Local SEO is different than regular SEO. While there are many crossovers between the two strategies in terms of implementation, the goal behind local SEO is what separates it. With local SEO, you’re attempting to make yourself visible to an individual making a search query within a specific location; such tactics are typically desired by brick-and-mortars locations. When you’re searching for somewhere to eat and Google, “best restaurants near me,” the top results that you see are businesses that have perfected their local SEO scores.
At Snap, our team of SEO Strategists are committed to helping our clients maximize their return on investment by working with them to create and optimize their local SEO strategy. We’ve put together a local SEO checklist to get you on the right track for outranking your competitors.
Google is Your Friend
If you want to dominate the local search engine rankings, you’re going to need to utilize Google My Business. A Google business listing will allow you to appear higher in local searches, as well as give your business more visibility and credibility. This page will allow for interaction with your customers as well. They’ll be able to do everything from looking at photos of your store to getting directions or seeing what times the store is busiest. Plus, having the ability to check hours and call the store directly is convenient for when people are out and about and performing searches on their phones. And let’s not forget about reviews! Your Google My Business listing clearly lists all of the reviews your store has received and provides a 1-5 star ranking to let shoppers know how others feel about your business.
You don’t need to just stop at a Google My Business listing, however. Go beyond Google by creating both Yelp and Foursquare accounts, and of course a Facebook page as well. Having more business listings across different platforms can make your business seem more trustworthy to search engines.
There is No Such Thing as Bad Press
Google My Business also allows your customers to write reviews; encouraging your customers to give reviews can also be beneficial for your local SEO. Google will reward listings with good reviews, as it will view these businesses as credible.
Of course, occasionally you will be written a bad review. It’s the nature of business. But it’s also a great opportunity to engage with your customers and address the issue. Not only does this show that you are actively trying to remedy the situation, but it also shows others viewing the reviews that you do care about the customer. And who knows, maybe your unsatisfied customer may end up bumping their rating. Always respond to every review, whether it’s positive or negative in a professional and friendly manner.
Consistency is Key
Being consistent across all your digital platforms with your business’s name, address, and phone number (NAP for short) is a small but crucial aspect of local SEO. You should make sure that your name, address, and number appear on every page of your website in the footer or header. If you have multiple store locations, then list them on a Contact Page. Along with this, make sure that you’re NAP is matching up across your Facebook, Google Business, and Yelp pages (or whatever platforms your business is linked to). Having a crawl-able and consistent NAP is sure to improve your Local SEO.
Inbound Links Are Worth the Effort
Moz conducted a study to find the top factors of local organic SEO rankings and found that having high-quality inbound links to your site was the number one factor when it comes to determining local rankings. Getting inbound links, or links from other sites that take them to your website is no small task, but it will be worth the effort. If you’re a business that works with suppliers, linking to one another’s websites can be a great way to boost your inbound links. Working with complementary products is another way to build-up your link base. For example, if you manufacture and sell coffee beans, you can build up relationships with local coffee mug sellers or cafes. Remember, you’re not the only one looking to increase their number of inbound links. Work collaboratively with other businesses in the area to boost your local SEO. Just make sure that the websites that link to your own are high-quality websites; otherwise, they may hurt your SEO.
Don’t forget the basics
While the above areas are all local SEO specific, you can’t forget the basics of on-page SEO. Making sure you’re conducting keyword research and implementing it into your title tags and meta descriptions won’t just help with your SEO in general, but will also improve your local SEO as well.
Let Snap Help with Your Local SEO
Local SEO can be a tricky field to navigate. If you’re in a competitive landscape, it can be difficult to stand out amongst the crowd. But that’s why we’re here. With over 15 years of experience helping companies large and small succeed in the digital landscape, we know that we can help your business increase it’s local SEO ranking. If you’d like to learn more about improving your local SEO give us a call today.