Who else wants to know the mystery behind measuring local marketing success?
Measuring the success of your local marketing campaign performance can be a difficult task even for the most seasoned of marketers. Measurement becomes increasingly burdensome when tasked with providing tangibile proof of performance at scale. Traditional marketing metrics–such as leads, conversions, and searches– all tie into how customers are engaging with you business, but what metrics are most important to measure?
To answer this question, we turned to a panel of digital marketing gurus and veteran search engine optimization (SEO) experts to gather their insights. Our panel included:
- Jeff Ferguson, Head of Production at Amplitude Digital
- Greg Gifford, Vice President of Search Marketing at SearchLab
- Noah Learner, Product Director at Two Octobers
- Tyler, Director of Enterprise Solutions at Rio SEO
Together, the panel shared their best practices for how to measure local marketing success in 2022, as well as the metrics that matter most for informing campaign performance.
Here is what they had to say.
Know the search terms potential customers are using to find your business.
Knowing and understanding the search terms customers are using to search for your business can help your business strengthen your keyword strategy. However, there’s often confusion around the difference between branded, discovery and direct searches.
A direct search refers to a search using your business name or business address. For example, “Anthropologie”.
A branded search refers to a search for a brand related to a business or a variation of the business’ name. For example, “Anthropologie reviews”.
A discovery search refers to a search for a product or service a business offers and the business appears in the search results. For example, “retail store near me”.
All three of the above types of searches are important to optimize for and track the terms that return your Business Profile in the results.
Rank reporting doesn’t necessarily determine local success.
Rank reporting shows the position that your website is listed in Google when a user searches for a phrase or a keyword related to your business. Ten search results appear on the first page, with some results appearing well below the fold with the advance of featured snippets. A question we asked our panel to clear up related to ranking is if local ranking relates to real world location performance?
The panel collectively agrees ranking is not a key indicator of success for SEO. Additionally, with proximity being one of the three main factors influencing search engine results along with paid results, it can be difficult to obtain a coveted number one position regardless of SEO efforts. And while ranking is something every brand should monitor, there are other determinents for measuring local performance.
As Noah shares, consider what your businesses goals are. And, what metrics are tied to success. This may include traffic (both in-store and online), average conversion value, conversion rate, customer acquisition cost, and more Noah then suggests focusing on improving those metrics that can be tied to revenue– generating more conversions and getting more traffic on more channels.
Google Business Profile Insights can give your business a transparent view of how customers are engaging with each of your location’s local listings.
Google has long been the primary search platform consumers use to answer their queries, making it critical to maintain your local presence and understand how your locations are performing here. In fact, as of December 2021, online search engine Bing accounted for over 7 percent of the global search market, while Google had an impressive 85.55 percent market share. Yahoo’s market share was 2.85 percent. Forty five percent of our webinar audience members too were interested in learning about Google Business Profile (previously known as Google My Business) metrics.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, clicks to call and clicks to website were important Google Business Profile conversion actions to track to measure performance. At the start of COVID-19, Google even recommended customers call a business prior to visiting to ensure they were open. Website conversions also became more popular than measuring foot traffic as more people sought out socially distanced purchasing options.
Now, other conversion metrics are more impactful to measure. For example, clicks to book an appointment on a listing are a strong conversion factor. Clicks for driving directions also indicate intent to visit a business’ location.
Align your reporting strategy around what matters most to your business and its goals.
For agencies, this entails listening to what the client is most interested in tracking and their key performance indicators. Then build custom reports for those key performance indicators. Google Data Studio one online tool that can help businesses convert data into customizable informative reports and dashboards. Google’s BigQuery helps businesses adjust, analyze, store, and visualize analytics at scale. In turn, this helps brands turn complex data into actionable insights.
Our panel recommends both tools to help businesses make best use of their data to grow and succeed.
Online reputation is becoming increasingly important to monitor and measure on a consistent basis.
Monitoring your brand’s online reputation can extend your customer lifetime and customer loyalty when done consistently and correctly. Reading customer reviews can help you keep a real time pulse on how your customer base views your brand as well as opportunities for improvement. They can also play a significant role in a customer’s buying decision.
A few key metrics Google uses to evaluate your local business’ reviews include the frequency in which your business receives reviews, the volume of reviews you receive, and customer engagement through responses to positive and negative reviews. In terms of review response, Jeff recommends being kind, generous, and understanding of your customer’s feedback.
Online reputation extends beyond monitoring reviews on your Google Business Profile listings. It also includes monitoring Yelp, Facebook, and other niche review platforms as well.
Want even more in-depth reporting insights for measuring local marketing performance and expert-driven marketing strategies?
Watch the full webinar on-demand now