Typical local search queries include not only information about "what" the site visitor is searching for (such as keywords, a business category, or the name of a consumer product) but also "where" information, such as a street address, city name, postal code, or geographic coordinates like latitude and longitude. Examples of local searches include "Hong Kong hotels", "Manhattan restaurants", and "Dublin car rental".Local searches typically trigger Google to return organic results and a local 3-pack. More local results can be obtained by clicking on “more places” under the 3-pack. The list of results one obtains is also called the Local Finder.
Search engines and directories are primarily supported by advertising from businesses that wish to be prominently featured when users search for specific products and services in specific locations. Google for instance, has developed local inventory ads and features ads in the local pack. Local search advertising can be highly effective because it allows ads to be targeted very precisely to the search terms and location provided by the user.
Local search is the natural evolution of traditional off-line advertising, typically distributed by newspaper publishers and TV and radio broadcasters, to the Web. Historically, consumers relied on local newspapers and local TV and radio stations to find local product and services. With the advent of the Web, consumers are increasingly using search engines to find these local products and services online. In recent years, the number of local searches online has grown rapidly while off-line information searches, such as print Yellow Page lookups, have declined. As a natural consequence of this shift in consumer behavior, local product and service providers are slowly shifting their advertising investments from traditional off-line media to local search engines.
One can search local information via search engines. These often return local search results from directories and maps. Google for instance, will present results from its directory (called Google My Business) in Google Maps and also in the search engine results pages in the form of a local pack. One can also look for local information by searching apple maps Search engines offer local businesses the possibility to upload their business data to their respective local search databases.