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State of the Click - The Evolution of Internet Advertising From .com to 'in town'

May. 05, 2006

In the past, Internet advertising was only used for the .com crowd, but as new technologies emerge, and customers begin conducting searches for Detroit area businesses online, it is a form of advertising that local businesses should add to their marketing mix.

(PRWEB) January 30, 2006 -- A recent study found that 55% of the online population uses the internet to search for local products and information. The problem for most businesses in the Detroit area is that they still see internet advertising as a marketing tool for people trying to sell products online; they do not realize that Detroiters are looking for their service and brick-and-mortar businesses on the web, and that they can reach these potential customers online.

What is Internet Advertising - Finding the Needles in the Haystack

Internet Advertising is a form of direct marketing that cost-effectively targets customers who are actively searching for a specific product or service. Advertisers choose specific search terms relevant to their business, and whenever anyone types in those terms, their ad appears. It doesn't matter how many times the advertisement appears; the advertiser only pays for the ad when someone clicks on it to visit their website.
The advertisements can even be set up to only appear in certain cities, metropolitan areas, or countries.

Many companies also use an internet advertising campaign to build their email marketing efforts by offering visitors to their website the opportunity to join their opt-in email marketing list - allowing them to target potential customers who are interested, but not quite ready to buy. Internet Advertising allows business to effectively target customers who need them right away, and those who will need them in the future.

Local Internet Searches

The majority of internet advertisers in the past were businesses selling products online. That trend is changing as more service and brick-and-mortar businesses realize that customers are using the internet to search for them. Recent data from the Kelsey group stated that 55% of all internet searches are local in nature. This means that people are using the internet to search for businesses in their own cities and states.

Businesses in other parts of the country that were involved in a pilot program of WSI Local AdWorks have reported very successful results. A Printing company in Salt Lake City, Utah generated $30,000 in new business from their Local AdWorks advertisement, a carpet cleaner in Atlanta, Georgia reported a 35% increase in calls to his business, and a national hotel chain reported over $80,000 in room reservation revenues as a result of their participation in Local AdWorks.

What does this mean for Detroit Area Businesses?

The current search numbers are already staggering. In December 2005 on Yahoo! alone, people searched 573 times for an "Oakland County Pet Sitter; 9,800 times for "Italian Restaurant Detroit;" and 3,100 times for "auto repair service Detroit" Leonard Magro, an Internet Business Consultant for WSI, said "I don't know of a company who wouldn't want their website listed at the top of a search related to their business. With an internet advertising campaign, we can have a business appearing at the top of these searches within a few days, and sometimes a few hours."

Local searching in the Detroit area is about to grow even bigger thanks to two new initiatives. The first is Google's rollout of a search browser for mobile phones. This technology will take local searching on the go. The second is L. Brooks Patterson's plan to make Oakland County wireless. No longer will people only be looking for business while they are sitting at home or at their desk at work. They can search from their laptop at the Coffee Shop, their PDA in their car, or their phone while waiting in line at the grocery store. As Google's mobile search technology is adopted by Detroiters over the next year, and Oakland County continues work on their wireless program, the number of internet searches will grow exponentially. The question for Detroit's businesses is - Are your customers going to find you when they are searching?

A Solution

A survey by Infinity Internet, suggests businesses are aware of, and interested in, advertising online, but see internet unfamiliarity, time commitment, and the inability to track results as the biggest barrier to advertising online. WSI Internet Consulting & Education in Rochester Hills, MI has announced the launch of a new internet advertising technology, WSI Local AdWorks that seeks to solve these problems by providing Detroit
area businesses a way to advertise online with managed and traceable programs. Every click, phone call, and email as a result of the ad is traced and reported back to the advertiser. To make this technology available to all businesses, they provide offer-page websites to all companies that do not currently have a website. Online Demo:

About WSI - Headquartered in Toronto, Canada, WSI is ranked the No.1 Internet services business in the world. With systems that have been developed, utilized and proven by over 1000 Internet Consultants in 87 countries worldwide, WSI delivers thousands of e-business solutions to small- and medium- sized businesses annually. The Rochester Hills, MI office is independently owned & operated under license by Leonard Magro. Leonard has a Masters in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Oakland University and an MBA from Duke University's Fuqua School of Business.


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