The Google Local Business Center

If you have not heard of the Google Local Business Center and most of your customers come from your local region, then you now have a high priority task today.  When prospects search for suppliers, Google will often now attempt to give them a list of local suppliers.  That’s particularly true if the searcher is using google.com and it is presumably only a short time before it applies to other Google searches like those done with Google.ca.

It works for all the common products and services where you might be looking for a local supplier.  You will usually find a block of ten local suppliers that is listed at the fourth position in the Google keyword search results for the particular product or service.  To an extent it may mean less business for Google as fewer people then click on the Sponsored Link (Adwords) advertisements at the top and down the right-hand side through which Google makes its money.

If you were previously relying on your natural occurrence in the Google search results (what is often called the organic search results), then your entry is pushed even farther down the page unless you can guarantee to be in the top three.  Perhaps that is the lever that will push many local businesses to buy sponsored link AdWords ads in order to appear on the initial screen (above the fold).

Google has now added a Local Business Center User Guide, and it includes a short video introduction to the service.

Mike Blumenthal is a keen watcher of the Google Local Search scene and he offers the following assessment of the  Local Business Center User Guide.

The Guide is a step in the right direction, is well organized and provides additional useful information. That being said, Google needs to “step it up” to bring the LBC into the realm of usable by the small business person it is intended to serve.

It is true that there is a degree of confusion here and for Google it clearly is a work in progress.  If you need any help in ensuring you are visible to your local customers then please contact SMM.

13 thoughts on “The Google Local Business Center”

  1. It would be nice to have something like that for those bloggers who are willing to write posts and articles for other blogs. Apart from this Google Local Business Center is of no or little use for regular blogger

  2. This would be very helpful especially for businesses who are targeting local customers. And I think even small and medium businesses will also benefit from this.

  3. This strategy helped a lot one of our clients who owns a hotel in San Diego. So we at Wisitech give this particular strategy a lot of weight when we want to concentrate on the local traffic.

  4. While it is nice to see local results that are relevant, such as the example of finding local dental websites, it is scary that Google keeps track of clients so closely. And it can be annoying when you are trying to do research on another locality.

  5. Google local is a good tool for user if looking for something locally, such as restaurant, clinics, b&b and other local business. But if the location is huge and have similar businesses, the search result will be competitive and end up to be similar like ordinary organic search. Any way it is just a thought.

  6. I disagree. This has me worried in that sure local services should come up for certain daily business like retail stores near you, but for me operating a travel business I need to rely on a nationwide search for certain keywords. If they are going to automatically pass it off each time to the travel agent down the street from the consumer I would never stand a chance.

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