The power of mobile local search for local businesses

The power of mobile local search for local businesses

There have been a number of very convincing studies regarding local mobile search. Local mobile search is when one searches for a business in a specific neighborhood on a mobile device, such as a smartphone. The neighborhood may be a city, zip code, a neighborhood in a city, town or even an entire state. Often, these are retail stores, such as a nursery or a clothing boutique. Studies have found that is very beneficial for a local business to have an online mobile


The importance and potential of local search on mobile devices

Mobile local search matters a lot. Even though many people have access to a desktop computer, many prefer to use their mobile phone. One explanation may be that they keep their phone with them at all times or they would rather use their phone than a business computer In fact, 77% of people who conduct a mobile search are in a location (either work or home) that is likely to have a PC available to them (Google/Nielson). Furthermore, according to eMarketer, local searches are projected to exceed desktop searches sometime next year (in 2015).

Also, many mobile local searches convert from online activity to offline activity. For example, 70% of mobile searchers call a business directly from search results. These users take advantage of their device’s “tap-to-call” feature. This allows someone quickly to call the store or business. Additionally, 78% of local mobile searches results in an offline purchase (comScore/Neustar Localeze/15 Miles). This indicates that those who conduct a mobile search are very driven to buy a product from a local business, which includes small businesses.

The temporal nature of mobile local search

Searches are timely. While people can conduct searches 24 hours per day, research suggests that some of the best searches occur during business hours. That is because one in three smartphone searches occur right before customers visit a store. Therefore, it is important to have your hours clearly posted online, whether it is on Google Maps or your store’s website.

Local search is still important to searches that occur earlier than immediately before visiting a store. In fact, 50% of smartphone users visit a store within one day of their local search. For desktop and tablet searches, that number is lower—34%. While that is not insignificant, that statistics from Google/Nielson suggest that smartphones are an important shopping tool.

How to get into the mobile search scene

More and more people are conducting local searches these days. The best way to make a good impression on a variety of devices is to have a responsive website. Responsive websites load based on the size of the browser. That means one website will keep the same look, design, and content across mobile phones of all sizes, desktop screens of all sizes and tablets of all sizes. When someone visits a website from mobile device, the page will be optimized for a mobile device. For example, the phone number automatically turns into a tap-to-call button. Navigation is simplified with a menu as opposed to the many buttons that you may see on the desktop version, and Google recommends responsive sites be optimized mobile user experiences (and Google crawling abilities when compared to a separate mobile site) for.

About Search Light

Search Light Internet Marketing provides website design services as well as Search Engine Optimization (SEO) campaigns to make sure that your website is found in a top position when people search for your category of local businesses. To learn more about us, visit or call 347-871-4141.

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Chief Content Officer at Searchlight Online Marketing

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