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Weekly News: Analysis of Local SERPs, LSM Benchmark Report, All-in-One Demand and Adoption

Here is this week’s roundup of the top news items related to local marketing and advertising, local media, technology, local commerce, consumer behavior and more.

Insight & Commentary

Massive Analysis of Local SERPs: It’s Mostly about GMB and Yelp (June 26, 2019)
LSA Insider: “Social-local directory site FreshChalk just published an analysis of 150,000 local business websites and SERPs (with more installments to come). It maps multiple variables to ranking (caveat: correlation doesn’t equal causation). Many insights aren’t a surprise but a number of them are.”

Are Late Payments Killing Small Business? (June 25, 2019)
LSA Insider: “A new study in Australia showing how late payments are hindering small-business growth is just the latest in a series of studies underscoring how cash flow remains a major challenge for SMBs and a leading cause of business failure.”

Fake Listings, Fake Reviews: Is This the New Normal? (June 21, 2019)
LSA Insider: “Yesterday the Wall Street Journal ran an article about the prevalence of fake local business listings on Google. This is a known problem that local SEOs have talked about for years and that Google says it has been addressing, in an ongoing game of whack-a-mole.”

Strategy & Tactics

Replay: Never Lead with Facebook — Secrets for More Effective SMB Sales (June 21, 2019)
LSA Insider: “During the LSA’s most recent webinar, Itamar Shafir and Barry Plaskow of Umbrella discussed how agencies can gain the trust of wary customers, the “360 package,” and the proper sequence for introducing different marketing solutions.”

The Retailpocalypse Doesn’t Have to Be Scary for Local Businesses (June 26, 2019)
Street Fight: “Things have been pretty bleak for Big Retail recently. In April, analysts reported nearly 6,000 store closures in the first few months of 2019—eclipsing the number for all of the previous year—and revealed that foot traffic at popular malls was steadily declining from an August 2018 peak.”

Alexa, Podcasts, and the Role of Voice in Today’s Marketing (June 25, 2019)
Street Fight: “Marketers ignore smart speakers and podcasts at their own peril. Both of these voice-based mediums are playing more prominent roles in how consumers find information and interact with their favorite brands. Where are we today in voice marketing? Let’s take a look at some trends and what marketers are doing to answer them.”

Stats & Studies

Report: GMB Has 2x More Reviews than Facebook, 10x More than Yelp (June 28, 2019)
LSA Insider: “Yesterday in New York, along with SOCi, I presented the findings of the first Localized Social Marketing Benchmark Report (LSM Benchmark Report). The study involved an analysis of the state of local and social marketing for 163 top franchise brands. It sought do three things: Understand whether a relationship exists between LSM performance and real-world results, establish success benchmarks for franchises and highlight brands doing LSM well.

94% of Marketers Plan to Use Location Data to Improve Accuracy and Results (June 26, 2019)
LSA Insider: “Data has become arguably the most important component of marketing strategies. It has allowed for marketers to create and test personalized, meaningful messaging and deliver it to their target audiences at the exact right moment. Additionally, marketers can use data tools to measure the impact of such advertising and easily adapt it to continuously drive sales and engagement.”

The Yawning Chasm Between All-in-One Demand and Adoption (June 24, 2019)
LSA Insider: “LSA’s proprietary small-business survey data consistently tells us SMBs would prefer one software provider to handle most or all of their business operations. They choose this over picking and choosing among point solutions for payments, payroll, marketing automation, CRM and so on.”

Industry News

Report: How the ‘Engagement Challenge’ Threatens SaaS Adoption (June 27, 2019)
LSA Insider: “There is a good news/bad news story emerging around the movement of small-businesses into the cloud to do everything from lead generation to payroll processing to supply chain management.”

Shopify Is Flying High (June 25, 2019)
LSA Insider: “Few companies in the SMB SaaS ecosystem have gained the traction or attracted the spotlight as Shopify (SPOT) has. Investors have rushed to participate in the Shopify evolution, doubling the value of the company over the past year ($153 v. $320 share price). What exactly is driving this remarkable valuation?”

Yelp and Google Bringing More ‘SaaS’ to SMB Profiles (June 25, 2019)
LSA Insider: “Today Yelp introduced several Business Page upgrades. These new offerings, Verified License, Business Highlights and Portfolio, are designed to help business owners stand out and better promote themselves. They’re also intended to generate new subscription revenues for Yelp.”

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