In today’s fast-paced world where the competition is growing at an accelerated rate, where it’s impossible to spend even a day without your gadgets, where the use of mobile phones and other wearable devices is progressively augmenting, local SEO has become more important than ever.
If you own online business, you would be aware of the never-ending struggle of establishing your brand and ranking on SERPs.
- 93% of online experiences begin with a search engine
- 75% of users never scroll past the first page of search results
- Search is the No.1 driver of traffic to content sites, beating social media by more than 300 percent.
These stats only demonstrate the necessity of local SEO in supporting your online business. It is the foundation of online marketing success.
Here are a few tips from agency founders that you should always keep in mind:
It means your business’s Name, Address, and Phone number should consistently be listed the same across the web. Taking the NAP further, it is equally important to have your website’s address also listed consistently as well. You must make sure your profile is complete and no important details should be missing. Adding a profile picture also helps. Images can bring down the speed of the site so optimization is essential. Minimize the dimensions of the images as much as possible.
Links and citations
The competition is increasing and references can get you a long way. In the Moz local search engine ranking factors survey, the link signals accounted for 18.3 % and social signals accounted for 5.8 % of the total.
Backlinks from non-competing, quality sites could be an effective method. If you have physical outlets, you can get local coverage by forging relationships with business journalists in the area. Forming connections with local charities and vendors can be another useful approach. You can get listed on the donor’s page and gain links within the community. Guest posting is also a great way to gain links.
Dedicating a section for feedback on your page can be a good idea. You can include BuzzFeed articles where you have been featured. Good reviews build credibility and make your brand look much more trustworthy. Good customer service and user experience also increase authenticity.
Domain authority is a measure of the power of a domain name and is one of the many search engine ranking factors. It is based on age, popularity, and size. Buying a good domain is one of the best investments you can make. Sponsoring local meet-ups and blogging about local events improves DA.
Today, a responsive page is not an option, it’s obligatory.
– 50% of local mobile searchers intend to find some business information
– An impressive 78% of local mobile searches lead to an offline purchase
Crafting a unique page is a part of building a recognizable brand. Optimizing a page is a ceaseless process, regular modifications and addition of new services can never be enough. There is always so much more that can improve its functioning. An attractive and responsive site acts as a crowd magnet.
You can also optimize your site for voice search. Technologies like Alexa, Google, Siri and Cortana are the new trends that are going to bring about a revolution in the internet world.
The title and description get the most visibility. But there is a limit on the number of characters and the space you can use for this. Earlier, this limit was 290 characters but now it’s been reduced to about 158 characters. Since there is restricted space, you need to use it wisely and make your content as relevant as possible. Do your keyword research and pick unique words which are easier to rank for. Long-tail and regional keywords can also help you rank much faster. Use these keywords in your URL as well to make it more readable and easier to remember.
Getting listed in local directories like Yelp and JustDial can boost your local outreach massively. You can claim your profiles on all social media sites to increase your visibility. Google+ is one the most underestimated platforms, it can expand your local reach to a great degree. You can even provide the feature of a virtual tour of your website.
Content is the key
“Creating compelling and useful content will likely influence your website more than any of the other factors.” Google, 2017
At the end of the day, high-quality and SEO-friendly content is the most competent way to gain audience. This is the most obvious and also the most difficult to strategically execute. You can eliminate competition by picking a niche and a website of the same niche and use SEMRush to identify the aspects it lacks and look for new ideas to incorporate in your website.
Some useful SEO tools
- Schema.org and LocalBusiness schema create, maintain, and promote schemas for structured data on the Internet and web pages.
- Screaming Frog crawls a websites’ links, images, CSS, etc from an SEO perspective.
- BrightLocal is an integrated SEO and local citation platform to help increase the visibility of your business on the web and attract more local consumers. It helps manage bulk local listings.
- RankBrain Algorithm is used by Google to sort through its search results. It takes dwell time which is the amount of time users spend on a website as a factor for ranking on the SERPs.
- Google My Business Communityforum connects business owners with each other as they navigate the complex world of online listings and is a great place to start when you have a digital problem you need help solving. It is also a resource to stay up to date on things like new Google algorithm updates that could affect your SEO efforts.