If you’re looking to improve your marketing strategy, focus on your local business listings first of all. As 78% of location-based mobile searches result in an offline purchase, your listings should be the most important part of your local SEO strategy.
This demonstrates how important it is for companies to have business listings on maps with accurate detailed information.
Here are 4 steps companies should take into consideration when trying to attract customers straight from searches.
- Start with an audit: check the relevance of your company’s data on maps and other sources
In order to manage your listings effectively, first of all, you have to know how you’re currently performing. For instance, check if there are any mistakes or missing information, or locations that are not listed at all or duplicated. You should also identify how your business is performing compared to competitors, whether your listings are ranked high on generic local searches.
A thorough brand audit will help benchmark your brand’s online visibility so that you can make improvements.
If a company has tens or hundreds of branches (like banks, retail, state institutions, post offices, etc.) it is extremely difficult and time-consuming to go through each source manually to look for data discrepancies. RocketData offers free brand audits to help businesses get a better understanding of how their locations are performing online.
This is the only way a business can see where the problems lie so as to then take important steps to solve them accordingly.
2. Claim your business listings submitting data to sites (search engines, maps, navigators, directories, etc.)
If customers can’t trust the information on your business listings then how are they trust your services?
Moreover, it is very important to claim all your listings, even if they belong to the same address. What does this mean exactly?
Generally speaking, a business can only have one listing for each address, but there are exceptions to this rule. Some institutions can have more than one listing at a single location.
Thus, financial organizations can have multiple listings at the same location: a single office can have its own listing, an ATM listing, and even listings for professional services provided within the branch such as a financial audit or investment services. A hospital, for example, would have separate listings for the hospital itself, each department, and all the doctors who work there.
As there are several different customer interactions and needs in these types of businesses, you should create all your listings and maintain accurate data — this way you’ll build trust with search engines.
By failing to claim them, even if they belong to the same address, you can be losing out on thousands of potential customers.
Сlaiming all your listings and keeping the information accurate, you’ll improve your listing credibility and search engine rankings.
3. Create your strategy — optimize your listings
Focus your efforts on optimizing your business data for how consumers are searching online locally today: they are using voice searches and “near me” queries to ask more specific questions and to find the exact product, service or place.
This requires companies to think differently about their optimization (site and listings) as consumer questions have become more conversational. For example, “near me” searches that include the terms “can I buy” or “can I visit” have increased by 500% over the last two years. There has also been a growth in consumers using the terms “open” + “now” + “near me” in search queries (“restaurants near me open now”) — these searches have increased by 200%.
Thus, for consumers, searching is not just about finding a product or service anymore. It is about finding a specific thing within the indicated radius at a certain time. So, if you want to target consumers more effectively, you will need to optimize your listings to take into account the rise in “near me” queries and voice searches.
Do this by adding photos, choosing the right category keywords, using Google Posts on GMB listings, responding to reviews, and answering users’ questions.
If your business is multi-locational turn to a listing management platform, like RocketData.io, to ensure both consistency and accuracy at every location from a single platform. This not only monitors the listings for inaccuracies, but it can also put your company in the best possible position for consumers who want to find and choose your brand.
4. Facebook Business Page: create local pages for every location
Until recently, most multi-location companies didn’t maintain separate corporate (“main”) and individual location pages on social media. There was a single national brand account, and social posts were typically generated from this page. However, all that has started to change — more and more enterprises are creating local pages.
Now users show a preference for locally relevant pages vs. national or corporate pages in social networks. The majority of brand engagements on Facebook takes place on local pages. Social media management platform SOCi examined internal data and compared Facebook corporate page activity with roughly 2,500 local pages for the same brands. It reported that 72% of all consumer engagement and 66% of content impressions take place on local pages.
So, the fact that local pages are getting more engagement than corporate brand pages proves that local content will help you to grow your business, and thus make it more profitable.
In addition to controlling your business “visibility”, Facebook pages have great SEO. Creating a page can help you reach a higher ranking quicker even than your website will.