Optimizing your website for E-commerce or optimizing your Ebay store for boardgames or shady herbal supplements is a great way to do business, but what about the traditional “brick and mortar” stores? Many businesses or services don’t want to provide an online service or as is often the case, they simply can’t. If you’re a plumber, SEO holds no help for you right?
If your business is geared directly for your area and your area alone, utilizing the benefits of “Local Search” will get the townfolk to notice you as they try to find answers to their problems online. Traditionally, local search was limited to the yellow pages. Buying ads in phone books or in the back of local publications and newspapers seemed to be the only way to promote your business without having to pony up the extra expense of a radio ad, a billboard or *cringe* a daytime TV ad.
Stacks of phone books left outside residences and businesses is a testament to the changing times. I remember when I stopped using a the yellowpages because I couldn’t find anything I wanted as quick as an internet search. I had to think like an SAT exam as I tried to force my brain to think of synonyms for clothing and trash services:
Please choose the best answer:
“Clothing” is related to “Apparal” and “Trash” is related to …
As your flipping through the yellowpages between “R” “W” “T” and “P” someone would already be on the phone with a company because they searched for “trash service in Denver CO.” The speed and ease of also flipping through microprint of thin white pages is reduced by searching for a particular name in a particular city.
Be Aware of Your Competition
- Use Google Maps to find who else competes with you for certain services and you’ll see what work you need to do to start thinking more seriously about local search.
- Look at what sites rank at the top on the left
- Look at who is using local pay-per-click and ranking on the right hand site
Get a sense of your competition and what you want to do to squash them. Find the keywords you want to be known for when someone is looking for your product or service in your city. Add those keywords and your city state to your page titles and H1 tags.
Submit your company’s listing to some top directories:
Don’t forget the Internet Yellow Pages:
You can see how this can become serious business for those companies that realize that their competition isn’t doing these things to promote their business. Once you begin surveying your local online landscape and begin putting stakes in the ground, you are ready to begin building a large internet marketing campaign that can be tied into your other marketing efforts in print, radio and *cringe* TV.