Gain a Competitive Edge With Local SEO
Local search engine optimization is a useful tool for local businesses to promote their products and services to customers in the area. Most small to medium-sized enterprises are competing with big brands in a fiercely competitive market. Large enterprises have abundant funds and manpower to launch large-scale campaigns.
Luckily, local businesses don’t have to rely on a miracle to get on the same level. With the right tools and knowledge, local SEO is the best way for small to medium-sized businesses to gain a competitive edge on their bigger competitors.
“My business isn’t based online so I don’t need SEO”
This is a common mistake that most small to medium-sized enterprises or local businesses make. Just because they don’t sell their products or services online or they have an established location that is doing well, SEO is something that they don’t need.
This kind of thinking is detrimental to the success of your business.
Statistics show that 97% of people search for local products and services online, which means if you want to increase your exposure as a small or local business, a solid SEO strategy is a must! Fortunately, there is an abundance of great local SEO tools that can help smaller businesses simplify and speed up the process.
But what exactly does local SEO do?
Local SEO is an important tool for SMEs to promote their products and services to local customers.
No matter what product or service you search for online, Google will almost always provide you with a local map pack suggestion box, right after the Google ads at the top of the search page. Within the local pack, there will be a few suggestions for the businesses in your area.
Local SEO is all about getting your business featured in the map pack, and preferably at the very first spot.
Research has shown that local searches are very popular with 80% of consumers looking for products or services online in their neighborhood. Google knows this and has made changes to its algorithm over the years to encourage local businesses to get involved. This means small and local businesses are able to get an edge over big companies because Google likes to give users what they want.
You may have realized that when you use Google Maps, you get options to check out restaurants, coffee shops, hotels, and more in your area before you even start typing in your search. And when you do enter an address or the name of the place you are looking for, Maps will still show results near your current location.
Businesses and service providers don’t just miraculously earn this position on this figurative podium through regular SEO, that placement is earned through local SEO.
Local SEO gives your company a competitive advantage, no matter the size of your business. But what exactly are the benefits of local SEO besides the points addressed above?
Having a solid local SEO strategy can:
- Help your business stands out in local searches, which give your business more exposure and foot traffic
- Help potential local and non-local customers in the area discover your business.
- Provide potential customers with useful information about your business, products, or services.
- Give people an easy way to contact your business or visit your website directly from the search results.
- Build brand awareness and familiarity.
The top 6 tips for improving your local SEO
By creating a sound local SEO strategy, small and local businesses can go neck to neck with larger and more established companies with an upper hand in a competitive industry. We’ve gathered 6 tips that will help you strengthen your local SEO in no time!
Get a Google My Business Account ASAP
A Google My Business account is the perfect start for you to get your business to rank in Google’s local search results, and it’s completely free!
If you have not created a “My Business” list yet, the steps are as simple as ABC. You just have to optimize it by completely filling in your business details, link to your website and add professional images, and voila that’s it.
Customer reviews are integral to your success
Your customer’s opinion matters. Not only does it help boost your local SEO, but it’s a useful tool for your audience too. If your reviews are not so good, it will probably deter people from visiting your establishment or buying your products. So get those 5-star reviews in!
Use Local keywords to rise to the top
Compile a list of keywords related to your location, and add these keywords to your “My Business” list, website content, and current SEO strategies. If your business is located near a popular local destination or landmarks don’t forget to add in keywords related to those specific areas. For example, ‘coffee shops near Central’ is a keyword that would lead you to coffee shops in the Central area.
Don’t forget to optimize your social media profile
In the age of where everyone and their mother is on social media.
Having a solid social media presence can make a huge impact on small businesses in terms of local SEO. Just make sure the information on your social media profiles matches the information in your “My Business” list. If your information does not match, Google won’t recommend your business in location-specific search results.
If you have multiple locations, use location page
If your business has multiple locations, you must create a different page (containing unique content) for each location. Then use these specific multi-location strategies to further enhance local SEO.
Get your local citations right
Local citations help users discover local businesses and can help improve your local search engine ranking. So find ways to increase mentions of your business online. It goes without saying, make sure that your NAP information (business name, address, and telephone number) is accurate and identical to the information you put down on your “My Business” list.
Now that you understand the power of local SEO and how it can help small and local businesses, go ahead and use our tips to boost your local SEO!
Want to take your business to new heights and become an industry leader? Our team of SEO experts and digital marketing specialists can help you achieve your search engine ranking goals with tailor-made strategies! Contact us today and watch your business grow.