If you run any sort of business that depends on local customers, then local SEO is going to be very vital to your business. In today’s tech-savvy era, many consumers resort to a simple Google search to find a reputable business in their area, and if you’re not showing up in the top results, then you could be missing out on a lot of new business.
Creating a local SEO plan isn’t hard, and if you know which steps to take, you may be able to position yourself with better rankings than your competitors when implementing these six tips:
1. Have a Physical Address
It’s so important to have a physical address in the area you’re looking to optimize because this is what will show up with local related searches. For example, if someone were to search for a dentist in the San Deigo area, your website, along with your address information, could show up in the map results, which is the first thing you will see on the desktop and mobile results if your website is optimized correctly.
2. Utilize Google My Business
If you haven’t created a Google My Business account yet, then it’s important to do so. With this account, make sure your information is accurate, your location is owner verified and the specific city you’re targeting is mentioned on the landing page title. You will also want to make sure the primary categories match up with your product. This account is free and is extremely user-friendly.
3. Optimize Your Website
If you haven’t purchased a domain yet, then you will want to highly consider adding keyword-rich terms and your city inside your domain. For instance, if you did have a dentist office in the San Diego area, then it would be ideal to have the word “”dentist”” and the words “”San Diego”” somewhere within the URL.
In addition, make sure your website has your business name, phone number and address on each page of your website, so this way, when search engines crawl your website, it will be able to pick up this local information. Choosing the right domain name and creating the right template can be crucial to your SEO success.
4. Know How to Build Links
Don’t expect to build a website, sit back and watch hundreds of people hit your website every day. Backlinks from other websites are crucial to your SEO success, and if you don’t build them, you’re not going to look credible in the eyes of the search engine.
Now when it comes to building links, there are two things you can do: You can either hire a professional SEO firm or you can build the backlinks on your own, which if done right, can be very time consuming; however, it can reap large rewards. To give you some ideas, you can build links by reaching out to other local businesses, supporting local events or writing articles for neighboring businesses with a link back to your website.
5. Build Quality Content
Take a close look at your five competitors and see what they are doing to rank so high. There’s a good chance they will have good content, satisfying reviews from customers and an optimized page with some of the tips mentioned above.
If you want to rank locally, you have to understand you can’t post five pages and hope for the best. Search engines and visitors to your website like freshness, so it’s best to make it a habit of creating compelling guides that may draw potential customers to your website. The key here is to take existing content and make it 10 times better.
Using the dentist example again, you could write about the costs of a certain procedure or even the dangers of a certain product. Consider using the free Google Keyword Planner to find keywords people are searching for, or if you have a budget, highly consider keyword tools like Ahrefs.
6. Become an Authority
This point kind of coincides with the building links tip. You have to understand that there’s more to local SEO than Google as there are other large players in the game such as Yelp, TripAdvisor and more depending on your industry.
Research other directories and create listings to draw in new eyeballs and to build your authority since most of the time, Google sees these other listings as backlinks.
Don’t be intimidated by local SEO as it’s not that hard once you figure out how it’s done. Sure, while it can be time consuming, it can be your best friend if you know how to build your online brand properly.