How can a local business get on the first page of Google? This question is one of the most asked about, and at the same time, one that is most misunderstood by business owners, so I will do my best to answer it in this article.
Most business owners are not very knowledgeable about how the Internet can help their local business, and therefore they tend to shy away from it, but the truth is that unless they are prepared for the golden opportunity that is being handed to them, on a plate by Google and the other search engines, the chances are that their business will not grow, and could indeed fail.
For some time now Google have known that people have changed the way that they look for services in their local areas, and now they search for things on the internet, rather than looking in the local newspapers for them, and this can be proved by the noticeable drop in newspaper and Yellow pages advertising.
Because of this Google have changed the way that it gives the people that are searching for services, search results that are showing local results first, giving local businesses an advantage over their competitors.
In recent years there has also been a sharp increase in the number business directories, and most of them allow businesses to list their business for free, of course some will also try to sell you a premium position, but this is not necessary.
Google have now introduced their own version of business listings, and have called it Google places, and you can also list your business for free in it.
Both the local business listings and Google places work closely together, and therefore many business listings have been picked up by Google, so there are a lot local businesses that have a listing on Google places and have not claimed their listing, as they don’t even know that they have one.
These local listings, together with Google places are very powerful, and give the business owner the chance to get their business onto the first page of Google in their local area, as well as the other main search engines.
There are only seven places available on the first page of Google, so therefore the listings will need to be properly done, to give the best chance of getting on the first page.
Combining the above strategy with your own local business website, and linking the local listings, as well as the Google Places listing to the website, can result in not only having your local Google places listing on the first page, but also your business website showing in the organic listings below the Google places listings, giving you double the chance of being found.
For this to happen though your website will have to be well optimized (meaning that it will come up for several search phrases), if you don’t know how to do this then it’s worth spending some money to get it done properly.
I hope that you are now getting the idea on how a local business can get onto the first page of Google in your local area.
The Internet has made it an even smaller world by creating a global community built on a network of links. While it is a common occurrence to communicate with a friend or co-work across the global via the Internet, consumers are turning to local search results to assist in their next buying decision. The only question now is, will consumers within your marketplace find your local business when it comes time for them to use your product of service?
Google local search platform is making it extremely easy for consumers to find relevant, local information regarding their search inquiry. In fact, Google Places has created millions of business listings for local businesses in their effort to provide relevant search results to their users. All the owner needs to do is claim their local listing and optimize if for maximum results. No web design experience or budget required to have your business listed in Google and other search engines.
During the early days of the Internet it was required that local businesses built a website and spend time or money on getting a good ranking within the search engines. Today, it is much easier to get your business listed in front of local consumers. Local search marketing should begin with claiming and optimizing your local business listing on the number of business directories such as Google Places.
Here are just a few benefits of listing your business in online directories.
- Search Result Listing – While phone books are still in use (often as a booster seat or door jam) more and more people are turning to the search engines to find local businesses. Claiming your business’ listing and optimizing it for maximum results allows searches to quickly determine where your business is located and provides contact information. Often, consumers do not want to travel too far out of their way to purchase whatever it is they are seeking. Google’s local search platform makes it easy for consumers to find the physical location of a business serving the local community.
- Social Proof – Social proof has long been a determining factor when consumers are making a buying decision. Having a local search marketing in place for your local business is a strategy that can boost sales without increasing your advertising budget. If your business provides exceptional products and services it is wise to encourage your happy clients to leave a testimonial.
- Having a local business listing appear on the search engines that is full of satisfied customer testimonials is a surefire way to generate new business. It also provides an opportunity to hear what your customers are not happy with and ways to improve their experience with your local business.
- Mobile Ready – With the popularity of mobile devices such as the Smartphones and the iPads, it is becoming increasingly important for local business to be mobile ready and this is as simple as claiming your local business listing. Over 50% of new Internet connections are through the use of a mobile device and many of these devices have the option of pulling GPS information which becomes extremely useful to the user on the go. Having your local business listed in online directories provides for a greater chance that your business will show up in GPS devices in cars and definitely within the search results from Google, Yahoo and Bing. While mobile marketing is a subject on it’s own, having your local business listed in the online directories is a great starting point.