Getting Customers When You Don't Have a Storefront: Tips for Home-Based Entrepreneurs
As a home-based entrepreneur without a physical store or office location in Amherst County, it can be challenging to attract new local customers and make sales. But have no fear - there are plenty of creative strategies you can use to get your home-based business found and build a loyal local customer base, no storefront required!
Get Discovered Online
Create a professional website showcasing your home-based products/services, rates, and contact info. This is your 24/7 "storefront".
Be active on social media by posting engaging content about your business, running local ads, and connecting with potential customers. Drive them back to your website.
Optimize your online profiles so you show up in Amherst County searches. Complete your LinkedIn, Facebook business, and Google My Business listings with your address.
Register your home-based business with relevant online directories (like the County Compass directory!) and review sites to be found locally. Don't forget industry-specific ones too!
Start a blog to share your industry expertise. Write SEO-optimized posts with local keywords so you rank for searches.
Network at local events and join local organizations like the Central Virginia Business Coalition, or the Chamber of Commerce to connect with potential customers.
See if you can put up flyers or brochures at complementary businesses like coffee shops, gyms, etc.
Partner with retailers to carry your products on consignment or do pop-up shops.
Rent shared office space part-time to meet clients and work. List the office address on your marketing materials.
"Wow" your customers so they enthusiastically refer others to you. Having a referral program helps incentivize it too.
Ask happy customers to leave online reviews. Positive word-of-mouth builds trust locally.
Request introductions from existing relationships like suppliers, friends, or business groups.
Partner with complementary businesses to cross-promote each other's services. Exchange referrals.
The internet levels the playing field, so leverage it to get discovered locally
Just because you lack a physical location doesn't mean you can't have an IRL presence: Referrals are powerful!
The advantage of being an Amherst County home-based business is that you likely live amongst your target customer base. Identify where they are interacting locally and find creative ways to insert yourself into the mix.
With persistence and some hustle, you can build local visibility and gain new customers even without a proper storefront.
Don't forget to register your home-based business with County Compass!