The Importance of Local Search Engine Optimization
What is Local SEO?
First things first, local SEO can be referred to as the process of optimizing your company’s online presence through relevant, local searches. What exactly does that mean? When a user turns to a search engine for a product or service in your city – for example, “Scottsdale advertising agency” – your goal should be to appear as one of the top search results. To do so, you need to be sure you’re checking off the following boxes:
- Claim and optimize your listing on Google My Business
- Get listed in local directories
- Use the same name, address and phone number everywhere
- Use social media to promote locally
- Create locally optimized content
- Optimize each page on your website for local keywords
- Build links through local companies
If you manage to hit each of these components in some way, shape or form, you’re bound to be successful in the world of local SEO.
Ready to get started? Read on as I quickly break down each of these tasks.
Google My Business
While it may sound silly, Google My Business is of the utmost importance. This platform is a simple, yet effective way for companies to manage their online presence across Google search and maps. According to Moz, “Google My Business is one of the top local ranking factors for both snack pack and organic results.” Whether you are starting a new company, or have an existing company, be sure to add it to Google My Business to improve your local SEO.
Local Directory Listings
Another quick task to complete is adding your business to local directories. There is a plethora of directories that would be willing to list your business, aiding in the presence of your company in search results. This task can be completed manually, or you can use a listings management tool, such as the one offered by SEMrush.
When adding your business to local directories, you may not receive links to your business. But they will boost your presence online, helping you reach your target audience. That being said, be on the lookout for duplicate listings, as these could hinder your local SEO performance. If you’re not comfortable completing this on your own, the BIG YAM digital marketing team is more than happy to handle your local SEO needs.
Consistency Is Key
As you begin to roll out your company’s information, you’ll want to double and triple check that you are using the same name, address and phone number across the board. This topic goes hand-in-hand with Google My Business and local directories. Consistency will help improve your local SEO, while errors could hurt you.
One of the most important pieces of local SEO is social media. Here at BIG YAM, we are known for using social media to promote businesses locally. Although this is just one of our capabilities, it is a big one. Social media profiles often rank highly in search results, so optimizing your profiles with local keywords can make a tremendous impact.
In addition to optimizing your profile, it is important to post about local events that are related to your business. Consumers searching for a local business will show interest in your company if you are using the right keywords and topics for these local events. By doing so, you are providing a sense of value and interest to your target audience.
Social media can be one of the more time-consuming local SEO strategies. You must remain active to keep customers interested and engaged. If you simply don’t have the time to focus on social media, our team of professionals would be more than happy to provide this marketing service. Our experience ranges from smaller organizations like SNEAKY BIG to larger companies like Cruise America.
Creating Locally Optimized Content
Content is key. You have probably heard this saying if you have ever tried to improve your local, or overall SEO. Content should be considered the bread and butter of your company’s local SEO efforts. Without high-value, locally optimized content, your company may struggle to appear in search results.
When it comes to creating your content, you will want to implement some sort of strategy. How many pages a month can you publish? How long will each piece be? What will your content cover? These are just a few of the questions you need to answer when creating your content plan. Now, just because you have created a plan doesn’t mean you’re going to succeed.
Local success is largely determined by what you write about and how you do so. When trying to rank locally, it is essential that you use local keywords in your content. Without these, search engines will struggle to nail down the location you are trying to target. In addition to general keyword usage, you should plan on writing about local events, issues, etc., just as you would with your social media content. By doing so, users are more likely to share your content and search engines are more likely to rank your business’s website.
As with social media, content must be an ongoing plan of attack. A larger content footprint is always a positive, so be sure to establish a content frequency that you know your business can maintain. Your local SEO can and will be successful if you create great content. In other words, if you have time for nothing else, focus on your content.
Optimize Your Pages for Local Keywords
Keywords are crucial. When writing content, it is important to use the right keywords at the right time. In addition to your content, the main pages of your website should be optimized for local search. Cramming local keywords into these pages will not help, but a natural flow of posts is sure to boost your presence in local search results.
There are several, successful strategies to adopt when optimizing each page for local keywords, so be sure to choose the one that makes the most sense for you and your business’s goals.
Building Local Links
If content is your #1 focus, then link building should be a close second. Gaining links from other, local businesses provides a sense of trust to your customers, as well as authority to search engines. The higher quality the link, the better chance you have to climb in the local search results. These links will go hand-in-glove with your content, so pay close attention to the accounts linking to you and to which page on your website they are linking.
Local SEO is a tough, but fun game. At BIG YAM, we make it our mission to serve each company we represent with a strong, local SEO presence. By doing so, our clients see more business locally, which typically turns into a larger footprint in their industry.
Need help? Contact our Scottsdale advertising agency today to learn more about our process and how we can help you improve your local search engine optimization.