A local SEO strategy is a must for businesses that want to appear in the local pack (a Google SERP feature that shows local business listings and maps) and on regular organic search results. Local SEO tactics can be different from those used for broader, national searches. But there are many strategies that can be applied to both types of searches.
As part of its local search algorithm, Google tries to show relevant results for each search. That includes a business’s location, products and services offered in a given area, and customer reviews about those offerings. These reviews can have a big impact on your business’s visibility, particularly in the map pack and the regular organic search results that follow it.
Getting found in local searches starts with optimizing a Google My Business profile. That’s a free tool that can help a business rank higher in local search results, and it can also increase clickthrough rates on a business’s website. It’s important to claim and update a Google My Business profile regularly to ensure that all of the business’s relevant information is represented on the site.
The next step in local search optimization is identifying the right keywords to target. Keyword research tools like AdWords and Keyword Planner can help a business identify useful keywords, but it’s just as important to consider the search intent behind each keyword. For example, if someone is searching for “gas boiler repair,” it’s likely they’re looking for an engineer that can fix their specific type of gas boiler.
Once a business has identified its target local keywords, it’s time to optimize the website for those terms. This can be done by making sure all relevant keywords are in the title tag, URL, meta description, and body of the website. It’s also a good idea to add product and service schema to the website, which enables search engines to better understand what each page is about.
It’s also important to encourage customers to leave positive reviews on Google and Facebook. In fact, Google’s search algorithm takes into account the prominence of reviews in a business’s local rankings. This means that a business with lots of five-star reviews will have a greater chance of appearing in the map pack than one with only four or five stars.
A local SEO strategy is a must for all businesses that want to be found in local search results. It’s especially vital for service providers like plumbers and painters, who usually operate within a given service area, and ecommerce and software-as-a-service companies that can be accessed from anywhere in the world. Having a solid local SEO strategy can lead to more website visits, more calls to the business, and ultimately more revenue. If you’re ready to get started, contact us today to see how we can help! Our team of experts can help you find the right keywords and implement them across your website, social media, and other marketing channels.