Local SEO Tactics You Should Know

Written by: Jason Bayless | September 03, 2016
If a brick and mortar store’s success depends largely on location, and an online business’s success depends on search engine placement, a local business must depend on both in order to succeed. Choosing a shop or office to rent takes consideration, but now more than ever, local SEO tactics give an even bigger boost to business.
Whether you run a bakery, medical office, or a plumbing company, local customers are the lifeblood of your success. The idea behind local search engine optimization (SEO) deals with building a community of recognition and positive reputation.

6 Local SEO Tactics Every Business Owner Should Know

1 — Use location-specific keyword phrases. The majority of people who search for a company with the intent to visit its physical location include the town, city, state, or zip code when they search. These should appear in headings, title tags, alt text, meta description, and elsewhere in the content of your website. Maintain focus and avoid keyword stuffing completely.

2 — Claim your Google My Business page and fill it out properly. Keep keywords in mind as you write the long description. Always include a professional-quality photo, address and contact information, and customer reviews. Since Google is by far the most popular search engine on Earth, maintaining a professional presence here is necessary for local SEO power.

3 — Visit the top online review sites where consumers regularly post and make sure your company is represented. Use the exact same name, address, and phone number (NAP) format in every single place your company is listed online. These citations tell search engines your business is real. Discrepancies can damage local SEO efforts.

4 — Court reviews from satisfied customers and clients. Never reward or pay but instead encourage people who come into your shop to buy an item or use your services to visit particular online review sites like Yelp or Angie’s List to share their experience. This is part of the community-building mentioned above. These local reviews do more to convince others to give you business than any catchy come-ons you could make.

5 — Build local links to other businesses, organizations, and news sources. Old-fashioned backlinking strategies such as link exchanges now damage SEO more than help it. Current local SEO best practices involve creating worth so others will want to link to you.

Send press releases to local papers. Donate merchandise or services to a local competition or fundraiser. Run a market-specific or small business Meetup group or presentation at a local venue. These types of events will get local people sharing great things about your company on social media pages and other community-buiding spots.

6 — Check everything regularly. Local SEO, like all optimization procedures, is not a one-time, static pursuit. After properly researching and positioning location-specific keyword phrases on your website, there is still work to be done. Building a vast web of citations with proper NAP takes time. Becoming a household name in the nearby communities and beyond can take even longer. Constant monitoring of how your company looks on the internet and the reviews it gets makes sure the local SEO you get is a positive force.

Local SEO tactics focus on giving companies a boost in the esteem of the town, city, or state they do business in. Since consumers use the online world to research companies and to monitor recommendations from trusted sources like friends, family members, and market influencers, local SEO online means much more for ongoing success than posting a flyer in town.

Location still makes a huge difference in the potential success of any company, whether is is a clothing boutique, an electrician, or an attorney’s office. For real-world businesses that need to attract a clientele within driving distance, local SEO expands and improves their reach and ultimately their profits.