Google Places Gives SEO Boost to Local Small Businesses
Internet marketing expert Phil Frost reveals how small local businesses can take advantage of Google Places.
It’s rough out there for many small local businesses struggling to keep afloat in a tight economy. But recently, business owners have gotten a big lift from Google.
Ever since Google introduced Google Places, local businesses have started appearing at the very top of the search results – and this valuable exposure doesn’t cost a penny. That’s music to many business owners’ ears.
It’s Like Free Advertising
According to small business marketing expert Phil Frost of Main Street ROI, a marketing training company with offices in New York and San Francisco, “Google is giving away millions of top placements to local businesses – it’s like free advertising. This is an unprecedented opportunity. Every local business should be taking advantage of this.”
As an example of the power of these local listings, Frost points to his client, Peter Roach, an attorney based in Syosset, New York, on Long Island.
Peter T. Roach & Associates. P.C. ranks on the first page of Google for the keyword “Long Island real estate attorneys.” But it wasn’t always that way.
“Not long ago, Peter’s firm was nowhere to be found in Google. I showed him how to create and optimize his local listing, and in a matter of weeks, his law firm became the very first listing for dozens of keywords.”
“Now Peter’s getting new phone calls every day from prospective clients. At a time when other business owners are struggling to attract customers, Peter has the opposite situation -- he’s had to scramble to hire new staff just to meet all the increased demand,” Frost says.
Deep Pockets No Longer Required
Until recently, local businesses needed to invest thousands of dollars to gain top search engine rankings.
“Pay per click costs have become more expensive – to the point where many businesses can’t compete,” says Frost. “For example, a single click in Google AdWords for the keyword ’personal injury attorney’ costs $58.96, so a monthly AdWords advertising campaign can easily cost hundreds, even thousands of dollars per month.”
The other option, search engine optimization (or ’SEO’) can be equally expensive. “SEO companies routinely charge $500 to $2,500 – per month. And keep in mind that traditional ’Top 10’ SEO often takes 3 to 6 months to bear fruit,” Frost says. “That means you’d have to invest thousands of dollars before seeing any increase in business. Most local businsses simply can’t afford that.”
Thanks to Google’s introduction of Google Places, it’s now easier, faster, and more affordable than ever to get ranked at the top of the search results. “Any local business can afford to invest in this,” Frost insists.
Do-It-Yourself And Save Thousands
Frost refers to the process of getting ranked in Google’s local search results as local search engine optimization, or local SEO – and he recommends that small businesses should do it themselves, instead of hiring an SEO company.
As Frost explains, “Local SEO is so much simpler than ’traditional’ Top 10 SEO, so you don’t need to hire an SEO company. It’s easy to learn because it doesn’t require technical knowledge. And once you understand how it works, you can easily do it yourself or hand it off to an assistant or employee to do it for you.”
“Do it yourself, and you’ll save thousands, if not tens of thousands of dollars,” according to Frost.
Get Started Today for Maximum Exposure
Frost insists this opportunity won’t last much longer, and he encourages business owners to get started right away.
“Most of your competitors still aren’t aware of this opportunity, so your competition is still very low. But I expect that’ll change in the next few months, as more business owners learn about local SEO,” Frost predicts.
Frost encourages local businesses to act now, so they don’t miss out. “There’s a limited number of local search listings available on the first page of Google, typically 6 to 8 for any given category in a city or town. As more attorneys begin competing for these top spots, it’ll become more difficult.”
“Get started today, so you attract as many clients as possible,” Frost says.
Phil Frost has created a free presentation which reveals the 5 steps to get ranked in Google Places, available at: http://www.TheLocalSEOFormula.com
About Main Street ROI
Main Street ROI is a leading provider of local internet marketing courses for small businesses, including The Local SEO Formula, a Google Places optimization course. AdWords Success Formula, a Google AdWords course, will be available in February 2012.
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