What Is Local SEO and Why Is It Important for Your Business?
To run a business, you have to cover several aspects. To run a successful business, you need to think about even more factors. So, in addition to budgeting for various expenses and recruiting new employees, you need to think about time management, customer relationships, and marketing, among many other things. All of these have layers to them that you also need to pay attention to. For instance, marketing comes in countless forms, and you need to cover all from brochures, billboards, and TV ads to digital techniques like content marketing, social media marketing, and email marketing. One important part of online marketing is focusing on SEO, and more specifically, local SEO. But, what exactly is that and how can it benefit your business? Read on for some useful information.
Local SEO explained
First of all, if you’re not familiar with the term local SEO, let’s explain it. While there is no official definition for it, the concept is easy to understand. Local SEO entails the use of website optimization in order to rank higher for searches that include a particular location. Therefore, when someone types in their city in the search bar or their location is available to the search engine, the results are based in their area. For instance, someone might look up “florist in Sydney”, “car mechanic in London”, or “photographer in New York”. That way, they are able to find local businesses that can meet their needs. If you want to maximize your website traffic and attract a wider audience, you need to optimize for these kinds of searches.
The importance of local SEO
With that in mind, let’s go over the specific benefits your business can expect by implementing local SEO.
For one, local SEO provides you with a chance to increase the traffic your website sees. By optimizing your content for local audiences, you will not have to fight with global names in your industry. Your website will rank higher when optimized for a specific location and people looking for what you have to offer will be able to find you more easily, which will boost your click-through rate. If they open your website and see that you have what they need, your conversion rates will also go up.
Having your business appear high on search engine results pages will help you gain customers’ trust. People are more likely to opt for those websites that are among the top few results as they see these as more reliable and trustworthy. Additionally, this can result in your business’s reputation being more positive as people might also recommend you to other people after finding you online.
As a business, you constantly have to be in touch with what your competitors are doing. You need to know how they approach marketing as well, so check if any of them are relying on local SEO. If not, this is a great way to get ahead of your rivals, seeing as how your website will pop up first when someone looks up the product or service you offer in combination with your location. Furthermore, even if your competitors do use local SEO, by opting for a reliable company to handle your search engine optimization, you can rank higher than them.
On the other hand, you don’t have to compete with all other local businesses. There are surely some that complement what your company does, so you can form useful alliances. This can be very beneficial if you’re looking to cross-promote your products and service or have someone refer clients to you. Something else you can do is use coordinated marketing campaigns that would benefit both businesses.
Local SEO is also essential if you want to retain your customers. Individuals that find you after a quick search and have a positive experience with your website are more likely to return and become regulars. These types of customers will also recommend your company to their friends and family. To make the most of this opportunity, opting for an agency for local SEO is advisable as they will properly optimize your website so that it meets all your customers’ needs.
Professionals can also help you optimize your website for mobile and voice search, which is a necessity because most people like to look up products and services near them on their smartphones. By having a website that ranks high, you can also lower your advertisement expenses.
How to improve local SEO
Finally, let’s go over a few strategies that can help you boost your local SEO efforts.
Start by registering your business on Google My Business. If you still haven’t done this, make sure to add your company name, address, phone number, email address, work hours, and business category. You can also add a logo and images of your products and premises. When doing this, it’s vital to ensure all information is correct, as you don’t want to get penalized. Moreover, you also want business citations that can be found on your social media profiles, event listings, and other business directory sites to be accurate.
Another big factor for local SEO is the responsiveness of your website. As mentioned, many people like to perform searches on their smartphones and, if your website isn’t mobile-friendly, they will close it in no time and look for a better alternative. Additionally, it should also load fast, so you might have to compress images and remove some add-ons.
In case you don’t already have one, it’s high time to start a blog. Here, you can post authoritative content that will inform and entertain your local readers. Not only will you build a reputation for yourself this way, but you’ll also get a chance to include some local keywords and phrases that will attract an audience and help you rank higher.
Lastly, it’s necessary to keep an eye out for customer reviews. They affect your rank, so you need to know how to manage them. You want to ask customers to leave reviews and take some time to respond to them. Thank the positive ones and see how you can use the negative ones constructively.
As you can see, local SEO is crucial for the success of your business. Implement it as soon as possible to start seeing good results.