Let me start off by saying that digital marketing for local and small businesses does not need to be difficult. Many of the companies I’ve worked with in the past see it as a daunting task that is going to take too much time, money and a team of people to do. Sometimes they are right, but a majority of the time they are just trying to do too much at once. Internet marketing as a whole encompasses a broad set of activities, but local and small businesses do not need to do all of them. They just need to find specific strategies that work for them and capitalize on them. This blog will be most helpful for local and small businesses such as electricians, plumbers, heating & AC Services, house cleaning companies, restaurants, lawyers and other small business types. My goal is that you get at least one takeaway that will help make a positive impact on your business's digital marketing efforts. If you still have questions, feel free to ask them in the comments section. OK? Here we … [Read more...] about 5 Digital Marketing Tips for Local and Small Businesses
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There's a grandma in Topeka who fires up Facebook every day to see new photos and stories about her grandkids in Wichita. There's a national group of mothers of Autistic children using Twitter as their platform to point out gluten-free recipes that are aiding their sons' and daughters' health. There's an organic farmer in Berkeley, California whose website is letting all his local customer know what's in season right now at his farm stand and a Native American Health Clinic in New Mexico that has just claimed their Place Page to increase the visibility of their vital local medical services. What do all of these human efforts have in common? People and heart. But, does Google, the tin man of the Internet, with its algo-centric, data-centric mindset really fit into the Local/Social picture? You tell me. If I Only Had A Heart... I just read Liana Li Evans' excellent piece, Watching Google Attempt Social is Painful: A Look at +1 and Other Failures, prompted by the supposed … [Read more...] about Local And Social Require Heart – Does Google Qualify?
Google has come under fire the last year or so from critics who claim that the search engine has been providing too many pages from some of the same domains in search results. It appears that this has had them looking at ways that they could provide more diversity within those results. A patent granted to Google earlier this year describes one approach that could have an impact on both local search rankings and Web rankings for authority pages for business entities. The impact of this approach would be that when these authority pages ranked highly in both Web results and local search results, Google might merge listings for the two, so that the Web search result no longer appears within search results for a specific query and the local search result is potentially boosted higher in results as well. In the past, I’ve written about How Google Universal Search and Blended Results May Work, describing how Google might decide when and where to include multiple listings within Web … [Read more...] about How Google May Diversify Search Results by Merging Local and Web Search Results
Late last month, at its “Searchification” event, Microsoft introduced a wide range of search enhancements and improvements. The company also said there would be additional updates to follow. Those are now rolling out and include feature and content enhancements for maps, local, and mobile services. The biggest news is the introduction of a new voice search product called “Live Search 411,” built on Tellme’s content and voice capabilities. In addition to local business listings, the service provides movie show times, weather, and airlines information. We haven’t had a chance to test drive or play with any of these new features, but here is the list from the official Microsoft press release:Maps and Directions • Innovative driving directions. The new Live Search offers more accurate and easy-to-use driving directions, including dynamic rerouting of directions based on real-time traffic information, one-click directions that allow drivers to get … [Read more...] about Microsoft Releases Upgrades For Maps, Local, And Mobile
As summer travel rolls into full swing, I’m reminded that much of local search is performed by non-locals. Depending on vertical, a significant amount of business may be from visitors outside the local area, either long-distance travelers or those visiting from nearby towns for the day. I’ll use my town, Frisco, Texas, which is a far northern suburb of Dallas, as an example for some perspective. Frisco is not like San Francisco, Washington, DC, or other destinations that have much stronger reputations for tourism and travel. According to a study by Frisco’s Convention and Visitors Bureau in 2013, the top three reasons for visiting Frisco were business travel, a weekend getaway and youth sporting events. Yet that same study revealed more than 31,000 out-of-town visitors come to the city and spend $3.9 million every single day. At the time, the city’s population was approximately 130,000 residents. Thus, every day, there are 24 percent as many visitors as there … [Read more...] about 33% of local search business is from non-locals (and 7 tips for capturing that traffic)