Yelp has been doing this for a long time. Google local does this. Manta does this and so many more.
There is also a growing number of online services, many younger who are aiming to help local service businesses, such as spas, use technology to boost the productivity of their local establishments and use online tools to market to their customers.
One relatively new service, Booker, has a suite of tools that I’d like to introduce you to.
These tools, from their web site, include:
- Promotion tools (Social Promotion, Appointment Distribution, Booking Website, Email Marketing)
- Appointment management (Scheduling, Online Booking, Facebook Booking, Mobile & Tablet Booking)
- Sales tools (Point of Sale, Credit Card Processing, eCommerce, Mobile Payment Processing)
- Customer management tools (Customer Management, Employee Schedule & Payroll, Inventory Management, Reporting)
There are may good options for small local retailers to boost their businesses using technology.
To promote your business, you could go directly to Google, Facebook, Twitter, Reach Local, Manta or other sources to reach local customers looking for local business. Read my book “The Facebook Guide to Small Business Marketing”
For selling within your retail establishment you could use Quickbooks Point of Sale, or several iPad based solutions to ring up sales in your retail store.
For customer management, SageOne and other solutions come to mind. The choice is yours. It would be a good investment to spend 1 – 2 hours with a local technology adviser who can guide you through what solutions are best for your business and how you can have the best integrated solution for your needsd.