The use of the internet has now become so prevalent and widespread in the world that many will use Google to get details about a place before even heading out for dinner. Search engines have slowly become the surest digital guides one can ever have and they have been helping millions to find information regarding anything that exists on the face of this earth.
However, search engines have proven to be useful to businesses the most. As more and more and more businesses are taking the digital route to sell their products, search engines have been helping the buyers to lead them to the sellers’ site that offers them a variety of options.
Local Businesses And Search Engines
Of all the businesses and outlets in the market, the local businesses have benefitted the most when it comes to the use of search engines. Let’s take a simple example. Say you have been visiting a foreign place named X, where you have never been before, and you feel like having a pizza for dinner.
The first thing anyone would do would unlock their cell phones, open Google and search ‘pizza places near me’. This search would give way to several options provided by the search engines that would deal with the local pizza parlours. So would be the case with any grocery store, restaurant or a bar. Local businesses can be benefitted a lot through search engines, as gone are the days when people would personally ask others for places nearby.
Majority of the people you are targeting are online and are likely to come across your website when they are online. All you need to do is come up with an efficient website.
Local Marketing Stack
Before you start with optimising our local marketing business, you should be aware of the marketing stack that consists of the listings that would appear on the result pages when a customer searches for your brand or your product category.
As all the three listings are different from each other, it is possible for a business to dominate any of the three (or all three if you’re fortunate enough!) and solidify your hold in the digital market.
Here are some of the most important components that are involved with making your local business fairly popular:
This is something that every small or medium business should be on if it is planning to go digital. Google Adwords would help your business in getting higher recognition and visibility on the internet. Adwords would also help your business in getting more visibility than it would through organic or white label SEO.
Google Adwords would pick your ad and place it on the top of the search engine results pages. This would serve as the most important feature when it comes to mobile searches. If a user searches for a certain keyword that may direct them to your site, your website and your ad would appear before the organic search results.
Therefore, Google Adwords dominates search engine results when it comes to cell phones. It would not only locate your business on the internet, but would also show your location on the maps along with the work hours and user reviews. This is enough for anyone to have all the necessary information about your local business and locate it on the internet through a search engine.
Google My Business
Google My Business (GMB) is a special listing provided to any local business registered with Google. This listing regarding GMB generally shows up in the local search engine results and can be displayed in a variety of ways. Some of them are as follows:
- The GMB listing of your business may show up as a location on the map displayed on the search engine results page along with the Google search link of the same. This is nothing but the red highlights on the map displayed when you search using related keywords.
- Your GMB listing can also appear on the right column of your results page when you search for the related keywords. This column would give the surfer brief information about your firm, including details such as your working hours, ratings and specialities (if any). You must have seen such listings for a Wikipedia page on searching for certain keywords.
These GMB results are free for any businessman, but it generally takes efforts to get the results on top of the results page. In order to get your business listed, you initially need to claim your listing and make sure that all the information regarding your business is authentic.
You would then need to work on getting favourable customer reviews and adding appropriate media to your listing, be it photos or videos related to your venture up there on the internet.
Organic Search Results
These are the most basic results that would appear on any search engine result page when a surfer would enter the right keywords. Here, you can bring the link of your website on top of the results by effective Search Engine Optimisation (SEO).
Decent SEO techniques would help your business rank higher on the search engine result pages and internet users would easily be able to locate you through organic search results. Unlike other listing methods, organic search results can be enhanced only through the process of SEO.
There are two broad SEO techniques used by local businesses in order to rank higher in organic searches: On-page and off-page optimisation. In the case of on-page optimisation, you’d need to customise the web pages in order to rank higher. Here, content plays the most important role as your site would only rank higher if its content is original and possessing a superior quality. Other on-page optimisation techniques include the use of images and headings in the matter.
The other SEO techniques involved in enhancing organic search results include the off-page optimisation methods. These are the methods that deal with increasing the site’s visibility without making any changes in its web pages. Some of these methods include link building and sharing, commenting and using social media for promoting your business.
Therefore, a proper combination of these listing methods would help you promote your local business on the internet.