How Do Customers Find Businesses Online?

How Do Customers Find Businesses Online?

In order to get customers, business owners need to have a presence on the internet. 


However, they may not be sure how their customers are finding them online and what they should do next. 


This blog post will explore the different avenues that businesses can use to help find new customers – or more accurately, help their customers find them.

1. Search Engines

You — like billions of others — likely use Google every day. 


And your customers are using it too. In fact, as much as 46% of every Google search is for a local business.

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This means one thing: you need to focus on your local SEO, or Search Engine Optimization. 


SEO is a vast discipline with highly technical and quickly changing requirements, so it’s best to get help when tackling this aspect. At the very least though, you can improve your chances of being found on a search engine by creating a simple, well-rounded website with helpful copy. 

2. Social Media Platforms

It’s easy to gloss over social media for marketing these days, but don’t! It’s estimated that about 54% of social users use this medium to research a product or service. 

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What does that mean for you? 

It means that failing to be active on social media can cost you customers. Which would you rather go to — a company that’s active and engaging, or one that never posts?

3. Directories 

Third on the list of places where customers can find you is directory sites. These are sites like Yelp , Google My Business, andYellowpages, and essentially act as a miniature “search engine” for businesses in your area. It’s essential to stay engaged on these platforms as well for a variety of reasons:

  • 80% of customers trust businesses less if info on a directory is inaccurate
  • Only 7% of businesses have all of their information correct on all directories
  • 56% of businesses haven’t even claimed their free Google My Business (GMB) listing

If your business is one of the thousands of unclaimed GMB listings, or if you have inaccurate information on one of these sites, you could potentially miss out on customers!

4. Online Ads

One of Google’s longstanding statistics is that every $1 spent on Google Ads yields $2 in revenue. 

The truth of online advertising is a bit more complicated than that statistic — and depending on your niche your margins may be closer or wider. 

Still, ads are an integral part of Google’s business model, and you can expect they won’t be going anywhere anytime soon. And since it presents you an opportunity to jump the Map Pack (and your competitors), it may be worth considering for your area. 

5. Referrals

Last but not least — word of mouth referrals are still alive and well, even in the age of the Internet. 

It’s estimated that as many as 92% of today’s customers have acted on a referral from a friend or family, and a staggering 88% of people look to reviews before making a purchase decision. 

Long story short, you should absolutely focus on building a solid reputation through your online reviews. And it doesn’t hurt to look into referral-based promotions as well!


There are more ways to win customers than ever. 

But keep in mind that opportunity and choice can sometimes be paralyzing. 

You don’t have to market on all of the platforms listed above to be successful. 

Sometimes, all it takes is one great marketing idea to win more customers and lead to new ideas. I hope the info in this post enables you to spark your own ideas and grow your business.