The world of online marketing has drastically changed and evolved over the last few years. The Search Engine Optimization (SEO) strategies of yesterday are not as effective as they once were, particularly if you are focused on your local market. There are new strategies and techniques that are available to small businesses which are imperative for you implement if you want to catapult your business to the top of a specific search.
Although having a website for your business is the best way to provide the most information to consumers, both current customers and prospects, it is not a requirement to have your business easily searchable in the search engines. Whether you have a website for your business or not, you can still implement these new strategies to improve the search-ability of your business when consumers in your local area search for your particular product or service.
Here are some staggering statistics that you should know about online searches:
- 71% of all American adults use the Internet.
- 91% of all Internet users use a search engine to find information.
- Over 50% of all purchases are preceded by an Internet search
- 30 percent of all search queries contain a city, state or zip code.
- There are 2.6 billion local searches a month
- You don’t need a website! (Although having one helps)
LOCAL SEARCH - A NEW OPPORTUNITY
The Google, Yahoo and Bing search engines, the big 3, have created a local aspect to their search algorithms including customizable business listings for every business across the United States. These listings include basic information about a business, such as your business slogan, contact information, location(s) with maps, hours of operation, website address and a short description about your product(s) or service(s). You can also enhance your listing with pictures, videos, custom categories like your service area, brands you sell, how to find parking, coupons to encourage customers to make a first-time or repeat purchase and a more detailed and colorful description of your business. These listings are free, although, in some cases, the enhanced listings may cost a small monthly fee.
Make sure your business comes up on your customer's next Google, Yahoo or Bing search!