The Transformation of Local in a Search Driven World

Dec 4, 2007 - 12:29 pm 0 by
Filed Under SES Chicago 2007

The Transformation of Local in a Search Driven World


* Michael Boland, Analyst, The Kelsey Group


* Bob Armour, Chief Marketing Officer, ShopLocal * Scott Dunlap, CEO, NearbyNow * Manish Patel, CEO, Where2GetIt * Richard Rosen, CEO, FastCall411

Richard Rosen

FastCall411 started off talking about how they connect consumers with local service providers faster, easier and more reliably than any other search platform.

Consumer Expectation / Current Market Reality

* Of 250,000.000+ calls per month, 2 out of 3 sent to merchants who are not “available” * 87% of consumers say availability is an important factor when hiring a local vendor * 10,000,000 merchants are not relevant to the customer * Proximity is the wrong approach to local search. Meta data is poor

Local search is frustrating for the customer; an effective business model hasn’t been materialized

* Bad base data (old listings, no relevant, poor meta data) * Not enough user generated content “reviews” * Difficult prospecting and selling local merchants * Poor match of “leads with needs” * Poor concentration of lead volume to individual merchants

Identify “availability” as part of a completely new approach to local search

Connect consumers to relevant available local merchants

Think outside the “web”

Manish Patel

Consumers want choice

* Where 2 buy * When to buy * How they buy * They want basic questions answered * Where is the nearest? * Where is it available? * How do I get there? * What is the price?

Consumers have adopted search but other very relevant mediums still exist

* Search engines * Retailer websites * Manufacturer websites * Vertical directions * Comparison shopping engines * Social media

Getting found = retailer website

Most visited section on their clients websites

Consumers are much more savvy

Filtering functionality

Move ready to buy customers from the product page to where to buy

Answer questions like:

* Where is the product sold? * What price? * Is it in stock? * Can I buy from you directly?

Getting found using search

* Organic * Vertical * Paid Search

Get found in emerging media

Even Adidas has a MySpace page

Consumers are in control and you have to be found everywhere whether selling a product or service

Nearly 80% of online searches follow up offine via in sotre visit or phone cal. Of these 66% go on to make a purchase

Engage with Relevant information

If your are selling a product or service today

* Add Local Content to your Website * Add Mobile Extensions * Add Registrations

Scott Dunlap

Example – Mobile Targeting

* Shoppers see signs for service on mall directories * Opt-in by texting “NEARBY” * Retailers can target nearby customers in real-time * Limit 2 ads per hour * Service shuts itself off after 90 min

Mobile can extend existing media

* Can be used to extend in-mall advertising * Shoppers choose preferred retailer * From emotion to action * Make existing media more measurable

Ex: Text “ng1” to NEARBY to find the nearest store that carries this “widget”

If you have buy online pickup in store option, it quickly becomes about half of your online sales

If you put the ability to get a mobile receipt about 35-45% of online sales will use that

Bob Armour

ShopLocal helps advertisers drive in-store sales using the web

Driver #1

The Internet is being used more as a research tool than a buying too

92% of shoppers use internet to do product research but 95% of retail sales happenin store

Driver #2

The web’s influence on offline sales will continue to grow to almost half of all retail sales by 2011 (over $1 trillion)

Driver #3

Advertising spend will follow consumers media time

On advertiser’s sites:

- Smart Circular (The web version of what you get on your Sunday paper)

- 53% of shoppers visit store within 1 week; 95% within the month

- 267 milion page views on Black Friday 2007, up 84% over last year

All across the internet:

- smart media (Local promotions in rich media)

- “close the loop” test: CPG retailer + Large publisher + consumer tracking panel – test produced 2x planned lift. Results were “too good”

- Interaction time: 17 seconds vs 10.7 seconds for standard rich media


- 56% of shoppers bought the items they saw on the site in a store

- Over ½ of purchasers would not have bought if they didn’t see the ad online

Contributed by: Justin Davy is a search engine marketing specialist for the E.W. Scripps Company and a guest writer for SER.


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