Taking care of your local SEO will help your business rank well in Google’s local pack. Local results are ultra-competitive, so you need to make some improvements to impact your ranking.
Here are 6 simple actions you can take to boost your local SEO efforts in the short and long term.
Find relevant local keywords
As with a non-local SEO strategy, you need to find keywords that are relevant to your industry as well as your city or business area.
In most cases, it’s enough to make a list of keywords that people use to find your local business.
How to do your keyword research? Several online software allows you to find keywords like SEMRush, Keyword Tool or the Chrome extension Keywords Everywhere. If you have installed Google Search Console, you will also find interesting queries in “Performance”.
If you run campaigns on Google Ads, you can find new opportunities in Search Terms.
Optimize your website for local SEO
In order for Google to feature your business in local results, the query must have a relevant local flavour, as must your content. How do you add local flavour to your site?
- Add your business location (city, address) or service area in as many pages as possible.
- Create local content.
- Optimize your pages, especially the homepage and contact page, with relevant and popular local keywords. As for “regular SEO”, fill in these keywords in meta tags, page titles (H1, H2, H3…), your images, etc.
- Use structured data.
Create a Google My Business listing
An effective way to appear in local searches for your prospects and customers? The Google My Business listing. A powerful tool in your local referencing strategy, the Google My Business listing allows you to quickly display up-to-date information to those who are looking for businesses similar to yours on the Google search engine and in Google Maps.
Google My Business helps you ensure your business’ presence in local search results, which are displayed in a variety of ways on Google Maps and in Google search. These results are customized to specific geographic areas and help users find nearby businesses. Learn how Google ranks local results.
You can present different information:
- Schedule (regular schedule, holiday schedule, summer schedule, etc.)
- Street address
- Phone number
- Photos or videos
- Rebate or bargain
Customers can leave reviews and you can interact with them. Don’t hesitate to ask your customers to leave a review.
It is also an excellent tool for voice search.
Have your company name and contact information updated everywhere on the web
Up-to-date contact information is essential to optimize your local referencing. Called NAP (Name, Address, Phone), this information must be identical everywhere it appears.
Have you moved? Has your business changed its name or phone number? Check these details on the web. Google relies on this data to validate your information.
Monitor your citations and, if you find any inconsistencies, contact the site owners. Then ask them to correct the error.
Obtain links from relevant local players or partners
Again, as in a classic SEO strategy, you need to have relevant backlinks to establish your authority and credibility with search engines. In local SEO, the most relevant is to get links from partners and industry players located in the same area as you. As an example, we can mention:
- Local business websites
- Yelp and similar directories
- Local media
- Chambers of Commerce
One of the fastest and most effective ways to get inbound links is to look for broken links. On a relevant site, look for a broken link that you could replace with one of your own. Report it to the owner and offer to replace it with your link.
Social media can also serve as an extension to your website. The information is complementary to what is already online and, depending on your strategy, the content will be different and more related to your target audience. Moreover, Google uses the information from these platforms to get an idea about your business. And it is also a good way to take advantage of their reach to be discovered.
On LinkedIn, keyword optimization is increasingly used to stand out in search engines for example.
As far as YouTube is concerned, the power of the platform regarding discoverability is no longer in question.
Instagram is a slightly younger platform, where visual content (photos and videos) is paramount. Focus on authenticity and optimize your hashtags to grow your follower base.
As for Facebook, the possibilities are endless. Remember that the platform does not like actions that force users to leave. So avoid video links to YouTube for example.
Launch local advertising campaigns
You can create geolocalized advertising campaigns on Google’s search network, Maps, YouTube, the banner ad network or on Facebook by localizing your target.
While organic referencing efforts take time to bear fruit, you can opt for advertising to position yourself more quickly. Be careful, here again, the relevance is important. Make sure you have a properly built website so that your investment is not in vain. For example, you can use local ads to position each of your branches.
You now have all the cards in hand to optimize your local referencing!