Whether you have a website or not, if you own a local service business and have been in business for a while you’ve probably experimented with different types of local advertising. Val-Paks, local newspaper ads, flyers, YellowPage ads, Facebook or Google ads, maybe you’ve even tried billboards or other more pricey marketing options. Smart business owners know they need to invest a portion of their profits into marketing if they want to keep new business coming through the doors. But how successful have your local advertising efforts been so far? Have you honestly seen a steady influx of new customers as a result of anything you’ve tried? If the answer is “no”, but you’re one of those smart business owners that knows you need to keep your name out there to grow your business, read on!

The most effective local advertising happens online. Why? Because every day, your target customers are going online – not to Val-Paks, not to the YellowPages, not to newspapers – they are searching online when they need a local company to provide products or services. If you’ve tried Google AdWords or other forms of online advertising, you may wonder then, why didn’t it work? Most consumers are well aware of the difference in paid search results and organic (the sites that come up naturally as the result of a search). A whopping 80% of people will automatically skip over paid search ads and go directly to the organic listings.

The most widely used search engine is Google, which means that the companies who appear in the first page of organic search results for your top keywords are in coveted positions. Perhaps you’ve seen your competitors appear there, and wondered how your company can also appear on that first page of results?

One of the hottest new Internet marketing trends is the “rank and rent” website. Bottom line, a team of professional Internet marketers create a website using their skills and the latest development tools and then they optimize the site so it performs well in Google search results. “Optimizing” may seem like a simple word – but there’s a lot of work and cost involved in accomplishing that. They have chosen a specific industry on which to focus … for instance, home remodeling. The content on the site has been structured so that any home remodeling company could “rent” the site, their name and branding could be dropped in, and nobody would ever know the site wasn’t custom created for them. After the site is ALREADY ranking well on Google, it is then offered for “rent” to a local business whose profile matches the site. The monthly rental fee is usually well within the budget of most small businesses and once the site is rented, all inquiries for the site are funneled directly to the company that is renting.

This marketing option is truly a game changer, in that it puts the power of a well-designed, search optimized website into the hands of any business owner. Previously, the time involved and the cost to develop this caliber of site and keep it ranking well would have made it unattainable for many small business owners.

So what are the benefits of renting a site over developing one on your own dime? Or, if you already have a website, why would you also want a “rank and rent”? Let us count the ways!

  1. Low cost – these sites are the perfect solution for a business that doesn’t have the budget to develop a site capable of ranking on page one of Google. Larger businesses spend tens of thousands of dollars to develop such a site, then often pay thousands each month to an Internet marketing agency to keep it ranking on page one. With a “rank and rent” site, there’s no up-front development cost. You pay your first monthly fee and immediately start receiving a stream of leads from the website.
  2. No time investment – one of the most common surprises and complaints from companies who go the route of building their own site is the amount of time they have to invest, first in the development stage and then ongoing. Perhaps you’ve heard the phrase, “content is king” related to Internet marketing? Part of the formula for keeping a website ranked well is providing a steady stream of fresh, relevant content to the site. Most Internet marketing firms relay heavily on the client to support them in developing content for their website. After all, who knows your business better than you? But with “rank and rent” sites, the Internet marketers are already pros at developing the content needed for your site. If they weren’t, it wouldn’t be ranking well! They create the content – you follow up on leads.
  3. Steady lead stream – it can take months and even years of consistent effort to get a website ranked on page one of Google. These sites have already achieved that status and are drawing traffic that are potential customers.
  4. No long-term commitment – once you’ve invested $10,000+ to develop a website, it’s hard to walk away from it. With “rank and rent”, it’s as easy to walk away as sending an email to cancel your agreement. No feelings of “we have to maximize this investment” and no ongoing Internet marketing contracts to sign.
  5. Increased brand awareness – there’s a saying in marketing … “you gotta’ be seen to be sold”. Another feature of the rank and rent site that you won’t pay extra for is the extra reviews and goodwill generated through social media that comes with the site.

Do you already have a website, and are wondering if the rank and rent site can work in conjunction with your own? The answer is YES. As a matter of fact, many companies who go this route already have websites that aren’t working for them, and they don’t want to invest the money to turn things around. Others may even have a site that ranks well, but want the added punch of TWO websites on page one of Google.

There’s no disputing it: rank and rent websites are a cost-effective, no risk means for small, local businesses to get their share of the Internet lead pie. Are you interested in growing your business at a faster rate? Contact Inovail today to learn more about how this trending marketing tool can take your business to the next level!