Geo-fencing technology is significant due to its intuitive awareness of geographical location. It takes into account not only the local Internet user's exact location, but also the location of nearby features that may be useful to users. In addition to being convenient for individuals, the use of local search marketing such as geo-fencing can prove very beneficial to businesses looking to build more foot traffic to their brick & mortar business.
What Is Geo-fencing?
Geo-fencing is a modern technology for portable electronic devices that creates and establishes specific boundaries around a real geographical area. The "geo-fence" itself is the specific geographical radius surrounding a certain place. Devices that are enabled with geo-fencing technology become triggered when they are within these boundaries. Upon being triggered, they immediately send out automatically generated alerts such as text messages or emails.
"Nearby" Modifiers And Social Media
Social networks and mobile applications such as Foursquare are typically used by individuals, but they can be useful for local search marketing as well. These apps use local social networks to allow users to "check in" to locations. The social media program Foursquare works by means of geo-fencing technology. Many casual smartphone users may be familiar with these types of apps, which use "nearby" modifiers used to indicate where they are at any given point in time - but businesses would do well to understand this technology even further.
Location extensions are another effective strategy for local search marketing. Location extensions used on portable electronic devices allow businesses to display relevant information. A clearly visible map marker is displayed along with this information so users can see exactly where a business is located on a map. If users are searching by means of a mobile device, they can easily follow a link to a page that gives them detailed directions. In addition, click-through ads with location extensions can be displayed.
How Location Extension Can Help A Brand New Business
Location extension features in paid advertising has been proven to be consistently beneficial to developing businesses. Using extensions sets your business apart from other, less tech-savvy competitors. It allows users to establish a relationship with your business right at their fingerprints. It also encourages them visit your business in person, since the directions are so easy to obtain. Ads with location extensions tend to see a 10% rise in click-through rate, on average. Most importantly, these interactive click-through ads can be targeted around the business' address.
How Local Search Marketing Allows Businesses To Grow
Local search marketing will not only help a small business to grow, it will allow that business to flourish long into the future. The current economic situation has forced businesses to fight even more viciously to attract and maintain customers. Businesses that have implemented local search marketing hold an advantage over businesses that have not. The fact that it is essentially personalized and interactive advertising, allows businesses to create a long-lasting relationship with customers. For example, locals who visit a business' area often will continue to receive current text promotions, encouraging them to return to the business time and time again.
Statistics Relating To Local Search Marketing
According to recent studies done by Google, local searches make up approximately 40% of all searches done on smartphones. What's more, technological analysts predict that as early as 2015, local queries will be more common on smartphones than on PC's. In relation to geo-fencing, it is important to note that a very large percentage of Americans own geo-enabled smartphones and other similar devices. As such, geo-targeted promotions will undeniably reach a very wide number of potential customers.
Local search marketing is the way of the future. Businesses that choose not to implement today's location-based technologies to improve their business will miss out on many opportunities to attract customers - often right around the corner from the business' physical address.
Maciej (ma-chi) is the SEO Director of a Naples, FL based inbound marketing company, Brandignity, helping small to mid-sized businesses with full service SEO plans, pay per click advertising, blog writing and social media.