Statistics show that more than half of all searches performed on smartphones and tablets have local intent. As a local business owner, you can capitalize on this trend by creating a strong online presence. Here are six powerful ways to promote your local business online.

#1) Google My Business

Formerly known as Google Places, Google My Business (GMB) is a free-to-use service that displays information about local businesses. Once you’ve created a listing, you can add relevant information about your local business, including address, hours of operation, prices, photos, reviews and more. It’s arguably one of the most effective ways to promote a local business online.

#2) Press Releases

Press releases offer another channel on which to promote your local business. This involves creating and distributing a newsworthy announcement about your local business. Whether it’s a grand opening, grand “reopening,” the arrival of a new product, change in leadership, etc., you can write press releases on just about anything. Once distributed, they’ll get picked up by local news outlets, driving traffic to your local business.

#3) Social Media

We can’t talk about ways to promote a local business online without mentioning social media. According to a Pew Research survey, 69% of U.S. adults use social media. From Facebook and Twitter to Snapchat and Instagram, there are more social media networks today than ever. Most of these social media networks allow businesses to create a profile or page as well. And by building a social presence for your local business, you’ll attract more customers and generate more sales.

#4) Local Search Optimization

Of course, you can also promote business online using local search optimization (LSO). Like search engine optimization (SEO), it involves optimizing a website to rank higher for one or more keywords. However, the key difference between SEO and LSO is that the latter focuses specifically on local searches.

#5) Local Citations

What is a local citation and how can it drive customers to your local business? Local citations are online listings of your business’s name, address, phone number and other information. There are literally hundreds of channels for local citations, some of which include FourSquare, MapQuest, Yelp, Angie’s List, Yellowbook, Mantra and SuperPages. By listing your local business here, other users will find it more easily when searching online.

#6) Post Photos

Don’t underestimate the importance of publishing photos. Not all search traffic comes from Google Search; some comes from Google Images. By posting photos of your local business online, you’ll connect with these users while driving more traffic to your business in the process.