When an online local listing for a business is incorrect, who’s to blame? The business owner? The search engine? The competition?
Regardless of fault, the majority of people (73 percent) say they lose trust in the local business when it happens. And 67 percent say the same if they get lost due to faulty location information. This, according to recent survey data released by Placeable.
"It is vital that multi-location businesses preserve customer trust by ensuring absolute accuracy in their online location information. Anything less makes the business vulnerable to a constant, ongoing erosion of its brand,” Placeable said in its report. "Brands that fail to ensure the accuracy of search engine location data run the risk of not only missing out on new customers, but jeopardizing their relationships with existing customers as well.”
Even when the business listing is incorrect in directories like Yelp, nearly a third of consumers say they blame the brand.
Having an accurate listing is especially vital given research findings that show 71 percent of survey respondents look up and confirm the location of a local business before going to it for the first time.
"If almost three-fourths of customers are researching locations before visiting a business for the first time, prioritizing and leveraging search engines will help convert prospects into customers,” the report stated.
The study also compared marketers’ behaviors against the average consumer to see how they compared. For example, only 39 percent of marketers surveyed researched locations before leaving their house. Another 39 percent of marketers used their smartphones to look up locations on the way, versus 22 percent of consumers.
Beyond online research behaviors, Placeable wanted to understand how fast the average person was adopting to the progressive marketing mindset that professional marketers were pushing in their own campaigns.
For example, how fast were consumers actually adopting mobile? And how important is personalized marketing and advertising messages to the average person?
Placeable said marketers are outpacing consumer behavior or desires:
- According to the research, marketers are more likely to want personalized offers, "with 72 percent of marketers preferring them, versus 55 percent of consumers.”
- Marketers also tended to share more information on social networks than the average person, "like using traffic apps to share traffic conditions or weather apps to report on weather conditions,” the report stated. The data showed less than half of the marketers surveyed limited the information they shared to location only; nearly two-thirds of consumers said they preferred to restrict their social sharing to just location info.
"While marketers understand how location marketing works and how to get the best results, they need to remember that customers may not be as savvy – at least for now,” Placeable said.
For more information, you can access the full report here.