The powerful and ever-dominate search engine we all know as Google has started a program called “Google Local Business Center.” Even though this program has been around for a little while, many people have yet to realize it, or fail to understand the true power and importance that these listings could have on their business. Having your website and business listed in Google’s Local Business Listings can be the greatest form of free advertising that your business has ever experienced. Many people are missing a few key factors in this new marketing medium that could help excel their business past their competition.
The first thing that stuck out to me about Google Local Business Listing is that they normally appear at the top of the search engine result page, above the natural search engine listings! This is just like getting sponsored or PPC results like Google AdWords, except for free! Who in their right minds would pass on this deal? Google “scraped” this data to begin with from their huge database of web pages that they routinely crawl. They compiled the information by relating the website’s theme and any listed physical addresses that were posted on these web pages. They also cross-referenced the data with other authority sites’ databases to match information and be sure it was correct.
If for some reason your business and/or website does not show in Google Local Business Listings, do not worry. Google has made it super-easy for you to go in and create your own listing for free! Do a quick search for “Google Local” and you’ll find it quick. If your business and website is already listed, but you would like to change or edit the information listed, you can do this as well by “claiming” your listing. To claim your listing Google will need to verify your physical address and/or business phone number by a process explained on their website. If you have any concerns pertaining to wherever and how to use scraping google search results, you can call us at the webpage.
One you have created or claimed your Google Local Business Listing you can go in and change your description, select different business categories or services, establish your business hours, and you can even create coupons with expiration dates to help urge customers to buy your products or services! Another great thing about Google Local Business is that it is tied in with Google Maps and shows the location of your business on the map! You can even manage your listing and edit the location on the map if for some reason it is showing in the wrong location. The power of this program on your local search engine marketing results is absolutely phenomenal!
Yahoo and BING (formerly MSN) also have similar forms of local business listings that you should take advantage of. A business can never get enough advertising. Even if you happen to be one of the lucky ones with more business than you can handle, you should be thankful first of all, and secondly you never know when things will change so it is always good to maintain your marketing. Some say that the best advertising is free advertising and I could not agree more, especially when it comes to these new local search engine marketing methods.
Myself and my business partners agree that these type of local search results will be slowly replacing the phone book. That may be a pretty bold statement, but with the way that technology has been advancing rapidly over the last two decades, it is hard to deny that we are moving more and more to a “paperless” world. Even if the search engines don’t completely replace the phone books, there is no doubt that the number of people using computers to seek local products and services that they need is increasing every day. Don’t fall behind your competition by not being listed in the search engines. Dominate your market by utilizing local search engine marketing.