Posts Tagged ‘Local Search’
Tampa Restaurants, grab your listing in Bing
Last Updated on Friday, 4 September 2009 02:17 Written by Mike Friday, 24 July 2009 12:56
Last month, Microsoft unleashed its brand new search engine onto the market. It’s called Bing i, contrary to the name, you do have to take it seriously. Even if you’re not planning to give up your Google search habit, you’ll still want to familiarize yourself with Bing to understand how you can help your site rank in their local search index. To learn a bit more about the engine, you can read about the keynote Q&A Microsoft president Dr. Qi Lu gave at last week’s Search Marketing Advanced show in Seattle.
However, what I really wanted to see was how Bing handles local search.
Microsoft has never been known for the creating the hippest search products, so I was curious to see how Bing was handling local search right out of the gate. A search for [Tampa, FL steak house] brings up all the usual suspects that my palette remembers here in Tampa. You’ll notice that the search engine results page (SERP) looks pretty rudimentary compared to Google and Yahoo! (not much more exciting than a Yellow Pages search), however, I really like the refinement options Bing offers on the left-hand side. They take an approach similar to Ask.com where they allow you to sort your search by Rating, Price, Cuisine, Atmosphere, Reservations, Payment and Parking options.
Once you refine your search, Bing allows you to click through to individual business listings. These individual pages give local searchers handy business “scorecards”, 1-click driving directions (a pretty awesome feature), a 3D Bird’s Eye View of the business in Maps, customer reviews, and more.
Why did I point all the refinement features and options Bing shows users? Because it’s important to know what users are seeing so that you can fill out your own local search listings to take advantage of all the refinement options.
So let’s do it.
To list your local business in Bing, head to the Bing Local Listing Center. From there, you’ll be able to check to see if you already have a local listing set up. If you do, you can modify it. If not, now’s the perfect time to create one.
Once you start creating/modifying your account. Bing will ask you to log in using your Windows ID. If you don’t have one, you’ll have to create one. From there, you’ll be asked to enter in your contact and business information, as well as a laundry list of supplemental information like additional phone numbers, Web pages, email address, hours of operation, payment methods, photos, etc. There’s also a long section for additional information like your company tagline, business description, brands carried (if applicable), specialties, affiliations, languages spoken, parking options, etc. It’s always in your best interest to create as complete a profile as you can.
From there, you can select up to six prioritized categories to place your business in based on associated keywords. You’ll also be able to supply information about features, cuisine type, prices, atmosphere, etc. Make sure you fill these out the best you can so that you can take advantage of Bing’s great local search refinement options. If you list it as an option, you will show up for it when a user looks for it!
Once that’s complete, Bing will ask you to review your business listing on the map, fixing the pushpin locator, if necessary. If everything looks good, submit your listing and you’re done. That’s it! Freel free to congratulate yourself on a well used 10-15 minutes.
It’s really important that you take the time to complete accurate business listings in Google, Yahoo, Bing and the other third-party service providers. The more accurate information there is about your company out there, the better chances your customers are going to find you. And when it only takes a few minutes, is there really any excuse not to give your Web site the best possible chance at ranking?
No. There’s not.
Tampa SEO Consultant – Local Search 101
Last Updated on Tuesday, 17 January 2012 05:33 Written by Mike Friday, 24 July 2009 12:37
For any local brick and mortar store or service provider, it is important to submit your business to the local business directories. A complete local business profile on Google, Yahoo, and Bing’s local business directories can bring in high converting traffic to your business.
Claim Your Listing!
The first thing you will want to do is sign up for Google LBC, Yahoo LBC, i MSN LBC and claim your listing. By claiming your listing you verify that you are the businesses owner. For Google they allow you to verify your listing by calling your phone and entering the pin code they provide, or you can wait for a pin number to be mailed. Yahoo & Bing will manually verify the business listing by mailing you a letter with a PIN code.
Local SEO Consultant – Local Search help
Last Updated on Tuesday, 17 January 2012 07:49 Written by Mike Thursday, 2 July 2009 03:59
More and more consumers are using search engines to find local merchants. Are you well positioned and easily found? If the answer is no, I can help.
Search engines are replacing the phone book in almost every household across America. Most brick and mortar businesses from doctors and lawyers, to craftsmen and service providers need help achieving good results from search engine submission.
This is where I come in, this is where I shine above the other SEO experts. I provide ‘localized’ SEO expertise. This is an often overlooked classification of SEO or search engine marketing campaign.
Just because your business is listed in the search engines does not mean consumers are going to find it. You have to know WHAT people are searching for, WHY they are searching, and how to deliver your businesses sales pitch in front of your competition.
Local SEO is a highly underrated aspect of the SEO/SEM industry. It is also one of the most lucrative for store owners and service providers. Achieving good results is not an extremely difficult task. This is why you should be talking to me.
Are you using MySpace or Facebook for Localized Traffic?
Last Updated on Thursday, 2 July 2009 05:37 Written by Mike Wednesday, 17 June 2009 03:27
MySpace and CitySearch recently made big waves in the Local Search and Social Media community with the announcement of MySpace Local. The two companies agreed to a revenue share but no details were released as to what percentages each company would receive. MySpace quickly stressed that this was a completely new revenue source for the company and was not only seen as great opportunity for both companies, but one of the few advantages MySpace would have over rising competitor Facebook.
The more connected your business’ social pages are (by customers, friends, vendors, etc.) the better your chances are to be found by a potential customer. These pages are also indexed by Google and can definitely help drive traffic to your social pages and website.
A business can create a page for their business and post events and offers and the friends/fans of that business will get an update. Without spending astronomical advertising figures, a business has great potential to bring their brand to mind repeatedly.
Local business’ are appealing to the local community
There are oodles of people online who need your services. These people will never ever consult a phone book, Google is their information resource. The more times they see your local business’ name while they are online, the more likely they’ll recall that same business if asked “Do you know of a business that does ___________?” Everyone wants that valuable Word of Mouth advertising.
This becomes a delivery vehicle for the service industry which includes: landscapers, plumbers, AC repairmen, roofers and any other type of service contractor. In reality, these type of business’ are very light on marketing and are even less knowledgeable about Internet marketing. However, the ones that do a little at a time to show where they are and what they are up to will get their hands on a new sector of business.
Being Passively Active on Facebook or MySpace
If you are bringing your business online in the example of a MySpace/Facebook page. Here are some tips that will help generate some online recognition.
1. Invite your employees to become friends/fans of your business – You can search to see who has listed themselves as your employee. Let them know of the companies page.
2. Be active in the community – The things you contribute to in your town should be listed as an event on your page.
3. Link to other sites – If you are sponsoring an organization, talk about it and link to the organization’s website and put their contact information on your pages as well. Remember linking out to trustworthy sites helps establish an authority for your own site.
4. Invite people to review your business – “Search for us on Facebook” is an easy line to incorporate into your current marketing efforts. It will speak to those who are on there already.
5. Contribute daily – If you can, post something useful, insightful or comment on others social platforms. Keep your Brand out there and eventually you will see more people visit your page. Any type of social media marketing effort will take time to build momentum. It is NOT an overnight success story. No matter how many times that ShamWow guy says it is. Trust me on this.
There is a lot a business can do locally without the expense of TV or radio ads.
How it fits with Search Engine Optimization
Social Media Marketing is a relative of SEO, but it is still not pure SEO. I would miss the mark in giving you this information without telling you how it helps with your SEO efforts. First off, adding your business to a facebook page will help bring another avenue of your name to the Search Engine Results Page (SERP). Anytime you can bring another site talking about you and point to you, it’s a blessing in your SEO efforts.
Of course what’s the point of blogging about this unless I had a solution for you. So here goes:
How to Get Local Traffic From Your Pages
1. Set up a blog on your website. Even if you hate ‘bloggers’ it’s time to face facts. Blogging is sharing, and the more people that share your information, the better your bottom line will be. Write about the keywords you want to rank for, also include local information in the title as much as possible. Don’t have a clue on what or how to write a blog? You can hire a ghost writer for cheap. Link these posts to your facebook page via Simply RSS application. Everytime you post a blog, it will echo in facebook, and across all your friends on facebook as well.
2. Network your social network pages up the wazoo. The more profile pages that link to your page the more likely your page is to get noticed.
3. Join popular groups, have stimulating dialogs and conversations with the community. Try not to be boring by contributing more than just an advertising message. I read somewhere that only 20-30% of your social media participation should be about pushing your own product. Help others when you can. Spread other non-competing companies message if they have a great product that people should know about.
If you have any more ideas I would love to hear and share them.
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