Businesses have been experiencing the frustration of diminishing returns from in print advertising. When people are looking for a new product or service, especially something local, more and more they are turning to their computers or smart phones rather than their phone books or newspapers. A look at numerous studies shows us that 73% of all searches online are local in nature. If your marketing strategy does not include a robust search engine component, you are letting some of the most qualified leads you will ever see slip by you and go to your competitors instead.
- It is really hard to reach today’s customers through a newspaper, a phone book, or even a television advertisement. Most people go online to search for local businesses today.
- A new study has determined that search engines have beat the printed yellow pages when it comes to the number of people looking for local information. It also found that online searchers are more likely to convert into sales.
- Kelsey Group and ConStat also released their new research data that revealed concurrent results. Their new research indicated that currently, 70% of U.S. households are using the internet consistently whenever they shop locally for any new household and personal products and services.
- ComScore reported that 90% of local commercial searches result in offline brick and mortar purchases. 82% of local searches end up with an in-store visit, phone call or purchase.
- Studies show that 67% of local consumers have consulted online customer reviews of local businesses. Most of them trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
- Search Engine Optimization can bring a higher ROI than any other type of marketing; increasing your sales volume and overall profit.
- As of January 2015, the Google search engine still dominates with approximately 65% of all U.S. search traffic. Yahoo gets approximately 13% and Bing gets approximately 20%.
- 98% of people searching for something online never go past the first page of search results.
Effective search engine marketing involves combining a number of strategies designed to work together to give you the best visibility possible. The ultimate goal is to get your business found whenever someone actively searches for the products or services you best provide, no matter where they begin their search. A well designed campaign will employ several of the strategies mentioned here, depending on the nature of your business, your products or services, and your ideal target audience.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO):
Have you got a website? You should. When you search for the products or services you provide, in your area, do you show up near the top of the displayed results? Most searchers are not going to dig very deep in the results, they will just click on a few results that catch their eye and run with the one they get the best feeling about. Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, involves tweaking your website so that it is obvious to the search engine robots what your site is about, and building and encouraging links to your site so that the search engines know your site must provide valuable information to people searching for terms describing your business. There’s a little more to it than that, but that is the basic premise.
Google Plus For Business Pages:
Have you created your Google+ for Business page yet? You should. If you’ve ever searched Google for something local and seen the map that appears and shows where local businesses are located, you’ve seen the most powerful benefit of a well optimized Google+ listing. You can bet there’s plenty more businesses in the area, but there’s only so many businesses that can be featured on the map and in the results – – that’s where you want to be. We can help you provide everything you need to let Google know you are worthy of showing up when people search for what you offer in your area. And, if someone clicks through on the map, your Google+ listing gives you the opportunity to provide lots of helpful and relevant information to help your potential customer make an educated and confident decision to contact your company. This is something you want to get right!
Note: We focus on Google first, because they have the biggest market share. We will then perform the same service on similar local search platforms on Yahoo and Bing at no extra charge.
Local business directories such as Yelp and CitySearch give you yet another opportunity to present your business to prospective new customers. Not only do people frequently search these directories directly, but being listed in a number of the top directories helps the search engines trust that you are an established business offering real value to your customers – – and that means better search engine rankings! Often the local business directory page, with your listing on it, shows up early in search engine results too. This is yet another road that leads prospects to you.
Pay Per Click (PPC):
Besides the above low cost, long term strategies for being found in the search engine results, many companies are willing to bid for spots in the paid sections of the results to get faster results across more search terms. A well written ad and a well managed campaign can be very profitable and speed up the process of gathering more qualified leads.