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15 Reasons Why Local SEO Matters for Small Businesses

Local SEO is an important tool in a small business owner’s digital marketing toolkit. Optimizing your website for local SEO best practices will help you be visible on local search results. Here are 15 reasons why Local SEO matters for small businesses and your digital marketing strategy. 

Following local SEO best practices set the foundation for your business to compete. Here are 15 reasons why local businesses should optimize their site and third-party listings for search engine optimization.

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15 Reasons Why Local Search Engine Optimization is Important for Your Business


Mobile queries have grown 200% since 2018

According to Google Trends data, “Where to buy” and “Near Me” searches have more than doubled over the last two years. These search queries often lead to map pack results heavily influenced by local search ranking factors and signals. Local SEO can help your business capture qualified local traffic that is looking for services like your business.


46% of searches on Google are local based

In 2020, Google saw users visit their site 62 billion times.  Just under half of those searches were focused on local search queries. This represents a huge chunk of potential customers and an incredible opportunity for local business owners. The key is to set the foundations by following best practices and having a well-balanced SEO strategy.


“Near Me” searches lead to real-world visits.

Nothing screams qualified traffic more than keywords that are a combination of your service/product and “near me.”  Over 50% of these searches result in a real-world sale. These queries are highly transactional with their intent and indicate that a user is ready to buy. Optimizing product or service pages for relevant “near me” keywords will help your site earn local search engine rankings.


Just around half of Google searches result in clicks.

A Spark Toro analysis revealed that 56% of all Google searches do not result in a click. It’s important to understand that Google is looking to provide users with their desired information all within their search environment. Building content that is structured, marked-up, and easily parsed by Google or Bing bots will help you earn coveted featured snippets. Planning your content strategy to target queries that promote click-through is essential to driving valuable traffic onsite.


Over half of online consumers use their mobile devices for search.

According to a report compiled by Statista, 56% of online consumers used their mobile devices to search for local businesses. Google serves over three billion searches per day. This search volume makes it important for your business to be listed on search engines for relevant industry keywords. If you’re not listed on Google, you’re missing out on qualified traffic for your business.


44% of users searching for local businesses use Google Maps

 Optimizing your business’ Google Maps listing is essential. Over 40% of users searching for business use Google Maps to navigate. Great businesses meet their customers where they are. Earning map pack real estate on Google Maps is an important credibility booster for your local visibility.


Approximately 1 out of 3 consumers in the US search for local businesses daily.

A study by Statista found over 30% of users search for local businesses daily. This means users are looking for the same services you provide every day. Not optimizing your site for local SEO will translate to you missing valuable traffic that will buy your product or service.


92% of users on Yelp want to become return customers

  A study by Yelp found that 92% of users are looking to become repeat customers. Your customers deserve an experience that spans across your website, social media, and the real world. This will not only help you attract customers but keep them as well. 

Web users looking for a clean experience that provides them with the information they’re looking for in a relatively easy manner. Provide value to your clients by answering their questions or providing them with content that matches their desired intent.


Reviews account for up to 15% of how Google ranks a local business.

A third-party review is like a vote of confidence in your business. Reviews are a signal that Google looks at to understand customer satisfaction with your product, service, or business in general. A local rankings survey found that reviews can account for up to 15% of local businesses’ ranking factors.


Over 80% of shoppers won’t choose a low-rated business.

Besides being an important local ranking factor for SEO, business reviews can also be a powerful persuader for prospective customers. A survey by PowerReviews found that 82% of shoppers won’t buy from a business with a lower than a 3-star rating. Reputation management through reviews is an important area of business. These reviews also provide your users with firsthand feedback for your business and other prospective customers.


Over three-quarters of users look at recent reviews.

 A study by BrightLocal found that 78% of users use recent reviews to inform their purchase. This makes it more important than ever to provide meaningful experiences for your customers that drive them to leave happy reviews. Prompt them, but never solicit for reviews.


90% of users interact with brands on social media

It’s more important than ever to meet your potential customers where they are.   A recent study found that 90% of social media users interact with the brand they buy from social media.


Purchase intent increase with exposure to content on Twitter

Creating passive impressions on social media can drive real-world conversions.  A recent study by Twitter showed that users were 5.2 times more likely to purchase when exposed to campaigns that featured brand and influencer tweets. This makes it more important than ever to use social media to drive real-world engagement.


80% of customers used their phone in-store to search for reviews

According to Think With Google, customers are more likely to use their mobile devices to find the store’s desired information. This means that your information must be accessible through search engines.


70% increase “where to buy” queries since 2018

Another Think With Google finding is that “best place to buy” queries have seen an increased search volume of 70% over the last two years. It’s more important than ever to optimize for local keywords and to drive reviews to your business.

Conclusion: Why Local SEO Matters

Local SEO is an important strategy for online marketing. Optimizing your business for local SEO will drive hyperlocal and relevant traffic to your business. The statistics above support investing in local SEO for your small business. It is more important than ever to compete across multiple platforms where your customers live. 

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