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Part 2: Where people are looking to find local businesses

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Online or off? Google? Local directories? Facebook? Where?

Last week I showed you some data that revealed where people were looking online to find local businesses. That was part 1 of this series on where people are looking for local businesses.

That report was published in October, 2011. The same research firm released some other numbers back in March. I’m not sure what they say is much different, but I think the chart is clearer, so I wanted to share this with you as well.

ONLINE sources people check BEFORE visiting a local business or restaurant

It should be noted that this report is referring to ONLINE yellow pages, and that this would encompass all yellow page sites (yp, yellowbook, superpages, etc). In case you didn’t know it, but yellow pages is not a brand. Instead, it’s a generic term that refers to more than 2,300 local business directories in the US.

Notable facts

Of particular interest to me is the fact that only 17% click on the first link in the search results.

Earlier reports showed this to be about 42% and this number seems to confirm the results of more recent studies. This indicates to me that people are being more selective and careful in their click choices, probably because of getting used to poor, spammy results. And this is very good news for local businesses. I don’t think they have to break their backs trying to be #1 anymore. A good strong presence on the first page, inviting title and description meta tags, and a landing page that convinces or converts should do it.

Local business search in Facebook is big!

The other fascinating tidbit is that a whopping 12% – almost as many as those who hit review sites like Yelp – went looking for local businesses in Facebook! If you were on the fence about getting a Facebook business page, this should be a wakeup call for you.

Evidently “Yellow Pages” is not dead

30% search in online business yellow page directories (that come in many colors), but just as many never look online at all! That’s a huge number. Could it be they are still using their print Yellow Pages? What else could it be?

So what does that mean for you the local business owner? Well, what it says to me is that maybe, just maybe, the print yellow pages is still a good place to advertise.

Are any of you out there having success with your print yellow page ads? If so, I’d like to hear about it in the comments below.

Are you where the eyeballs are?

Part 3 of this series is live now and shows some interesting eye studies on where people are looking for local businesses on the search results page. Are you where their eyeballs gaze, or are you in the dark.

Kat

Kat

Top Kat at Kat & Mouse Co.
Kathy (aka Kat) is one of the internet's original Digital Divas and freely shares her expertise in the fields of web design, SEO, Local SEO, social media marketing, content development, PPC, and conversion optimization to help businesses succeed online. Sadly, she's allergic to cats.
Kat

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Kat

Kathy (aka Kat) is one of the internet's original Digital Divas and freely shares her expertise in the fields of web design, SEO, Local SEO, social media marketing, content development, PPC, and conversion optimization to help businesses succeed online. Sadly, she's allergic to cats.

Comments (2)

  • Tané Tachyon

    |

    Recently I asked for housepainter recommendations on the “Linked Local Santa Cruz” LinkedIn group and got a huge amount of good recommendations — part of narrowing the search down for me after that was not only looking the recommended painters up online but also looking them up in the yellow pages to see how legit they seemed.

    Reply

    • Kat

      |

      Tané, thanks for your comment. There is much there for online businesses to take note of:

      1. Why good referrals are so important and why you need do provide a great service in order to get those.
      2. Consumers are looking for you in social media. Are you there?
      3. Reveals that possibly with the proliferation of spam online, consumers are learning to be more cautious with their purchases. Building credibility online is important for businesses and social media helps.
      4. Consumers still go to trusted sources like the Yellow Pages for validation.

      Regarding YP, did you look in the print pages or online?

      Reply

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