Local SEO is one of the many ways ways for your business to show up on Google, Bing, Yahoo and other engines. You can purchase positions using Pay Per Click (PPC) ads or Google Adwords, you can create powerful backlinks from relevant sites with high domain authority. You can delivery value to those searching, earning their trust and attention.
Google uses content to determines that you are truly relevant to a specific search term from your website or blog and ranks you in the organic or unpaid search results.
Th goal of Local Search Optimization is to get your business listed in what we call the Local Pack. These are the top three to ten local listings that show up within a radius of your business location when you incorporate Local SEO best practices.
If your business is properly optimized for local search, this adds value to your business for organic rankings. If you are targeting customers on a national or global basis, the same actions you take to be ranked locally are needed for a national presence. These include Google My Business Listing, Proper Name, Address, Phone (NAP) on all local directories and engines, good keyword density in your on-page copy, and link building with high quality website backlinks.
This is part of their evaluation of your relevance. You will rank better than other local websites that are not listed in local directories or other search engines. If you are ranking high locally, this adds to your credibility and relevance, resulting in higher rankings.
Local SEO tasks are a fraction of the cost of a national SEO campaign. Many of the same tasks required at the start of a global or national SEO campaign will be completed as part of a local search effort. If your desire is to be nationally ranked in search engine results, you can get a good start by applying SEO for Growth strategies for local search. This will reduce the work required (and therefore the cost) of a national SEO campaign. Keep in mind that Local SEO or any SEO effort should not consist of tricks or tactics to get the search engines to believe you are relevant. Good SEO is based utimately on giving your ideal customer content, information, or education that exactly matches the purpose of their local search.
There are a lot of elements that contribute to your domain authority. These include having quality backlinks, your social profiles, positive reviews and more. By using local listing search engines and directories, you are increasing your total online presence and therefore your overall domain authority, a key component of Google rankings.
In today’s world of search, it is vital to have great on-page content. As part of your local search optimization strategy, a good SEO expert will report and optimize on-page content so that it contains the right density and placement of keywords, metadata or schema, and written content.
Google wants to see that your business is valued by its customers. Positive reviews on Google and other sites and directories will not only bring you favor with new customers, Google will see that others value your business and will reward you with higher rankings. More importantly, good rankings significantly boost conversions. People are more likely to click through to a website that has better reviews than the competition.
If you are considering SEO to grow your business, consider beginning with a low cost Local SEO effort. In the meantime, we suggest running a scan here to see how you are listed across 70 search engines and directories. No worries, it is free and you will not be hounded with sales calls!
Finally, don’t expect results for at least 3 months and the effort to optimize your local SEO should be a continuous effort to constantly improve your online rankings. Google’s own recommendation is 3 to 6 months.