Secret To Small Business Success? Local Search

Secret To Small Business Success? Local Search

By: Shelly Kramer
August 13, 2010

Just because you have a cool business or offer a unique service, doesn’t necessarily mean that people will find you. Or buy what you sell. Which is often a critical misstep that businesses make. Paying attention to local search and developing a strategy to maximize your exposure in your own community is a critical component to small business marketing – and a big part of success. And, when it comes to overall SEO strategy, the experts (at least the ones that I work with) generally advise that you start in your own market, own that, and then move outward. Or, as my partner in crime, Michelle Lamar, likes to (incessantly) say “Concentrate to Dominate, Baby!”

Local search is growing by 50% every year and, according to the fine people at Orange Soda who created this killer infographic, there are some 1.5 billion local searches per MONTH in 2010. Are you doing all you can to make sure those searchers find your business?

Local Search - A Must For Success

These days, finding a dentist, a tailor, an accountant, or a coffee shop is most often accomplished by the click of a mouse. Consumers search online for just everything they want or need – and that’s typically how they find the businesses they will ultimately patronize. That means a marketing and SEO strategy that maximizes local search is key. Smart businesses are staking their claims on location based sites like Gowalla and Foursquare and maximizing brand awareness inexpensively and easily. Additionally, tools like Google Places, online registries, directories and review sites are great places to make sure your business has a professional presence.

Not yet exploring how local search can help your business? There’s no time like the present.

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  • Shelly Kramer

    I love Yelp, John, and submit reviews all the time. It’s always amazing to me how few businesses are paying attention to Yelp, too. Thanks for the read, stop by any time :))

  • Hi Shelly. I use the Yelp application on my Droid phone to find local restaurants and businesses. The cool thing about Yelp is the reviews. They really help you weed out the good from the bad!

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  • It is amazing how many small business want to be discovered online and they forget to think local first. Some of the healthcare providers and restauranteurs that I work with are amazed when they do not even show up in a local search. They forget to market themselves locally.

    The yellow pages as a directory of businesses is the past or at best a door stop. Embrace the power of the Internet to get your local customers!

  • You got me started. I'm on Google Places now. Others next.

    Gosh this was a good reminder for me Shelly, this is how I worked my prior biz but was having a hard time (internally) do it this time. This helped me get back on track. Cherry

  • ShellyKramer

    Go Cherry, Go Cherry ….. love it. And it's sooooo easy. Very proud of you :))

  • ShellyKramer

    Well, E, of course I agree. I spent the afternoon on Friday with a friend in a small town, talking about this very issue. And, by the time I was done, we had her on the map. It's easy to do, just takes the desire to learn/change with the times, and some time. As one geek to another, we'll get 'em. Eventually. Or, they'll go out of business!

  • mmangen

    Moving to Venice, FL where they are so “not social” has been driving me a bit batty – mainly because there are products/services that I want but I can't find because very few are on Google Local (is it places now?); Yelp, FourSquare, etc.

    Of course, I'm doing my part and adding them in as I go, when I have the ability to do so…but geesh people…..(ahem, particularly the City of Venice, FL) help out your new residents (and existing) by being able to be found!

  • ShellyKramer

    I smell “blog post” in here, MM. Get on it!!

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