Local searches on Google and Yahoo are growing in popularity and have been for some time, yet many companies completely forget about their local markets or don’t take advantage of the tools available. Businesses can make simple changes and capitalize on their local markets as well as giving their search marketing program as a whole a nice boost.
1) Include your address on every page of your website. This is the most overlooked and easiest way to gain some local exposure.
2) Update and optimize your business listings on Google, Yahoo and MSN Local. It's amazing how many businesses do not include a link to their website within their local listing. Create a compelling description for your company using your most important key phrases.
3) Correct any incorrect yellow page listings as well as adding a link to your website again if not already listed. Be sure to also take advantage of your description. www.yellowpages.com, www.superpages.com.
4) If your organization has multiple locations, be sure to optimize all of the locations and to include a link on all of those locations' listings.
5) Update directory listings in infoUSA and Amacai. These directories among others generally feed many of the online Yellow Pages and major search engines their data, however beware that correcting these directories may not correct all incorrect listings. Old data can still be pulled from other sources in which correcting can be extremely difficult.
6) If you are having trouble getting your business listing to show up within local results on Google try taking advantage of some of their paid advertising opportunities. Google offers advertising via Google Maps and within their Google local results. You can also target potential customers by state, city, IP address as well as a certain radius around your business. All the above options can be implemented through your Google AdWords program.
7) Yahoo Search Marketing also offers geographic targeting which allows you to advertise on a key phrase within a certain geographic area (region, country, state, province or city).