YouTube Videos – Double Click Rates For Local Businesses Using Google Local, Yelp and CitySearch

Yelp and CitySearch both maintain that having a YouTube video on their listing for your company doubles the likelihood that visitors to your listing will take some kind of action such as a phone call to you or a click to your website. Many local search engines now allow you to upload your video information to their sites, including the king of local search, Google.local.

The most important marketing challenge for local businesses used to be location. For many such as restaurants, hotels, and dry cleaners, location is still a critical part of the marketing decision. One of my clients, PV Bicycle Center in Palos Verdes, California, moved his shop a few block into a larger and more visible location and has seen his business almost double the first year and the second year is on the way to similar increases… and all of that during a recession. The second most important challenge used to be how big of an ad to take in the Yellow Pages. You know, that book you now use as a door prop.

The internet has changed the equation for both of these marketing moves if you are a small, local business. Today your location on the first page of internet searches is commonly more important than your location on main street, and your listing on local search engines is the modern equivalent of the Yellow Pages hard copy edition. The current and future king of local search engines is the map at the top of the page that you see when adding a city or zip code to your business type (e.g. Inglewood marketing consultant or mortgage broker 90025). By sheer force of this map’s location on a Google search, being seen next to the map may be the most important driving force for new business clients.

But Google.local is not the only local search engine (LSE). There are at least 60 general websites that fall into subcategories such as directories and mobile directories, and include such names as,, Yelp, CitySearch, HotFrog, and MerchantCircle. Your potential customers are using these LSE’s and others to find information and reviews about your business before they decide to visit. If you aren’t listed, they can’t find you. If you are listed and have very little content or that content is not compelling, they may shop with your competitor who has good content. Part of that content is Video.

The methods used by LSE’s to determine how you rank under your category is complex and different for every one of them. Moreover, they don’t tell you what you need to do to have a high ranking other than pay them lots of money for a sponsored position. One thing we do know, the more robust your content the more likely you are to achieve a high ranking. The more compelling your content, the better chance you have that the customer will decide to use you. The obvious conclusion is that you need to have at least one, and preferably more than one compelling YouTube video on the LSE’s that allow you to link videos.

Creating a DIY YouTube video is within the reach of most small businesses. The cost in time and money is not huge. However, using a local marketing company to do the video will generally produce results that are much more likely to create action by the viewer. You may be surprised to learn that the cost of a video may be as low as $300, and even less if you do several at a time.

Your video can be used for much more than just an element on the content of a LSE. Other uses include:

  • Embed in your website
  • Embed in your blog
  • Be found on Google searches
  • Be found on YouTube searches
  • Build trust and authority
  • Share information which may result in loyalty

If you would like to learn more about shooting or marketing YouTube videos for your enterprise, please help yourself to the information contained on my small business marketing blog.

Why YouTube? There are many other video repositories such as DailyMotion. My experience is that YouTube will result in more than double the viewers than all the others combined. The YouTube brand has trust associated with it, and power just from being the biggest and best known brand. Finally, YouTube is owned by Google. ‘Nuff said.