3 Reasons Why Local SEO is ‘Mission Critical’ for Your Business
A 3-part series from the Brave River Solutions Digital Results Team
Part 1 - How do local consumers find your business?
As a business owner, this is perhaps one of the most important questions you can ask yourself when it comes to all things relevant to connecting with local in-market prospects.
Considering the fact that 77% of US Adults own a smartphone, it’s safe to assume that they’re not using the Yellow Pages anymore! What’s even more fascinating is the adoption of mobile technology amongst those aged 50 and older; 74% of these folks own a smartphone.
Considering the level of smartphone/mobile usage, it’s not surprising to learn that 4 in 5 consumers use search engines, like Google, to find local information. They search on their devices for local information such as: business addresses and phone numbers, hours, product availability and directions.
With Google’s search engine being responsible for 75 percent of all search volume, would you say that it’s essential to ensure that your business is displayed properly?
The following is from an independent study released which cites some very important statistics about consumers who use Google Search:
- 46% of all Google searches are local
- 64% of local customers use search engines and directories as their main way to find local business
- 50% of local mobile searchers look for business information (like a company’s address or phone number)
- A whopping 78% of local mobile searches result in an offline purchase
The message is very clear today and for the future: If your business cannot be found on the web via a smartphone or tablet, then how will new and existing customers ever find your business? And when (if) that potential customer does get to your website – is your site 100% mobile responsive? Or will that person’s experience be less than optimal because the site isn’t mobile friendly?
Part 2 - What the heck is “Local SEO” anyway?
Local Search Engine Optimization (SEO) refers to optimizing a site or pages on your site to rank for organic queries in the search engines where the intent of the searcher is to find local information. Local ranking factors like name, address and phone number and customer reviews help your business to rise to the top of organic results and even get featured in the carousel. Examples of local search queries include searches with geo qualifiers like the city or town name, or with a zip code. Local SEO is one of the most effective ways to market your business online. It can help you promote your products and services to local customers at the exact time they’re looking for a local business. Yet 56 percent of local retailers haven’t claimed their own Google My Business listing…
Local SEO uses a variety of strategies to get your website ranked on search engines like Google as well as business directories such as Yelp, Superpages, Google My Business, and Google Maps. Localized content on your website and online reviews are another great strategy to outrank the competition.
Thousands of local customers in your area use local search every day to find the best local businesses. You can help increase your chances of getting found through Local SEO.
Not sure if your business listings are claimed or accurate? Contact Brave River, your friendly local seo company, and we will show you how to find out!
Part 3. The best local SEO opportunities are FREE Right Now.
We cannot say with certainty that all local SEO strategies will free forever though. Right now, it’s free to claim your listing on Google My Business, Bing Places for Business, Yahoo Local and on hundreds of other online business directories. This is good thing. It’s a time-consuming thing, but still a good thing. Of course, having a robust business profile and having a solid keyword based strategy can make a huge difference. It’s worth the effort and we are here to help. Reaching highly targeted, high converting in-market prospects is at the heart of every successful Local SEO campaign.
The top reasons why consumers use local search is to find a specific business or to find a product or service. Even though many in-market consumers don’t have a specific business in mind when they begin their search, these highly targeted prospects have a ‘specific intent’. Compared to other advertising mediums such as Television and Radio, where the consumer has no intent, conversion rates and ROI for Local SEO are sky high.
By using local search engine optimization, you can better position your business at the exact time local customers are looking for your type of business. There’s no better time to connect with a potential customer than when they really need you. And unlike traditional advertising (e.g. newspapers, direct mail, etc.), with local SEO there is little wasted expenditure. You reach potential customers when they need you; not when they don’t. This makes Local SEO both extremely efficient and cost-effective. Online directories (like Yelp, Citysearch, Manta, etc.) display a business’ name, address, phone number and sometimes additional information (like a menu or business description.) Local directories dominate the first page of many local search results. Local directory marketing (just one of many Local SEO strategies) has a 50% higher conversion rate than other more traditional forms of advertising.
This means that by getting your business accurately listed on as many high quality online directories as you can, you’ll convert 1 out of 2 prospects into an actual customer! Here’s a Shocker: Did you know that only 44% of local businesses have claimed their Google My Business listing?
Google My Business is a free search engine local listing that Google makes available for all local businesses. Getting listed on Google can significantly increase your chances of appearing prominently in the local search results on Google. The world of online marketing is confusing and fluid to the uninformed. Without a professional guide it can become downright frustrating. But for those who put in the effort, it can offer a serious advantage over the competition. So, what are you waiting for?
The bottom line: These days’ people rely on the search engines (mostly Google) to find information about all types of products and services they need. If your business cannot be found within the local search results, how will any customers ever be able to find you?
Local Search trends are strong and getting stronger. Now is the time for you to take advantage of local search engine optimization before your competitors do. All local businesses, from carpenters and dry cleaners to attorneys and auto repair shops can grow their business and help new and existing customers find you through local SEO. So what are you waiting for? Call us today!