Promoting your company online doesn't have to involve casting your net far and wide – Nextdoor provides businesses the opportunity to advertise locally via social media. That is, of course, if you know how to make it work for you.
With the global pandemic eroding the local business model in more ways than one, and with owners scrambling to find ways to reopen safely and effectively, Nextdoor makes it easy to connect with local customers in a genuine way. By providing a number of ways to advertise exclusively to local residents, this unique social platform can help you reach a wide range of customers that are just a stone's throw away from your front door.
Businesses have an advantage here, as it's free to sign up to Nextdoor with a business account. However, signing up is just the first step. In this guide, we'll explain how to join Nextdoor as a business, how to promote your business on the platform, what this kind of advertising might cost you, and why advertising on this social platform is a smart move.
Why Advertise on Nextdoor?
Just like with social media management platforms, Nextdoor can help a business spread the word and attract new customers.
However, Nextdoor isn't your average social media platform. Unlike Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, Nextdoor requires all users to verify their address before joining, so they can be placed in a specific neighborhood. Subsequently, rather than a timeline of friends from all around the world, your news feed consists exclusively of fellow neighbors in your area that are looking for information on local issues, selling old desks, and so on.
For businesses, this provides a unique opportunity from an advertising perspective, giving them access to a local audience that is not only present, but also engaged in the goings-on around the area. More specifically, here are a few key benefits for businesses that Nextdoor can provide:
- Reach a local audience
- Build customer relationships
- Foster word-of-mouth interest
- Network with other local businesses
Nextdoor has the numbers to back up these benefits as well. According to the platform, 88% of their members shop at local businesses at least once a week, while 67% share recommendations with their neighbors. And if you want to hear it straight from the horse's mouth, we've got a few testimonials that can't help but sing Nextdoor's praises:
"It’s as good as or better than word of mouth referral. A single word of mouth referral will reach 1 person or a couple. The level of trust people have for their neighbors is greater and the amount of people they are reaching is so much higher. If you’re not using Nextdoor as part of your business growth; you’re missing out."
“Nextdoor is great for my business because it enables me to share information – like that we’re open on Christmas Day when most other shops aren’t -- and promote discounts to locals. There isn’t another way to be able to communicate with everyone in the neighborhood like we do on Nextdoor.”
"Nextdoor has been a fantastic tool to let our neighbors and potential customers know about our stores. Many of our longtime customers are moving out of the area due to the high cost of living, so having our presence on Nextdoor is very helpful to attract new faces."
"Nextdoor has definitely helped my business. Not only have I run an Offer to promote a deal to the community, but I also participate in the conversations in my neighborhood. That helps me know what the people in my area are looking for, and I can use that information to better market my business."
“The ROI with Nextdoor [Offers] is better than we’ve seen with other channels. We get warm leads from people who are already interested, and we’ve found that those leads close at a much higher rate than other channels,” Tim says. “In fact, leads on Nextdoor close at about 44%. That’s a pretty high conversion rate. We attribute that success to the power of recommendations from neighbors.”
"Nextdoor brings us closer to our clients. They know who we are, we know who they are. Everything has that personal touch and that's what's special."
Who Can Join Nextdoor?
When it comes to users, Nextdoor is just like any social media platform: anyone can join! As we mentioned above, all you have to do is input your address to be placed in a specific neighborhood, so you can get the catered experience inherent to the platform.
As for which businesses can join Nextdoor, any business can create a free business page, whether you're an officially licensed company or just a neighbor offering work. Even ecommerce stores can join, although it's not advised given the local nature of the platform. There are a few industries that are specifically built for the locally focused nature of Nextdoor, including:
- Real estate
- Home services
- Beauty services
- Health & Fitness
Basically, advertising on Nextdoor is better suited to brick-and-mortar businesses that are looking to break into the local scene with a little flair. Now, you just have to find out how much it's going to cost you.
Nextdoor Advertising Costs
Much like other social media platforms, creating a business page on Nextdoor to promote your service is completely free, so you can reach this local audience seamlessly without seriously dipping into your company's resources. You can't endlessly post, you are allowed two free business posts per month, which can get you a lot of attention depending on the content. In addition to that, there are a number of ways that you can specifically advertise your business on the platform.
The most prominent advertising strategy on Nextdoor is through Local Deals. This feature allows businesses to advertise promotions, special offers, and discount deals to specific neighborhoods. The cost of these deals can vary from a few cents to a couple hundred dollars, with the average cost coming in at around $75. The price depends on the number of people you're targeting and the duration of the deal.
How to Join Nextdoor as a Business
Now that you understand the basics about Nextdoor and how much it might cost your business, it's time to figure out how to actually join this thing. Fortunately, we can walk you through the basic process of setting up a business profile and moving forward with some advertising.
How to Set Up Your Nextdoor Business Profile
Once you've set up your personal Nextdoor account, you'll be able to set up a business account with ease at no cost to you. First, you'll need to visit Nextdoor for Business to get started. You'll have to decide whether you're a Professional Business or a Neighbor for Hire, and whether or not you want to use a personal email address or a business email address.
Now, you're onto the business side of the setup process. First, you'll input the name of your business and the address at which it resides. You'll then be asked to classify your business from a drop-down list, including charity organization, cheese shop, or restaurant, among many others.
Once your account is actually set up, the real fun starts. By customizing your page for your business, you'll be able to attract more customers. First, add a logo in your profile dashboard. Then, add a cover photo that represents your business, with a recommended size of 1156 pixels x 650 pixels. Then, you'll want to share your story and update your contact information, so customers know how and where to find you.
Finally, it's time to start posting about your business – and that's where promotion is going to come in handy.
Understanding Your Organic Neighborhood Reach Metrics
The profile dashboard provided for businesses on Nextdoor is quite robust, offering a wide range of analytical information that you can use to tap into your neighborhood even more. And arguably one of the most important metrics is your Organic Neighborhood Reach.
This specific metric tracks how you're doing in terms of engaging specific sections of the neighborhood. It can help you pick target areas, informing your promotion strategy before you've even taken your first steps. Always make sure you're plugged into this dashboard to get the full picture of your impact on the neighborhood, before making any big decisions on promotion.
Get Recommendations from Customers
The first and foremost strategy for promoting your business on Nextdoor is to get recommendations. This is the most important step because, without at least three recommendations, your business will not appear in Nextdoor searches.
Subsequently, you're going to need to tap your personal network – either personally or through other social media channels – to land those first three recommendations and get off the ground.
Respond to Neighbors
Once you're set up with your recommendations, it's all about responding to potential customers. Unlike other social media, business profiles aren't allowed to endlessly post their content in hopes of attracting residents, although they are allowed two free business posts per month.
Instead, you can only respond to public comments (found in the Neighbors Comments section) and reply to private messages (found in your Inbox) from potential customers looking for information.
Promote Local Deals
Finally, one of the more popular means of promoting your business on Nextdoor is through Local Deals. This handy tool functions similarly to Facebook Ads, in that you can offer special deals and promotional offers to specific neighborhoods and advertise for a predetermined amount of time.
Unlike the other methods of promotion in Nextdoor, Local Deals will cost you a bit of money (based on which neighborhood and how long the deal runs for), but the return on investment is notably more impressive – provided you've got the budget for it.
Final Thoughts – Why Advertising on Nextdoor Is a Smart Move
In an age where social media advertising has become not only a crowded medium, but also a controversial one, Nextdoor provides a secure, genuine avenue to local customers that doesn't feel at all nefarious. Between the user base of trusted residents, the restrictions on over-posting, and the affordable ways of offering discounts to potential customers, the platform allows businesses to be seamlessly introduced into a neighborhood without the unnecessary bells and whistles of other platforms.
Simply put, if you're trying to get your business noticed – whether you're a new brick-and-mortar store or a reputable brand – Nextdoor provides an easy and nonchalant means of doing. If you're interested in taking the next step towards setting up your Nextdoor business page, it's free to get started.
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