While much-deserved attention is given to local SEO and SEM, showing up in search results is only half the job.
Google performed a study that demonstrated very little correlation between usage or traffic and influence. In other words, just because people frequently find your business doesn’t mean they choose your business or buy from your business. Rather, influence is achieved through consumer experience and matching your content to what consumers need or are looking for.
Conversion takes more than attracting attention — it requires engagement or connection with the consumer and matching what you are offering with what the consumer is looking for. More often than not, consumers look for location information when considering local stores to purchase from.
Local search conversion starts with location
In a study by MomentFeed, national brands report that 85 percent of all engagement with their businesses takes place on local media assets such as local landing pages. Local business characteristics drive conversion, whether for large brands or small businesses.
Arguably, the biggest local factor for consumer decisions when shopping at stores is location. In a national consumer study (registration required) on how far consumers would travel to shop, Access found that 93.2 percent of consumers typically travel 20 minutes or less when shopping for everyday purchases. Urban consumers (83 percent of all shoppers) prefer even shorter distances, with 92 percent usually traveling 15 minutes or less.
Distance was a far greater influence than price or quality of product. When asked what influences purchases, excluding travel distance, only 32 percent responded that best price most influenced their decision. Thirty-two percent likewise stated quality was the most influential.
Consumers also shortened the distance they are willing to travel for the most frequently purchased items, averaging only six minutes away from home for gas stations. Groceries and fast food may be slightly farther, averaging between eight and nine minutes, while home and garden and auto service average about 14 minutes away from home. Consumers tolerate the greatest distance for purchases of clothing and shoes, averaging almost 20 minutes from home.