We recently read a major online study citing that “94% of small businesses haven’t claimed their local listing”. Since an “unclaimed” listing would send a company’s search results far down the list, we felt that number was too high, especially for contractors who’d be giving up a significant lead source.
So we queried 9,800 contractors from our list who granted us behind-the-scenes permission to check their listing, completeness, and ranking.
Yet after compiling results, the cited figure was close enough. Turns out 88% of contractors polled had not claimed their listing, or had a “minimally completed” listing. This is a serious problem.
If you have not claimed your local listing or have an “incomplete” listing means your local search and online lead results are critically low.
Two significant dangers emerge:
Many contractors who attempted to get their local listing in-house (21% of respondents) or paid an outside firm (14%) had several rank-killing errors. Most common 3 were:
And the list goes on. It is disturbing that many contractors paid others to get their listings, but never checked their rank, only “assuming” others legitimately outranked them. Not true. A few tweaks can significantly change results.
Fixing those errors is not too difficult, but the result can mean a higher rank, more leads, and of course more sales. Here’s how –
This problem will not go away by ignoring it. For the 88% of “unclaimed” or “uncompleted claim” contractors, this means those who do claim and optimize their listings have an almost unfair advantage.
As Google, Yahoo, Bing, Yelp, SuperPages and other search engines continue to “rule” results, learning to play by those rules – and bend them to your favor – pays very handsome returns.
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