A website gives you the ability to reach out to the entire (online) world.
Local SEO, on the other hand, is concerned with improving your local search engine rankings.
In these times, getting found online by your local audience greatly increases your business’s chances of survival.
Here, we’ll define local SEO and point you to more in-depth resources to help you make your website more discoverable in your area.
What is Local SEO?
People used to turn to the Yellow Pages when they needed to find a specific product, service, or company in their area. People nowadays use Yahoo, Bing, and most commonly, Google and Google Maps instead of clunky books.
Consumers want to be able to find what they need quickly, whether it’s a restaurant or flower shop. People are increasingly able to get what they’re looking for directly from the search engine results page (SERP), without having to go to a website.
That said, if you want to improve your online visibility and Google ranking, you must align your website and local listings with Google’s methods.
This is referred to as local SEO.
Local SEO refers to a variety of strategies for getting your company’s website and listings to appear in local results for broader searches (such as Google’s 3-Pack).
Why Local SEO is important?
Just a moment, please. Let’s clear something up first: local SEO is a type of SEO.
Non-local SEO is the type of SEO you’re probably most familiar with. It entails optimizing your website’s backend as well as content for specific keywords and topics that your most likely customer would use to find you. It also has to do with the structure of your website, its load time, and its mobile friendliness.
Local SEO improves your SEO by optimizing content, your website, and offsite ranking factors such as your local listings for your location, so your company appears in local searches.
And, before you ask, yes, you will require both in order to be successful!
Why? Because you want your business to show up in search results regardless of the searcher’s intent. Local SEO improves your chances of showing up in searches with local intent. Furthermore, by using SEO on a regular basis, you’re increasing your chances of being found for searches that are specific to your products and services.
As a result, by combining the two strategies, you’ll be able to cover a wider range of searches and ensure that your company appears in relevant search results. Furthermore, a successful local SEO strategy is difficult to achieve without a solid SEO foundation.
How to do Local SEO?
You’ll need to tweak your Local SEO strategy to account for some local ranking factors if you want to perform well in local searches.
1. Perform local SEO keyword research
Local SEO keyword research is usually easier and more straightforward than keyword research for non-local SEO. While some cities and locations are more competitive than others, local keywords typically have a much smaller competitor pool than non-geographic keywords.
Using a simple formula, generate a list of seed keywords: [product or service] in [location]. Consider the following example:
- Coffee shop in Chennai
- Restaurant in Banglore
2. Run a competitive analysis
Once you’ve created a keyword, it’s time to put it to use. Enter competitor websites into a tool like SEMRush, Spyfu, or Ahrefs to see what keywords they rank for and conduct a competitive analysis. Then investigate your local competitors’ backlinks in SEO. Take note of where they’re mentioned in local resources, media outlets, and blogs.
3. Optimize for Google My Business
Google My Business listings, as you might expect, play a big part in local search. Google My Business assists search engines in verifying the legitimacy of your business so that they do not serve junk search results to their local search audience. You’ll be more likely to appear in local search results, such as Google Maps and the coveted local pack if you claim and optimize your profile on this platform.
Keep your information up to date by returning to your profile to update it if your hours or location change. Encourage your customers to leave online reviews of your business, and respond to all of them.
4. Optimize for Bing Places and Google Maps
We can generally assume that what ranks in Google will also rank in Bing when it comes to non-local SEO, and we can use Google as the gold standard. That isn’t the case with local SEO, where each search engine’s individual place listings have a significant impact on local listings (Google My Business and Bing Places).
Making sure you’re as thorough as possible in GMB is a big part of Google Maps optimization.
5. Audit and optimize your citations
One of the most important factors for local search engine results pages ranking is citation signals. Local SEO Citations are online mentions of your company that include the name, address, and phone number (or NAP) of your company.
To improve your citations for local SEO, you must first conduct a Local SEO audit. (If you want to automate things, look at the tools section below.)
6. Improve local on-page SEO
Optimize the on-page content of your website based on your local keyword research. Many of the same Local SEO best practices will apply, such as
- Optimize your homepage
- Optimize your local landing pages
- Add schema markup
- Improve internal linking
7. Local SEO best practises for Link-building
One of the most important ranking factors for local SEO is inbound links from other websites. While local citation listings help you get on the map (literally), they aren’t enough to build a complete backlink strategy. Local websites can build links in a variety of ways, including:
- Develop relationships with local bloggers and publishers and send them newsworthy content.
- Organize events that reflect the culture of the area while also giving back to it. Alternatively, you could contribute to local community events by sponsoring them.
- Join local chambers of commerce, business associations, and other community organisations, and look for ways to get your business listed on local resources.
8. Develop a local content strategy
Create local blogs, or add geo-specific content to your main blog. To improve your rankings for long-tail keywords and reinforce your relevance in each location, blog regularly and add other local content. Write about current events and news from your community and industry. Make materials for your local audience. Turn your content strategy into a link-building asset by creating a visitors’ guide, a local “Best Of” guide, or a local calendar. Make an effort to provide genuine value to each local audience.
9. Get reviews
Online reviews are a significant trust signal for Google, and they play a significant role in your rankings on vertical search engines like Trustpilot, Yelp, Trivago, Glassdoor, Priceline, and others, depending on your industry. You might not be able to choose which reviews appear in the SERPs — you can’t simply “turn off” a negative review so that searchers don’t see it. However, on an SEO level, you can control the narrative and provide a more comprehensive view to ensure that your satisfied customers speak loudest.
10. Make it Scalable
Staying scalable when your company is national (or global) and has multiple locations can be difficult. Assign regional employees to solicit and manage reviews and report any business changes where possible (e.g., store hours, etc.). Just make sure you give enough direction (specific review sites, for example) so that the information is consistent.
How to improve Local SEO?
Now let’s get to the most important part: how to improve your local search ranking and boost your local SEO strategy.
1. Claim and optimize your GMB listing
The most important part of your local SEO strategy is GMB or Google My Business. You can create free business listings with this Google tool. According to Moz, one of the most important factors Google considers when ranking businesses in organic local search and snack pack results is their social media presence.
2. Keep mobile in mind
Because smartphones have become such an integral part of our daily lives, it’s only natural that many people will use them to look for local information and businesses. Uberall commissioned a study, which revealed that 82 percent of respondents had used their mobile devices to search for “near me” items. This demonstrates how frequently people use their phones to conduct local searches.
3. Collect plenty of customer reviews
Your local search and snack pack ranking are also influenced by review signals. .
4. Focus on local link building
Among the top factors that influence your ranking in local searches and snack pack results are linked signals like linking domain authority and quantity. To improve your link profile, local SEO, like SEO for beginners, necessitates link building. The linking domains, on the other hand, should be more relevant to your destination.
5. Ensure NAP/citation consistency
In local search results, Moz discovered that Google considers citation signals such as citation volume and NAP (name, address, phone number) consistency. This means that, in addition to Google My Business, your information should be available on citation websites like Bing Maps, Yelp, and Facebook. Smaller listing directories should be avoided in favor of larger domain authority directories.
6. Make the most of social listening
Find out what people in your target location are saying about your company or in general using social listening. It could even be used to gather data on audience preferences and priorities. Then use these revelations to figure out how to improve your strategy or even your products and services.
Local SEO Checklist
In order to succeed in local search and stand out from the competition, your brand must:
- Take control of your Google My Business page by claiming it.
- Use local keywords that are specific to your area.
- Make a list of your company in relevant online directories.
- NAP on a regular basis.
- Create a positive review bank.
- Put Schema to the Test.
- Create a backlink profile.
- Produce unique, high-quality content.
- Make your site mobile-friendly.
- Metadata, images, and anchor text should all be optimised.
- Connect your social media accounts.
Local SEO Tools
Let’s look at some tools you can use to improve your ranking in the areas that matter the most now that we’ve covered how to optimize your business for local SEO.
1. Whitespark Local Citation Finder
Whitespark provides local listing management, makes recommendations for where your business should be listed, analyses your competition, and builds and monitors your citation growth for better local search rankings.
2. Screaming Frog
From an SEO standpoint, this desktop program crawls websites’ links, images, CSS, script, and apps. I’m wondering if you have any 404 errors. Are you concerned about the lack of meta descriptions or H1 tags? Screaming Frog offers a free version that analyses up to 500 URLs and a paid version that analyses an unlimited number of URLs for $200 per year.
3. Moz Local
Moz Local is less expensive than most of its competitors, and it will verify your business listing on Google and Facebook, as well as distribute it across the search ecosystem.
Backlink checking is made easier with Ahrefs, which is important because backlinks (links pointing to your website) are a good indicator of your website’s authority.
Ahrefs also provides competitor analysis, keyword research, and information on the anchor text used by other websites when linking back to your site.
BuzzStream makes it easier to get local backlinks by researching local influencers, tracking conversations, and reporting on your outreach campaigns, team performance, and link placements.
BrightLocal is a comprehensive SEO tool suite designed specifically for the marketing needs of small businesses.
The tool can assist you In generating and monitoring reviews on local websites, analyzing nearby competitors, and understanding your local search performance.
BrightLocal also provides client access and white-labeled reporting, making it an excellent choice for both agencies and brands.
When it comes down to it, if you want to make your local business more competitive online, local SEO can be your best friend.
Now that you understand how local SEO can benefit your company, you can better manage its online presence and expand your client base.
We understand that as a small business owner, your top priority is to set your company up for success so that you can grow it into a long-term success.
In the future, this will be a well-known brand. You can achieve this through local SEO efforts.
Your goal Is to grow your business to its full potential, and we’re here to help you get there.