Anyone who uses the internet to search for products, services, or advice have seen the local results that show up in searching using a city, state , or zip code in their search.
Google, Yahoo, and MSN all display local results at the top of the search listings right under the sponsored listings.
We are going to concentrate on Google local results today. Do a search for “Orlando internet marketing” in Google. You will see local business results show up on the top of the search results. It displays a map with the listings marked with letters and the listing information displayed along side the map. The listing shows the company name, street address, phone number, and website link.
If you can get your ad listed in the local business listings, you are getting great free advertising. How do you get Google to display this information on your website you ask?
First, you will need to be showing in the first page for your listing. If you are not on the first page, don’t worry you can still get a hyperlink under your listing with a map and directions to your business.
You will need to create a Google local account at: http://www.google.com/local/add/businessCenter. Add all the website information that pertains to your business that you would like Google local results to display. Google will require a mailing address to send a postcard to you that will verify the address you gave. Once you receive this postcard, you will log back into Google Local Business center and enter the verification pin on the card.
The whole process can take 4-6 weeks but is well worth the effort. The second way to get your site listed within the local directory is to just wait. If you have your business address and phone number on your site, Google should eventually display the information.
I suggest you submit your site to the business listing as you are sure to be listed within a few months; you have more control on what information is displayed, and best of all its free.
Shawn Hickman is the Internet Marketing Manager for Websolutions of America Web Design & Internet Marketing Services