Monday, October 24, 2005

1 Billion Monthly Local Searches -- How to Tap into This Astonishing Market Revealed

Search Engines Becomes the Preferred Way to Find Local Businesses! by Kamau Austin

Do you have a website that fails to generate decent traffic? Have you failed to make search engine marketing a part of your promotion of your business because you have a local business, or feel the Internet is not where your customer's will find you?

Recent reports in Emarketer daily, one of the top Internet business resources, reveal over 50% of the country are now online. More importantly twice as many people search online for local businesses than use their Yellow Pages to find businesses in their area.

You could be losing at least 20 - 50% of your potential market and customers by not having an Internet marketing plan with a strong search engine component.

- Local Search Becoming More Important!

For those business owners who once felt that the Internet wasn't necessary for their local business, you should especially take note.

Now is the time to learn to tap into the promotional power of the Internet for your local business.

Since consumers increasingly are searching online for local businesses, how will your businesses take advantage of this fundamental shift in customer behavior? The Internet has affected almost every facet of business and has driven the creation of new business models while forcing the evolution of others, writes Click4Talk's Dave Landa.

Landa goes on to state traditional printed yellow pages and local commerce are being drawn headlong into the Internet vortex. The surge in online local searches by consumers relative to traditional printed phone book searches has prompted tremendous business focus in this space.

Local search has become such a strong business Google has even gotten into the act.

- Google Outsourced the Selling of Local Search

It is a very important development that Google has outsourced the selling of local search PPC programs to Bell South last year. Bell South has a large sales force that can sell search advertising face-2-face to local businesspeople and merchants.

In other words Internet search will become a significant marketing strategy for local business. This is significant because 20% of searches online are for local information. This is a huge amount of monthly searches.

- 20% of Internet Searches are for local Information means approximately close to One Billion Searches a Month are being queried via the Top Search Engines -- for local searches. This One Billion local searches will create new local business models and propel visionary tech savvy local businesses.

In other words, if you once thought your local business didn't need to be on the Internet, it is time to get a new reality check.

To bring home the importance of this grand Internet marketing shift on how it will impact your local sales, consider a recent experience with me and my wife. We listed a real estate property in two of our major local papers (The New York Times and The Star Ledger of NY and NJ respectively). The response was slow.

Later we ran a targeted local Pay-Per-Click (PPC) campaign with Google and received more than 10 times the amount of leads from both The New York Times and the Star Ledger!!!

Local focused and targeted PPC advertising with Google had out performed Two major northeastern newspapers with established real estate sections by an amazing margin. By the way, the collective circulation of the New York Times and NJ Star Ledger was 5.5 million people for the Sunday Editions.

This rise in the search engines and major portal to find local business has come at a price to local newspapers, major newspapers, and the local yellow pages. With twice as many people preferring to use the search engines to find local business than the yellow pages, this obviously has shaken-up print media.

To further illustrate this point recently the parent company of the New York Times purchased the popular Internet portal!

Your competitors will soon be introduced to the importance of local search via sales consultants from Bell South and other advertising rep firms. Don't get caught sleeping -- on move to local search!

My business has grown 3-fold in the last year because I made a focused decision to grow my business in my local area using the search engines. I know of some business associates that have created lucrative local directory type web businesses rather than putting their emphasis on general Internet Traffic.

If you are looking to increase your sales and profits maybe looking at the short view and local niches in your are is the quickest way to get there.

Kamau Austin is publisher of and runs He is author of Always On Top "How to Get the Highest Search Engine ranking for your website. See more about his eBiz strategies at Always On Top

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