Did you know you don’t even need a website to appear in Google’s search results? If you’re a local business targeting the local community Google has Places pages for any size business. Ever notice those pointers when you search for a local electrician on Google. Those are Google Places pages.
A local business can also advertise on Google, again even without a website. Google provides business owners with Places pages. All you need to do is upload your relevant, important information, and a few pictures wouldn’t hurt too. And, you can even track how much a phone call cost from one of your Google ads. Pretty cool, huh?
If you’re in the hospitality industry with a restaurant or bed & breakfast search engine visibility is critical to your livelihood. Optimizing your local website isn’t mysterious at all; it requires relevant local text content and relevant local back links. And, similarly to travel related companies, social media is playing a greater role in it than it was a year ago.
Restaurants, inns and B&B’s need to pay special attention to their social standing in places like Trip Advisor and Yelp to mention just two. Google takes into account social signals from the user contributed content sites in their algorithm. A well optimized website for local search and actively managed social media sites will ensure you’re getting the reservation and not your competitors.
And, don’t forget or discount paid search traffic. (Yes, people really do click on those ads.) Because of Google Adwords incredible targeting abilities a local advertiser can have as many as three search engine listings on a search results page. This means customers are three times as likely to find you as your competitors.