The tipping point has finally been reached as more local business searches are done on mobile phones and other devices than on computers. Consumers are on the go when they conduct local searches looking for a certain business and because this type of search has become the norm, people have high expectations for quality results in their searches. Google has taken note of this phenomenon and companies that handle their own search engine marketing should also respond by focusing on local SEO and improved rankings for these types of impulse searches.
The Importance of Capturing “Near Me” Searches
One of the fastest growing inquiries entered into Google searches is the “near me” inquiry which includes phrases such as “nearby,” “near me,” and “closest” to help users find businesses or services in their immediate area. According to Google, “near me” searches have doubled since 2014 and in the last quarter of 2014, about 80% of these searches came from mobile devices. This information is extremely valuable for businesses that want to attract local customers through their search engine marketing because consumers are not just looking for information in their “near me” searches, they are actually making the decision to go visit a store.
Google’s statistics show that of those users that search for a business on a mobile device, 50% will go to a store and 18% will actually make a purchase within 24 hours. Many users will also continue to search for information on products while inside a store or restaurant. It is important to consumers to get immediate, relevant results with their local searches to help them make an informed decision and making sure your brand appears to consumers in these moments will greatly increase your chances of being chosen.
Maximizing Your Local SEO
The overarching trend in search engine marketing is that more consumers are using mobile devices to find businesses in their immediate area and they expect a seamless experience with useful results. All types of businesses from small local to global companies should put forth the effort to be visible on local searches and provide comprehensive, relevant, and useful information that meets the new demands of mobile consumers and provides a convenient experience that will encourage customers to visit your store or make a purchase.
The key to capturing consumers when they are in that critical decision-making moment on their mobile devices is to focus on local SEO strategies so that your brand is visible in local searches. Local SEO has become one of the most important aspects of search engine marketing and will continue to grow as more consumers turn to their mobile devices for local searches and the technology improves to provide quicker, better results.