What Local Businesses Need to Do to Show Up in Google

What Local Businesses Need to Do to Show Up in Google

Often local businesses call me at my You Can Be Found consulting company and ask how to show up in Google for their local searches, such as “product or service offered” followed by “town in which they do business”. This comes down to taking advantage of local search, or those maps that pop in search with different businesses and pins on them.

There are a number of factors that you need to take advantage of in local search, and I tell them if you want to help yourself, at least cover the basics.

What Local Businesses Need to Do to Show Up in Google

  1. Secure your Google local business listing: Go to Google Places for Business or Google My Business or whatever they decide to call it this month. They change this a lot. I typically just Google “Google places for business” and you will find it.
    1. Go through the process of telling them about and claiming your business listing. Be sure you pick and use a business name, address, and phone number that you can use over and over. That is an important part of this.
    2. Don’t try to outsmart Google. Use the name your business would use when you answer the phone. Don’t try to load the name with keywords. That doesn’t work anymore.
  2. Spread out your NAP: A big factor in local search is your Name, Address, and Phone (NAP) citations. This is the number of reputable local databases that show your consistent NAP.
    1. Make sure you are precisely consistent. New Jersey Route 34 is different from RT-34 NJ and Trail and Trl are different. Be consistent
    2. Choose to get in the big local databases like Yelp and Merchant Circle, etc.
    3. It helps to go out and claim listings in major core databases like Acxiom, Localeze, etc.
    4. My company helps local businesses be sure they normalize their NAP’s in all of the important databases for a pretty reasonable price, but you can go out and do it on your own.
    5. If you are buying or taking over a business, be very aware if your business has inconsistent NAP listings spread across the internet, as they can hurt you.
  3. Online Reviews Matter: Reviews are helpful and they matter, but they are also all relative. Just like everything else that helps people in Google, there are industries built up to do fake reviews and try to cheat the system. Don’t do this. It will hurt you in the long run.
    1. Review success is relative. If your leading competitors have three, it would help if you had five. Don’t go out and get 30 in a day. That is a red flag.
    2. Just bake it in to your process. Just get used to asking your good clients to leave you a review. Though Google reviews will help Google the most, having a mixed bag of reviews across Yelp, Google, Yahoo and other places is better long term for your business. Let your customers leave reviews in the places that are comfortable to them.
  4. Your Site SEO Strength Matters: Because inbound links to your site are important to SEO, they are also important to local search. There was a time when your local search presence and your organic presence were somewhat separate but those days are over. Your organic search strength is now a key factor in your local search presence. Make sure you get those reputable links that you can.
    1. Get Accredited with the BBB. This is a nice, solid reputable link to have and build your strength.
    2. Make sure you secure links from existing relationships: You’d be surprised how many clients are members of chambers or business organizations but forgot to put their link on their profile. Make sure you have any easy link that you would automatically get from our off line relationships.
    3. Announce your business with an online press release: Online press releases can give your organic presence a shot in the arm. Announce a new service or business opening through a reputable online release service.

These are some simple basic steps to follow to at least get you going with a presence in local search. Of course we can help you do this or take it to the next level, but in some less competitive markets, this can be enough to get you where you want to be. Good luck!

Staying Safe Online By Masking Your IP Address

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Your IP address is like your phone number for your Internet connection. Using commonly available techniques, hackers, data thieves, and companies can use tools or cross reference databases to accurately determinate more information about your identity from your IP address. Hide My IP is a must-have VPN tool for the privacy conscious. Using Hide My IP is a bit like caller ID blocking for your IP, preventing websites, apps, and anyone on the Internet from knowing your true IP and identity.

Hide My IP exclusively uses the most secure VPN protocol ñ OpenVPN with 256-bit encryption. This means all your Internet traffic and activity is fully encrypted. Not even your ISP or government can know which websites you visit or monitor or record your web traffic data while the software is running.

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Not Just for Staying Anonymous – Travelers Love Hide My IP

Most people who travel outside their home country are aware that Internet availability is different in each country. Some countries block sites like Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. Some websites such as BBC iPlayer, Pandora, and Netflix are not available in most countries. Adult websites are blocked in various countries by ISPs or countrty level network censorship – Hide My IP is able to easily unblock these types of sites by using an IP from a country with more Internet freedom such as a US or UK IP address. Hide My IP enables users living or travelling in various countries to change their IP location from more than 75 locations across the globe, thus enabling access to any blocked website.

Boosting Your Internet Connection is Possible

For some situations, using a proxy VPN such as Hide My IP can help boost your connection speed and stability. If your Internet Service Provider is on a network with routing issues, you may notice slowness or an unstable Internet connection. This type of issue is more common for developing countries. Hide My IP can improve your Internet traffic routing, causing an alternate path to be used to access a website, and possibly allowing the website to load faster and more reliably.

Send E-mails Anonymously

When sending E-mail, your IP address is usually visible to the world, which enables any recipient to see your location and possibly access other details regarding you. However, Hide My IP can conceal your IP from your E-mail headers, thus allowing you to send anonymous E-mails. Masking your IP in E-mails can also help protect you against targeted attacks based on your E-mail IP address.

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Device Compatibility and Pricing

Hide My IP is provided for free on Windows, Mac, and Android devices. Good news for Android users, Hide My IP is completely free for Android versions 4.0 and higher, no root access needed, the only limit is the number of IP locations users can choose unless a full license is purchased. Hide My IP VPN accounts may be manually configured on other devices such as iPhone, iPad, and routers that support OpenVPN configuration. Hide My IP may be used indefinitely after a one time purchase of $29.95 or as low as $2.95/month when purchased from Google Play.

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