Author | Chatmeter TeamDate Posted | September 13, 2019

What is Review Solicitation and What Does it Mean for Local SEO?

What is Location-Based Marketing

Location-based marketing, also known as geo-targeting, takes location and search-related data pulled from a user’s mobile device and uses that data to deliver targeted content and create a relevant customer experience in real-time.

Harvesting the location data is now an essential tool for businesses to convert shoppers from searching online to making purchases in-store. It allows them to target local customers who are ready to buy, better understand the customer experience, and stay competitive on their home turf.

Unfortunately, how and when to use this type of data can be hard to understand without the proper tools. That is why many companies are turning to analytics software services and local SEO marketing technologies that help to better analyze, understand, and utilize locational data.

Locational Data is the Missing Link

Locational data has made headway as the new biggest trend because it provides marketers with clarity on their customer’s online habits. It is the missing link in better understanding customer opinions and shopping trends. Ultimately, you’ll gain the insights that can guide your team in making data-driven, informed decisions like:

  • Who your target audience should be
  • What platforms and channels you customers prefer
  • Which products and services they love, and don’t love
  • Where the best place to deliver your message is

Why is it so effective to use location-based marketing strategies and tactics?

  • It’s Personalized: 71% of people prefer personalized messages. By personalizing your messages to their location, you are much more likely to show them something relevant
  • It’s Timely: Real-time location data gives brands the opportunity to target people at precisely the correct moments (like when they are near one of your store locations) in order to improve engagement and relevance

Incorporating a locational strategy into your marketing approach is the best way to start utilizing this new widely available data. Below are some examples of why it is so important to have location in mind when gathering new information about your customers and some examples for how to incorporate it into your strategy.

How to Expand Your Local Marketing Success

24% of retailers saw an increase in sales when they used location-based data to aid them in targeting customers. Knowledgeable brands do this by using tools like geo-location to target specific regions or cities that have had the highest number of conversions in the past. They then compare this data with purchase information to further refine and create highly targeted strategies that cater towards attracting customers at a local level.

Make Local Search A Tops Focus

Local search and review platforms like Google, Bing, Yelp and Facebook have continued to enhance their capabilities to better incorporate location-specific marketing and deliver search results that place more significance on location.

These new advancements include Google’s focus on proximity, using it as the number one influencing factor for their local search rankings, Bing’s new improvements to their local results section that allow you to chat directly with bots and ask questions about the restaurant (i.e. do they have indoor/outdoor seating) and Facebook’s ability to track offline conversions so you can have a better idea of what is working when attracting people to your location.

Finally, Yelp’s decision to only work with the most reputable companies, in order to provide the most accurate and valuable data possible to customers has shaken the local search industry.

The significance of these advancements from industry leaders goes to show how influential locational data is becoming among all facets of the local search marketing industry.

Implement Local SEO and Voice Search into your Marketing Strategy

Along with the location craze, voice search popularity has been growing just as fast. About 50% of all searches were voice searches in 2020, and nearly 30% will be done without a screen (ie. via Amazon Alexa and Google Home). The very nature of voice search has been designed to incorporate the local intent of users searches.

To suit local requests, Siri and other voice assistants now have a direct integration with their partnering map applications. This means your new local strategies will be just as successful in attracting customers over voice search. After all, if 20% of all searches are made through voice assistants, then you could be expanding your reach and winning over new customers with little effort. Right now, the best thing you can do is to optimize keywords for organic local voice search.

Dive Into Social Media for Local SEO

Targeting local customers through social media is far easier than you think. There are 3 great approaches for gaining more local followers on your social media platforms. The first is to offer promotions to your followers in order to create buzz and brand loyalty. In doing this, your customers will be more inclined to follow you if they feel that they are getting something in return.

The second is to locally target customers through social media advertisements. Social media sites like Facebook do a great job of targeting local customers making it easy to get your name out there and reach new people.

Finally, sites like Snapchat, TikTok, and Instagram help to create a visual buzz and hype around your individual locations. With integrations like SnapMaps and the ability to tag specific locations to photos on Instagram, customers can get a first-hand look at what is really going on in your stores.

How to Create Fantastic Local Listings

Accurate and consistent local listing information is critical to the success of any local strategy. 32% of customers won’t even consider a business if their contact information is incorrect and another 37% will dismiss you if your information is inconsistent across different sources, ie. different on Yelp and Google.

If they aren’t properly listed, customers around your area won’t have any idea of where you are or what your hours of business are. You should also add attributesposts, menus and options to make reservations or appointments to further distinguish your business from its competitors.

Start Adding More Location-Specific Keywords

Your keywords should properly reflect your business’s characteristics and what you do. Part of this also includes adding specific keywords about your location and its characteristics. People who find your restaurant in a different state will most likely not be profitable to you. Adding your location’s characteristics in your keywords will help you attract more customers in your area and boost your revenue.

The Top Local SEO Terms You Need to Know

Remember these commonly used terms that are a must-know for understanding the local SEO and listings environment:

Look-alikes: Collecting anonymous data to create mini-profile target groups that have the same characteristics as an advertiser’s goal.

Designated Market Area (DMA): A population in a specific geographical area.

Geofence: A virtual mapped area used by brands to target messages to people at specific locations.

Identifier for Advertising (IDFA): A piece of location-based code within iPhones used for ad targeting.

Triangulation: The process of using multiple pieces of data to verify the accuracy of one piece of data.

Location accuracy: This measures how closely a company’s data matches to actual location coordinates in the real world.

Attribution: Determining that a piece of media drove a conversion.

First-party data: Data collected and stored directly by a company.

Third-party data: Data collected by another firm that’s used as an additional source for verifying the location.