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What Local SEO Means For Small Businesses

January 24, 2013

Simon Fryer
Simon is CandidSky's Search Director, with strong roots in organic SEO and analytics, and a disturbing passion for spreadsheets.

In this post I’d like to talk to present some points as to what local search means for small/medium sized businesses, and why you as a local business should love local SEO.

1) It’s easy/ (easier)

Local SEO is low-hanging fruit for any small business that wants to take their first steps online. Many are slightly imtimidated by online marketing, as the investment needed to enter the race can seem quite high at times, but because local search results feature only listings with a permanent local address, the level of competition is instantly cut down, making it possible to start generating interest online without breaking the bank.

2) Trust

Most consumers view local results in Google as more authentic than traditional results. This is because of the map, address verification, images, videos, and customer reviews that come with a small business page. Trust is one of the most valuable comodities online, and this is one way that small businesses can achieve it without having to fight tooth and claw.

3) Real estate

Local listings receive much more ‘real estate’ in search results (the amount of the page which is dedicated to a particular result). Have a look at the image and you’ll see what I mean. In layman’s terms, businesses with well placed local rankings will get seen more.

local search real estate

4) Mobile

Mobile search is growing every single month. The smartphone is the new place to find local businesses and services, and local map listings are excellent for new businesses who want to be found by people on the go. What’s more is that mobile searchers have a much higher intent to purchase than the average desktop user.

5) Conversions

Conversion rates for prospects searching with local intent (eg “hairdresser in Manchester) have a much higher conversion rate than national terms. Geographic proximity makes is much more likely that a local searcher will click through to your site and then visit your business.


This is the fourth blog in our SEO mini-series on local search. Take a look at the other posts in the series below. Enjoy!

Part 1 – A history of local search

Part 2 – How local search works

Part 3 – The importance of local search: A case study

Part 4 – What local SEO means for small businesses

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