In my previous article, I’ve discussed on how to sell your products and services free of cost with online listing websites. The sole intent of that article was to make you familiar with all the top listing websites with the best possible ways to successfully sell your products or services for free of cost. Seeing the enormous advantages that free listing sites offer, it’s easy for sellers to get caught up in the excitement of reaching the wider audience and new customer pockets. And for those who have never explored this area before, it can be overwhelming.
So, in this post, I’ll show you the 7 common mistakes that you should avoid when listing your products or services on free listing websites.
1. Choosing the Wrong Listing Websites
The vast online marketplace provides a lot of benefits with the ability to reach new and diverse customer base. Nowadays, it’s important for sellers that instead of prominently listing themselves on multiple or wrong listing sites, they work on listing sites with the great set of features. The listing sites that suits your particular niche and help you to reach your target audience. Like Yelp is for candid customer reviews with the additional feature of sending private or public messages (offers, deals, etc.) to customers and reviewing business trends. Whereas MerchantCircle is a free network targeted online source. This listing website helps businesses connect with local customers with post business blogs, advertising and free marketing tools.
- Based on the category of your product or service, choose the listing site that can showcase your product in the best possible way. For example, if you’re into real estate industry, free listing websites like 99acres is the best option.
- Choose the listing site that can extensively reach your targeted customer base.
- If you want to target the local audience in your area, carefully choose the specific location and then post your listing.
However, Google My Business far outweighs any other listing sites with a feature to add your business’s exact location on a mobile-friendly map.
2. Unclaimed or Over Optimized Local Business Listing on Google
As discussed in no#1, Google My Business by Google is a huge boon for businesses with its free and simple registration business. It gives you the ability to claim your businesses on Google Maps and update it with accurate information like business hours, address, website and phone number. But, in case you do not claim your listing on time, you’re losing the big opportunity to show up in local searches or local map results when someone is looking for a service related to yours.
- You should always optimize for customers not to manipulate rankings.
- Make sure to use your actual real-world business name on Google that is registered with the state. Avoid a keyword stuffed name or a spammy business name. Or else, your listing can be suspended and then you’ll lose all the visibility of your business.
- Place any additional information in the appropriate fields.
- Make sure your business name is consistent throughout your Google My Business listing, website and other local listings.
This is a snapshot of a real estate business named Green Lotus Avenue. This listing on Google includes all the relevant details like contact no, address, etc. with the reviews and rating it received across the web. Thereby, GMB listing is a first step which is recommended by experts. Like in the above example, if someone searches for Green Lotus Avenue in Zirakpur, it will show up in the specific location on the map.
3. Not Including the Best Quality Images
There are tons of opportunity offered by free listing websites, but still why do potential buyers simply skimp over your ad or listing? Well, that’s just because you’ve not included the quality image of a product or service to let them see what you’re selling. This is like you wouldn’t visit a physical store to buy a product that is not interested or hesitant to present the desired item to you with its specifications and features. So, here are some simple tips to make the best out of it:
- Upload clean and non-blurred images that highlight the qualities of your product or service from multiple angles.
- Give a backdrop that is in contrast to the product you want to sell to make it stand out.
- Use the photo editing softwares like Canva or Pixlr to achieve the best quality image.
- Highlight the details like label, tags, etc. related to your product or service for sale.
Here is a screenshot of my client Desi Cooks that run its F&B business in Tricity.
4. Misrepresenting the Product or Service for Sale
Please avoid this! Because if you’re misrepresenting the product or service for sale, you’ll definitely lose the goodwill of the people in your local area. Being a seller, you want to showcase your business in the best possible light. So you should understand that there is a huge difference between portraying your business in the best light and misrepresenting your business to prospective buyers. You may feel overwhelmed during the entire selling process and can get tempted to misrepresent, hide or cover the problems to see those numbers exaggerating. These misrepresentations will only send up red flags when prospects review the actual status stuff.
- Always give an accurate, up-to-date and honest description of the item or service you’ve put up on the sale.
- Do not add a vague or little information. Give useful information so that your potential buyer can make an informed choice.
- Don’t use fancy or subjective terms like attractive phone, rather give a potential benefit of the product or service, such as-‘ ideal choice to take selfies’, ‘best for business people’, etc.
- Give the precise dimensions or specifications of the product. Also, highlight the features that set your item apart.
For example, see the listing below. I’ve created this listing on OLX to sell an inventory, i.e, 2 BHK flats in Derabassi for my real estate client SBP Group.
This listing includes everything, dimensions, floor plan, price, location, project name and accurate description. OLX is one of the best listing websites to place the local classified ads free of cost.
5. Posting Listings on Low Quality or Spammy Listing Websites
It would be easy to think that listing on multiple sites will help you gain access to a larger customer base and then achieve better ROI. If you think so, you’re totally wrong! Because, if you’re posting on low-quality or spammy sites with a low DA and PA, you’re only taking your business down. This will definitely affect your search visibility and at the end, you will be losing your sales. Furthermore, over-posting or multiple posting of a product or service can raise a red flag and get you suspended.
- Post only on listing sites with high DA and PA. You can see some of the examples of such sites here.
- Always use different post titles and descriptions for each listing on these top listing websites.
- Also, as high-quality sites mean the quality of your listing should also be high, which includes title, description, image, etc. I have already discussed these attributes in the above-mentioned points.
- Each title should be unique and catchy to attract the potential buyers or entice them to take the next action.
- Do not just copy or paste the description. Make it informative so that a reader or visitor find it useful enough to go ahead and make a purchase.
6. Underestimating the Social Bookmarking Sites
Social Bookmarking is one of best online listing ways that gathers deluge of traffic to it. Thus, they help you increase your sales. So rather than adding them to your favorites menu in the browser, bookmark your product or service web pages with a social bookmarking site. This will allow you to engage new visitors and drive plenty of traffic by gaining high visibility on the SERP’s.
- Do not bookmark your own posts on social bookmarking sites. This will only result in having zero visibility or not displaying at all in your keyword searches.
- Search engines consider social bookmarking sites as a source of quality backlinks. Hence, you should only utilize the popular listing websites. These websites can easily get your item in front of the people whilst promoting it.
- Create a listing that comes into sight in topics your prospects are looking for.
7. Incorrect Utilization of Forum Discussion Sites
The effective use of forum discussion sites can help your product or service stand out of the crowd. But, not all the forums are worth your time. So, it is important to look for the popular forums in your niche. The forums that have the right community for your business. Below are a few things to keep in mind if you use forum sites as listing websites:
- Do not ever use the forums hosted by your direct competitors.
- Read the community guidelines before posting.
- Make valuable contributions to the community.
- Always put your website URL in your signature file.
Moreover, once you get registered, resist the urge to start posting right away. Forum communities are tight-knit to haze and shun new users. Therefore, before you jump into the actual thing, spend some time lurking on the forum. Find out the influential users and make a note of popular topics to help you fit in more quickly.
Now you know the 7 common mistakes while using free listing websites and how to avoid them. You’ve probably understood by now that only using the right listing websites in an effective manner will help you increase your buyers and sales so you will want to avoid these common mistakes.
Please feel free to make any comments and share ideas that you think are useful.