The mobile & local intent eureka moment

In 2012 our team has been blogging a great deal about mobile search as this digital medium continues to evolve.  We’ve told you the statistics, to help you understand how device usage is changing and validate the growth in digital devices. We’ve shared with you how your business can maximise your mobile website usability.  We developed an infographic to explore the advent and historical evolution of location based marketing.

I had a eureka moment thinking about the relationship between mobile search and local intent, which I am going to share with you below.

Since the early 1900s when the first Yellow Pages directories were first introduced, this is the tool we used when we had a local need. Need a plumber, check the directory. Need a dentist, check the directory. Our local services were all jam packed into a large book that served our local requirements.

Different, but the same

Today, when we have a local need, it’s not the fundamental behaviour that has changed, but rather the medium we use to make local searches. We’re in effect, still using a directory, the difference is that the information which was previously packed into a book, is now available to us at our fingertips, on our digital devices and smartphones.

The directory has expanded into multiple search engines and search tools like Yelp.ca, RedFlagDeals, GooglePlaces, Urbanspoon, Facebook, but, in effect it’s as if we’re still tapping into that original Yellow Pages directory.

One fundamental advantage we have today is that we can carry our directory around with us wherever we go. Imagine carrying a Yellow Pages directory with you everywhere, you can’t! BUT your mobile phone, it’s your 24/7 companion and is with you, in real time, for every situation of local need in your day.

Businesses – Read this part

The logic goes to show that if people are searching locally, on the go, in real time, when they require any type of local service, in order for your business to COMPETE for that business, your business listing will need to appear on mobile devices for local searches.

Think Mobile. Think Local. Drive Local Business!

Get your business on Google mobile search, leverage mobile display advertising, determine the basket of online local resources, relevant to your business and make sure that your ad shows up when local searchers are trying to find a solution to their problem.

Remember, 9 out of 10 local searches result in an action. It’s up to you whether that action results in business for you or for your competitors.

In the spirit of the Olympic Games, giving your competitors free local business by not competing where searchers are looking for your product; would be like being Michael Phelps giving away Olympic Medals to his competitors by not swimming.