Local Internet marketing is becoming increasingly important to your success on Google and other search engines. As Google continues to move toward local search results, your effectiveness at local Internet marketing can have a major effect on your bottom line.
Let’s try an experiment. Go to Google, and type in your industry or niche, and your city and state (e.g. Italian restaurant, Wichita, KS). What will pop up is a map of some of the Italian restaurants in Wichita (or whatever you typed in) that may or may not include yours. If it doesn’t, that’s a real problem, but it’s one that’s easily solved.
Optimizing for Google’s Local search is an important part of local Internet marketing. They’re the biggest search engine, so they’re the gold standard for search engine optimization. They also already have your company information in their servers, so it makes sense that they put that information to use by helping their users find you more easily.
The great thing about Google is that it also scans different review sites, like Yelp or UrbanSpoon, for user reviews. So B2C businesses (business-to-consumer) may end up getting some great local Internet marketing juice if people leave positive reviews on the different review sites. These reviews also make Google map listings more useful, because people can see whether they want to visit your establishment or not.
Should Regional and Online Businesses Do Local SEO Marketing?
Even regional businesses and online businesses should optimize for local internet marketing. While most of your customers may not come to your location, this will still help improve your search engine ranking. In fact, local Internet marketing is one of the most effective and efficient forms of SEO.
That’s because you need as many inbound links to your website (links that go from another site to yours) as you can get. The more you have, the more valuable Google thinks your site is, and so the higher it appears in search results.
But you also never know when you are going to get a local visitor. While you may not want visitors at a home-based business, it’s worth doing if you have an actual office. You’re already going to do it for SEO reasons, so just consider any visitors who find you this way as a bonus.
Should B2B Do Local Internet Marketing?
Companies that focus on business-to-business should also take advantage of local Internet marketing. For one thing, a number of your customers may be local. You want them to know you’re in the area, so filling out your Google Local profile is going to be a big help.
While your local customers may only be two percent of your customer base, you might as well take advantage of this. Besides, if your competitors are already on here, you want to make sure they’re not beating you. And if your customers aren’t on Google Local yet, you could be the first. Take advantage of their absence.
How Can National Chains Do Local Internet Marketing?
You’re probably thinking I’m going to tell you to manually enter each store location on Google’s Local Business section. And while they would be a great job to give the interns, you can just upload a list of your locations, including the addresses and phone numbers, and Google Maps will place the markers for you.
Where Else Should I Focus My Local Internet Marketing Efforts?
Don’t think that Google has the lock on local Internet marketing. There are several sites, including the aforementioned Yelp and UrbanSpoon, that may be worth your time. There are also the Yellow Pages, Super Yellow Pages, Yahoo Yellow Pages, and other similar directories that can help your local Internet marketing. There’s also Yahoo’s listing service, and the new kid on the block, Bing, has a local business listing you can take advantage of. Visit them and update your listing information.
Local Internet marketing can greatly help your search engine results, but you don’t have to be search engine optimization experts. This is something you can do in a matter of minutes, and it can make all the difference in the world. But if it seems like something you don’t want to mess with, call a local online marketing expert. They’ll be happy to help you out.