SEO is a traditionally important tool used for search engine visibility. It has been long used in combination with other forms of digital marketing to keep up with this continuous race of visibility.

Local SEO is different than SEO and cannot be used interchangeably with it. In fact, local SEO aims at increasing visibility locally by offering a very specific, location-based optimization. This precisely aimed approach lets customers view your business when they want to, on their terms. In contrast, SEO is less precise and less restrictive of the audience it targets.

Local SEO has a host of benefits for small and big businesses alike. Here are a few that will compel you to list your business on Google ASAP:

  1. It is the new yellow pages

Read this figure from Bright Local: 83% of consumers rely on the internet to find a local business. Just as in the yellow pages people rarely ever read to the bottom of the list, with internet searches too people rarely ever go past the first page – let alone second. It is imperative that your business must appear in one of the top search results.

This visibility can, of course, be achieved through local SEO.

  1. Better lead conversion

The beauty of local SEO is your business appears to people when they need it. Every marketer knows this is an excellent window of opportunity for lead conversion because the consumer is most receptive. In fact, read this: 72% of consumers regard to search engine results as their first choice for obtaining information on local sellers.

With a purchase already in mind, if a person manages to find your business ranked top, your chances getting a click and consequent lead conversion will improve substantially.

  1. Consumers prefer local merchants

You, as a local business have the upper hand here. There are some items that have to be purchased locally because they are perishable and it just doesn’t make sense to order groceries or flowers from another city, does it? This preference of local items is not just limited to perishable items, actually. Even with other types of products, local merchants are preferred.

  1. Consumers trust online reviews greatly

This aforementioned trust in online reviews if put into numbers, is 88% of consumers, according to another one of Bright Local’s surveys.

One of the key steps involves in optimizing your business locally is customer reviews. The more positive reviews and stars you have, the better your ranking. Consumer reviews are the new word of mouth in this case.

When you combine the above number and this knowledge about the importance of word of mouth, the conclusion is clear and resounding. Your business needs to execute local SEO in order to target the behemoth of local consumers.