The Evolution Timeline of Local Search
- Started with The Roman Bazaar. 50 million people were in ancient Rome during this time.
- ARPANET was the first indexer for the internet. The main purpose, at first, was to connect computers at research institutions, funded by the Pentagon, through telephone lines.
- Phone booth Yellow Pages came on the scene.
- Flip phones came around.
- The iPhone was launched. Only 6 million units were created at its launch.
- 90% of consumers use local search.
- Google Maps has a wide distribution.
- 500 changes to their search algorithm.
- Evolution of Google local ads and monetization.
- Push notifications to consumers to collect attributes.
Yelp Enters Local Search
- # 3 in total number of revenues.
- Average rating of all reviews.
- Much more trusted than other review sites.
- Powers Apple, Bing and Yahoo listed reviews.
Organic vs PPC Space
In the past Google ads only looked at the words in your search, and did not pay much attention to the context. Changing how the layout of Google ads appears has greatly changed how people interact on the page. Only 50% realize the links they are clicking on are actually ads.
Pain Points Digital Marketers Have With Local Search
There is a disconnect with local search. An example is if someone searches for something online, they usually will pay for it online. If someone is searching for something local, after they make the search, they pay with something that is not connected directly to whatever they used to search for that item (ex: searching for a local pizza place, and then paying for your pizza with a debit card at the cash register itself).
- VEO – Voice Engine Optimization
- 46% are using voice search every day to find local businesses
- Organic search 34% of clicks are on the first result
- You only get ONE result – 100% conversion rate (Ex: Where is the best soy milk vanilla latte downtown?”)
Is there a difference between Apple’s voice search and Google’s Voice Search?
Apple does not have revenue tied to its voice search, Google does. This may mean that the quality of voice search results may go down.
The Future of Local Search
Local search has evolved into a powerful tool in the last few years and any search strategy needs to incorporate it in some way. The future will only add to its ability to bring local businesses more customers. Businesses and marketing professionals must stay on top of changes, improvements and new local search tools as they come to market.