Customer Review Card for Google Places [Template]

Having good quality reviews on your Google+ Local page (i.e., Place page) not only influences your ability to convert prospective customers, but can affect your local search ranking. Most customers won’t know to leave you a Google Places review, so it is important to promote or actively encourage customers to give honest reviews. [More]

10 Customer Review Building Tips for Google+ Local

Customer reviews are a fundamental part of your local marketing efforts and online reputation. If you can get enough good ones, they can go a long ways. A slew of good reviews can boost both your local search ranking as well as click-through rate (CTR), which should ultimately lead to converting more customers. A Local Consumer Review Survey (2012) showed that approximately 72% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, while 52% said that positive online reviews make them more likely to use a local business. But building customer reviews, and doing it ‘the right way’, especially on Google (with all of their flip-flops and recent updates) has been a dizzying process for SMBs.... [More]

EZlocal featured in TechCrunch

In a video interview earlier this week on TechCrunch TV, CEO of Yext, Howard Lerman, showcased their new PowerListings Turbo product and demonstrated live functionality with EZlocal’s robust business listings platform. EZlocal is proud to be among a small handful of platform partners Yext chose to work with including Foursquare, Yahoo! Local and Citysearch. [More]

How Small Businesses Can Show Their Charitable Side

Go to a large corporate website and click open their site map. You will be inundated with a multitude of boastful links and phrases, all in the same vein: “Community & Giving,” “Helping Society,” “Giving Back,” “Doing Our Part,” “Corporate Philanthropy,” “Social Responsibility,” “Charitable Giving,” etc. The effect is humanizing. Suddenly, the corporation seems a bit more friendly, a bit more caring. I certainly won’t begrudge a corporation for promoting their philanthropy, good deeds deserve good press. However, corporations don’t hold a monopoly on charitable work. America’s small businesses are certainly no stranger to helping others. Yet, many don’t capitalize on the opportunity to promote their involvement in charities. They should. Small businesses are usually local entities. They hire locally, market locally and give back locally. While a large corporation may be impres... [More]

Local Business Search in 3D: How to Search with Zuluz

Last week EZlocal unveiled zuluz, 16 handy business attributes added to the point of search, which allow users to add extra specificity to their local queries. While local search used to only accommodate a "what" and a "where," EZlocal's zuluz now bring a third dimension to local business search, a "with." Let's take a look at how it works. It's late and you just got bit by the coffee bug. However, work has been pretty hectic and you still have some email to catch up on. To complicate matters further, you are completely out of cash; wherever you go had better accept credit cards. Using traditional local search to track down a coffee house that is open late, accepts credit cards and provides wifi isn't an easy task. A query for coffee houses in your local area may yield plenty of results, but how do you zero in on the coffee houses that have the features you desire? By doing an EZlocal zuluz sea... [More]

Introducing Zuluz: The Next Generation of Local Search

Frequent visitors to EZlocal may have noticed a change to our search in the last week. Gone is the conventional two-box, location-based local search. Taking its place is an exciting new search, which now offers three dimensions: "what", "where" and "with". Capably filling the role of the "with" criteria are our beloved zuluz. In the coming weeks we will tell many stories about the creation of zuluz. You will learn of our palindrome obsession and love of the letter "Z". You will learn how we decided upon the name "zuluz" and what it means. You will even learn about the new patent pending technology that supports this third dimension of local search. All in good time. First, a quick zuluz primer: Zuluz are meaningful, searchable business attributes that add extra specificity to your local queries. One or more zuluz can be selected at the point of search... [More]

Managing Your Business' Online Presence: Don't Put All Your Eggs in One Basket

Last week our very own Dave Cosper, VP of EZlocal, put together one of the most comprehensive slideshows on the topic of local search optimization to date. His entire presentation is superb and deserves a complete viewing, but today I’d like to focus on just one of his points (from slide 35): Online local consumers are fragmented across multiple search engines and internet yellow pages sites – robust, broad content distribution is key to maximize reach. So what does fragmentation mean? At the most basic level, fragmentation means that consumers seek out different resources when shopping locally. Some people go by word of mouth, others use printed yellow pages and yet others may follow printed reviews or ads in their local paper. However, the only “fragment” we are concerned about in this article... [More]

Optimizing Your Local Listing for Search Supremacy

My full article is posted on SearchEngineGuide. Here are the cliff notes: Google's local search algorithm, in Layman's terms, looks something like this: Ranking = Location + Information + Corroboration + Input + X Understanding the variables in this equation are a critical part of getting found online. Businesses have just two meaningful representations in the local search space: a website and a business listing. The latter of the two is worth discussing in detail. Let's take a look at the anatomy of a local search results page and see where local business listings fit in. For this example I did a Google search for "cleaners boston ma"... [More]

Local Search Becoming ... More Localized More Relevant

The local search space has never been more teeming with new applications and features emerging on some of the most popular sites and newest mobile devices - all concentrating on more localized and more relevant content -- and we're pretty excited about that. Even better, it's the small businesses in suburban locations and rural areas which are positioned to be the benefactor as they'll find it increasingly easier to gain exposure, reach out to local consumers and build loyalty, without having to compete with the more traditionally dominant online presence from bigger businesses in the city or online mega-marts. Those business owners who recognize this trend and successfully promote and manage this local content have the opportunity to gain a significant edge on the competition.   But increased online exposure also carries additional risks. Media continues to experience decentralization, and online marketing is becoming more complex and advanced. With this comes many opp... [More]