Black business owners face numerous challenges when selling their products. Find out what these challenges are and how a black business directory can help
Entrepreneurship can be related to art in so many ways. In order to create an art piece, the main requirements are blank canvas and brushes. The entrepreneur, on the other hand, requires a well-crafted plan and capital.
As part of their marketing strategy, black businesses post useful information about their business on social media with vital details like the phone number, name and address. This is an important step, but certainly not enough, especially at this time where so many other businesses are going online.
In case you haven’t noticed, the Coronavirus has forced most of us to stay indoors, spending more of our time on our phones and laptops. Ever since the pandemic started, Google has also recorded an increase in search traffic. Purchasing products online is now the new normal as they say, and this is precisely why black businesses should add their details in online business directories.
Challenges faced by black businesses and how a black business directory can help
Owning a business has always been the dream of most Black Americans who want to be financially independent. But when it comes to black businesses, it isn’t really all about the capital and business plan. There are also other challenges that black business owners face like the race factor, fear of being a sellout, lack of consistency and of course, poor marketing strategies.
Also, a study done by the National Bureau of Economic Research indicates that black businesses have been hit the hardest by the pandemic. To be precise, over 440,000 black business owners are out of business, which represents about 41% of black-owned businesses.
But even with these unfavourable conditions, have you ever wondered why black-owned companies like World Wide Technology, Dangote Group, Blavity, Johnson Publishing Company among others have managed to stand out? Well, this is because these businesses use robust marketing strategies. And this also includes being listed in online business directories. It, therefore, gives the best reason why you should also register your business to sell on Melanin Markets.
Melanin markets help black business owners overcome these challenges by giving them more exposure which in turn leads to more leads and increased sales. As part of our structure, we also have a black business directory which offers a platform for our sellers to advertise what they have to offer in the intended market group. This now brings us to today’s discussion;
Why MUST black business owners list their businesses in an online business directory?
Top benefits of listing in a black business directory
Back in the days, directories were only used to market businesses by leaving links to your website. But now, you no longer have to leave those tiny unnoticed links in directories, but a huge banner that serves as an advertising tool for your business. For black businesses, creating an online presence is beneficial in two ways;
- It helps in Search Engine Optimization, SEO. This helps black business owners at Melanin Markets reach their target market through search engine results
- Customers can easily find these businesses which means more exposure
Today, directories give black businesses the visibility needed to earn more clients and increase profits in the long run. Contrary to advertising your business in other digital spaces, directory submission doesn’t value some clients over others. Advertising in other websites means competing for space with other businesses. So if you are just a startup and are advertising against the already established companies, it can be really tough to compete here. You may probably need to part with a huge sum of money for the advertising space but when it comes to advertising in the business directory, the advertising cost is quite minimal.
Take advantage of the reduced costs
Thanks to all the challenges that black businesses face, Melanin Markets, and other black business directories have reduced their pricing as a way of attracting more black businesses to these platforms. At the Melanin Market business listing site, black business owners now get to list a free business plan at no cost, and a premium business plan at only $12 per package for an unlimited number of days.
So whether you are selling unique products like cowry shells and cassette tapes or common products like laptops and tote bags, marketing online at the Melanin Markets business listing is rewarding. Posting unique photos of your products, leaving your contacts and having direct interaction with your customer base are all the importances of listing in a black business directory.
Double online traffic
Listing in a black business listing directory can also increase website traffic. If you have just started selling at Melanin Markets, more website visibility will bring in more customers. With high exposure, black businesses stand a chance of appearing on search engine result pages resulting in more potential customers visiting their websites. Increased traffic also comes with brand visibility and more sales.
As we have already said, one of the main challenges that black business owners face is lack of exposure. Black business listing sites promote brand visibility. Your business will be easily accessible to customers that are looking for the type of product that you specifically sell.
Here is an example, you started selling branded T-shirts but didn’t have enough money to advertise your business in the local area. This means that only a handful of people, mostly those close to you know the existence of your business. By listing your business in a black business directory, you will expose your business to a larger area even without moving an inch. The only remaining part would be to make your business stand out by selling high quality, unique and affordable branded T-shirts.
Low-cost method of advertising
Lack of capital has always been the main reason why black businesses don’t live to see their second year. You, however, don’t need to spend a fortune when listing in a black business directory. Listing your business in an online directory is a cost-effective and productive advertising method. There are also other online business directories where you won’t have to spend a coin in order to list your business. Those that charge only require a minimal fee. This qualifies it as one of the most convenient ways to market your business compared to traditional methods like radio and TV advertisements.
Build a business reputation
When it comes to business advertising, we can all agree that internet marketing is the in thing right now. But with so many companies advertising online, it is becoming extremely difficult for the consumer to know whether they are purchasing products or getting services from a reputable company. This is where a free business directory can come in handy.
Most consumers refer to online directories to determine the credibility of a brand. Listing your business in an online directory means that you are a trustworthy business that is there to offer quality products and services and not scam people instead. Besides, most directories also have a customer review section which also shows how committed you are in the business.
The goal of every black business owner at Melanin Markets is to look professional in the eyes of consumers. A professional appearance builds more trust and a black business directory can help achieve that. When a potential customer comes across your business listing in an online directory, they are more likely to buy from you. Unlike a simple Google search where you are likely to be bombarded with hundreds of companies (and it is difficult to tell which ones are legit), only legitimate businesses are listed on online directories. Therefore, customers are more likely to work with a business listed in an online directory than those that aren’t.
Gather customer testimonials
In many business directories, clients and customers are free to review and rate a business depending on their experiences. If for instance, you sell wedding gowns at Melanin Markets, a potential customer may need to check your rating in an online business directory before buying from you. Online directories have a section where customers can rate, review and even leave comments about the business (ie., Google Reviews, Yelp, BBB, etc). This will give you an idea of where you stand as a business, the areas that need improvements and those that you are excelling in.
Business exposure is also a vital marketing strategy. This is actually simple to understand; if more and more people get to know your business, the number of customers is likely to increase. If only a handful of people know that your business even exists, then you aren’t going to record an increase in sales any time soon. Listing your business, no matter how small it is, in a black business directory will expose you to the world. As we already said, many people are now looking for products and services online and if they can’t find your business, then you are losing out on a large customer base.
Is a black business listing worth it?
The above points clearly show how important online business directories can be, especially to black businesses. And besides, most of the online business listings are free, so there is nothing that should stop you from making use of this marketing strategy with high potential. Adding your business to online business directories like the Melanin Markets black business directory and other listing sites won’t cost you a fortune. Most of these business listing sites only require a one-time fee or a manageable monthly fee to maintain the listing. It is easy to get started. You just need to spare a few minutes of your time and put all the companies’ details in order, then create a business profile. Regardless of the type of products you sell, listing in a black business listing site is definitely worth your time and investment.