If you’re looking for a way to get in front of local searchers on top search engines, search marketing is the place to start. Paid search marketing, also known as search engine marketing, pay per click, and a few other names (gotta keep you on your toes, right?), is an integral part of any multi-channel marketing strategy to help you drive leads and awareness for your business.
So, what do you need to know about local search marketing? Here are six important things.
What is Local Search Marketing?
Let’s start off with an easy one: What is search marketing? Search marketing allows you to bid on keywords specific to your business in order to get shown on search engines for queries related to those keywords or terms.
You see search ads at the tops and bottoms of your favorite search engines and in Maps in Google’s case. Search ads blend in a bit with organic search results and give you another place to show up when consumers are conducting a search related to your business.
What can Search Marketing do for Local Businesses?
Like I mentioned, paid search marketing gives your local business another place to show in search results, which can help you increase brand awareness and get more customers.
If you’re conducting a search for “best vet near me,” and you see the same veterinary clinic in search results multiple times, it increases your trust a little bit, right? I know I want to take my dogs to a reputable clinic and seeing the same one popping up a few different times gives me confidence for some reason. That’s building brand awareness.
And, once I see that clinic in a few different searches, I’ll probably click on their ad or do a search specifically for them to get to their website. Once there, if I like what I see, I’ll likely get in contact with them. Which will get them a new customer.
When it comes to marketing your business, it’s about getting in front of likely buyers at the right time — and search marketing gives you a way to do just that.
Is Search Marketing Effective for Local Businesses?
Yes! Search marketing is incredibly effective for local businesses for some of the reasons I outlined above. Not only are you able to increase brand awareness and hopefully capture new customers, but you can track your return on investment, which is a plus for any marketing tactic.
Because you’re paying for each click on your ads, you can track (with a lead management system) which of those clicks drove a customer. And, with LOCALiQ, you can take that a step further. Our conversion-based optimization for our search marketing solution optimizes your search marketing campaigns based on what’s driving actual leads, not just clicks. Based on that information, adjustments are made to your campaigns across search engines to ensure you’re getting the best return for your investment.
Are There any Downsides to Local Search Marketing?
One of the concerns we hear from local business owners regarding local search marketing is the need to advertise across search engines, which means managing your campaigns across multiple platforms that don’t talk to each other. Or, business owners stick to one search engine, which can reduce the number of searchers seeing your ads.
Luckily, working with a marketing partner like LOCALiQ removes that roadblock. We run search marketing campaigns across platforms, and our conversion-based optimization I was talking about optimizes across campaigns to make sure your ads are being seen where they perform best.
How Does Search Marketing work with Other Marketing Tactics?
Search marketing is highly complementary to other marketing tactics. For example, search marketing is a much faster marketing tactic when it comes to results than SEO, which is just as important. So, with search marketing, searchers start seeing your business more immediately on search engines while your SEO is getting ramped up.
Additionally, when running print advertisements, the goal is for consumers to contact you from your ad. But, they might do a few searches for your business first. So, if you have a presence on top search engines, you’re increasing your brand awareness and the likelihood of capturing that consumer.
Basically, search marketing works great with any marketing tactic you’re running to drive leads and awareness.
How Do I Get Started with Local Search Marketing?
Have we convinced you yet? If you’re ready to get started with search marketing, you’ll need these three things:
- A mobile-friendly website. Because the majority of consumers are performing searches on their mobile devices, you want to make sure your website is mobile-friendly. This will also help with Quality Score for Google.
- A list of relevant keywords or search terms. What phrases or keywords do you want your business to show up for on search engines? You’ll need to know and understand what those might be before deploying your search marketing campaign.
- Know your area. For local businesses, using geo-targeting to reach searchers in your area is key. You’ll want to think about things like how far customers typically travel to reach you, what your service radius is (if applicable), and the number of competitors in your area.
There’s a lot that goes into search marketing, but it’s an integral part of any business’s marketing strategy. We at LOCALiQ would love to be part of your search marketing journey, so why don’t you give us a call? We’ll be waiting by the phone.