I suppose real reason for a local small business to have a website at all is to provide information for local market, generate leads from local shoppers. Up until now too many small businesses have created websites more like monuments to their company name. If someone knew name of company, they could probably find website. That was good to a point but what about those people who just know they need what you sell but they don't know anybody who sells it?
What if, instead, local businesses began to think about their websites more like a listing in a phone directory. What if they began to build and optimize their websites with primary intent of being found in their hometown as leader in a category. Someone looking for "Farm Fresh Tuna in Upper Cutbank, Montana" is going to enter just such a search, right?
Google and Yahoo both announced this month their model for tapping into local search traffic. In other words they are now going to make it easier for web surfers that want to find an accountant in their home town to do so.
Everyone knew they would eventually get around to this very lucrative market so now more than ever you need to prepare your website to be found in your town. More about local search at these sites. http://www.google.com/lochp - Beta site http://www.google.com/help/faq_local.html#what FAQ http://local.yahoo.com/u_s__states - yahoo local
What I'm talking about today is "local" search engine optimization. In one sense principles are same as everyday regular search engine optimization but way of thinking about them is a bit different. ~~~~~~ gEEk Term definition: Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is science of making sure web pages are "designed" in such a way that search engines can find, index, and rank them according to value of their content. For those of you who don't know, there is an entire industry built around this science. ~~~~~~
In old day mindset was to create a website and optimize it for anyone looking for a certain topic.
Local SEO focuses first on being found in your town....for a certain topic. Geo targeting is key. When someone is looking for a veterinarian, they don't search locally (at moment) for name of your firm. Think in terms of a Yellow Pages directory. They go to city they are looking for and then category and then name of firm to call.
Local search is structured much same. People who are looking for an auto mechanic online will search "Kansas City Auto mechanic" In order to win local search game you must be able to win that type of search.