Local SEO

10 Advantages of Using Google Places

If you aren’t using Google Places to market your business on the web, then you are seriously missing out on an unparalleled opportunity. A Google Places listing can be one of the most powerful money-making tools you have, and it’s time you claim yours. Still need some convincing? Here are ten advantages of using Google Places:

It’s free! That’s right – your Google Places listing and page won’t cost you anything to set up. When you consider how strong a tool Google Places is when it comes to web marketing, it’s almost mind blowing to know that you don’t have to pay a cent to use it.

Google Advertising. Once you have your Google Places page completely set up, you can then take advantage of the array of Google Advertising options available to you.

Customer review forum. Your Google Places page is an ideal spot for satisfied customers to post glowing testaments for all to see. It is also a great place for you to publicly handle customer complaints, so that potential customers can see firsthand that you are willing to work with your customers to make them happy.

Google Maps. Along with your Google Places listing, Google will also place a marker for your business on Google Maps, making it easy for new customers to find you.

Better than the Yellow Pages. Studies show that over 97 percent of all consumers search the web to find local businesses, making the Yellow Pages nearly obsolete. If you want to get noticed, you need a business listing on Google Places.

Mobile users. Most people these days use their smart phones to view the web even more than they use their PCs. Mobile users have full access to Google Places listings, so you won’t miss out on this valuable market.

Targeted demographics. It is possible to tweak your Google Places listing so that is it seen by those people who are most likely to visit your page and become your customers.

Virtual business tours. Google Places is now offering (temporarily on a limited basis) to send a photographer to your place of business to shoot a 360 virtual tour of your establishment. For customers who are on the fence about visiting your business location, this can be just the push they need.

You might not have a website. Setting up a business website can cost a considerable amount of time and money. If you have not yet developed a website, you can just use your (once again, free!) Google Places page as your site.

Google Offers. Google makes it very easy for you to offer customers who visit your Places page special offers and coupons. Simply click on the “Google Offers” button, complete the information you want to include, and Google Places will publish the offer to your page.

Take advantage of everything Google Places has to offer by enlisting the help of competent professionals like us, SEO Dream Team. We can be reached by phone, at 301-806-2271, or via email: sales@seo-dream-team.com.

More people are relying on Search Engines to find local businesses[Study]

PEW Internet, one of the world’s leading research and survey companies, recently published its findings regarding how adults over the age of 18 find local businesses in today’s economy. The study involved 1087 adults, and each was asked about their online and offline search habits relating to seeking out local businesses, as well as which method they were most likely to use.

60% of respondents claimed that they do use the internet to seek out information on local businesses, not including bars and restaurants. Of these respondents, 47% claimed that the internet was the the search method they used the most. These findings claimed that 36% of respondents relied on search engines, while 16% relied on specialty websites. Only 1% of respondents claimed to rely heavily on social media platforms, including Facebook and Twitter.

The survey also states that respondents who did not rely mainly on internet searches used methods which included newspapers, recommendations from family and friends, as well as local television and radio broadcasts. The statistics for these individuals were as follows: 31% used newspapers, 22% used recommendations, 8% used television and 5% used radio.

When it comes to searching for restaurants and bars, the percentage points for online searches increase slightly. Of these respondents, 51% relied heavily on the internet for information on local eateries and clubs. 38% claimed that search engines were their main source of information, while 16% used specialty websites and 3% used social media. 5% of respondents searching for bars and restaurants using newspapers claimed to use the online version most often.

What is important to remember when analyzing these numbers is that respondents were offered the option to fill in more than one answer for a question, meaning some people who gave an answer of “search engine” may have also answered “social media.” This survey also states that respondents most likely to use the internet for searches tended to be young adults and females, as well as tech-savvy urban residents.

For online marketers, this information is invaluable. Whether you’re marketing a local business or a national business on a local scale, you need to take advantage of online opportunities that can get your clients’ businesses in front of potential consumers. This means adding accurate information about your clients to sites and directory services such as Google Places, City Search, Yelp, online phonebooks and more. This information needs to be static across all online business directories in order to not only help customers find the business you’re promoting, but also to assist in building a brand.

As a marketer, you also need to recognize the potential that this data has for PPC campaigns. By developing branded keywords for your clients, you will be able to use services such as Google AdWords to help drive local traffic to your client’s local business. Keep in mind that you may end up having to bid on hot keywords, but if you’re able to get them, they should be able to provide plenty of marketing exposure and potential business for you.

[Local SEO] How to claim and update your Google Local Listing

How do you claim your Google Places listing in the Google Maps?

As you may or may not know Google has an area specifically for local business owners to showcase their business.  This is called Google places or Google Business listings.  Google automatically populates its listings many ways (yellowpages, superpages, your business phone company, ect.) and other sources as well.  All of the listings are initially unverified and may contain errors about your business.  The most important factor for your listing is to claim it.

If you haven’t claimed your business listing you should do it as soon as possible.  There are many reasons to claim your listing such as better rankings, updating contact information, and listing specials ect.  One of the main reasons you should claim your listing is to ensure spammers, prankers, and worse your competition! There have been many horror stories of company’s listings being marked as no longer in business and that company losing potential clients.

If your business is not currently listed then you can sign up for free and get listed also.

Here we will show you how to find your local listing, claim and edit it so that you can be found with the most relevant business information.

Is your business listed?

Finding Your Google Listing

The first step is to search to see if you have a local listing with Google.  You can search your business name and address.

Unverified Local LIstingunverified gooogle listing

Once you find your listing you will see whether it is verified or not verified.

If your business listing doesn’t show up when you search then you need to submit a listing.

You might find that your information isn’t correct, don’t worry once we have claimed your listing we will be able to edit all the information.

The next step is to click more and then click the edit link to start claiming your local listing.

View and Edit local listing Details

start claiming local listing

Start your business claiming process

If you currently have a google account log in, if you don’t you can easily create a new account.

Once you have logged into your account select claim and start editing your business information.  Correct any information that isn’t up to date.  You can also add photos and videos of your business.

enter google details here

Once you have done this you can validate your business listing.  You can either have a postcard sent to your location or have them verify you by phone.  Many times your listing must be verified by postcard if you are a new business or if you have changed a phone number.

verify by phone

Once you have received a post card you can enter your pin and your listing will be live within 24 hours with up-to-date information and will ensure that your listing isn’t hijacked by someone you don’t want to have control over such an important Google benefit.

Now that your local listing is up to date we can start talking about optimizing it for better placement.  You can now compete with big name businesses so contact us today for Google maps optimization.

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[Local SEO] 5 Tips to boost your Local Rankings

No matter what your business size is you can benefit from a Local Listing on Google, Yahoo, and Bing. There are several factors that can not only boost your web presence but can help get your phone ringing and orders coming in more often.Local searches such as “Elderly Caregiver in Maryland” Or “Dog walker Manassas” can be found via the local maps section with a few edits to their local listing profiles. Try these out and watch your listings improve.
Tips to boost your local rankings
  1. Spread yourself like the plague- Making sure your address is on your website. If you own any other websites for your business make sure you include your main location on each website. Don’t forget if you have multiple business locations that you setup your local listings for those as well.
  2. Join your [Online] Community- Websites that relate to your business or your location that have forums or directories are great to list your business on. The search engines take into account your importance in your area by the mentions you receive on these websites.
  3. Don’t pass on the smaller guys- Yes Google does have a huge share of monthly searchers. However don’t forget the smaller players. There are still a large percentage of people using Yahoo and Bing search features. Don’t let your competition grab the searchers you might be missing.
  4. Encourage the happy customers-to leave reviews! There is no hiding the fact that your customers love your product and services than by showing the world. Just like links are votes for your websites reviews are visible votes. Having a few positive reviews will help the potential buy make their decision.
  5. Update your Whois- Many experts believe that having the most up to date contact information can help your local listings. Are your online properties matching? Making sure you have matching Local Listings and Whois information will help you grow in the rankings.
The SEO Dream Team is a full service Search Engine Optimization agency. 301-806-2271

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Local Maps SEO

Local Maps SEO business owners now have a chance to compete with the big dogs! When it comes to your local searching clients Google has made it available for you to compete on a level playing field!

Local Maps SEOThe SEO Dream Team is a Boutique SEO Firm that specalizes in helping local business owners dominate the Local Maps SEO for their industry. This is great news for you! Not only can you reach the top but your business can stay put!

Our company will setup, manage, optimize and promote your local maps seo business map listings so they not only reach page one, but stay at the top of page one! This is exactly where your company needs to be listed in order to bring in the type of clients you are looking for.  If your business isn’t currently listed for your city, state, and business service then its time to think about optimizing for more business.

Big businesses are always known as the dominating forces that sometimes keep you on page 4 or 5.  Well with this feature from Google you can now leverage your business on the first set of results. Your website is now brought to the top of the searches above the bigger companies. In less than a month your company could be listed right on page one!

If you would like more information on how our Local Maps SEO works then give us a call today.