Is your market listed with search engines?

Is your market listed with search engines?

Claiming your business on Google is a must for your online reputation.

 

For this years Love Your Local Market we are going to be creating a ‘Collaborative Map’ on Google to show where your markets are and what you will be doing on them for #LYLM2017 fortnight.

Your online presence can make or break how your market is viewed by potential visitors.  Markets can tell a great story about the local communities that visit them, the traders that work there and the organisations that run them and when this is translated into an engaging and user-friendly website, it is a great place to start…..as long as people can find it.

A recent Google Study showed that 4 in 5 consumers use search engines to find out local information with 84% of smartphone and tablet users visiting within 24 hours of the search.  A further 18% translate this behaviour into a purchase and while it is fantastic that the majority of markets have local listings on search engines, many of these remain unclaimed.  The claiming of your local listing is really quite essential for your market allowing you to control content and have the market represented in the right light…..and it really is quite amazing just how many markets haven’t done this yet.

 

Why should we claim our page.

Simply put, an unclaimed page looks bad on your market. If your page is unclaimed you miss out on providing potential visitors with valuable information, or even worse, your page could be displaying the wrong information. You also run the risk of someone else claiming your page which could be potentially harmful.

With the advent of Airbnb Experiences where local ‘experts’ offer tours of their city or neighbourhood and similar offers on Tripadvisor, we have seen a rise in organised visits to markets.  While this can be great for the industry in general, it can be all too easy for organisations or individuals to claim your listings either on Google or the aforementioned companies that rank highly in search engine results.

Let’s make a start

We highly recommend you do a search of your market and at least make sure any company listing you on the first two pages of search results holds accurate information.  If there is a page to ‘claim’ such as your Google listing, then get on it and if you are not listed with Tripadvisor, maybe it is time to ask yourself “why not’? and do something about it.

Here at Love Your Local Market towers, all we want to see is our UK markets thriving so to get you on your way, for #LYLM2017 we are going to map all the markets that have ever signed up and flag the ones that aren’t listed through a private message.  The scope of letting you all know whether your Google pages are ‘claimed’ or not is too big for our small team, so we are going to have to leave that up to you but the simplest way to tell, is just to Google your market.

As with many markets, the one above has not been claimed.  If nothing at all comes up in the right-hand column, then the search engine has not found out enough information on your market to even list you, so imagine how hard it is going to be for visitors.  But that is a subject for our next blog on this matter, when we have found out just how many of the 1200 markets listed as taking part in Love Your Local Market, cannot be found in this way.

How to claim your page?

The great news is it is super simple to claim your markets page.  Following the ‘Own this business’ tab shown in the picture above, you just need to just follow the steps it takes you through which will end in verifying your account.  This will usually entail a phone call to the markets office listed number and tapping in a code that comes through.  If your calls come through a switchboard, this can get a bit confusing but the verify phase can also come through the post, so don’t worry.

Now you are in control

Its time to add the finishing touches that reflect your market.  Your logo is a must and great photos with flowers, blue skies and lots of visitors all help, as opposed to the photos posted by random customers in January in the rain that may be there at the moment.  This is the front door to your business online, so take the time to make it look good and make sure you link to your website.

Finally, you may have some reviews on there.  Why not use Valentine’s Day to ask your customers to show the love for your market by leaving a review?  You could enter them all into a prize drawer to give the love back…..or if you need some more lead in time, do the same during Love Your Local Market fortnight in May.

We’ll let you know in the next installment how many markets aren’t listed at all….but in the meantime, to map all those markets.  Phew, we’re going to be busy.

We’re looking to seeing your Registrations come in and we’ll be in touch soon to let you know how you can add details of your #LYLM2017 activities to the ‘Collaborative Map’.