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Get out our notebook – this is an article you’re going to like! Today we’re going to look at an important aspect of marketing: Local SEO. Google says that 20% of all searches have a local intent. That number is astonishing! But it gets even crazier. Bing recently announced that 53% of all mobile searches have local intent.

If you’re not optimizing your website for local search and aren’t taking steps to use the internet to market to your local customers then you’re missing out on a HUGE potential market. How do you capitalize on the searches? Let’s take a look at 5 quick tips:

  1. Google Local Business Center – This is the most important of your local SEO initiative. Google uses this as its primary source for knowing which companies to post in the local results in any Google search. If you have this space optimized correctly it can mean a noticeable (and large) impact on your bottom line when you rank at or near the top.
  2. Facebook Places – Many businesses already have a Facebook Page. If you’ve read this blog much then you know we endorse getting one. But Facebook Places is different – it allows people patronizing your business to “Check in” and let others know where they are. You can also give special incentives to those using Places.
  3. Twitter Places – Twitter has its own version of “Places” though it isn’t as robust or developed as Facebook’s. Right now you can’t do anything with the data but Twitter says everything is in the testing phase so look for some creative uses for this data 6+ months from now. Twitter currently uses Localeze as its main business listing supplier so be sure to claim and update your listing.
  4. Foursquare and Gowalla – Be sure to register your business and set up a profile page because these services do have an effect on SEO through their sites via citations, backlinks, and other ways.
  5. Avantar– As we already learned, local search makes up an astonishing 53% of mobile searches. Because of this it is worth registering your business with Avantar – the first mobile yellow pages. Though they don’t get a lot of search queries (approximately 5 million per month)it is worth getting in on the ground floor of what is undoubtedly a growing market.

Doing well in local search is very important for any business whose primary market is also local. What tips do you have to share?

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