Local Search Column

Location-based marketing: What works and what doesn’t in a campaign

Marketers continue to invest their digital dollars in mobile advertising with campaigns utilizing location data to improve their relevance and effectiveness. BIA Advisory Services shows that marketers will spend over $26 billion in 2019 on campaigns built from location-based data. However, not all geotargeting campaigns are created equal. Here’s what makes for successful location-based marketing, …

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Hooray! Google My Business descriptions are back

Google My Business (GMB) recently brought back the business description field, which has caused those of us working in the local search industry to say “hooray” and raise eyebrows. Here are a few things you should know about the description and some useful tips to help you make the most of this new change. 1. …

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Why we need to fight fake reviews

I have a growing concern about fake online content. Last year, I wrote an article about eight different types of fake content and how the epidemic would hurt local search. It seems the problem is continuing to get worse, much worse. Perhaps the most outrageous example of fake online content in the past year is the …

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6 smart e-commerce lessons to boost local business

E-commerce and local search might seem to be exclusive functions. Local search is typically associated with store locations and driving offline purchases, while e-commerce usually involves online transactions. But recently the crowded e-commerce space has led online-only stores to encroach on the turf of local stores and services. Amazon opened a bookstore in Seattle and …

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Are Yelp ads worth paying for? How to figure it out

As someone who works regularly with small businesses, I am frequently asked: “Should I advertise on Yelp”? Since this came up again recently, I thought I would share my insights and experience in hopes my answer helps someone else. Yelps makes it hard The last person asking about Yelp owns a European auto repair garage in …

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Google’s growth in online local reviews continues to dominate, but…

The growing importance of reputation management in business growth needs no introduction. If you want a single statistic to showcase why every business person and their dog encourages great reviews more than ever, it’s this: 85 percent of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. That statistic is from a recent piece of …

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Why entities may power the future of location-based data

Over the past decade, Google has continued to increase the amount of personal data they collect from people querying information or supplying data to them. A story on Quartz brought this practice to light last year when a researcher discovered Google tracking location information from Android devices even if they have location services disabled: Since the …

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How does it all work?

If your business sells internationally, then your search engine optimization (SEO) efforts need to operate around the world, and international SEO can be complicated. Multiple countries, multiple languages, and often, multiple languages within a given country. It’s easy to get tied up in knots. And even easier to confuse a search engine and create a …

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How do you optimize content for a voice-first world?

For years, the use of voice search and voice assistants to answer questions has been on the rise. According to Google, 20 percent of all mobile search queries are voice search, and that number will only go up. Voice recognition technology is getting better and better: Google’s technology is now 95 percent accurate. Yet for …

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Are you getting credit for all of your organic visits from GMB?

As search engine optimization specialists (SEOs), we all have one goal: to increase organic traffic for our clients. We optimize signals to increase the relevancy of our clients’ (or our own) sites so more people find them and check them out. But what if some of the traffic (or even a lot of it) isn’t …

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A key ingredient for successful local search results

Customer loyalty is often overlooked in local search. The thinking is that people are searching for new places to shop or for things they don’t know about already. If they were a regular or loyal customer, they wouldn’t need to search. But that’s not entirely true. Due to the  “Google effect” or digital amnesia, consumers …

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Local search industry optimistic about 2018 — but less likely to hire

The local search landscape is a constantly evolving beast, regularly changing at the whim of Google My Business and, more and more these days, reliant on consumer reviews. As such, the folks working in this niche of the wider SEO industry have had to be quick on their feet to adapt to changes. It’s no …

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