, Freebase, Info USA, Factual and Wikidata.
- Industry and Member Organizations. Is your brand a part of any business, industry, or profession-specific groups? Many of them have online member directories you will also want to have updated. Some ideas include local chamber of commerce, local neighborhood business organizations, Industry associations, and professional networking groups.
Everything About Email
Email is generally one of the top forms of online correspondence that a business has. Therefore, you definitely want to update certain aspects of your email systems with your new location, including:
- Email Signatures. This is something you can start to do before you move! During the weeks leading up your move date, include a tag line at the end of emails that you’re relocating (along with your email signature) and ask people to update their contact information/ make a note of it!
- Out of Office Replies. Many times, businesses may need to mostly shut down for a day or two in order to physically move your stuff. Even if you don’t shut down completely, you may not be responding to email as regularly as usual. Use your out of office reply to notify people you’ll be closed during the move and ask people to update their contact info.
- Email List. Send an email to your list members with details about the move. Rather than only including it in your monthly newsletter, you will want to send it as a separate announcement to ensure as many people know about the move as possible.
- Email Marketing Systems. If you use an email marketing service to send out your eNewsletter, you’ll want to be sure to update your address in that system so that you have a valid postal address included in your emails.
Make Your Move Visual
Get your patrons excited about your new location! You can make your move visual by including photos and videos of your new location and your staff in the new workspace.
- Photography. Take photos of your new location that can be shared on social media. This will also help alert people about what is going on, in case you are not as responsive to normal communication during these days.
- Video. Give people a sneak peek of the new location with a behind-the-scenes video tour to add to your website or social channels.
Other Important Details
Make your move the most successful move of your business career. You should try to make sure that everyone knows about your enthusiasm and excitement for everything that will come with this new location, which you can do in a few different ways:
- Brochures and Business Cards. You definitely are going to update your printed materials with your new address. In light of online aspects of your business, you may want to consider a few things: You might want to include your Twitter @handle on your brochures, Include a “like us on Facebook” emblem, with your business contact info, or it may be sensible to include your employees’ LinkedIn addresses on their business cards.
- Press Releases. In some business scenarios, it may be wise to use a press release or a series of releases and some media relations to announce your move.
- Grand Opening Party. If your business relies on foot traffic, you’ll want to consider planning a grand opening party (or a grand re-opening party) to raise awareness of the move. This can be promoted on your social media platforms (i.e, Facebook, Twitter, your blog) and also on your website. Additionally, you can send out an e-vite to your business contacts and customers, so that they can take part in the fun.
Do you have experience with a business move recently? Is there something from this list that really worked well, or something you would like to add? Let us know in the comments section below! We would love to hear from you.