In an age where everything is at our fingertips on our devices, customers have become more demanding and often get frustrated when something doesn’t appear as expected and brands can miss out on customers to competitors that do this right.
As someone in the digital space this is frustrating but I look for other ways to find what I’m after, but customers aren’t always so forgiving. This is even more important in Local search where an immediate answer is crucial to that moment and any decisions from that. If someone is looking for a Dumpling restaurant (worth 27,100 searches per month) but can’t find your business when they do a local search, they are going to go straight for the competition if they don’t know about your business already.
This means that getting local right can directly impact your bottom line, with over a third of mobile searches related to local (Google) , it’s a massive audience that can’t be ignored. In addition 50% of smartphone users who search for a local business will go in store within 24 hours of making a search. Think of your online presence similar to the shopfront of the business. If the wrong name is on the sign outside the business and the trading hours sign isn’t correct, customers are less likely to want to shop there. Therefore, your digital storefront should be just as , if not more important to target new customers and drive them in store.
In addition to traditional searches on desktop and mobile, voice searches are more likely to local focused. Brightlocal in their annual survey found that 58% of customers in the survey had used voice to find information about a local business. This means that being local ready is not only important today but is important moving forward as voice becomes a more natural form of search for users. This is also not limited to mobiles, but in car voice, smart speakers and other devices that allow potential customers more opportunities to connect with local businesses.
The fundamentals are often looked over and can make or break a potential customer interaction, simple information such as your Business name, Phone Number, Trading Hours and Address is often inaccurate. This can hamper local search performance from a Search Engine perspective as well causing customer frustration which will give a negative brand experience.
Therefore it has never been more pertinent to have your Local SEO fundamentals in place for the increasingly localised search world.