If you are still not convinced that your online visibility is not the key to attracting more customers in the future, read these statistics:

  • By 2014, 53% of total retail sales (online and offline) will be affected by the Web, as consumers increasingly use the Internet to research products before purchasing. (Forrester, March 2010)
  • Luxury Institute research revealed that, of the customers who shop for high-end merchandise online, 78 percent of them did so in order to find the best price while nearly as many, 77 percent, did so to compare brands (BrandWeek, January 2010).
  • When making purchase decisions, North American Internet users trust recommendations from people they know and opinions posted by unknown consumers online more than advertisements on television, on the radio, in magazines and newspapers, or in other traditional media. (Nielsen Online, April 2009)
  • 92% have more confidence in info found online than they do in anything from a sales clerk or other source. (Wall Street Journal, Jan 2009)
  • 90% of online consumers trust recommendations from people they know; 70% trust unknown users, 27% trust experts, 14% trust advertising, 8% trust celebrities (Econsultancy, July 2009, Erik Qualman, Socialnomics)
What this really means is that the Internet is having and will continue to have a profound and powerful effect on how consumers find, compare and purchase products and services from local merchants. These statistics also confirm that traditional word-of-mouth referral marketing is not just alive and well in our society, but flourishing online. The savvy entrepreneur should take heed and not fight the trend, but do more local online marketing and position themselves to take advantage of the tremendous opportunities that these consumer trends offer to generate referrals and grow your business.
More specifically – increase your Internet presence and visibility by incorporating proven local online marketing techniques that help you get found online. These techniques include; listing your business online and distributing it all across the Internet and using an online marketing plan that generates online reviews which leads to endless referrals.


Author: Jim Merrick