While high search engine rankings historically have been given to those companies who can afford to pay for them, major search engines such as Google, Yahoo!, and MSN now offer localized search geared to those users looking for businesses within a specific city or region. This is great news for small businesses, as local search gives your business a chance to compete with the “bigger fish.”
Although each major search engine works in a slightly different way, the basic process of getting started involves creating an account and entering all the relevant data for your business, including its address, location on a map, hours of operation, and contact information. You will also be given the opportunity to choose the category or categories under which you wish to be listed. Google’s listing service is free, while Yahoo! offers three different packages: free; $10 a month; and $25 a month, depending on the features you want.
For more on search engines, be sure to read What Is Search Engine Marketing?