How to Do Local SEO in 2019

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@harsimran-kaurHarsimran Kaur

Digital Marketing Expert | PPC|SMO

Every business should have a strong local strategy if they want to target the local audience. Local SEO strategy will help them rank higher on local SERP and generate quality leads.
There is a study that shows that:
46% of all Google searches are looking for local information
Now you may get an idea of how important local SEO is for you if you are targeting local audiences. There are more people that are using mobile to search the “near me” and location-based keywords. 
If you are a local business then it's good news for you. You can attract users if you know how to do local SEO.  Local SEO is essential for the small business that are targeting local users. It can be visit to the store or anything else.
One thing good about local SEO is that you are not competing with the world, you just have to beat your local competitors which you can do with the successful local strategy.
But it doesn’t mean that local SEO is easy. Before going forward it is important to know

What is Local SEO?

Local SEO is a way to promote your local business online, as it helps you to promote your products or services in front of local customers. 
Local SEO is done for the local searches, not for ordinary searches. Now you may think that what are local searches. Let me explain

What are Local Searches?

If someone searching for the “best digital marketing agency” then it comes in the ordinary searches whereas if someone searches digital marketing agency in [locationname], such type of queries which include location is known as local searches.
 In this case, Google understands the user intends and shows the local results to the users.
Now you may wonder where would the local results appear. Local Results will appear Local SERPs.

What are Local SERPs?

To drive traffic to your website or generate leads, your business should rank on 3 pack results. Local SERPs describe the result that usually includes a 3 pack on top. 
Below is an example of a local pack that results from the keyword ‘plumbers in NYC’.
You can notice that these results are different from the organic results. You can see, opening hours, reviews and photos. Google is extracting this information from Google business listing.
Now the question that may strike your mind is that how to do local SEO that attract more and more local audience.  Below are some tips that will help you in building a strong local SEO strategy.

Optimize your Google My Business Page

One of the most important tactics to rank in local results is to optimize your Google my business page. One major factor of whether your business appears in 3 pack results is how well is your google my business optimize.
Listing your business on Google business makes it easier for users to find your business. Your business will show up on google maps results when users search for the local keywords.
When someone searches with your brand name, your Google business page will appear in the sidebar of Google search results if the business is verified by google. 
One should do the following steps to optimize the google business page:
  • Add the complete, correct and up to date information (Name of business, address and phone number) about your business.
  • Add your business logo, images, services, payment method and hours of operation.
  • Add a detailed business description
  • Ask customers to review your business on google business page.
  • Try to respond to every review
If you don’t have google my business then you have to first create google business page.
It is very easy to create your listing. Just go to the https://www.google.com/business/ and create your listing. 
This will help you in strengthening your local SEO and generate more leads for your business.

Optimize your Website

If you think by just optimizing Google business page you will achieve your desired goal then you are wrong. You should also optimize your website for the local keywords that users are searching for. Before optimizing your website it is a good idea to do SEO Audit of your website.
For this, you can use the Keyword planner to find the relevant local keywords by selecting your targeted location. This will help you in finding the keywords that your local audience is searching for.
Once you finalize the keywords now it's time to optimize them on the website. You should include the keywords in the title, description, heading, website content, and URL.
It is advisable to not overuse the keywords as it may lead to keyword stuffing and your content may be seen as spammy. It is important to evenly distribute your keywords.
Google is smart enough to punish spammy websites or websites that do keyword stuffing. So, one should target LSI keywords so that your website’s content doesn't look spammy. 
You can also add the google business page in the footer section or contact us page of the website.
Add location pages if required and create local content for your audience.
You should take care of the thing that your website information should match your google business listing information.

Citations

A citation is nothing but an online reference to your business that mainly includes Name, address, and phone number.
Local directories are popular when users search for local business so it is important to list your business on popular local directories.
Popular local directories rank well in google search for local searches so when someone lands on the local directory they will easily find your listed business. 
In this way, you can drive traffic to your website and also helps you in generating leads. 
It is advisable to use the same name, address and phone number that you are using on your google business listing and website otherwise you will lose potential customers.
Below are some of the top citation sites where you can list your business.
  • yelp.com
  • foursquare.com
  • bizjournals.com
  • mapquest.com
  • yellowpages.com
  • angieslist.com
  • manta.com
  • citysearch.com
  • merchantcircle.com
  • superpages.com
  • Ask your Happy Customers to Review your Business

Most of the users say that they read the reviews before purchasing anything so you can assume that how important are review for any online business.
 The positive review helps you attract new customers. So ask your happy customers to review your business online. It will help your brand to gain the trust of customers.
No one gives you positive reviews if the customer is not satisfied with your services so always provide quality services to your customers. 
Positive reviews help you to gain the trust of your targeted audience and they will recommend your business to their friends.
You should keep in mind that you will not always get a positive review so if you get a negative review, you should apologize and try to resolve the issue politely.
You can ask for the reviews by sending your google listing link via mail or text message once users complete the purchase.

Create a Mobile-Friendly Website 

Now everyone is using a mobile phone so mobile searches increase significantly. All the credit goes to high-speed internet.
According to Statista, the expected number of mobile users will reach 4.68 billion in 2019.
So it is really important to make a mobile-friendly website to improve the user experience on mobile devices. Having a mobile-friendly website will help you in building a strong local SEO strategy.
You can google tool to check whether the site is mobile-friendly or not. Here is the link to the tool: https://search.google.com/test/mobile-friendly 

Final Words

It is really important to develop a strong local SEO strategy but at the same time, it is also important to be aware of the latest SEO trends as SEO is evolving day by day.
I hope these points will help you in building a local SEO strategy and ranking higher on local SERP. If you have any question or facing issue in implementing these strategies then feel free to contact me or my team at Uvisible.
If you know any other ways to improve the local SEO, feel free to share them.



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