Bill Leake - How to Win with Local Search on the Internet


Published on

More and more consumers are using the web to find and research properties. Agents and brokerages can leverage search engine optimization techniques to bring more awareness to their organization's website and to capture larger market share. Bill Leake explains how site structure, robust use of highly searched key words, blogs, social media profiles, links and more affect the visibility of a brand in today's information-saturated digital world.

Published in: Real Estate, Business
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

Bill Leake - How to Win with Local Search on the Internet

  1. 1. Local Search What, Why, and How Presented at Ignite 2010 By: William Leake @marketing_bill CEO, Apogee Search 20 February, 2010
  2. 2. Agenda What is local search & why you care: Definitions, Facts, Figures How to take advantage of local search: Turning Thought Into Action
  3. 3. most searches have local intent (eventually)
  4. 4. Online search influenced $471 billion worth of offline sales last year … versus only $136 billion in e-commerce sales (eMarketer, 2008)
  5. 5. Product research and comparison shopping happen online. But 67% of those purchases happen offline . (Accenture) 90% of purchases are made within 50 miles of a person's home. (Kelsey)
  6. 6. Google moved from three to ten results in February 2008 Google 10-Pack
  7. 7. And from ten to seven results in most cases last month Google 10 7-Pack X
  8. 8. Shows as a blended result. Can expand your search results to get more info without leaving page Integrated Map
  9. 9. Google now searches locally based on IP address if keyword is a service.“House Painting” renders local referrals and shows the map No Geo Keywords Needed
  10. 10. How to Submit your Company <ul><li>Register individually with Google, Yahoo!, and Bing </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Register all your addresses </li></ul><ul><li>Tip: Be as robust as possible when registering </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Include coupons, pictures, hours of operation, videos, etc. </li></ul></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Provides users with an overview of their local search presence in all three search engines plus Best of Web
  12. 12. Google Local Business Center 3/3/09
  13. 13. Google Local Business Center 3/3/09
  14. 14. Google Local Business Center 3/3/09
  15. 15. Google Local Business Center 3/3/09
  16. 16. Additional Options <ul><li>In addition to Categories and Hours of Operation features, you can also add: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Payment Options </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Photos of your product or storefont (limit of 10) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Tip: Host photos on Flickr and geotag images </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Videos (limit of 5) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Tip: Host videos on Youtube and optimize </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Additional Details </li></ul></ul>
  17. 17. Listing Validation 3/3/09
  18. 18. Local/Map SEO <ul><li>On Page Optimization </li></ul><ul><li>Citations </li></ul><ul><li>Link Building </li></ul><ul><li>Reviews </li></ul>
  19. 19. On Page Optimization <ul><li>Include “City, State” in title tag </li></ul><ul><li>Include physical address to pages </li></ul><ul><li>Customize by page for multiple localities </li></ul><ul><li>Keywords </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Do not overdo inclusion of keywords </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Content should be interesting enough to entice user to link back to site </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Address </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ensure each page of your website contains the address of your business </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Internal Linking </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Turn the keyword into a link point at the page it does target </li></ul></ul>
  20. 20. Tagging <ul><li>Goal is to... </li></ul><ul><li>Accurately describe content of page </li></ul><ul><li>Create unique tags for each page </li></ul><ul><li>Keep tags short when possible </li></ul><ul><li>Include city within tags to improve association and local ranking </li></ul><ul><li>Title tags – very important to SEO. Inform both search engines and users about the content of your page. It's the irst bit of information to appear in search results. </li></ul><ul><ul><li><title>Keyword City, State | Company Name</title> </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Meta tags: keywords and description – like title tags, provide information about content of page. </li></ul><ul><li>Keywords viewed by search engines, description sometimes pulled in search result. </li></ul><ul><ul><li><meta name=”description” content=”Located in City, State, Company Name specializes in Keyword...” /> </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li><meta name=”keywords” content=”Keyword” /> </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Header tags – on-page elements provide information about content of page as well. Given extra weight by search engines </li></ul><ul><ul><li><h1>Keyword</h1> </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Vary from H1 to H6, most important to least important </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Alt text tag – specifies text that will appear to search engines since images cannot be rendered </li></ul><ul><ul><li><img src=”images/Keyword.jpg” alt=”Keyword”> </li></ul></ul><ul><li>URLs – not a tag, but can be tagged. Use static URLs and include keywords in URL along with dashes, not underscores: /austin-custom-software, not /austin_custom_software </li></ul>
  21. 21. On-page Optimization <ul><li>Keywords – important content of each page contains its targeted keywords. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Do not overdo inclusion of keywords, though. Content should be interesting enough to entice users to link to website </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Address – make sure each page of your website contains the address of your business – use both regular </li></ul><ul><li>HTML and hCards </li></ul><ul><li>Internal Linking – it's inevitable you will use keywords on a page it does not target. Don't fret! Turn that keyword into a link pointing at the page it does target. </li></ul>
  22. 22. Internal Linking Dogs Red Dogs Blue Dogs Green Dogs Red Dogs Dogs Blue Dogs Dogs Green Dogs Dogs
  23. 23. Citations Explained <ul><li>In local search, a citation is a mention of your business name and address on a website, even if it isn't a link </li></ul><ul><li>Search engines do not only look at incoming links to help determine local search rankings, but also citations </li></ul><ul><li>Citations help search engines validate information they have about a business </li></ul><ul><li>Improving the number of citations to your business' website consists of submitting your site to a variety websites </li></ul>3/3/09
  24. 24. Citations <ul><li>Appearance of business name and location on same page is a signal that boosts rankings </li></ul>
  25. 25. Major Local Search Data Centers <ul><li>A number of websites act as data centers, providing secondary local search websites with information about your website </li></ul><ul><ul><li>After Google Local Business Center, submit info to centers </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Universal Business Listing </li></ul><ul><ul><li>For $30/year, will submit your business information to infoUSA and a number of other locally focused websites </li></ul></ul><ul><li>InfoUSA </li></ul><ul><li>Localeze </li></ul><ul><li>Acxiom – not able to submit online, search web on their own acquiring data </li></ul>3/3/09
  26. 26. Local Search Sites <ul><li>On one level, function as directories in that they help categorize businesses by their metadata </li></ul><ul><li>Much more interactive than directories, social media directories: Send listing to a friend, social bookmarking, send to phone, write reviews, create a profile, acquire friends </li></ul><ul><li>Provide incoming links and citations </li></ul><ul><li>Examples: Yelp, Yellowbot,, TrueLocal, HotFrog </li></ul>3/3/09
  27. 27. Local Business Directories <ul><li>Finding local business directories is as easy as searching for “[your city] directory” </li></ul><ul><li>These directories are highly associated with a city/region and crawled often by the search engines </li></ul><ul><li>Better Business Bureau functions as a high value, highly localized business directory </li></ul><ul><li>Provide incoming links and citations </li></ul><ul><li>Examples: Better Business Bureau,, </li></ul>3/3/09
  28. 28. Reviews: Get Them The importance of reviews is growing. Not just for SEO, but for every local business
  29. 29. Reviews Continued... Google prefers different sources for different industries. Do your research and get reviews where Google shows they matter .
  30. 30. Don't forget the video! <ul><li>Easy to implement in SEO </li></ul><ul><li>Produce once, get recurring benefits </li></ul><ul><li>Minimal equipment, make it real </li></ul><ul><li>Many online profile listings accept video </li></ul>
  31. 31. <ul><li>Algorithms getting better, more accurate </li></ul><ul><li>More results with local flavor </li></ul><ul><li>Reviews help filter the best local venues </li></ul><ul><li>Take advantage of blended search results </li></ul><ul><li>Develop mobile version of site </li></ul>What's on the Local horizon?
  32. 32. THANK YOU! William Leake CEO Apogee Search [email_address] Follow Apogee on Twitter: Follow Bill Leake on Twitter: Apogee videos on YouTube:
  33. 33. <ul><li>Google Spam </li></ul><ul><li>Black Hat? Or </li></ul><ul><li>A Google Conflict of Interest issue? </li></ul><ul><li>Here’s how it works … </li></ul>Citation Spamming for Local Rankings (aka “buying yourself onto the map”)
  34. 34. “ Debt Consolidation Los Angeles”
  35. 35. w/in local listing 14 web pages
  36. 36. So what are many of these pages? MFA (Made for Adwords) sites