The world of SEO is an everchanging landscape, and one area organizations may overlook when managing their organic content is local search. Local search, which involves optimizing a company’s online presence for local consumers and search engines, is crucial for driving business outcomes. It’s built on the foundation of Local Presence Management (LPM), which is a multidisciplinary practice that manages all aspects of a company’s local online identity through optimization of vital information, such as online reviews and Google Business Profile (GBP) listings.
In a recent Our research found that brands deploying a strong Local Presence Management strategy saw two main improvements:
- Increased discovery through non-branded search results on Google Maps
- Increased call centre activity, website traffic, and direction requests, which lead to additional business outcomes
DAC’s research included data from six businesses in the service, food, and retail industries across 7,500 locations across the United States and Canada over a 12-month period in 2022.
From cost center to growth driver
Although the fundamental aspects of Local Presence Management have been around for years, a more sophisticated strategy is now needed to stay up to date with the increasingly diverse ways customers seek information online. Businesses run the risk of losing out on possible advantages if they treat Local Presence Management like a cost center rather than a source of revenue or growth. Proper listings management, for example, requires effort and attention to detail ensure all information is accurate and updated regularly.
Although the benefits of Local Presence Management have long been recognised by DAC and our clients, it has been a challenge to quantify its value beyond specific KPIs. Anecdotally at least, managing your listings and your brand’s online reputation—as well as improving the content of your website and local experience—is an effective way to increase customer engagement and drive business at a strategic level.
DAC’s research on Local Presence Management reveals important insights
Our research provides insights into how brands can start to quantify the value of a Local Presence Management program. We analyzed brands that use the TransparenSEE platform and its Local Rank+ feature, which determines how a business’s search rankings change when a user searches for a specific keyword from various proximities to its location. Notably, the results show a direct correlation between a company’s Local Rank+ score and an increase in actions (such as website visits and direction requests) from the Google Business Profile section on the search engine results page (SERP).
Foundations of a strong Local Presence Management program
So, now that we’ve seen the importance of Local Presence Management and how it can be a driver for business outcomes, there are three things that marketers can do right now to manage their brand’s online local presence more effectively.
- Manage reviews
Numbers matter. Ensure you encourage accurate, recent, and abundant reviews. Some brands neglect this critical aspect of online reputation management because they aren’t convinced of its tangible value. Yet DAC’s previous work with clients and its new research study can offer many instances where both search metrics and business conditions improved thanks to a more rigorous approach to updating reviews.
- Enhance the visual experience
Today’s SERP is very visual, and photos are especially important to a company’s LPM strategy. Marketers have to know the kinds of images that people seek when conducting an online search for a particular type of retail business.
- Deploy SEO best practices
SEO is incredibly important both for listings and website management, with a focus on Google Business Profiles. To succeed in local SEO, ensuring that content and user experience flows from the listing to the website seamlessly should be a top priority. To take the user experience one step further, consider adding location pages to your website to enhance SEO performance.
Want to learn more about Local Presence Management and how you can implement your own program? Download our free white paper or contact our expert team!