What our Professional SEO Company is Doing Differently

How to Build a Local SEO Strategy

Knowing how to Build a local SEO strategy is one of the essential parts of growing your Local business. Read out Local SEO strategy guide.

When you’re running a local business, trying to bring in new customers can feel impossible. How do you get your small business noticed in a sea of enormous companies and billions of websites? One great option for bringing in new customers is focusing on local search engine optimisation.

A strong local SEO strategy can take your local business to the next level and expand. And become more profitable by bringing in new customers that find you and at the same time building your reputation and brand. 

Read on to learn more about local SEO and how you can improve your business’s search engine rankings. With simple changes and some time or an affordable SEO budget.

What Is Local SEO Marketing?

Before we dive into how you can improve your local SEO strategy, let’s talk about what it is. Search engine optimization is the process of tweaking your website to help it rank better in search engine results. This involves optimising your web pages for specific keywords your target audience are using when searching for businesses like yours or products and services you offer. We call this on page SEO. And by building a content marketing plan and by building backlinks to your site from high quality and relevant sites. Which we call off page SEO.

Local SEO works on improving your search engine rankings among your local market rather than trying to make a splash in the wide world of the internet. You can focus on your specific geographic area, which is where all your business is concentrated anyway. This can get you closer to the top of the rankings and be a lot easier and more effective than pursuing a global or national SEO strategy.

Why Is Local Search Optimisation Important?

As of this writing, there are more than 1.8 billion websites on the internet, and that number is always rising. To put that in perspective, if you visited one website every second of every day, it would take you more than fifty-seven years to see them all. SEO can help you get your website noticed in this vast sea that is the internet. 

Local SEO helps you to hone in on your local market and find more success with your specific customer base. You don’t need to be at the top of the search engine rankings in Thailand if you’re operating a business out of Newcastle. With local SEO, you can become a bigger fish in a smaller and more relevant pond. 

How to Build a Local SEO Strategy

Now you know why it is important to take advantage of a local SEO strategy. Read on to learn how to get started and the simple ways you can start getting your website in front of your local community and driving traffic to your website.

Local Keyword Research

Whenever you’re trying to improve your SEO, one of the first things you should focus on is your keywords. Keywords are words and phrases customers may search, such as “flower shop near me” or “best place to get a smoothie.” The better your site matches a keyword search, the more likely Google is to list your page at the top of the results.

Whenever you create new content for your website – a new page, blog post, product page, etc. – make sure you research related keywords that your target audience would use to find what you are offering. Look for keywords with a relatively high search volume.

You can do this with our keyword research tool with our (search engine rank tracker Tool), and create your content around these keywords thinking about the intent of the person searching and what they are looking for from the search. This way, when someone searches for that keyword, your site will be one of the most relevant results.

On-Page SEO For Local Businesses

On-page SEO is Key to all search engine optimisation. Once you have carried out keyword research and found keywords your target audience are using to find what you are offering, you can optimise your content for these keywords. Making sure it is natural and does not take away from the reading experience. Plan your content around what the consumer wants out of their search. For local businesses, you should incorporate your target location in your keywords.

Here is how to do it.

Optimise Your Title Tags 

When you’re building your website, you’ll notice that you can add a few tags to your site pages. Title tags are essential to your on-page SEO. They let the search engine and the consumers searching know what your page is about. You need to make sure your title tags are working for you to bring in new customers.

Your title tags will show up in the results and why it is vital to get these right.

(Notice the keywords in the title tag in blue, and the keywords are bolded in the grey meta description below the title tag.)

Optimise Your Title Tags 

Make sure to add your primary keywords and describe what your web page offers. You need it to stand out from the other results and entice consumers to click on your title tag in the results over your competition. And to let google know what your page is about.

Optimise Meta Descriptions

One overlooked area of many websites is the meta descriptions. As the name suggests, these descriptions appear as the small grey text under the title link in Google search results. A meta description is another chance for you to entice consumers to click on your link in the search results and another chance for you to let Google know what your page is all about.

Your meta description should be short (155 characters is recommended), clear, and enticing. It needs to let potential customers know what you do and why they should click the link to find out more.

Remember, for local SEO, include your target location in your meta description and title tags.

To learn more about on-page SEO on our free SEO learning hub. Or, if you would like us to take care of it for you, we offer one-off, on-page SEO packages.

Focus on the Map Pack

The first thing you need to know about is the map pack when it comes to optimising for  local SEO. The map pack is the first three listings Google displays at the top of a search results page for a business. These listings are shown on a local map and have their basic information listed for customers.

Google’s Map Pack has its algorithm for ranking businesses, so you need to be focused on those rules in addition to the traditional SEO rules. Focusing on things like NAPs or business citations (more on that later) can help you break into this list. But keep in mind that the map pack results will change with every search since it’s mainly based on where the customer is when they run the search.

Check Your GMB Page

Your Google My Business page is one of the best tools you have at your disposal when you’re working on improving your local SEO. This page is your business’s profile on Google, and it contains all your basic information. In addition to your NAPs (Name, Address and Phone number), it may include your business hours, a link to your website, your reviews, and even build you a website with the information you add. You should regularly post information about your business here and add photos.

You can add the areas you service and the services you offer. Doing this will help google understand what you offer and where. Google will also show you in the map pac for keywords on your site.

You must make sure your GMB page stays up to date. Out-of-date information could lose your spot in the map pack, as well as dropping your rankings. Make it a point to check in on your GMB page every few months, updating it as needed.

Ask for Reviews

One of the factors Google looks at when determining your search engine rankings is your business reviews. They’re more likely to direct a business with good reviews than one with bad or no reviews for obvious reasons. Don’t be afraid to ask your customers to leave Google reviews for you to help improve your SEO.

Put a CTA at the end of your emails, blog posts, and social media posts, asking readers to leave you a review on Google. You may also want to ask satisfied customers at your brick-and-mortar store to leave a review. Try to give customers a link and some basic directions about leaving these reviews, so you make it as simple as possible for them. 

Whenever you collect a review make sure to reply to the user. This shows google you are engaged with the users.

Build Local Business Citations

Consistent citations and NAPs are crucial ranking factors in local SEO. Add your business to relevant and trusted citation platforms. You can do this yourself, or you can outsource your citation building and management. You can read more about our local SEO citation building services here.

Focus on Your Local Business citations

Focusing on your local business citations is one of the best ways to improve your local SEO. Business citation platforms show your name, address, and phone number listings (NAPs) can have a massive impact on whether your business makes it into the map pack we talked about, as well as your rankings in the organic results. Primarily, Google wants to see that you have your NAPs listed and that they’re consistent across all platforms.

Make sure your address and phone number are posted on your website, along with your business hours. Also, check that your Google My Business page and any social media profiles have updated contact information. It’s also a good idea to check your business name and look for any listing you have and check if all the information is correct and matches your google my business page to make sure that information is up to date, too.

Keep Things Consistent

We mentioned earlier that NAPs are essential on your GMB page and your site, but they must be consistent everywhere. Google ranks businesses with consistent contact information more highly, and it’s easy to see why. If you have three different phone numbers listed across five different sites, how does Google know they provide their customers with reliable information?

Google your business name from time to time and see how many sites it pops upon. Double-check your listings on all these sites and make sure your contact information is up to date. If it isn’t, edit the listing yourself if you can, or reach out to the site administrators to update it for you.

Build Good Internal Backlink Structure

Link to your content when it adds value to your content and visitors’ experience. This helps you offer your visitors an option to access more useful information. Google wants to help people find the information they are looking for.. Alway link to help pages if it will add value to the visitor. Make sure it is related to the page.

This is where content marketing comes into play

Regularly Posting New Articles To Your Blog

Regularly writing blog posts helps you offer more information about your given field and what you offer. You can then link back to your site’s important and relevant pages. Will show google you are a good option in the results for your keywords and industry. 

Each blog post is also an excellent opportunity to add keywords or phrases that you can get found for—Consumers research online before buying. So writing blog articles that answer the questions they are searching for is a great way to bring new consumers to your business and build trust in your business. If you are not confident in blog writing, you can use a blog management service to research target keywords and write articles for your blog.

Each blog article is a new doorway customers can come through to your business for years to come and can boost your whole site rankings.

Create Custom Content Marketing plan

If you run a business with multiple locations, you’ll need to tailor your local SEO for each one. Remember, the point of local SEO is to limit the geographic scope of your SEO efforts. If you’re generating the same content for locations in Leeds, London, and Liverpool, you’re losing the advantages of local SEO. And google will punish you for duplicate content. This is lazy and many companies were hit by google update when they stopped this. 

Good quality content that offers the visitor value will make all the difference in your rankings and conversion rates.

Try to generate at least some custom content unique to each of your business’s locations. Focus on local trends; use your target location in your keywords. This kind of customisation will centre your SEO efforts and help each of these locations improve their local rankings.

We offer content marketing services you can find out more here.

Keep Content Readable

Whenever you create content, you want to make sure it’s accessible to your customers. No one wants to stare down a giant wall of rambling text, so you must make sure you break up your content. This will make your website more appealing, in doing so, improving your SEO.

Also, make sure you keep your vocabulary clean and simple, avoiding overwrought phrasing or complicated diction. Customers don’t want to have to keep a thesaurus open while they read your blog post. Aim to keep all site content to a grade nine reading level or below not to 

scare off your readers.

Remember people are browsing your website not studying it.

Link to Reputable Sites 

Another primary factor Google looks at is whether your website has links to other reputable websites. Suppose your content links to replicable and high ranking web pages. It tells Google that you are offering visitors great information. There’s some truth in “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know”. 

Make sure you link to reputable, non-competitor websites throughout your website, back up statistics with links to reliable studies and link to related articles your customers might enjoy. Not only will this boost your local SEO, but it will also provide your customers with a better content experience.

Build Quality Backlinks

Google sees backlinks as an endorsement or a vote to determine which websites are relevant and which ones aren’t. The higher the quality or the website, i.e., the higher the DA (domain authority) score the backlink comes from, the more the vote is worth in the eyes of Google. So build quality backlinks over quantity. It will make a big difference to your SEO campaigns.

Backlinks are the most significant ranking factor, and as we can see, they always will be.

Make sure your backlink comes from reputable sites. Not all backlinks are equal. Gone are the days where all backlinks are good backlinks.

Use Local Link Building

When focusing on local SEO, it’s a good idea to spend some effort on local link building. As we mentioned, linking to reputable outside sources can improve your overall SEO. Linking to other high DA sources from your area can also help your rankings. You can link to your local chamber of commerce local news articles. Linking to relevant local resources can centre your business in your community and improve your reputation. It also establishes you as a leader in your business community and lets site visitors know that you’re active and engaged in your local economy.

You can also speak to local businesses you know and use like suppliers and ask them for a backlink from their website. You can offer to write them a review for their site and add a link to your site. Or ask if you can write a guest post on their business blog.

Embed a Google Map

One great way to emphasise Google’s algorithms that you’re a local business is to embed a Google map on your website. For one thing, this will let the search engine know that you operate out of a particular area. But it can also be helpful for any potential customers who are trying to find your business.

To embed a Google map on your site, start by visiting Google Maps and finding your business. If you click the dropdown menu in the top left corner of the screen, you’ll see an option to “Share or embed map.” Copy the embed code that appears and add it to your contact or directions page on your website.

On-Page SEO For Local Businesses

On-page SEO is Key to all search engine optimisation. Once you have carried out keyword research and found keywords your target audience are using to find what you are offering, you can optimise your content for these keywords. Making sure it is natural and does not take away from the reading experience. Plan your content around what the consumer wants out of their search. For local businesses, you should incorporate your target location in your keywords.

Here is how to do it.

Improve Your Local SEO Strategy

Focus on getting your keyword game on point. Local SEO can be a great way to improve your search engine rankings and put your business ahead of your local target audience, looking for what you offer. It’s also a good idea to make sure you have consistent contact information across all sites and other citation platforms and online directories. And that your content, meta descriptions and title tags are optimised for your keywords.

If you’d like help improving your local SEO strategy, check out the rest of our site at SEOi. We make SEO simple, affordable, and accessible to all with our free SEO platform. Sign up for free today and start growing your business the smart way.