Local search marketing focuses on elevating the visibility of a local business’ presence in the search engines so that can be found earlier and more often in the search results – and clicked more frequently – by people who search online for local businesses to buy from.
And according to a study by the Kelsey Group, the local search marketing field has a growing demand to meet. The study found that 97% of American consumers use the Internet to find local business information – of whom:
90% use search engines
48% use the Internet Yellow Pages
42% use comparison shopping sites
24% use vertical sites
Nine out of ten American consumers who use the Internet to find local business information use search engines to do so. Clearly the importance of local search marketing to the success of a business-to-consumer (B2C) sales model cannot be underestimated.
Local Search Marketing in the Business-to-Business Space
It’s worth noting that the importance of local search marketing doesn’t end with B2C sales. Business-to-business (B2B) sales are also becoming increasingly dependent upon search engine usage, as a study by Nielsen/Webvisible found that 41% of B2B decision-makers use search engines to find local businesses from which to buy the products and services they need to keep their businesses running.
Big Numbers Back up the Importance of Local Search Marketing
The people behind the search engines are also no strangers to the numbers or to the importance of search marketing at the local business level. Google recently announced that 20% of all Google searches have a local intent behind them (that number climbs to about 33% for Google searches via the mobile Web). And while that does not necessarily mean that two out of every ten Google searches are made by people looking for localbusinessÂ information, it does mean that importance of local search marketing cannot be denied.
Buzz about Local Search Marketing Isn’t Just Talk
If all the talk about the importance of local search marketing seems to you to be just that – talk – then take a look at the numbers below. They are taken straight from Google’s Keyword Selection Tool, which, among other things, reports on local (and global) monthly search volumes:
6,600 local monthly searches for “lawyer Vancouver”
6,600 local monthly searches for “spa Vancouver
4,400 local monthly searches for “dentist Vancouver”
4,400 local monthly searches for “insurance Vancouver”
1,600 local monthly searches for “gym Vancouver”
Although the example highlights just five different search terms people use every month to find local businesses in just one city, it’s important to understand that there are hundreds or thousands of additional keywords that people search for every month – many with similar or higher search volumes. And that’s true of hundreds or thousands of cities around the world.
Local Search Marketing Puts Your Business in Front of People Who Take Action
People who use search engines to find local businesses and local business information do not search just for the sake of searching. They search for the sake of finding. And when they find, they take action, as the Nielsen/WebVisible study cited earlier found:
70% will call the phone number on a website
60% have referred a business they found on the Internet to a friend
52% always or often research online first, then follow up with an offline purchase from a local business
14% will send a business they found online an email
11% will fill out an online form
Obviously the rate of conversion of people searching for local business information means that local search marketing doesn’t just expose a business to a big crowd, it exposes a business to a big crowd with a big appetite that it wants or needs to satisfy that appetite quickly.
Whether your business is a major corporation with locations in cities all across the country or all over the world or it’s a small business with a single location, local search marketing is absolutely essential to its success if it depends at all on local leads and customers.
Dawson Barber invites you to learn more about online marketing and local business marketing by visiting him at his website – Local Business Marketing Solutions – which houses lots of useful information, how-to’s, and videos and where you can also download a free copy of a Local Search Marketing ROI Calculator as well as ta free copy of the new ebook “Local Search Marketing: Let the Power of the Search Engines Drive Your Business’ Growth.”