Lessons from PubCon Vegas 2009: It's Time to Think About Local Search and How You Can Make an Impact Online

By
Services for Real Estate Pros with Real Skillz-Clear Marketing for Your Real Estate Vision

One of my favorite sessions at PubCon Vegas 2009 was the Local Search and Mobile Optimization session.  I have been following local search for the past five years from a marketing angle.  Quite awhile ago I realized that the SEM field would have to address the needs of consumers.  Consumers want to research and have a need to find local vendors online.

The local online space is fascinating because it's a space where the national players can be beat.  Here's a few tips to getting it done in the local search space courtesy of Pubcon Vegas 2009,

  • Local business professionals can use national platforms to promote their brands, products, businesses, services and interact with consumers by leveraging their online business profiles,optimizing them, and getting links.  Do you have profiles on MerchantCircleCitySearch,Local.com,TrueLocal,Yellowbot,Yelp,hotfrog.com,, Trulia,your city directory or BBB? 

A good time to do that is now.

  • Local business professionals can create websites with local content and gain enviable SERP (SearcLocal Search builds your rolodexh Engine Results Page) rank.  Do you have a website with content preferably fed from a blog built into your website? 

A good time to do that is now.

  • Local business professionals can build relationships offline with consumers and local businesses.  They can reach out and advertise to them locally in traditional offline venues like local newspapers and local radio spots.  They can extend to them an opportunity to guest blog or interview them.  They can work on a local link campaign to get their website links on local business websites.

A good time to do that is now.

  • Local business professionals can analyzeand track their referral sources from their website statistics, call ins, and walk-ins.  In person or on the phone front office staff should be asking name, number, and source of referral.  If online ask where and what keyword they searched to find you.  This keyword research, whether online or offline is critical to local search success.

A good time to do that is now.

  • Local business professionals can register all of their street addresses on Google, Yahoo, and Bing.  On their business profiles local business professionals should be as robust as possible by including coupons, pictures, hours of operation and video which Google ranks well on Google local.  It's important to offer as much content as possible on these business profiles because consumers may not want to go to the link out to the business professional's website.

A good time to do that is now.

  • Local business professionals can search their keywords on theirand to their mobile phones locally and see who is coming up, take notes, and then take measures to make sure their businesses show up for those keywords.

A good time to do that is now.

  • Local business professionals can seek reviews from customers who they believe would complete reviews.  Local businesses can also get Citations-a mention of their business name and address- on a website even if it isn't a link.  Citations help boost local rankings.

A good time to do that is now.

Local search is exciting.  It's a way for local businesses to win if they do the work.  I just listed 7 items as your checklist.  I must mention that two of the speakers on the local search panel were business professionals in service based industries- one was a chiropractor-  they are getting business locally and have local marketing plans in place.

As Google increasingly adopts to user behavior and SERP is based on user behavior AND location isn't it time to consider your local search strategy?

It's Time to Think About Local Search and How You Can Make An Impact Online.

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Re-Blogged 4 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Heather Fitzgerald 11/13/2009 06:55 AM
  2. John Novak 11/15/2009 05:26 AM
  3. Bob & Leilani Souza 11/16/2009 06:40 PM
  4. Cheryl Ritchie 11/16/2009 09:59 PM
Topic:
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Tags:
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Rainmaker
1,402,864
Vickie Nagy
Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate - Palm Springs, CA
Vickie Jean the Palm Springs Condo Queen

Okay, it appears that I have some work to do. It's daunting how much time it takes to be listed where I can be found online.

Nov 12, 2009 04:39 PM #1
Rainer
214,255
Anthony Ebright - NMLSR ID #247647 Purchase and Refinance Mortgages
FHA, VA, Conforming, Jumbo - Wells Fargo Home Mortgage - Santa Rosa, CA

You're right! the time is now to do these things. The trick is to set time blocks to work on each step. Thanks for the post!

Nov 12, 2009 05:13 PM #2
Ambassador
672,399
Rene Fabre
First American Title - Seattle, WA
Marketing in the Digital Age

Yes indeed... that's what I mean when I say 'participation' is everything... Join the local (online) conversation! You are so right on... SERP is (more and more) based on user behavior. Nice post, great points, thanks...

Nov 12, 2009 08:13 PM #3
Ambassador
1,584,872
Norma Toering Broker for Palos Verdes and Beach Cities
Charlemagne International Properties - Rancho Palos Verdes, CA
Palos Verdes Luxury Homes in L.A.

I'm working on applying some method to my scattered approach to posting profiles on more sites.  Lots of great ideas and I have work to do.  Thank you.

Nov 12, 2009 09:54 PM #4
Rainmaker
1,924,381
Lottie Kendall
Compass - San Francisco, CA
Helping make your real estate dreams a reality

Great advice, Rebecca. Your post is bookmarked to remind me to check back from time to time and see what improvements I've made.

Nov 13, 2009 03:40 AM #5
Rainmaker
317,573
Liz Loadholt
Liz Loadholt- AgentOwned Realty- Covering SC - Mount Pleasant, SC
Realtor--Broker-in-charge - Trainer--Relocation Director Covering SC

Rebecca ---- there is so much information here --- I can see that I need to really come back here and spend time so that I can put some of this to use. Thanks.

 
                                                                                

Nov 13, 2009 05:50 AM #6
Rainer
21,160
Candis Hidalgo
Real Estate Marketing - Go Smart Solutions - Arroyo Grande, CA

I'm so glad you posted this - I wasn't able to attend that session at PubCon and was hoping you would post a recap :) These tips, especially #1 and #3, are things that every business person who relies on local customers should be doing.

Nov 13, 2009 05:52 AM #7
Rainmaker
176,539
Rebecca Levinson, Real Estate Marketing and Online Advertising Consultant
Real Skillz-Clear Marketing for Your Real Estate Vision - Lake Geneva, WI

Vickie- The amount of places does grow but local is where the internet has always been really where it's been headed.  It's the experience users want.

Anthony- Time blocking is a great strategy:)

Rene- You're welcome.  Listening to Matt Cutts speak really reinforced this to me at the end of PubCon, but just noticing the moves toward personalized search over the years hightened my interest and awareness of local search.  I think it's awesome.  A great and powerful way for local businesses to compete is local search.

Nov 13, 2009 08:48 AM #8
Rainmaker
176,539
Rebecca Levinson, Real Estate Marketing and Online Advertising Consultant
Real Skillz-Clear Marketing for Your Real Estate Vision - Lake Geneva, WI

Norma- You are absolutely welcome.  Thanks for reading.

Lottie- Excellent we all should strive to improve...there's always room to grow in internet marketing.

Liz- You're welcome.  Nice avatar.

Candis- I couldn't wait to post this so I blogged at the airport:)

Nov 13, 2009 08:50 AM #9
Rainmaker
831,171
Troy Erickson AZ Realtor (602) 295-6807
Good Company Real Estate - Chandler, AZ
Your Chandler, Ahwatukee, and East Valley Realtor

Rebecca - I have been wanting to localize my business for some time now.  I am making some headway, but your list is fantastic.  Thanks for sharing, and providing me with some great ideas on low to market locally.

Nov 13, 2009 12:55 PM #10
Ambassador
554,125
Larry Story
Total Care Realty - Greensboro, NC
Total Care Realty, LLC, Greensboro, NC Real Estate

Rebecca,

Very nice post, I am actually going to have to go and check some of those sites.  I always think I have all my bases covered but I think I need to take another look.

Nov 13, 2009 03:11 PM #11
Rainmaker
176,539
Rebecca Levinson, Real Estate Marketing and Online Advertising Consultant
Real Skillz-Clear Marketing for Your Real Estate Vision - Lake Geneva, WI

Troy- Great to hear and I will be adding more "local" strategy posts to this blog.

Larry- Always good to dive into local Larry, glad to hear you'll be taking a look.

Nov 15, 2009 02:01 AM #12
Rainmaker
1,087,353
Bob & Leilani Souza
Souza Realty 916.408.5500 - Roseville, CA
Greater Sacramento Area Homes, Land & Investments

Rebecca, I found this post via John's re-blog and I'm re-blogging it myself...you provided such great information that is pertinent to an upcoming project I have, so THANK YOU! :)

Leilani

Nov 16, 2009 06:40 PM #13
Rainer
67,073
Alexandria Virginia
Featuring Susan Craft, CRS, REALTOR® - McEnearney Associates - Alexandria, VA
Real Estate Editor

Tons of info.  This will be another post we will print out and put into our game plan.  Thanks

Nov 17, 2009 10:21 PM #14
Rainer
74,031
Sarah Eubanks
Hill Valley Financial Services - Oregon City, OR
Preferred Oregon Loan Consultant & Notary Public

Rebecca...Great idea to put into place with the rest of my marketing and web presence.  Thank you...

Nov 18, 2009 04:33 AM #15
Rainmaker
176,539
Rebecca Levinson, Real Estate Marketing and Online Advertising Consultant
Real Skillz-Clear Marketing for Your Real Estate Vision - Lake Geneva, WI

Leilani- Glad to hear you are able to use this then and thank you for reading.  I am grateful that you were able to find thru an REblog.

Alexandria-Fantastic.  Glad to hear you will be making a local search game plan.

Sarah- Your absolutely welcome Sarah.  Local search makes sense.

Nov 18, 2009 12:29 PM #16
Rainer
342,746
Anthea Click
Fresh Perspectives - www.InsideNashvilleHomes.com - Franklin, TN
Nashville Home Stager - Selling Nashville, TN homes quickly!

Rebecca,

I certainly have a lot of work ahead of me. My goal for 2010 is to get my website on the 1st page of Google for Nashville area home staging. Your advice is great. I'm adding these tips to the list of To Do's. Thank you!

Dec 21, 2009 05:36 AM #17
Rainmaker
176,539
Rebecca Levinson, Real Estate Marketing and Online Advertising Consultant
Real Skillz-Clear Marketing for Your Real Estate Vision - Lake Geneva, WI

Anthea- If you are dedicated and make a plan for success you can do it.

Jan 21, 2010 03:18 PM #18
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Rainmaker
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Rebecca Levinson, Real Estate Marketing and Online Advertising Consultant

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