Local businesses are very important to most communities since they offer employment, tax revenues, and contribute to local social stability. A recent study found that over sixty percent of all the economic activity in most local economies is linked to the local economy. Economic activity generates a lot of tax revenue for local businesses and when the local business is strong there is usually an increase in the amount of tax the community receives. The existence and the success of local businesses plays a large role in the local economy since they create a base from which other local businesses can be built.
Yelp is a website that is gaining popularity with customers in the local business area. It is a site that allows people to rate and review local businesses with a “star” rating. This is similar to how hotels, restaurants and so forth are reviewed on the popular consumer reporting sites like Yelp. The website is free to use and has millions of local businesses listed. Many local businesses use Yelp to advertise their businesses and even provide special promotions for users that leave reviews.
The goal of online business listings like Yelp is to attract attention to new businesses that may not be well known locally. If a business has a high star rating on Yelp then it will appear more frequently when people are searching for businesses in the particular category the business falls into. More businesses will appear in the search results due to the higher number of reviews on Yelp.
So how does this help the local business owner? Well the better the rating and feedback from customers the more likely it is that those businesses will continue to advertise through Yelp. For local business owners this can mean additional revenue. Lets say the business was only earning twenty dollars per day off of one hundred customers. That business owner would only make twelve dollars per day off of one hundred customers if they had five hundred reviews on Yelp. If they had 500 reviews though, their earnings could jump to sixty five dollars per day!
This is why I strongly encourage local business listing on local directories such as Yahoo Local, Bing Local, and the like. These directories will bring in more traffic and potential customers because of the obvious fact that these directories are always free. The reason why these directories can offer so much is because there is plenty of information out there about local business hours, Google maps, yelp, Facebook Places, and all the other options that exist on the internet.
Local business listings on Google+ Local are a fantastic way to rank highly in the search results. Google gives businesses a great deal of importance by displaying them at the top of the search results. Google also has a new feature called local search results where your website may show up in the search results for a particular geographic area, depending on how many times your site is searched for. Now you understand how important it is to get listed on the leading search engines such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing.