Friday, December 6, 2013

Optimizing Your Website for Local Search is Crucial

Look at it this way, search engines are getting smarter. Your prospective customers realize that, so their queries are following suit. Recently, if you wanted to find a hospital which was close to you, could only type ‘hospital in [AREA]’ Now appear (I ran the search from Center Town Philly):

Now, I could just type in the term ‘hospital’ and Google still returns relevant results. Exactly the same holds true for terms for example ‘car dealer’ or ‘towing company. ’ So, we now have seen that Google has changed, but has your search technique? If not, here are some stuff that you may be missing out on.

Tips #1: Reputation Management

Or else properly optimizing the local directory listings, you won’t be able to stay in the loop for of reviews with negative sentiment, but exactly why is this important?

You might have notice Google’s local scoring system:

The state definition can be found here, but to conclude, the actual more positive reviews you get, the larger your service will be rated. Since Google’s goal would be to help the cream popularity, it wouldn't surprise me when the higher rated local companies receive higher organic rankings (which increases traffic and leads)

Google pulls testimonials from trusted sources on the internet and ranks them accordingly. Within a perfect world, we would all receive reviews such as these:

Unfortunately, we live on the world earth and we will sometimes see reviews such as these (I don’t mean to call anyone out, We promise) :

In case you are properly optimizing your local directories, you may be alerted that this review came in and you might have the opportunity to reach out to this person and provide to make their experience better. We have heard many stories about companies contacting disgruntled customers to make things better. The client has even gone back and updated their listing to some positive one. Be sure you reach these comments before Google does.

If you wish to ensure you are efficient together with your local directory listing, look into the getlisted. org resource to get the most influential ones by industry here.

Tips #2: Capture a Competitor’s Clients

By optimizing your Google Places page, you might be increasing the likelihood of driving leads to your website. Wouldn't it be great if your company’s listing came along whenever someone looked for a competitor’s listing? Well, that is precisely the case. Look at this section below a competitor once i looked for a ‘nissan dealer.’

If for reasons unknown I was not happy with the reviews which i saw for the initial listing, Google reveals four other types that they think that I might enjoy more. Without a properly optimized GP listing, I would not have the chance to steal customers from the competitor with weak SEO games.

Tips #3: Increased Presence

By optimizing your Google Places listing, you may be sure that your results show up when supposed to. Google Places gives you the opportunity to set your service hours. Let’s say that We are a tow service and my Google Places hours section appeared as if this:

If I am looking for a tow truck at noon, Google will know to demonstrate my listing in their results page because that would provide the best user experience. If I have not updated it of Google Places and someone looks for a tow truck at, say, 4pm, Google has to guess whether my shop is open not really. We do not need Google guessing about my store hours.

Tips #4: Improve Your Click Through Rate

This really is basically industry jargon for ‘increase the likelihood that someone actually will click on your stuff’ when someone will do a search key phrases that are important to your business. Look into the results returned when I look for ‘Nissan dealer cherry hill’. (Yes, this term is actually super long-tailed, but I wish to prove a place.)

If Cherry Hill Nissan was very lazy, they might have been cool with only ranking #1 organically with this term. They would have ~10% chance of being visited with regard to one of their most important terms. Still by having both the Google Places page and also the Dealer-rater. com page, they went from ~10% possibility of being clicked to ~30% chance. Basically ran this dealership, I think I would really prefer the 30% number a little better.

Tips #5: Brand Creating

I know, brand building is less SEO and much more Inbound Marketing (which is where the industry goes anyway) but here me out. When is the final time you saw a brand so much that you considered to yourself “man, that must be legit, We are seeing it everywhere”. I thought that whenever I first saw The General Car Insurance. I believed those commercials were MAD cheesy and that nobody will be buying that insurance. However, once i saw the commercial several hundred times (many during prime time) I started to take serious notice. Because the commercials got beat into my head a lot, I began to respect it. Google ‘car insurance’ and see what pops up.

By optimizing your local directories, you do the same thing for your business. The greater people that see your business, the higher the chance that they will click on your listing and purchase your stuff. Couple this with all the positive sentiment from the reviews you have encouraged and you can see how everything plays very well together.

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