97% of consumers search for local businesses online. When searching on Google, imagine someone searching for “car dealers“. It would likely be more satisfying to that user if Google shows car dealers websites that are close to their physical location.
Google uses several different methods to detect user location including locations in search term and location based on computer’s IP or GPS mobile devices location. This is 99% accurate. Google displays Pay Per Click advertisements and search results based on user location.
If a local small business owner in Raleigh chooses an Internet Marketing or SEO company located in a totally different area, they most likely won’t be able to see your website in search results as someone from Raleigh area does.
Following are two totally different search results for the same search query “car dealers”. First screenshot is from someone located in Raleigh, NC and the second screenshot is from someone located in Atlanta, GA.
Google Search Results in Raleigh, NC:
Search Results in Atlanta, GA:
As you can see, Google displays search results relevant to the user location. If there is such a big difference for two relatively close US cities, how can someone from outside the country properly optimize a local small business website?
To run an effective local Internet Marketing campaign, you need to see the search results that your target audience actually sees.
I must say I do agree with you Google takes location into account but if I wanted to see that same thing that the people in the same zip code of the company that is having SEO work I can tell Google that I live in the same Zip code as the target Market you know as well as I there are many SEO tools that will show me what the real page rank is anywhere. I know once the website is remade it will reflect the company’s location.