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Have you Optimized your Online Presence?

Optimizing Your Online Presence

June 28, 2019

A recent study by SCORE(a resource partner of the U.S. Small Business Administration) reveals some interesting statistics about Search Engine Optimization (SEO).  

By now every small business should know they need to have an online presence and to some degree, almost every business does. But, have you optimized your on-line presence? Local SEO is the practice of improving your online presence to attract local customers to your brick-and-mortar business. 

Here are just a few reasons why local SEO is important. 

  • 46% of all Google searches are local
  • There has been a 900% growth in mobile searches for “(blank) near me today/tonight”
  • 76% of nearby mobile searches visit a related business within a day, with 28% buying

So, how can you improve your local SEO? One of the first things you want to make sure you have on any website, on-line directory social media, etc. is your business name, address, phone number and business hours. You might be surprised how many businesses don’t have this basic information on their sites or have it in a hard to find place. It’s among the first things customers want to know about you when looking for you. According to the study, 70 percent of mobile searchers call a business directly from search result.

Consumers also search for this local information.

  • 54%: business hours
  • 53%: directions to store
  • 50%: store address

Another way to improve your local SEO is to take advantage of online directories that offer free business listings. 

Here’s what a lot of small business are missing.

  • 84% of retailers have not claimed their free listing on the Better Business Bureau’s website
  • 82% haven’t claimed their Bing listing
  • 81% haven’t claimed YP
  • 79% haven’t claimed Yahoo
  • 66% haven’t claimed Yelp
  • 56% haven’t claimed Google My Business

Lastly, consider asking for online reviews. But if you do, be sure to respond to them. 

  • 86% of consumers read reviews for local businesses
  • Consumers read an average of 10 online reviews before feeling like they can trust a local business
  • 89% of consumers read businesses' responses to reviews

For more information on the Local SEO study, and how SCORE can help you get optimized, go to score.org/resource/infographic-local-seo-make-clicks-lead-your-brick-location

Find more tips on starting and growing your business at sba.gov. Learn more about The Partnership’s Small Business Resources Hub.

Dave Lentell

Dave Lentell is the lead lender relations specialist with the U.S. Small Business Administration's (SBA's) Iowa District Office. He helps coordinate SBA's small business loan programs in the state of Iowa and promotes SBA's programs to the small business community. He has been with SBA since 1993.