Google search is the new Yellow Pages.  This is a reality in 2012, and for a company of any kind to succeed, an online presence is extremely important.  This is especially true for retail or other ‘brick and mortar’ businesses navigating a difficult economy.  Search engine optimization can put your business on Google’s map (literally).

The reality is that the majority of potential clients in any given city find most ‘brick and mortar’ stores through a simple word search on Google or comparable search engines.  For instance, a woman looking to find a salon may search for “salons in Philadelphia” or “what is the best salon Philly.”  A woman trying to find a good Thai restaurant nearby may use, “good Thai restaurant in Center City.”  We call this sort of search a “natural language” search (another example, and one of the most popular searches on Google: “what is the meaning of life?”) and it’s more and more commonly used as people become accustomed to using search engines as an information source.

Geo-targeting

Conveniently, even if the woman in our hypothetical scenario doesn’t include her city’s name, the search will still feature results in her area code thanks to Google Local.  This algorithm, recently implemented by Google, lists 7 local businesses on the first results page of every query.  These seven results also provide easily accessed contact info, location information, and user reviews.  If searched on a smart phone, this means the telephone number, or a map to your location is accessible in a single click, with red markers representing the physical location of each business.

With search engine optimization, your retail, restaurant, salon, or pilates studio could appear higher on the list of local businesses on the results page.  So, when a large mass of tourists come in for a busy weekend or new college students arriving for the fall, their smart phone searches will highlight your business.  Not only will this lead new clients visiting your website, it will provide them easy access to contact your retail location, or stop by to take a look.  These interactions are incredibly valuable for local businesses, and go far beyond the Yellow Pages of our previous generations.

We live in a rapidly digitizing world, and the more prevalent a business becomes online, the more frequently people will “discover” your business. Search engine optimization coupled with positive Google Local or Yelp reviews are a source for business growth that should not be underestimated.

If you are thinking about adding internet marketing to your marketing campaign

We invite you to give us a call.  Let us show you how having a targeted and increased web presence can help you attract more foot traffic and more potential customers.  We handle Google Local optimization, reputation management, search engine optimization, and geotargeted search for mobile devices.  Want to make sure that your store, restaurant, or office is found when people are searching for your competitors?  It’s no accident that they show up on the first page of Google and you do not.  Contact us today, we can show you how we can help you get there.

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