25 Reasons Why Local SEO Is Important For Your Business (With Stats)

At the heart of every business is it’s ability to attract new customers, and most business owners these days understand that their potential customers are just a mobile search away, but few business owners understand why local SEO is important for your businesses long term growth.

In this article I’ll go over the benefits of local SEO and why this deserves your attention.     

But first, let’s start with the basic…   

What is local SEO marketing?

The popularity of local SEO has grown by multiples over the last 5 years as users gain more comfort in using their smartphone while at the same time connectivity and internet speeds improve. 

Local SEO is all about providing a searcher with the best results for their query but it also takes it a step further by also filtering by geo-location.

Here’s an example of search results for a local Mexican restaurant in the Google Map Pack: 

example of google maps listing

Reason 1 – local customers are looking for local businesses

Instead of big box and chain businesses, consumers by far have a biased towards working with a local business.

According to screenwork,

consumers prefer to shop and buy from local vendors and service providers but they also expect them to be digitally savvy. 

The survey was performed by Yodle who surveyed 6,000 adults

and found that the top 3 reasons local consumers prefer to do business with a local merchant is because of quality of work, reliability and trustworthiness.

Here are some other big business vs small business statistics:

why local seo is important
big business vs small business statistics

Reason 2 – Highly targeted audience looking for your product or service now

Most searchers are looking for a specific type of business. In general they understand what kind of product or service will satisfy their need, but they don’t have a contact.

This is the best time for your business to show up in the search engines to deliver your quality product or service to those who are searching for it.

Reason 3 – 20% of all searches have local intent

When you think about it, that’s an extremely high figure. The folks over at sunant have confirmed that 1 out of 5 people who are actively searching for something have intent to purchase a product or service that is local to them.

Reason 4 – highest conversion levels of all marketing channels

Approximately 4 years ago, a study was performed by a company named Localeze which found that while Google advertisements generate direct revenue for Google, local results generate the most trust and relevancy for its users.

This emphasizes to Google that they need to place more importance on local results instead of advertisements and solidifies again why local SEO is important for local business owners.

Reason 5 – The Mobile World Is Experiencing Rapid Growth

The data is very conclusive now and the results show that we are well past the tipping point. Mobile users now consume their media at a whopping 51% rate as opposed to 42% through desktop and only 7% through other connected devices such as a tablet.

how often people use a certain media to consume information

Reason 6 – return on your investment

Unlike traditional marketing where you are constantly making an effort to place your business in front of potential consumers, local SEO allows your consumers to find you when it’s convenient for them.

Local SEO allows you to put in the time and effort once and leverage that so you constantly and consistently have your business show up when it’s relevant and geographically close to the searcher.

The longer your show up on the search engines for a particular keyword, the closer your ROI and ROT reach infinity.  It should be music to a business owners ears!

Reason 7 – only 44% of local businesses have claimed their Google My Business listing

Your Google My Business listing is powerful, and best of all, it’s free. Google makes this listing available to nearly any business and it allows you to show up in the search engines with a strong presence.

Your Google My Business (GMB) listing displays your business’ name, address and phone number along with directions and a link to your website.

Not only that, but it conveniently displays your business on the map. If 56% of your competitors haven’t claimed their business on GMB, it’s a perfect time for you to leverage their oversights.

google maps example

Reason 8 – only 20% of adults get their news from print newspapers

Sorry to say, but people getting their news from print media is well behind us. Surprisingly, television media still holds a strong 57% with digital media right behind at 38%.

At the same time, video advertisers and podcast publications are showing great signs of growth which further confirms that distribution of media on multiple modalities is still extremely important.

(Source: poynter.org)

news from digital media

Reason 9 – 88% of local customers trust online business reviews

This re-emphasizes reason #3. Google places high priority to those that have had great experiences with quality businesses. If previous customers love doing business with a certain landscaper in your area, as an example, then chances are you will too!

Shopify actually sites that approximately 67% of consumers will read 6 reviews before they form an opinion on a particular business.

So what does this mean for you?

Well for starters, you’d better be playing with you’re A-game, but also, it gives you an opportunity to really set yourself apart from your competition.

And if you really believe that your product or service is superior then why not ask for reviews from your customers – Google will love you and so will your future customers!

Reason 10 – local customers rely on the internet to find out information about your business

These days, people rely heavily on the internet to find information they need. If your business doesn’t have a website or any kind of web presence then you are mission out on a tremendous opportunity.

From search engine organic listings, to social media, to paid advertisement and everything in between, you cannot afford to not be found on the web, literally.

Reason 11 – Google 3-Pack gives your website prime real estate

And yet another reason why local SEO is important for business owners.  When there is local intent involved, the Google 3 pack gets the top stop 93% of the time.

The 3-pack gives three business owners the opportunity to showcase their business name, address and phone number for a particular product or service that the user is looking for.

The great part is that getting on the 3-pack is free. Though completing your profile 100% and optimizing it is one thing, it is worth the return on your time and investment.

Reason 12 – smartphone searches lead to sales. Period.

According to Nectafy.com 88% of consumers who conducted a local search on their smartphone visited a store within a day and 34% who searched on their computer/tablet did the same

Reason 13 – A higher probability of a sale that day

A recent partnership study conducted by Google and Ipsos MediaCT 18% of local mobile searches lead to a sale within one day.

That’s nearly 1 in 5 searches that turn into a sale within a 24 hour period. Mobile users act fast!

If there is any doubt in your mind if local SEO is important for sales growth, this stat should smash it!

Reason 14 – 60% of American adults use smartphones and tablets to search for local product and service information

Since Americans are constantly on-the-go, this study conducted by the Local Search Association, would make sense that local searches are mostly conducted on a mobile device. Since we also carry our phones everywhere we go, we can also search for something we need as soon as we think of it.

Reason 15 – 18 trillion reasons why

The US Commerce Department conducted a study and found that roughly 70% of the nearly $18 Trillion US GDP is driven by consumer spending that occurs within 20 miles of home or work.

If that’s not a benefit of local search then I don’t know what is!

Reason 16 – more than 60% of consumers have used local information in ads

Information such as direction to your business or the click-to-call feature are relied upon heavily by your potential customers, for this reason, you should try to maximize those fields in your GMB profile.

If your business is targeting a national presence, simply optimizing for specific locations can really help your business reach a larger pool of consumers.

Reason 17 – business address/location is the primary piece of information sought by local searchers

To reiterate the point directly above, consumers are drawn to your business information. If a searcher is looking for a hair salon in Seattle, WA, for example, if your business isn’t displaying its most current name and address then you are making it more difficult for your customers to find you.

Reason 18 – 64% of mobile users prefer a mobile browser vs a mobile app

A recent survey taken by Quixey found that 66.4% of mobile internet users prefer to use a browser instead of the app. The reasons being they feel they have all the content in one place and they also don’t have to install an additional app on their phone, taking up additional storage space.

What does this mean to you? Again, your site should be capitalizing on the benefits of local search with a GMB listing.

Reason 19 – Google drives 96% of mobile search traffic, followed by yahoo at 2% and bing at 1%

This one is self-explanatory.

This is not to say that you shouldn’t focus any efforts on the other search engines, but my experience has shown that if you focus on making Google happy, you will satisfy requirements for the other search engines as well.

Reason 20 – local searches are growing 50% faster than mobile searches overall

Of all the mobile metrics that Google has disclosed in the past, the most eye-opening stat for local business owners is that searchers want to do business with companies that are geographically close to them.

So much so, that this particular stat is growing 50% faster than mobile searches alone.

Reason 21 – users are 5x more likely to leave a site that is not mobile friendly

Now a days it’s simply bad business to have your mobile visitors access a page that isn’t mobile friendly. 

Not only is your site formatted improperly, making it extremely hard for your visitors to have a good viewing experience, but it also kills your conversions.

Since Google has over 200 metrics it uses to rank your site, poor conversions will also hurt your search engine rankings.

You can access Google’s Mobile Friendly Test site to see if your site is optimized for mobile visitors.

Reason 22 – by 2019, mobile advertising is expected to represent 72% of all U.S. digital ad spend

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Reason 23 – 77% of americans own a smart phone, up from 35% in 2011

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Reason 24 - locally focused content is the driving factor for most major categories

The chart below shows the breakdown between searches on a desktop vs mobile searches per major search category.

While some categories may not be as relevant to many local business, such as Government, the graph provides a strong suggestion that no matter the reason for your search, chances are strong that it is likely being performed on a mobile device.

In particular, the “Coupon” category shows a large opportunity for a local business owner to advertise their products and/or services and appear on local search.

locally focused mobile search per segment

Source: Statista.com

Reason 25 – over 50% of smartphone users grab their smartphone immediately after waking up

I know I’m guilty of this and so are your customers! Use the tools Google provides to create a site that gives your customers a reason to find you first!

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