Research shows that local online marketing is more and more important to local businesses. Consumers are increasingly turning away from traditional advertising and other offline sources of information and performing online searches to find local products and services. In fact, each month, nearly 3.5 billion local searches are performed by consumers looking for the products and services they need, right in their own neighborhood.
Local Online Marketing is the new form of Communication
Why is this happening? Because the Internet has changed how we learn, communicate and conduct our lives. Consumers are increasingly sophisticated, educated, connected and in control which makes it much harder to get their attention with traditional advertising when they can search for what they want when they want where they want any time they want – online.
Today for a local business to be “findable” online – you have to be very visible to search engines. Until recently, the major search engines relied on spiders crawling over websites to index information about local businesses and you could rely on an optimized website, good content and clever keywords to be readily found online. No more! To improve the comprehensiveness and quality of the local business search results that they display, they created separate “local” search engine sites, including Google Maps, Yahoo Local, and Bing Local and turned to independent business listing partners for the content they display about local businesses.
Local Online Marketing is More than a Website
As a result it is no longer enough to simply have a website and list your business on Google, Google Maps, Yahoo Local and Bing and expect great results. To be effective you must improve your overall online visibility. Start with your business listing; it must be accurate, enhanced, keyword rich and distributed to multiple platforms in order to obtain prominent placement in local search results that motivates consumers to contact you and your business.