Brafton has reported that experts at SES New York say local search should be a priority for internet marketers this year. For local merchants who have claimed their Google Places pages, there are now Instant benefits to local SEO.

Google has announced that Google Instant is now available for searchers using the Places View. Google Instant, which Brafton has reported uses the search giant’s predictive technology to display results as users type, has been available in web results for some time, but its new arrival in Places search speaks to the growing trend among consumers to look for quick local results on the web.

To get to Places View, users simply choose the Places option on the left panel alongside the Google query box. With the new launch of Instant for Places, results for businesses in a neighborhood near you begin to appear. For instance, our search for “Italian rest-” immediately started showing some eateries in Boston’s North End (the Little Italy of Beantown). Google Instant for Places.

Google says it is offering Instant for Places View so “you can find where you want to go even more quickly.” Marketers should consider that optimizing their sites for local searches may not only bring more clicks from Places View searchers, but also from mobile searchers.

As Brafton recently reported, mobile users are increasingly looking for nearby businesses when conducting on-the-go queries. More than half of consumers (58 percent) use their smartphones to find local businesses while they are out shopping.