What is Local Search? Its Importance and How does it work?

What is Local Search? Its Importance and How does it work?

Have you ever asked Google some questions like:

Pharmacy near me

Salons near me

Restaurant near me

Or some other questions like:

Best singer in Delhi

Best hotel in Bengaluru

Best pub in Pune

If you answer in a “yes,” you might have seen the image like the one below.

The three top results are shown below this map. Many of the time, these results are helpful and relevant. 

Most of us today search Google before making a purchase decision or getting some service delivered. This is because we get reviews about the business, and also we look for the businesses in our vicinity. The Discovery of local businesses happens all over the Internet via queries.

So, this is something called local search. According to Wikipedia,

“Local Search is the use of specialized Internet search engines that allow users to submit geographically constrained searches against a structured database of local business listings.”

Some stats to show you why local search is important?

  • A huge 78% of local-based searches on a mobile device result in purchases that are made offline.
  • 1 in 3 searches made on smartphones was led just before visiting the store. 
  • Out of the people surveyed, 71% of them search for a location to confirm that it existed before visiting it for the first time. 
  • 50% of people who perform a local search on their smartphone went to that physical store within 24 hours. 
  • 18% of local searches made on mobile lead to a sale within one day.
  • 34% of the people who did their search on a computer or tablet did the same.
  • There are 60% of adults in the US who make searches for local services or information of the product on smartphones and tablets.
  • In 2017, 97% of people searched online for local businesses, with 12% searching for a local business online every day.

Local search is becoming increasingly important because consumers and businesses are looking for each other online. 

Some of the reasons why local search is important are:

Search is moving towards smartphone and away from desktop

This is so because people today find smartphones handy, and it reflects the ever-changing requirements of Internet users. There is a strong correlation between the mobile users’ search queries and their immediate requirements, and also between their searches and their current geographic location.

Local searches are personalized

Today traffic from local searches converts better into leads as the searches are personalized as per their search history and their geographic location as well.

Local businesses are supported by Google

Google gives more visibility to smaller and newer local businesses in search engine results. It helps them systematically establish their online presence.

To serve users better, Google is consistently redefining its search results

And this is the reason that almost 59% of searches are made with local intent. Also,  more than half of all the mobile searches are made to look for information regarding the local business, as in its hours of operating or its distance from your location.

In local search, there is less competition than that in the global search

With so many websites coming up every year and lots of businesses growing up into enterprises, small and local businesses struggle a lot to be noticed online. Now when business owners target smaller niches where competition is less.

Local Search – What Happens Behind the Scenes

Are you wondering how local search works? How does it rank websites or businesses? Let us explore what happens behind the scenes.

Google My Business

This accounts for 14.7% of local ranking factors, so ensure that you have properly gone through the listings for the following:

  • Solitary description for each location
  • Exact categories placed rightly within the My Business tool
  • Images of business logo and the location
  • Local contact numbers
  • Checking the consistency of address against the website address
  • Correct opening and closure times
  • Reviews pushed for all the clients within Google+ page.

External Location Signals

The NAP (Name, Address, Phone number) of the company within the Internet Yellow Pages (IYP) accounts for nearly 15.5% of local ranking signals. For this, the following steps are to be taken:

  • Make sure that NAP is consistent within all citations across all IYPs.you should check these against Google My Business and website location.
  • Utilize the tools like BrightLocal and consider competitor reviews in addition to citation authority and domain authority of IYP.

For free tools, consider taking these steps:

  • Perform a local search as in “Skill Development Centers Bengaluru.”
  • See the directory listings in the first two pages suggested by Google.
  • The two citation opportunities Yell and Yelp are worth consideration and maintain the consistency of NAP.

On-Page Signals

The NAP should be present on all business location pages because it accounts for 21% of SEO ranking factors. You should regularly check for:

  • Page Authority
  • Domain Authority
  • Presence of city within the H1 tag, Landing page title, Landing Page Content, URL, ALT attributes.

Link Signals 

It is important to gain links to regional pages and local sources taking into consideration the domain authority, Spam Score, No Keyword rich anchor text.

Review Signals

Generally, consumers look for reviews on Google for any local business. Google+ also takes into account the reviews and shows in the SERPs(Search Engine Result Pages), indicating it by star rating.

Social Signals

Marketing or advertisements on social media is really crucial because it’s the Facebook Likes and Twitter followers that may work wonders for local search. Also, people look for Google+, active accounts, and consistency of posts as well. Instagram, WhatsApp, and Snapchat are the new normals for improving local and sitewide SEO.

Behavioral

To help with general organic positions within the general SERPs, make sure that you are consistent with mobile functionality, Click Through Rate (CTR) from SERPs, which includes Meta descriptions on local business pages and enticing page titles.

Personalization

When the search results are personalized, it influences local SEO as well as any search made on the web. You should consider managing country, locality, mobile and local search factors, personal history, as well as social connections.

Conclusion

After looking at the working and importance of local search, you might have concluded that whether a business is well established or a new and small one, making local search strategies for the same can make it write success stories very efficiently.

Want to build local search strategies for business?

It is recommended that you take up an online training course for Local SEO. The course will make you understand the concepts of local SEO in and out and enable you to make excellent search strategies with real-life projects and training through industry experts.

Enroll yourself now!

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