Local Stack on Mobile or Is It Really Just Google AdWords In Disguise?

I Screenshot_2015-09-26-auto-repair_resizedwas with a large auto repair chain owner the other day and we were talking about his local search & paid traffic strategy.  We were looking at our mobile phones for a couple of key searches as a significant amount of calls come from mobile traffic as repairs are often needed quickly when the vehicle will  not run.

Calls have been down since the change to the Local Stack and we were brainstorming where we can improve our Local SEO and adapt our AdWords campaigns.

Then BAM, I saw this!  I had to do a double take because the AdWords format almost looks identical to the Local Stack.

In fact, I was pretty impressed by Google’s quest for monetization as my gut feeling is that many of the searchers will not be able to differentiate between the paid listing and the local stack and that will reduce the any hesitation to click for a paid result (if the searcher is so inclined).

Take a look for yourself and you be the judge!

SEO

BIG CHANGES WITH GOOGLE LOCAL SEARCH REQUIRE A MORE BALANCED LOCAL SEO APPROACH (August 2015)

The Local Stack 3 Pack was not an algorithmic change so if you previously ranked in the #1, #2 or #3 position, great for you. If you did notice a change in your local rankings it’s not because of the Local Stack update. All this update is effecting is the display and how your listing is featured. For example, the phone numbers and street addresses are removed.

NOW THAT GOOGLE IS MOVING TOWARDS MONETIZING LOCAL SEARCH, WHAT DO YOU DO NOW?

Local-SEO-Diversification-Strategy

1. Don’t Have a One Sided Local SEO Strategy (aka do not put all your eggs in one basket) 
If there is one thing I know and can predict with 100% certainty, Google is going to change.  Focusing only on Local Search (maps) is a bad idea just like those businesses who only focused on Google Adwords are now paying astronomical sums for those Pay Per Clicks because it’s an auction and everyone is competing for the same click.

A more balanced approached to Local SEO is required that will allow you to rank organically for dozens of local (geo-coded) long tail keywords by following best practices for website on-page seo, content marketing & video seo.  The good news is that if you rank high organically you’re also very likely to rank locally (if properly optimized for local).

2. Make sure you are actively building and marketing your Online Reputation.
If you’re a buyer and you see 3 local listings and then click one of them, you are now taken to another Google page where you will see 10 other competitors in a new left panel. You can bet you are going to glance at their reviews AND if another business that happened to rank lower in that list has more Review Authority than your business, you can expect to lose some traffic to them and conversely, if you have a better 5 Star Reputation – you will steal clicks away from their searches too.

So its pretty clear now that your Online Reputation is going to be the basis of your BRAND.  You must build and market your Online Reputation to succeed or you will get left behind.

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Video Marketing

Video Marketing

If a picture is worth a 1000 words and a video is thousands of pictures linked together, then local businesses new and old need to step up their marketing campaigns and use Video to get the word out more efficiently. Whether your business is a Plumbing or HVAC Residential Services provider or a Property Management company, Brand You Local Marketing can develop your Video Marketing strategy.

Our Fort Worth video production services are the perfect complement to the 4 R’s we offer (Reputation, Reach, Retention & Referrals). These may be short commercials to air on local television stations, creative marketing videos to post on video sharing sites, Word of Mouth Review Commercials, Video Syndication (Video SEO), or even Social Media Marketing.  The internet is changing, and video is currently the most effective way to get in front of your customers.

Expert Interviews

Video SEO

Where did my Google reviews go?

Have you recently noticed that you used to have more reviews on your Google+ Local page and now some reviews are missing?

Here are several resources to figure out why your Google reviews might be missing:

1st, check out this Google article called: “Having technical issues with the reviews on your listing?“.  Google offers several explanations as to why reviews go missing like spam abatement and duplicate Google listings.

2nd, one of the biggest reasons we see reviews go missing is that they were written by employees.  Google doesn’t allow reviews from current owners or employees.  They don’t always catch them but sometimes they will if they can figure it out via the gmail account the reviewer left the review on.

3rd, the review may have violated Google’s content policy guidelines.   Items that violate their review content policies are advertising, phone numbers or website addresses, personal info, and obscene or profane language.   You can view a complete list of the items on this Google Review Policies page.

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How to Get More Word of Mouth Referrals

There is a strong correlation between customer loyalty and getting more word of mouth referrals.1

So what are you doing to retain your existing customers so you can increase your business’ profitability? Here are some quick facts on Customer Retention.

  • Getting new customers is 5 times more expensive than retaining existing customers.
  • Repeat customers are less expensive to service because you’ve already created files and set up their account.
  • Long term customers aren’t easily swayed by a competitor and are less sensitive to pricing fluctuations.
  • A 2% increase in customer retention has the same effect as cutting costs by 10%.
  • A 5% decrease in customer defection can increase profits anywhere from 25% to 125%, depending on the industry.

Call me today at 817-521-8570 to ask about our Customer Reactivation campaign that can help you identify past customers to reactivate and/or retain and convert them back into customers.

References

1 Leading on the Edge of Chaos”, Emmett C. Murphy and Mark A. Murphy

Local Search Optimization

Local Search Optimization

Local Search is used by 85% of consumers to find your business or your competitors.

Everyone who has access to the Internet uses a search engine to find relevant and useful information, and according to Google’s own data, 97 percent of consumers search for local businesses online.

We can help your services and products get found when it counts – when customer are looking for you.

Search optimization is a science we have mastered and can help you with today.

75% of users don’t scroll past the first page of a google search - hitslink.com

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85% of consumers search online for local services - searchengineland

85%

Local Search

Email Marketing

Email Marketing

What are you doing to ensure that more people know about you today than yesterday?

It’s our experience that a business that wants to grow needs to make sure that more people know about it today than did yesterday.

If you’re not meeting new people and telling them about your products and services, you’re not developing a pipeline of potential new customers and you are going to see fewer sales in the future as a result.

This sounds pretty obvious, we know. But we are always surprised when we talk to local business owners and ask them about their promotional efforts.
Do you have a method to build a continually growing prospect/client email list?

We make it easy to send customizable appointment reminders, confirmations, thank you notes, newsletters, and holiday greetings to your customer base.

91% of consumers use email at least daily - exacttarget 2012

91%

Email Marketing

Reputation Marketing

Reputation Marketing

Good reviews can fuel positive word of mouth and generate referral traffic like you’ve never seen!

Don’t leave your reputation to chance.  We build Five Star Reputations online and then market your Reputation to get more customers.

We can help you improve your reputation, safeguard against negative comments and protect your reputation online.

When it comes to marketing and protecting our customers reputations we are second to none in the industry.

 

70% of consumers trust opinions posted online (Reviews) - Nielsen Group

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85% of consumers use the internet for research before making a purchasing decision - Yelp

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Purchase

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Social Media Services

Social Media Services

A complete social media posting and automation process delivered by our expert team.

We can manage and update your social media profiles with our activity based marketing engine allowing you to have an active community of supports

Don’t leave your social profiles to fall stale, social media activity has proven to drive business, referrals, and name recognition.

No need to waste time, delegate it to your admin, or hire outside help, we can handle it all for you.

78% of consumers purchasing decisions are impacted by online reviews - Ipsos Open Thinking

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63% of consumers are likely to use a local business if it has information available on a social media site. - comScore Networks

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Social

Email Marketing

What are you doing to ensure that more people know about you today than yesterday?

It’s our experience that a business that wants to grow needs to make sure that more people know about it today than did yesterday.

If you’re not meeting new people and telling them about your products and services, you’re not developing a pipeline of potential new customers and you are going to see fewer sales in the future as a result.

This sounds pretty obvious, we know. But we are always surprised when we talk to local business owners and ask them about their promotional efforts.
Do you have a method to build a continually growing prospect/client email list?

We make it easy to send customizable appointment reminders, confirmations, thank you notes, newsletters, and holiday greetings to your customer base.

91% of consumers use email at least daily - exacttarget 2012

91%

Email Marketing

Website Design

Web Design

You only get one chance to make a first impression and we can know your website will attract local customers when working with us.

Websites need to be both beautiful and functional and our websites are both.

If your site does not properly convey your brand, services, products and calls to action it is no better than a printed brochure sitting in a draw.

We can make sure this does not happen by leveraging our website build best practices gained through years of experience and 1000s of sites.

Web Design