Self-Storage Place Search: Google Encourages the World to 'Buy Local'
|Copyright 2014 by Virgo Publishing.|
|Posted on: 11/17/2010|
By Amanda Patterson
Google changed the way it serves up Search Engine Results Page (SERP) results in lated October for searches assumed to have local intent. With Place Search, Google Places receives more emphasis, and organic results, fewer. The results on page one are now more relevant and focused than ever. From our perspective, it’s an exciting opportunity for self-storage companies to dominate in a competitive space with their website presence.
Right now, this appears to be a moving target. But, here’s a quick summary of the changes we’re seeing today.
What Do These Changes Mean?
These changes reflect Google’s commitment to local search. Self-storage businesses need to be equally committed if they want first-page placement. Place Pages were always important, but now they’re critical.
Google Reviews are more critical now, too. In addition to being served up on Place pages, a new “review” link appears next to the Place listing and key review sites are served up as clustered links.
Because of the new scrolling-map feature, competition for paid spots one through three may be more heated than before. It could also mean a reduced cost per click for the lower spot, but that placement is still valuable, and reduced cost per click would only increase the return on investment on those ads.
Local search marketing strategies need to be focused and smart. With less SERP real estate, page one has become significantly more competitive.
Greg Sterling summed it up well on Search Engine Land: “By making local results (and Place Pages) more prominent than even they were before, users will likely respond with more local queries and rely on Google more heavily for local information. The overall volume and percentage of queries on Google seeking local information may in turn increase.”
Google loves to surprise. For those of us with a pulse on the direction Google has been going, this isn’t a huge shock. Local search continues to dominate and as search moves towards mobile, it will dominate even more. For now, we look forward to seeing how Google’s SERP changes will boost traffic to self-storage websites that are optimized for local search.
With 10 years experience in marketing and advertising, Amanda Patterson manages the public relations, social and communications strategy for G5, a provider of vertical-specific local marketing solutions that help self-storage properties get found online, generate more qualified leads, convert more leads into new tenants, track marketing performance including offline, and optimize the marketing sources with the best return on investment.