By Katherine Andes
If you have a retail store, have you claimed your local business listings with the major search engines?
If you don’t know what I mean, then go to Google and type in “Your Product Your City Your State.” (e.g. furniture Fresno ca)
Most likely you will see a map at the top of the page. This map is prime marketing real estate.
To the right of the map, you will see listings of your competitors and, hopefully, your own store.
If you click on your store name, then you’ll be taken to your website (assuming you have one). OR if you click on “more” or “reviews,” you’ll be taken to the local listing page.
This page will have an address, a map, maybe reviews, and maybe a lousy “drive-by image” of your store.
But if you “claim” it, you can fill it out with more information — like terrific sales copy. And you can include images of your product or coupons. You might even include a decent image of your store.
This local business listing is absolutely free advertising space.
If you invest a few hours to develop it — so that it’s attractive and appealing for your customers — the page will work for you for years and years to come with no additional investment.
Since Google gets 72% of all web searches, be sure to claim your Google listing first. Yahoo is next with 15% and Bing with 9%.
Once your Google page is complete, it will take even less time to build the Yahoo and Bing pages.
To claim your local business listing, just click through to the listing page and look for “edit.” Then follow the prompts. You will need to be in your store when you load the page, as you will be phoned to verify you are the owner.
If you have more than one store, you will need to claim your listing in each city.
Easy Web Tip #58: Claim your local business listings with Google, Yahoo, and Bing for years of free advertising at the top of search results pages. BTW: You don’t even need a website to claim these listing pages.
Katherine Andes is a consultant who specializes in web content development, including search engine optimization, and landing pages — especially in the home improvement market. You can phone her at 559.589.0379 or email at email@example.com