How Local Businesses Can Benefit From Search
Small businesses today may struggle with the changing landscape of search and local advertising. Yellow Pages, mail, and commercials are no longer the main vehicle for attracting customers. However, one valuable tool that many local businesses miss out on is search. A recent study looked at local search-- here are five reasons why it's so important, as summarized by Search Engine Land.
Consumers with PCs, smartphones and tablets do more than 21 local searches per week, or an average of three searchers a day. This compares to five local searches a week for consumers with PCs only. Therefore, as more consumers purchase smartphones and tablets, we can expect local search queries to increase, both across devices and overall.
Searches via tablets – which have only been available for a few years – are already being made by 20%-40% of those making purchases in each category. It’s clear that no matter what the business category, small businesses need to invest in advertising that reaches consumers across the growing number of digital platforms.
As local search continues to soar and more options are available in the marketplace, consumers are increasingly looking for more comprehensive business information. Consumers are looking for an increasing amount of information (such as prices and specials) across various business categories. Small businesses of all types need to ensure that comprehensive information about their business is available in order to be considered by today’s local searcher.
Consumers are less likely to travel far for basic and regular services, but more willing to venture longer for services they don’t use often. Small businesses should not allow themselves to feel tied to a specific local area. Instead, they should test varying boundaries to see if aspects of their business are notable enough to drive customer traffic outside their area. Each business category and individual business will realize different results.
Avid local search users are more likely to engage in a variety of local activities, including patronizing local stores or shopping using a local app than average users. They are also more likely to check in to a store, purchase a daily deal, scan a QR code, download a mobile app, and click on a mobile ad.Avid users represent a significant share of today’s local search activity presaging the types of consumer behaviors we can increasingly expect from current average users in the months and years to come. All small businesses should keep a close eye on the changing face of local search to ensure that they can adequately attract new and existing customers.