Are you thinking about moving your business to a new location? Is your lease up and you're looking for something larger, more affordable, or with a better location?
Moving your business from one place to another is about more than just packing up the truck and signing a lease. Your online presence mustmove with you.
If you rely on local search, or mobile search, to bring visitors and customers to your location, then moving without having a plan to update your address or phone number can cost more than you save by moving.
Here are nine things to remember the next time you're moving to a new location.
1. Change Your Physical Address Online
This is pretty time intensive, but must be done. Imagine incorrect address and phone numbers sending potential customers to an empty storefront – that's lost revenue!
When you start sharing your new address, make sure you're using the "normalized" address that Google, the post office, and other address entities recognize. Here's a great tool for finding your new address in its correct form (hat tip to Darren Shaw from Whitespark.ca).
2. Try to Keep Your Phone Number
If you are forced to get a new number because you changed towns, be sure you can keep your old number and have it forward to the new number. This can help redirect customers to your new location.
3. Inform the Government
The government needs to know you moved as well - update your name, address, phone and other pertinent information with the licensing and taxing entities in your state.
4. Update Your Address on Every Piece of Marketing You Have
Your website, email marketing templates, email signature, business cards, and be sure you let your marketing company know you've moved.
5. Update Your Paid Search Campaigns
If you're running paid advertising campaigns and you're focusing on a local market - your physical address needs to be updated in your targeting or location extensions. Wrong addresses send customers to incorrect locations - that can be a painful loss for the business to absorb.
6. Tell Community Partners and Friends That You've Moved
If the bike shop down the street sent folks waiting for tire repair up to your coffee shop - be sure you let them know you're now two blocks away instead of one.
7. Update Citations
Beyond the local directory listings, it's worth changing as many local citation websites as possible to the new address or phone number.
Start by searching for your old address and making a note of any page in the top 20. Those are the places you need to change first.
Keeping those local citations up to date as you move is incredibly important. Inconsistent phone numbers across numerous websites can effect your local ranking. You can learn more about managing your local data and download a great checklist at LocalU.org.
8. Don't Forget Social Media!
Addresses on Facebook, Twitter, etc., need to be changed.
9. Automatic Payments
Here's one you probably didn't think of – any website that auto-charges your business credit card will be calling because your charges will not go through once you update the address at your credit card company or bank.
You will likely have to update some other locations, depending on your business.
I always recommend clients make sure each employee has a sheet with the normalized name, address, and phone number (NAP) for the business that they are required to use whenever they create a new account, listing, profile, etc online. This can help alleviate questions, prevent suite or abbreviation errors, and save headaches in data consistency down the road!
Meet Your Favorite Search Engine Watch Contributors
Many of SEW's leading expert contributors will be at ClickZ Live, the new online and digital marketing event kicking off in New York (March 31-April 3). Hear from the likes of: Thom Craver, Josh Braaten, Lisa Barone, Simon Heseltine, Josh McCoy, Lisa Raehsler, Greg Jarboe, Dan Cristo, Joseph Kerschbaum, John Gagnon, Eric Enge and more!