Local SEO is an extremely important aspect of your Digital Marketing Strategy, but one which is often overlooked and underused. Google statistics show that 50% of customers who carry out a local search on their mobile device, visit their preferred store within one day. Likewise, research shows that almost 80% of local searches will end in a purchase being made in store.
Research like this demonstrates, just how important and effective local SEO is, to secure business in your area. However, many businesses fall shy of implementing an organic, local SEO strategy and isn’t focus on developing a design-oriented website. While both are key to securing business, your website must be visible in local search results, in order to attract customers.
Let’s look at a couple of key trends which are set to affect local SEO this year...
Although Augmented Reality this is something usually related with gaming and archaeology, Google is beginning to incorporate these aspects into local searches, to give the user a more accurate and meaningful search result.
This means that rather than just having the ‘local pack’ (where businesses will appear above organic search results), Google now also includes detailed visual elements such as images of the searched location, food and drinks served (if searching for local eatery’s) and so on. This could prove to be a particularly effective method of engaging customers and persuading them to choose you, over the competition.
Your organic SEO won’t simply improve if you add a video, however what video content can do is improve user experience and Google’s perception of your website, through reduced bounce rates and increased click-through rates, which ultimately may improve your ROI.
While local information about your business and services can prove successful for converting local searches into real in-store sales, it is certainly likely that these results would be even more efficient, if real-time information was to be included with details such as which products are stocked and whether these are available to buy from the customers nearest store.
Recently, Google has been researching the effectiveness of Local Inventory Ads, which would give businesses the opportunity to promote products and provide information on pricing and whether these are available in store. Google has collaborated with an emerging company named NearSt to deliver a live inventory to customers, allowing them to ‘check before they travel’. Perhaps an inventive way to allow high-street businesses to compete with ecommerce giants.
In summary, it is important to consider these organic SEO trends as part of your ongoing Digital Marketing Strategy in order to stay ahead of the competition and ensure your business appears in local searches.