15 Jul 2014

Local Biz’ in a Google World

By Allison Howen and Amberly Dressler

Most business is local business. As the Web becomes a more traditional element in consumers’ daily digital lives, brands must know the places to be and the methods to get there to ensure greater awareness and more ‘Net inspired conversions.

For many, that journey begins with Google. After all, its search engine alone accounts for roughly 68 percent of the market share with its nearest competitor, Bing, accounting for just about 19 percent according to comScore’s most recent search engine ranking study.

Google could certainly hang its virtual hat on its search business, but instead has diversified its offerings to include nearly everything that brands today need to grow their companies online and off, not to mention for consumers to access information. The countless third-party solutions that support a brand’s efforts on Google are of course important too (think SproutSocial for Google+ management, HubSpot for search engine optimization, etc.), but before local merchants think about complementing their Google efforts, they must first get right with Google. In other words, a strong understanding of how Google’s offerings can support one another and a company’s broader digital initiatives should be a local business’s first step.

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