What is local SEO? It’s still optimizing for search engines on a much more dynamic and smaller area radius for your local area. The reason local SEO ranking is more dynamic than national or international search engine optimization is due to reduced amount of real estate that appears for local keyword searches by local customers. Google’s algorithm is constantly updating and one of those updates over a period of time was to improve local search ranking to be more dynamics based on where a person searches.
What this means is depending on where you are and the number of relevant businesses, local search results can change every 500 feet. Moz has stated that SERPs local packs change drastically for “near me” and “city” related searches when searching from different sections of the same town. So when you factor in the above, with clients who may want to rank for various search phrases, each one will be competing with different sets of businesses per different keyword phrase.
Local SEO is heavily reliant on how data aggregators like Google, Bing, Apple, Linkedin, Yelp, etc, find relevant pieces of information on your business that’s relevant to potential customers search queries.
The Basics Of Local SEO Strategy
Local SEO relies heavily on a few basic sections. Over the last 20 years, SEO has changed from keyword stuffing and ranking to a more refined and structured approach towards local ranking factors. Everything from schema to meta tags and content relevancy go into SEO ranking factors and local SEO just adds on a few more. Citation management and GMB listing optimization are just as important as backlinks and keyword research for local SEO.
Local SEO Tips
Not addressing the following local SEO factors will result in lack of visibility for local listings:
- Claim Google My Business Listing – GMB helps establish brand authority.
- Make Website Mobile Friendly – 84% of local search is done on mobile devices.
- Keyword Research – Targeting terms local users search is important.
- Onpage SEO – Can’t rank keywords with poor on page SEO.
- Backlink Optimization – Backlinks send trust to help keywords rank.
- Local Citations – These are like backlinks but from business directories.
- Use Google Posts – Recent posts are shown in the brands knowledge panel.
- Map Packs – Search results that are associated with Google Maps.
- Schema Markup – Structured data that prompts Google to show detailed information.
- Link Building – Creating quality content and resources that people want to link to.
- Engage Online Reviews – Replying to customer reviews can have a positive impact.
Local SEO Demands Proper Research
Long gone are the days of ranking with keywords stuffed in the content, like a infomercial for Flextape. Local SEO requires not only thorough competitor research, but also improved user profiling and local event research. When keyword research isn’t properly done for local SEO, local sites could be using search phrases that location doesn’t use.
That would be embarrassing to explain to a client, “Sorry, we were targeting ” soda ” when the locals call it ” pop “. Content relevancy and current events will tie even more into community opinion. Especially if any community events or news relates with a webpage that can be used to capture that search intent.
Community Efforts Should Be Part Of Your SEO
The local community is one of the best marketing factors when local SEO is thought of. Because other businesses want to rank for keywords too and are more willing to work together to co-sponsor events that will earn backlinks and organic web traffic for branded local websites.
Everything from fundraisers, case studies to county fairs become places of possible outreach of more local organic web traffic, possible local links and reviews! The community made the business a business so why not give back, it’s an investment regardless. Think of working with your community as local search engine optimization.
Social Media Marketing Duality Of Local SEO
Local SEO can create two distinct benefits of social media marketing, in a physical and digital form. The usage of QR codes on placement ads on a variety of media can improve local organic traffic with the right message. From restaurant placemat ads, to community newspapers and events. The amount of physical locations to market social media accounts or content in general is plentiful.
It’s just a matter of creative thinking and marketing that could be a matter of improving local SEO and thus sales in general. The conversations able to be had online while following the same context in the local physical community will go a long ways towards improving brand trust and authority.
Digital Marketing For Local Business
For marketers the service area matters a great deal for the online presence of a small business. Every business owner has learned the importance of a correctly constructed business profile. The business name is the most important piece of information to make sure is correct for brand presence.
Making sure all business details are correct in the Name, Address, and Phone Number section, also called “NAP”, is crucial to get right for your geographic area. Especially for mobile searches, since if it’s wrong, a business will miss out on the convenience of a potential customer calling straight from their phone during a Google search.
Google Analytics & Google search console monitoring is another aspect of local SEO to keep in mind. Keeping track of what pages get traffic organic results is imperative to a properly address any issues holding a website back from appearing in the results page.
The Basics Of SEO Still Influence Local SEO
Don’t forget to optimize:
- Title Tags – Keep them within SEO guidelines, as these are the most important SEO variable shown in SERPs.
- Meta Descriptions – Are the call-to-action summary, to entice users to click on from SERPs.
- Landing Page – Is any webpage that a user lands on after clicking a link.