Local Search Speak and You Shall Find Westvyne MarketingAccording to the Gartner’s mobile market report, 100.7 million smartphones were sold in the first quarter of 2011, which is an 85{a1e4dbad5b5db674abcd08880e44cddfd507140ecbeb8646296ad08a1acb49a4} increase from a year ago.

What does that mean for your local business?

As more and more people have access to local search capabilities on their smartphones, they will be searching for your local services on the fly- while they are driving to and from work (yeah, you know who you are), shopping, eating out, spending time with friends and family, and so on. 

On many smart phones, it’s very easy to search for something merely by speaking into it.  For instance, if you have just lifted a heavy box and hurt your back while helping your friend move to a new place, you can say, “chiropractor” into your Google-powered Android and you’ll receive a list of chiropractors in your immediate area.  Those chiropractors who have claimed their Google Places listings will appear first in your voice-generated search results.  Think about how important it is to have your business appear on that list as more and more people use their phones as mini-laptops. 

In order to claim your Google Places listing, go to http://www.google.com/places and click on “Get Started”.  It is important to put some time and thought into your listing as you want to give people every opportunity to find your services via keywords and other information.  You definitely want to appear as high up on the search results as possible to gain the competitive edge.