Everything you need to know about Local SEO Services
Local SEO Services entail having your website show in search results when consumers are searching for a local business. In many instances, the results for local searches include maps, reviews, Google posts, photos and more. Local SEO strategies include tasks such as: creation of local citations, being listed in local directories, back links from authoritative local websites, optimizing your Google My Business account, GEOtagging photos and more.
Many SEO Agencies are now focusing much more on having their clients “local listing” show up in the local pack than traditional SEO because the ROI can be achieved sooner than nation-wide rankings. Industries such as real estate have seen major shifts in their lead funnels; moving from traditional SEO to local SEO.
In many instances, the localized search results will show on a map with links to read reviews, view photos or menus, and directly call the business or visit the website. With the ever-growing popularity of localized search, Google is rolling out new options daily such as setting appointments or reviewing a menu directly within a Google My Business listing.
SEO Services continue to soar in global popularity because of the tremendous return on investment it provides. Having your business come up on page one of Google, when someone searches for your industry, is a no brainier for local business. If you are a bricks and mortar company, with a storefront and an address, Local SEO should be your first priority.
Social Media + Local Web Presence
While social media integration is always of paramount importance, establishing a strong local presence is equally as important. With over 50% of global companies with sites now optimized for mobile readiness and viewing, it is essential for any sites to have a strong mobile, social media, and online presence.
Still, the focus and spotlight seems to revolve around local SEO and securing a strong presence at the grassroots level. Not only does this put a face on your brand, it also allows your company to effectively market its products and services to core, niche, and especially geo-specific audiences. As a full service SEO agency, we will give some insight on how to get your Local SEO started.
What Does Local SEO Do For You?
Google processes over 100 BILLION searches per month with its search engine. Many of those users are searching for someone to do business with. Whether you have a restaurant looking for lunch customers or you are selling inflatables for a birthday party, if you are not found when your customers search for your product or service, you are missing business from local customers. With everyone using their mobile devices for just about everything, it is not a shock that Google has become the source for local information.
It is hard to imagine a bricks and mortar business, where their customers come from visiting their storefront or selling directly to the public, not having a presence on Google local.
Proof Local Search Rankings Matter
Today, more than ever, small businesses rely on local search engine optimization to put their business in front of potential customers. Ranking in Google Maps doesn’t necessarily mean more website traffic, but it does mean more walk-in traffic, phone calls, and overall visibility.
Google has stated that almost 50% of all internet searches are looking for localized information. Whether that be a local restaurant, real estate agent, storefront or simply local information such as showtimes or statistical information.
- 72 percent of consumers who did a local search ended up at a bricks and mortar business within five miles of their location. (Wordstream, 2016)
- 30 percent of searches completed on mobile devices are related to a location. (Google)
- 28 percent of searches for a product or service nearby result in a purchase. (Google)
- Local, mobile searches direct over 50% of smartphone users to visit stores within one day of their search. (Google)
- Location-based searches make up almost ⅓ of all searches on mobile devices. (The SEM Post)
Google Optimization for Local Businesses
Local Google Maps Optimization is extremely critical for bricks and mortar style business. The real estate industry has seen a dramatic shift toward local SEO. Ranking in the Map Pack of Google can bring additional leads to your existing real estate SEO campaign. Read our Guide to Local SEO for Real Estate for more information.
More and more people are using their cell phones or desktop computer to search Google to find local businesses around them. Local SEO is quite different than traditional SEO Services in that Local SEO results show in a “special place” in a Google search and different aspects of your website dictate if you will show up or not.
Phone books are a thing of the past. Today, people use their mobile device for finding local businesses. Whether searching for Dry Cleaners or Best Hamburger, having your business show up when a user searches for your type of business creates walk in traffic and has a powerful addition to the bottom line of any bricks and mortar business.
Local SEO agencies such as One Click SEO will not only get your business on the critical websites that are responsible for ranking within the Map Pack, but we can facilitate reviews, citations, schema and more to ensure that your business ranks when your business type is put in a search engine.
Steps in Local SEO
Local SEO is achieved differently that traditional search engine optimization. Where traditional SEO starts with a SEO friendly web design coupled with high quality backlinks and a content marketing strategy, local SEO is derived from Citations on sites that rank and display local businesses.
An example of citation websites would be Yelp or Yellow Pages. When these websites have you listed in their directory, with consistent business information you begin to rank for Local SEO. In addition, positive reviews on these sites boost your rankings.
It is extremely critical that your NAP — Name – Address – Phone Number be consistent with every Citation website in order for Google to recognize that every site is referring to the same business.
Any Local SEO campaign will start with at least rudimentary keyword research. Keyword research will provide critical insight on the words, phrases, and terms that should be included in your copy. Don’t Keyword Stuff! Keyword stuffing is an old and antiquated SEO technique that can negatively affect your search engine optimization efforts. It is best to use your keyword research to ensure you cover all your topics completely and for latent keyword information. As in any copy-writing, you should write for the reader, not for search engines.
The beginning step in a Local SEO campaign is the optimization of your Google My Business listing. We ensure that your categories are strategically chosen, and a unique business description is created. The way your business is referred to in your Google listing should be exactly what you are branding referrers to, as well as you address and phone number. Your NAP in Google My Business becomes the gold standard for the Name, Address and Phone Number of each specific location.
Local Directories and Citations
One Click SEO will submit your business listing to the main must-have local citations and big data aggregators. Next is submission to the large aggregators like Infogroup and Acxiom as well as creation of business listings on the top 20 best business listing sites. Check out our the definitive list of SEO citation websites. From there, we submit your GMB listing directly to the citation websites with a consistent description of your business as well as your website link and correct NAP (Name, Address and Phone Number) so Google correlates every page back to your business.
Having reviews on your business on these critical Citation Websites is crucial for ranking in a highly competitive industry. Included in your local digital marketing campaign will be a process for acquiring legitimate reviews.
Google Posts and Events
Google My Business allows the ability to post temporary posts and dated events to be as current as possible and provide relative, timely and quality information for the searcher. It is important to have many unique photos when optimizing your GMB listing also.
Higher Level Local SEO Tactics
Above are the basics of a local SEO campaign. The top local SEO agencies will go much further in building out your local presence. Additional local strategies include:
- Creating hundreds of Google Map Directions
- Embedding Google Maps on various online sources
- Creating a Google Stack. A Google Stack is utilizing Google’s online tools and building out keyword rich content and linking between the respective Google URLs. Google Tools include:
- Google Drive
- Google Sheets
- Google Slides
- Google Docs
- Google Sites
- Creating back-links to Google Maps URL, Google Posts, Google Reviews and Google Stacks
- Geo coding photos
- Creating back-links to high-profile citation accounts and their reviews
- Having ongoing local SEO implemented
Ongoing Local SEO encompasses additional submissions as well as reviews and on-page customization of your website for ranking as well as external link building.
Depending on the level of competition, all of the above-mentioned strategies may not be implemented. Each unique local market and business niche will dictate the level of competition and ultimately your SEO pricing. As a frame of reference, we have priced out New Orleans Local SEO.
Anyone with a business storefront, whether needing New Orleans SEO or anywhere in North America, to grow your business buy expanding your online presence specifically to your customers in your area, should be implementing some sort of Local SEO as part of their digital marketing strategy.