To begin doing local SEO you need to identify what the biggest problems are. You must begin with an audit. This is always the first step in making a profitable campaign or getting many visitors to your informative site. It is best to follow a step by step procedure that can tell you exactly what needs to be done. By using this approach you can make rapid gains in your site’s local SEO score. This is a guide for how to conduct a comprehensive local SEO audit.
On-Page Search Engine Optimization
This section is about the tactics you can employ to optimize a specific page on your site to get it higher in the search results. The things you can do range from improving the quality of your site’s content and making changes to the HTML code on your site. Let’s get more specific.
Duplicate Content with Local SEO
Search engines like Google want your site to have as mush unique content as possible. When a site just posts content that is already somewhere else on the internet, users don’t get additional value. It is necessary to make sure that your own site does not have any duplicate content. If you do have it, you will be unnecessarily harming your site’s rankings. There are sites like Copyscape that can help you determine if your site’s content has been posted before. If you intend to use the same content across multiple sites that you own, don’t fail to use the canonical tag. It tells the search engines the location of the original blog post. This lets you use the same content without it getting flagged by the search engines.
This is the data on your web page that lets Google know the topic of the page. You must make sure the title of your page and its other metadata headers have the keywords that you want to rank for. In the case of Local SEO, choose words for your location. Web surfers will see the metadata title tag when your site shows up in the search listings. Make your title tag less than 55 characters. Have the meta description be less than 155 characters.
In local SEO, you want your URLs to be in a friendly format where the search bots are concerned. If your site is difficult to navigate, it will count negatively against you in SEO.
Schema markup refers to the code you add to your whole website to help the search engine categorize your content. You need to choose schema markup that is easily understood by the indexing bot. That way it can be easily digested by it. If you are promoting your local restaurant, you can set your markup to let Google show your review ratings. The stars representing how well customers like your restaurant will appear right under your title. This could be of great assistance in bringing more attention to your site in the search results. Competitors who do not have a positive star rating showing will be less likely to get clicked. You can make changes to your sites schema markup by using Google’s webmaster tools.
It is important to pay attention to citations when doing local SEO. Citations are the part of your site that refer to your address, phone number, business name and more. Google gives higher rankings to local businesses that have greater amounts of citation information because it wants to promote companies that are accessible to their customers. It is important that the citations be consistent across your pages. Make sure the information is listed clearly and identically on each page where you feature it. Then put your business information in as many free directories as possible. You can post it in Google, Yelp, Superpages, Yellowpages.com, Superpages and CitySearch. Don’t forget to add a facebook and Google+ Page for your site. Having a social media presence that points back to your site helps your rankings.
Follow these steps to perform a local SEO Audit and watch your site rise up in the rankings.