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We are all familiar with the fierce competition that exists between monopolizing companies like Walmart and Amazon trying to capture as much market share as they can. Two companies that have not been known to compete for market share in the past, but are now coming head to head, are Facebook and Google. Facebook is trying to compete with Google in the area of local search. If there were any company that would have a chance to compete with Google in local search, Facebook would be it. In an article by Wesley Young on Search Engine Land, he states, “With its huge base of users and volume of personal data on them, Facebook has great potential for helping users in their search for local products/services and helping businesses get found. All the components are there: millions of business pages, location data, behavior data, demographic information, social networks and engagement.”

Before this year, Facebook’s local search function did not work very well and was not given much emphasis. However, due to many changes Facebook has recently made, their local search function is now extremely useful in pulling up relevant results of local businesses with their star ratings. While Google still has majority of the market share when it comes to local search, Facebook is steadily gaining more market share and becoming a bigger threat.

So what does this mean for local businesses? If you want to maximize your ability to capture clients from online search traffic, you need to optimize both your local Google listing and your business Facebook page. Here are three significant ways you can optimize  your Google listing and your Facebook page:

  1. Make sure your business info is up-to-date. Primarily, verify that your address is listed and is correct. Your proximity to the person performing the search is one of the most important factors in determining relevance in local search results.
  2. Get authentic and positive reviews on both your Google listing and Facebook page. When a potential customer does a local search for a service, the number one way they determine which business to call/visit is the business with the best and most reviews. If that business is you, you will receive most of the search traffic.
  3. Have consistent activity on your Google listing and Facebook page. Consistent activity on your local Google listing means you are getting a steady flow of reviews and are engaging these customers by replying to their reviews. Another way to have consistent activity is by posting on your Google plus page. On Facebook, you also want recent reviews coming in and you need to post on your page frequently.

With these efforts, you can begin building your online presence to effectively capture search traffic and grow your clientele, no matter who wins in the local search race.