How Local SEO Could Improve Your Marketing Strategy
Online Marketers are fully aware that the most critical aspect of improving the profitability of any business is to invest in top-quality SEO. There is a rising concern with a saturation of businesses online making it difficult for a smaller company to make any headway against all the competition and big-name companies.
However, there is a solution that often doesn’t get the attention it deserves. Businesses with a physical presence in a local area can apply the power of local SEO to increase the number of visitors and traffic and expand their business. Here are some of the most pertinent facts that attest to the value and efficacy of local SEO.
Local consumers often shop from local companies, and by putting your business in front of a local audience, you can generate significant returns.
Google results pages have special advantages for local SEO.
There are many promotional avenues to explore in conjunction with local SEO.
Local search results are less competitive than national search results, making it easier to rank.
More and more of your customers are searching from mobile devices that give a priority to local businesses, many of them could be walking outside your door.
As you can see, there are plenty of reasons that local SEO could benefit your business. Here are seven steps for gaining local online traffic.
1) Claim Your Google My Business Page
Step no. 1 is the most important. Google has a directory for business listings, and all you need to do is take the time to set it up. This critical page will serve as the foundation for the local SEO campaign. By telling Google your business details, you are letting Google know that your business is real and has a physical location.If you havent already, claim your Google My Business page by visiting google.com/business.
2) Citations are Essential
When you put your business as address and physical location on your webpage or any online directory you are making your citation. While many can debate whether this is effective for conventional SEO, there is no question about its importance to local SEO. Having as many citations as you can on as many listings as possible is a great benefit to local SEO.
There are many places where you can place a citation. There are large and international directories like Yelp, but your local area probably has many more. You will want to research and register as many of the listings and place citations everywhere you go, if you can add a website link on the listing, you are extra lucky, but this is not essential.
3) Build Local Links
While you don’t want to focus on links when building your citation collection, we are still working with Google and Google loves links even when improving local SEO. Traditionally, this is done by emphasizing topic relevance from similar sites. With local SEO, location-based links are equally as important as getting topic relevant links. This way Google will see that your business has a good standing in your local area.
You will want to look through your local directory and try to get links to the businesses that are prominent. Sports clubs, media and journalist enterprises, charities, entertainment, and others with a strong standing in the community will enhance the effects of your links. Of course, you will still need to balance this with conventional link building.
4) Localize Your Website
Your website should have content dedicated to your local area. In your service descriptions add plenty of mentions of your local area and community your business provides service to.
Take this idea a step further by making yourself an active member in your community from the perspective of your industry. Add articles and posts to your website that mention special events, locations, prominent members of your community and discussions about local concerns and issues from the neutral and unique perspective of your business. Just be sure it somehow ties into the services you are providing.
Don’t get carried away though; local journalism is not the purpose. Valuable, engaging content that ties your business to the community is what you are shooting for.
5) Optimize Your Contact Page
All your efforts will be undermined if your site has a contact page that is poorly executed. You need more than an online contact form and phone number. You should have a clearly designed and presented page that includes all information necessary, including the physical address, mailing address, email and phone number with area codes. Then, top this off with an embedded Google map and straightforward directions to your physical address.
6) Localize Your Social Media
Consider which social media platforms your largest population of local consumers gather and reach them there. Make a splash with valuable and engaging content that makes mention of your local area and the services you provide. Even if you don’t do much advertising here, provide plenty of valuable, entertaining, insightful and otherwise engaging content and make your presence known. Furthermore, use social media to establish your credentials, people need to know who you are and what you do.
Reviews help to establish your location, and having many reviews means your business is relevant and can help you gain exposure in Google SERP’s . Encourage your customers to leave reviews by adding links to review sites such as Google, Yelp, and Facebook in your follow up emails or on your website. Have a contingency plan to deal with negative feedback in the most positive way possible.
Rank Matters specializes in local SEO. We can help you create citations on the top directory sites, build relevant, quality backlinks, create content for your website and social media, and more. Get an SEO consultation to find out if local SEO is suitable for your business. It could quickly become a productive part of your marketing strategy.