In recent years, one of the most common questions in the local marketing space relates to the value of “near me” search optimization. As developers of Enhanced Google Business Profile tools and listing management services, it is something we are deeply engaged with. Do “near me” searches still matter, or has the search landscape evolved beyond the trend? For a closer look at this subject we’ll start by considering what Google has to say.
The Importance of Near Me Search Optimization
A perhaps surprising statistic released by Google this year was that searches for “open now near me” grew globally by over 400% year over year. While we may have grown accustomed to hyperlocal searches in the digital marketing world, only recently have many consumers shifted their behavior to conducting searches on the go – or with an immediate buying intent.
We can also see similar patterns on the Maps service. Google Maps searches for “shopping near me” grew globally by over 100% year over year. Online shopping may have seen dramatic rises over the last decade, but consumers still want to visit local stores, restaurants, doctors, dentists, car dealerships and a host of other business types.
Today, consumers are consistently turning to search engines to research local businesses. A recent survey, BrightLocal’s Local Consumer Review Survey 2022, highlighted this fact, indicating that 81% of participants used Google to evaluate a business compared to 63% the previous year.
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