Local SEO helps you rank on Page 1 of Google.
You’re sitting in your office thinking about how to get more customers. You’ve already tried paid search, social media, and other ways of attracting new consumers who are searching for a business like yours. And yet you’re still not getting any phone calls or online leads. Luckily there’s a whole lot more you can do to ensure you’re getting more customers. We’re talking about local SEO.
A 2020 survey cites that 90% of people search the internet to find local businesses who could help them overcome their problems. Besides, the same survey indicates that 82% of the respondents read online reviews through local search before picking the business of their choice. No wonder, 86% of people relied on Google Maps to find local businesses. Another survey reveals that 61% of businesses received more queries once they got listed in Google My Business (now, this feature is being embedded into Google Maps itself). And almost 53% of internet users use their mobiles to find local businesses. A Google study even states that 67% of smartphone users are most likely to buy from firms whose websites are optimized for mobile. For this reason, it’s common for local businesses to focus on local SEO, and do very little else with the rest of their on-site optimization.
Local SEO, using keyword research words like ‘SEO services in Bangalore‘, is the art of getting your business listed in online directories, so that local customers will find you, learn about your business and hopefully, become new customers. When it comes to local SEO or local search, there’s more than one way to skin a cat. The secret is to do some research – and figure out what works best for you. If you’re not a local company, there’s also some stuff in here that might be of interest to everyone. So let’s get started.
But remember one thing first. SEO is not about stuffing keywords into your text for the sake of it. It’s about using the right words that your audience will search for, within the topics and industry you’re in, to improve your rankings through local results, local marketing, technical SEO, local listing, link building, google business profile, and local SEO marketing in multiple locations. In 2014, Google launched its Local Business Center that helped many business owners to tap into using their expertise through local search engine optimization.
There are many ways to do local SEO using SEO experts but the most common one is to add a piece of unique content about the location you’re trying to promote. The goal is to have it rank in Google’s local results so that people who search for your business will find it.
For example, if you’re a photography studio, your content could include how to get the best lighting when taking photos of weddings or how to make pink wedding dresses. This is done through a blog post or Google post to enable organic SEO, page SEO, and local ranking. You can also include tips on choosing the right place for your business and even how to find what types of clients you want to cater to.
But when you start adding these kinds of tips, your content starts ranking for all kinds of terms that don’t relate directly to your business. That’s because Google uses algorithms that rank pages based on their relevance, so they may rank these types of pages higher than ones related more closely to what your business does.
To avoid this, you can add a few keywords that relate closely to your business, such as “photography studio” or “wedding planner.” This not only helps your small business to activate the local seo service, but become visible on Google Map, Google search, but also in local search results, local pack, map pack, and local seo services. Then Google will sort all the other keywords by relevance and give them higher priority, which will help them rank better on the list and bring more people back to your site that are looking for that type of information. The local citation in India will help your small business rank in search result, much akin to Moz Local in the US, Canada, and UK. The other services overseas include Yelp, Yext, LocalFX, BrightLocal, and Whitespark, among others.
What does ‘local’ really mean? What you may have missed though, is that “Local” can extend beyond your immediate area to encompass a handful of other, different markets: Local-as-in-where-we-are, Local-as-in-where-our-customers-are, and Local-as-in-where our competition is. This guide will take you through what’s happening in each of these three markets and give you 11 things you could be doing to earn more from local search.
Simply put, local SEO optimizes your website (and other online assets like directories), to increase the online visibility of a business in SERPs (Search Engine Result Pages) for queries that have local intent. The focus is on providing results that are relevant to the users’ location.
Here is a comprehensive look at what may be missing in your local SEO strategy that could be causing no footfalls in your business. Make sure you fix what is broken to turbo-charge the sale of your products or services.
Claim Your Google My Business Listing The first step is to claim your Google My Business listing. This will allow you to show up in Google Maps and be more visible in the local area. What’s more, your entity could be included in the Google Local Pack, which is where the search engine will group three businesses that operate locally. The Local Pack is a SERP feature that helps immensely, if done well. Therefore, the more information you provide for your business, the better it will be for you. Make sure to include the business name, address, phone number and other contact information. Also, add photos of your business for added exposure. The best way to rank for local keywords is to use a lot of local content. This means adding much useful information about your area and the businesses in it. The more relevant you make the local content, the better you’ll do for local keywords. This will help you rank in Google on pages that focus on local business and topics.
Post Your Business on Facebook and Other Local Directories Next, post your business on Facebook and other online directories where people can find you. You want as many pages as possible out there with links to your site because this tells Google that your business is legitimate and relevant to your industry or niche. You should also create a Just Dial, Sulekha, Clutch, and NiceLocal listing, and link them back to your website along with any other social media page or platform that you have available to you. Make sure the information is accurate and that you keep it up-to-date. Link building is akin to Moz Local in the US, and mighty useful with local marketing as your listing will have a local intent.
For example, if you moved locations, create a new listing with the current address. If you changed your business hours or phone number, update those fields so customers can reach you at the right time. This will help your business show up in relevant local searches and may even be a factor Google takes into account when considering which business to rank in the top 3 spots on the SERP. Remember, local content and local search results are crucial to be visible on Google. Do your keyword research thoroughly to get there.
Create Content That Targets Long-Tail Keywords Content marketing is one of the best ways to get high-quality traffic to your website without expensive advertising costs. But if you’re going after keywords that have a lot of competition in them, it will take years to rank. Therefore, it’s best to target long-tail keywords which are three words or more. For example, ranking for ‘content marketing’ might be difficult to rank your local business, but ‘content marketing hsr layout’ will be mighty easier.
Obtain high-quality links from websites aimed at local customers To get high-quality links to your website, you’ll need to put in some work. Write relevant, interesting content that is of a high standard. Other websites will only want to link to you if they think your content is good. Reach out to other business owners in your area and ask them if they’d be willing to link to you. You can also try asking non-competitor businesses in your area who are likely to have customers that could be interested in what you do.
Get involved with your local community by doing things like speaking at events and writing blog posts for relevant publications. This will help raise awareness of your brand and encourage other sites to link back to you. Links are important because they help boost your search rankings.
Create a content marketing strategy The most effective way to get search engine results for a local keyword is to target that keyword in your content marketing. You can do this by creating a blog and posting to it regularly. And you don’t have to post regularly if you don’t want to, but if you do, make sure your website’s mobile-friendliness is up to date so that even when it’s not on your laptop or mobile phone, it will still be indexed. This is crucial as 61% of all internet searches are performed on mobile.
You don’t have to be very precise about this. You can just target the major categories that are relevant to your business. The categories you are likely to think of first are likely to include the main keywords your customers would use to find you locally; and these are likely to also be the ones that give you the best chance of ranking high on search engines like Google.
Once you’ve finished brainstorming ideas for new content, you should try and identify those keywords in your own list. Then add them to your blog post title, bullet point or otherwise; put them on your webpage’s meta-tags (keywords); and register the domain name for it too.
Once a week, write a blog post with those keywords in it and publish it on your website. It doesn’t matter what it’s about; just use the keyword as a heading or a bullet point or something, so as to make sure people will find it easily when they look for that keyword locally.
Search engines are increasingly looking at how well your website performs on different devices, including smartphones and tablets. So when you’re writing blog posts, make sure to target keywords in your title and text that have high search volumes in your local area.
You can also use Google’s new Knowledge Graph to include relevant data about your clients and other information about them in your search results. The more relevant information you can provide to a potential customer, the more likely they will be to come back to your website.
Optimize your landing page for local SEO One of the most important tasks in improving your local SEO is optimizing your landing page. Landing pages are the first point of contact between you and your potential clients, so it’s crucial to make a good impression.
Make sure all of your information is up-to-date, including address and contact information. You can also include other relevant details, such as opening hours and a staff bio. With more than 1 billion monthly users, the exposure from the local 3-pack in Google SERPs can be game-changing for your business.
Local SEO doesn’t stop at the discovery phase, though. You need to optimise your landing pages to convert visitors into customers. Local SEO can increase your visibility in searches that are most likely to result in a sale or lead. According to HubSpot, 72% of consumers who did a local search visited a store within five miles.
Besides, Google has made significant efforts over the last few years to highlight local businesses so there is even more competition for these valuable spots on the first page of search results.
Optimizing your site means ensuring that it’s mobile friendly, has original content, loads quickly and is free of bugs or broken links. While there are many technical aspects to SEO, at its core it comes down to providing search engines with the information they want about your site. For example, Google wants to know that you have a physical location in the area where you’re targeting customers. It also wants data on the number of customers who visit your website, their geographic location and what they do while they are there. In order to provide this information most effectively, you’ll need to implement some tracking code into your website code. Google provides several tools for this purpose, including Google Analytics, which can help you track how many visitors come to your site from a given area, or click phone numbers or links on your site. It also allows you to track how long visitors stay on each page of your site so that you can identify which pages need improvement.
Optimize h1 tags for location keywords The best way to get started with location-based SEO is to include your city or neighborhood names within your H1 tags. H1 tags are a type of HTML tag that indicates the most important heading on a page. In most cases, H1 tags are the title of a page (e.g., “Bengaluru SEO” or “content writing services in Bangalore“). Including location keywords within those headings tells search engines like Google that your business is located in a specific city or region. That information then helps Google determine where to rank you in local-based searches for those terms.
You can also include local information in other locations on your page, including:
8. Add schema markup to your site Schema Markup is the language of search engines. When you add Schema Markup to your website, you help Google better understand your content and display your page in a more appealing way in SERPs.
Schema Markup is most often used for local businesses, and even a regional or national company that has many locations. Search engines use schema markup to identify the type of content you provide on your website. This helps them display more helpful results to users in different types of searches. For example, if you run a restaurant, this markup will help search engines show your business hours and menus.
Adding schema markup to your website can be especially effective for local SEO. The most common schema types for local businesses are LocalBusiness and Organization, which have properties that add information about a business’s location and hours of operation. You have to add schema markup to your website using JSON-LD, a format that Google recommends for structured data. It improves SEO in many ways. For example, you could use it to display star ratings on your products in search results which can lead to higher click through rates.
Link from other sites to yours You can increase your local SEO by making an article from a blog post on another website link to your site. You can do guest posts on other websites that have a higher domain authority to yours. You could even create a Medium account for your business, and link to your website. Importantly, you should link other blog posts within your website as internal linking is crucial. This cross-posting will tell Google that you’ve written many pieces on the same subject to show your grasp in the domain.
Create content that highlights local landmarks, attractions and events If you have a business based in a particular city or region, then a great way to boost your search engine optimization efforts is to create content that highlights local landmarks, attractions and events. You can simply incorporate this information into your post or create a more visual piece with maps and videos. For example, if your business has a blog, write a post showing readers what they can see and do in your city or town. Or, if you run a travel company, do the same thing for the places you visit.
You can even go one step further by writing about specific events that are happening in your area. This will not only help you get noticed by locals who are searching for that event online, but it will also help travelers find you when they’re looking for things to do in your area. Content that focuses on local landmarks, attractions and events has the potential to be linked to by a great many other sites, including local news sites, blogs and social media pages.
Get reviews for your business online Getting customer reviews for your business is a great way to enhance your local SEO. Most people trust the opinions of others over the opinions of a company when it comes to purchasing decisions. That’s why you’ll see customer reviews on sites like Amazon, Goodreads, Google My Business, and so on. Because online reviews are trusted so much by consumers, they can help boost your local SEO efforts.
But there are some things you should keep in mind when you review customer reviews and how they impact your local SEO. The number of reviews matters but so does the quality and diversity of the reviews. Reviews will help you rank locally but it also helps increase your click-through rate (CTR) which also impacts your rankings.
The best way to get reviews is to give people a reason to leave them. If your business isn’t doing that, fixing that will probably help more than asking for reviews. You don’t want to be the kind of business that needs to bribe people to say nice things about you.
But if you have an honest, good product or service, asking for feedback is a good way to make sure your customers are happy: ask them if they’re satisfied with what you provided, and if there’s anything you could have done better. If it turns out there was something you could have done better, do that next time. And if they were satisfied, ask them if they’d be willing and able to leave you a review online.
Make it easy for them by giving them a link directly to your Google Places page or wherever you want the review to go. Most people who are happy with what you did will be glad to do this for you; most of the others won’t want to hurt your feelings by saying so.
We suggest limiting this request only to customers who had a really positive experience with your business. Don’t take advantage of your customers’ goodwill by asking everyone for a review; just ask the ones who really want to.
There are many ways for local businesses to boost their SEO and increase visibility, but few of them are being done. Good information will lead to good design; good design leads to high conversion rates; high conversion rates lead to happy customers. Don’t have a website? You should have a website! It’s free and you can create one at WordPress.com or Wix.com.
SEO is a great way for you to build your business, but it’s not something that can really be done alone. To get the best out of your SEO, you need to have a team who knows what they’re doing. The time it takes to properly set up and manage your services can be quite long, and while the big companies have budgets large enough to fund teams of writers, marketers, and programmers, small businesses do not. However, you do have an option: outsourcing.
It can be tricky to get the right SEO keywords, the right definitions, and even the right links, but it’s worth the effort. In fact, when done correctly, SEO can make your website a natural choice for consumers in your niche—which positions you ahead of your local competitors. Pay attention to local competition as it relates to keyword searches and be sure to stand out while you’re at it!
There’s no real magic bullet for getting more local foot traffic. But if you start working on the basics, such as local citations, social, and consistent name, address, phone number (NAP) and continue to expand your keyword research and marketing outreach, you should start seeing some results—especially over time. And let’s be honest: any boost in foot traffic is going to help your bottom line.
All businesses can benefit from local SEO; you’ll just have to decide who will run the campaign and how much you’ll spend. It may take time to see results, but it’s worth the effort and investment.
Originally published here.