As any small business owner will tell you, most companies do the majority of their business with local clients and customers. For example, if you are in the roofing industry, there is little incentive for a customer who needs to have his or her roof repaired to call a company that is several hours away from their home. Instead, customers in this scenario almost always call a roofing company in their local area.
For this reason, making an appeal to your local customers is the best strategy for small businesses to build a more robust profile. One of the most effective ways to achieve visibility is to implement local search engine optimization. Local search engine optimization, or local SEO, takes advantage of Google’s algorithms to place a company at the top of the search engine results for some of the most frequently searched business-related terms.
Experts indicate that most web browsers rarely make it past the first page of results after conducting a search on Google. Finding ways to reach that first page, then, is extremely important for local companies wanting to improve visibility in their local area.
In the past, web designers took advantage of keywords to help augment the traffic of a company’s website. However, Google recently redesigned their search algorithm to eliminate websites that predominantly focused on keywords. The search engine now values interactive website features and helpful, well-written content.
Using Google Places for Business
Google Places for Business is one of the search engine company’s most innovative platforms for businesses who want to build a more substantial customer base via the Internet.
Google Places for Businesses operates like an online phone book for local business owners. Unlike a conventional phone book listing, though, which only lists the company’s name, address, and telephone number, a Google Places listing offers access to the company’s website, pictures of the company’s building, and a few introductory paragraphs from the local company’s staff, describing to Internet engine users what makes this particular business helpful and unique. Of course, Google Places listings also list the name, address, and telephone number for a local business.
Benefits of Google Places for Business
The biggest advantage to adding your business to Google’s Places index is that it doing so automatically adds your company to the website’s Google Maps application. This visual platform gives web users a map of their local area. The map will have a destination ping that indicates where your small business is in relation to their home or other local points of interest.
Prospective customers will be able to use Google’s Maps feature to get directions to your business. Creating a Google Places profile, then, is an excellent way to help every customer who searches for your business online find your company’s location.
Because Google Places is integrated into Google’s services, a Google Places for Business listing will automatically be placed at the top of the search results for any term relating to your company or your company’s services. Oftentimes, the first thing a web browser sees after performing a Google search is a Google Places profile.