With the growing importance of search engines in local search, many small businesses are wondering how they can improve their local SEO.
Nearly one-third of consumers in the U.S. use the internet to search for local businesses every day.
76% of people who search for a local business on their mobile phone visit a related business 24 hours.
We've compiled a guide for you to implement the local SEO strategy of your business.
What Is Local SEO For Small Businesses?
Local SEO is the process of optimizing your website and online presence to rank higher in search engine results for searches related to your business, conducted by people in your local area. It's an important part of any small business marketing strategy, as it helps you reach potential customers who are looking for businesses like yours in their local area.
What Are The Benefits Of Local SEO
What difference does it make for your listing to be in the top 5 results on Google? The top 5 results on the SERPs account for 80 percent of click-throughs on the first page of Google. The first organic result alone accounts for almost 40 percent.
Broaden Your Customer Reach - With local SEO, you can find potential customers who are already interested in what you have to offer. This saves you time and money by reaching out to customers who are already interested in what you have to offer.
Increased Website Traffic - By optimizing your website for local search, you can see a significant increase in traffic to your website. This increased traffic can result in more leads and sales for your business.
Improved Conversion Rates - By improving your website’s ranking on local search engines, you can see a significant increase in conversion rates. This means more leads and sales for your business.
Ahead Of Your Competition - With local SEO, you can bypass your competition and appear at the top of the search engine results pages. This gives you a competitive edge over your competition and can help you acquire more customers.
Elevated Brand Awareness - When you appear at the top of the search engine results pages, you create brand awareness for your business. This helps get your name out there and can result in more customers in the future.
Reduce Cost Per Acquisition - By optimizing your website for local search, you can reduce the cost per acquisition for your business. This means more leads and sales at a lower cost to you.
Long-Lasting Rankings - With local SEO, you can achieve long-lasting rankings that will help attract potential customers over time. This means that your business will continue to see an influx of new leads and sales long after you implement local SEO tactics.
13 Local SEO Strategies For Your Small Business
1. Create Engaging Local Content
Any small business owner knows that local SEO is essential for attracting customers and driving sales. But what many don't realize is that writing compelling local content can be a powerful local SEO tool.
By creating content that is relevant to your local audience, you can improve your chances of appearing in SERPs. And since local searchers are more likely to take action than those who are simply scrolling through search results, this can be a great way to boost foot traffic and drive sales.
But how do you write local content that will actually help your business? Here are a few tips:
Write blogs to educate: Make sure to include local keywords throughout your content. These are the words and phrases that potential customers are likely to use when searching for businesses like yours. In addition, focus on creating high-quality content that provides value for your readers. Lengthy, well-written blog posts are more likely to rank highly in search results than shorter, less informative ones.
Write about local events: If you're a small business owner, there's a good chance you're already involved in the local community. Why not write about some of the events you're participating in or attending?
Highlight local attractions: If your business is located in a tourist destination, there's no better way to attract attention than by writing about the local attractions. Not only will this help you appeal to potential customers, but it can also help you attract visitors from out of town.
Share local news: Whether it's an article about a new local ordinance or a blog post about a recent event, sharing local news is a great way to show that you're plugged into the community. Not only will this help boost your local SEO efforts, but it can also help build trust with potential customers.
2. Optimize Your Google My Business
Google My Business is a free listing that allows businesses to control how they appear on Google Maps and in local search results. Optimizing your GMB listing can improve your visibility and ranking in local search results, helping you attract more customers.
Several factors go into Optimizing your GMB listing, but some of the most important include:
Claiming and verifying your listing.
Providing accurate and up-to-date information.
Ensuring your NAP (Name, Address, Phone Number) is consistent across all online platforms.
Adding photos and videos.
Share company news, and blogs, or simply promote your product and services.
Encouraging customer reviews.
3. Do Frequent SEO Audit
Any business owner with a website should perform regular SEO audits to ensure that their site is optimized for search engines.
An SEO audit will help you identify any technical errors that could impact your site's indexing, as well as any on-page issues that could be holding back your rankings.
Here's a quick overview of how to perform an SEO audit:
Check your site's indexation. Use Google Search Console to see if any pages on your site are not being indexed by Google. This could be due to a technical error, such as a robots.txt file that is blocking access to your site.
Check for broken links. Use a tool like Screaming Frog to check your site for broken links. Any 404 errors could negatively impact your SEO.
Check your title tags and meta descriptions. Make sure that your title tags and meta descriptions are unique and keyword-rich. This will help improve your click-through rate, which is a key ranking factor.
Check your H1 tags. Your H1 tags should be unique and descriptive, helping search engine crawlers understand the topic of your pages.
Check for duplicate content. If you have multiple pages with the same or similar content, this could be hurting your SEO efforts. Use a tool like Copyscape to check for duplicate content across the web.
By following these steps, you can perform a comprehensive SEO audit of your website and identify any areas that need improvement.
4. Create A Back Link Strategy
Backlinks are a key factor in determining a site's relevancy and authority, and they can be the difference between a page rank on the first page of results or the second page. But what does all of this mean for local SEO? Let's take a closer look.
Relevancy is determined by how often a site is linked to other sites. The more relevant backlinks a site has, the more likely it is to rank highly in search engine results.
Authority, on the other hand, is determined by the quality of the linking sites. A link from an authoritative site (like an industry blog or news site) carries more weight than a link from a less authoritative site.
Local SEO is all about optimizing your site for searches related to your location. This means that having backlinks from local websites can be especially helpful in boosting your ranking.
That's because when someone searches for something like "plumbers in XYZ area," Google will give preference to sites that have links from other local websites. So if you're trying to attract customers in your area, make sure you're building up your local backlink profile!
5. Claim Local Listings
Listing your business in local directories is an important part of any local SEO strategy. By claiming your listing and providing accurate information, you can improve your visibility in search results and attract new customers.
Several directories cater to small businesses, including Google My Business, Yahoo Local, and Yelp. Claiming your listing on these platforms is free and relatively easy to do. Simply create an account and follow the prompts to add your business information.
In addition to these major directories, many niche directories can be beneficial for certain businesses. For example, if you operate a pet store, you may want to list your business on a directory like BringFido.com. By taking the time to list your business in the right directories, you can improve your chances of being found by new customers who are looking for what you have to offer.
6. Ask For Customer Reviews
Google My Business reviews can be extremely helpful for local SEO. When potential customers search for businesses in their area, Google takes into account the number and quality of reviews when ranking results.
Therefore, having a large number of positive reviews can really help to boost your visibility in search results. And since reviews are also one of the first things that people see when they visit your Google My Business listing, they can also help to create a favorable impression of your business.
Furthermore, responding to reviews (whether positive or negative) shows that you value customer feedback and are committed to providing a great experience.
In sum, Google My Business reviews can have a big impact on your local SEO efforts, so it’s definitely worth asking customers for their feedback and taking the time to respond to all reviews.
Source: Charane Creative
7. Use Local Schema
As anyone who has tried to do it knows, SEO can be tricky. There are a lot of different factors that go into getting your website to rank well on search engines, and it can be difficult to keep track of all of them.
However, one factor that is often overlooked is a local schema. Schema is a code that helps search engines understand the content on your website. By adding local schema to your website, you can help improve your local SEO by making it easier for search engines to understand your content and index your website correctly.
In addition, schema can also help improve the click-through rate for your website by providing more relevant and accurate information in the search results. As a result, improving your local schema can be a great way to improve your local SEO and increase your chances of being found by potential customers.
8. Optimize Page Structure
One of the most important aspects of SEO is optimizing your website's page structure. This refers to the way that your pages are organized and linked together.
A well-structured website is easy for search engines to crawl and index, and it provides a good user experience. There are a few key elements to consider when optimizing your page structure:
The title tag is one of the most important on-page elements, and it should include your keywords.
The meta tags are also important, and they should be descriptive and keyword-rich.
Your website's navigation should be easy to use and understand.
Pages should be linked together logically so that users can easily find the information they're looking for.
The URL structure should be clean and keyword-rich.
9. Target Local Keywords
It's no secret that keywords are an important part of SEO. But did you know that targeting local keywords can be even more effective?
Local keywords are search terms that include a specific location, such as "plumber in Seattle" or "restaurants in New York." By targeting these keywords, you can reach customers who are specifically searching for businesses in your area.
In addition, local keywords can help you to rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs). This is because search engines often give preference to local businesses when displaying results for location-specific searches.
10. Make Mobile-Friendly Website And Content
In today's world, more and more people are using their mobile devices to access the internet. Google now gives preference to mobile-friendly websites in its search results.
Also, 61% of mobile searchers are more likely to contact a local business if they have a mobile-friendly site.
This means that if you want to improve your SEO, it's important to make sure your website is mobile-friendly. There are a few things you can do to make your website more mobile-friendly.
Mobile-friendly websites load quickly and are easy to navigate on a small screen.
Make sure your website is responsive, meaning it will adjust to fit any screen size.
They also generally have larger font sizes and simplified designs.
Your content should be short and have graphics customized for mobile screens.
Source: Power Prolive
11. Use Social Media
Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are great ways to connect with potential customers and promote your business. But did you know that social media can also help you with your SEO?
By creating and sharing content that is keyword rich and relevant to your business, you can attract more visitors to your website and improve your search engine ranking.
In addition, platform algorithms often give preference to pages and profiles that are regularly updated with fresh content.
And of course, don't forget to add a link to your website in your profile so that people can easily find it. With a little effort, you can use social media to give your SEO a boost.
12. Participate In Local Business Events
Participating in local business events is a great way to network and build relationships with other businesses in your area. These relationships can be beneficial for several reasons, including helping you to improve your SEO.
When you make a strong relationship with another business, you are more likely to be mentioned on their website or social media channels. This can help to increase your visibility online and attract new customers or clients.
Also, when you participate in local events, you're increasing the chances that people will search for your business online. And when they do, your website is more likely to come up in the results. That's because event listings often include links to participating businesses.
13. Invest In Google Ads With Local Keywords
Google Ads is a powerful tool that can help you reach new customers and grow your business. When you use Google Ads, you can create targeted ad campaigns that appear in search results when people are looking for products or services like yours.
You can also target your ads to specific geographic areas, so you’re only reaching potential customers who are likely to be interested in what you have to offer. And because you only pay when someone clicks on your ad, Google Ads can be a cost-effective way to attract new customers.
Best of all, when you use relevant keywords in your ads, you can improve your SEO at the same time. By targeting local keywords, you can make sure your ads are reaching people who are searching for businesses like yours in their area.
If you’re a small business owner, then it’s time to get serious about your local SEO. By following the tips we outlined above, you can make a big impact on your visibility and organic search traffic.
And when you combine that with a well-optimized website and great customer service, you’ll be well on your way to boosting your bottom line.
Get started today and see how quickly your local SEO improves. Have questions or need help getting started? Our team would be happy to chat with you – click here to get in touch.