In today’s consumer market, commercial stores and large companies are getting all the attention because they have better locations, prices, or are just more familiar to an individual. It is crucial for small businesses to be search engine optimized (SEO) in order to be found and stand a chance against bigger names. Not only should small businesses be SEO for web searches but also on maps and local search like Google Places.
Having your business on Google Places will enable customers to find your business more easily. Not only does the location of a business come up, the contact number, multimedia (photos and videos), reviews, and a plethora of helpful information is included in the results on Google Maps and Google Places.
People go about their day running errands within proximity of themselves. They would rather make fewer stops when they are out rather than go to a number of different places with farther distances between them. When they log online to search for the nearest drug store for example, they would probably type in “drug store near Tribune St”. When the search results come up, competitors’ names and locations might come up first even if their drug store is a lot farther than yours. So instead of the buyer walking a short distance to your store, they’d go all the way to the other one because yours didn’t show up highly ranked within the search pages.
It is also a way to advertise your company and entice people to see you even if you don’t have a website. Since people go to a certain areas everyday, your location can pop up beside the place they are looking for. So if you own a small coffee shop beside the dry cleaners people go to, they might just see the location on Google Places and decide to drop by for a latte.
Since technology nowadays has allowed everyone to go mobile and hit search while they are out and about, being SEO on Google Places will be beneficial for the searcher and for the small business.
Drew Poland is a Web Consultant in the Bay Area, who specializes in Google Places SEO.