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Starting an Online Business All-in-One For Dummies®, 3rd Edition by Joel Elad, Shannon Belew

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Localizing with Ads

As you saw with some of the targeted mobile coupons and ads, one advantage that mobile commerce offers is the capability to reach customers in a specific geographic region. The concept of localization, or local advertising, isn't restricted to mobile applications. If you're an e-tailer with brick-and-mortar locations, local search can mean big business for you. As competition and market conditions tighten, local paid search is expected to grow as an important advertising strategy for retailers. Local ad revenues hit an all-time high in 2010, and projections show it reaching $183 billion by 2015. As targeting continues to improve and as mobile usage increases, localized search is expected to keep rising. In the next few years, an estimated 30 percent of all searches will be local.

In this process, also referred to as geotargeting, your business ads appear as part of search results that are based on a specific geographic location. Plenty of sites use the concept of local marketing, such as Craigslist and Angie's List, and even the online yellow pages. However, in the area of paid local search, the three biggest contenders are Google, Microsoft (Bing), and Yahoo!. These search engine competitors have taken online advertising to a new level. Google remains the industry giant, accounting for more than 70 percent of paid searches. Microsoft and Yahoo! work to keep the 10 percent slice each currently owns, and have joined forces to try and be a worthy contender against ...

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