While experts have been predicting local search would accelerate for the last few years, it is finally gaining traction. Borrell Associates estimated an $8.5 billion search spend in 2007 for local online advertising, which includes local search, local banner ads and local video.
In 2008, Borrell estimates the local search portion will account for nearly 50 percent of the total local online advertising spend, which is projected at $12.6 billion for this year.
Beyond the ad spend, there are two other reasons for revving up your local search presence in 2008: explosive growth in local search and the increased visibility potential due to universal search and personalization.
The importance of local listingsEvery company needs a local listing, regardless of whether it sells locally, nationally or internationally. Here's how you can improve your results on Google Maps and Yahoo Local, using similar tactics on Live Search, Ask and other local directories.
The most important part is entering your business information for the business profile. Gather your information ahead and follow these steps:
Google will activate your profile with a phone call or a postcard, which is necessary to ensure the person who entered the data is actually employed by the business. Your business profile will appear in Google Maps as a local listing and can come up for local search queries in Google's general search index as well.
Google maps advertisingGoogle Maps displays local business ads, integrating the local match options from Google AdWords into Google Maps
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Great Post. There are some local companies offering "Local Search Engines" to fill the gap of what the Google's and Yahoo's supposedly can't deliver. Some are the local telephone Companies and Yellow Pages Company for example. One such site is even developed strictly for the CIty of Surprise AZ. I don't see these sites taking over though. I think The big Search Engines will offer something comparable. We are already seeing it with local.google and yahoo.local etc.
Hi Jason,Glad you had the opportunity to see the importance of a business listing in local search first hand. As you say, it's important for businesses large and small. Can also help you cover more ground in universal search results.
CB,This is great information for marketers and businesses ( small and large). I spent the last 3 weeks in Manhattan---and it was cold. When I needed a coffee or diner, and didn't feel like taking a guess which block to venture down--- all I had to do was open my Google maps on my blackberry, do a search for a business ( Starbucks) and if a business is smart and using google maps, all of the info about your company will be displayed and google will walk you right to where you want to go. Yes, one better optimize for local search :-)Thanks CB!
Hi James, Thanks for bringing managedq.com to my attention.I queried "local search tips" and came up with one good result (MHO), which was a pst by Michael Gray on Feb 5 saying he was going to interview search experts all week on local search. This is current and the list of experts was impressive, so this listing was relevant for me. The rest were all either old or irrelevant (for me). So many new SEs and people get confused just trying to remember them. When Collarity came out, I thought it was great (ditto for Rollyo). But I never did use them a lot. As far as SEs go, I still like Google despite sometimes getting irrelevant results. To get what you want, you have to be a skillful searcher. I'm learning. But thanks for bringing this new SE to my attention.
Thanks, Colleen, glad you could use this info. Local search listings are important for everyone these days.
This is compilation of terrific local search tips - thanks much for sharing.
My favorite new search engine is ManagedQ. To learn the latest SEO tips, you should do a ManagedQ cross-search on SEO Tech Mechanics
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