The goal of every local business is to get customers in the door and get them spending money. In the past, this goal was often achieved through methods like advertising, getting a listing in the local yellow pages, or even just through word of mouth. While some of these methods still apply, organic customer searches using the phone directory have almost entirely been replaced with organic customer searches using the Internet. To adapt to this new normal, businesses need a robust local SEO strategy.
What Is Local SEO?
If you have ever performed an Internet search for a product, service or business, you’ve likely noticed that local businesses appear near the top of the first page of results. This is an intentional design decision by the major search engines (Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc.). Search engines are optimized to help you find the most relevant information possible. To this end, local businesses and local business directories are at the top of results.
For every major search engine, it’s also possible to restrict all results to only local entities. Appropriately, this is called a local search.
Local search engine optimization (SEO) is a strategy that uses a variety of proven techniques to improve the ranking of your business in local results and local searches. This is a multifaceted strategy that involves improving the general design of your web page, securing your place on various local business listings — including Google business listings — building links to and from other local businesses, tracking the conversion rate of website visits, and more.
What Are the Benefits of a Good Local Search Engine Optimization Strategy?
The primary benefit of good local SEO is a higher conversion rate for local search results. Studies show that 96% of all PC users use local searches to find local goods or services. In fact, almost 50% of all Google searches are local searches.
As for mobile searches, roughly 50% of all mobile searchers look for business contact information. Almost 80% of those searches then result in an offline purchase.
Ensuring your business ranks highly in local searches and your website provides the type of comprehensive information searchers are looking for is one of the most surefire ways to convert a website visit into a sale. Despite this, just 44% of all businesses have claimed their Google My Business listing — which is free and greatly improves the ranking of a business in local Google searches.
Furthermore, online directories are considered highly trusted by most searchers. Some online directories have a conversion rate as high as 50% — well above the average for other types of advertising.
How Can We Improve the Local SEO of Your Business?
Local search engine optimization is a comprehensive strategy that needs to be customized to your business. No single technique — no matter how valuable — is enough on its own. And proven techniques for one business may be useless for yours and vice versa. Our experts will work with you to build a custom strategy that combines some or all of the following strategies:
- Website Design – We’ll help you build a website that’s both engaging and highly informative. By carefully including local keywords, we can ensure that search engines recognize the areas you serve.
- Google Business Listings – If you don’t have one yet, we’ll claim yours. And if you do, we’ll optimize it to provide the information potential customers most want to see.
- Map Listings – Map listings include your business in popular online map services. A Google Map listing is by far the most valuable, linking to your business listing and showing the location of your business when it appears in a Google search. We’ll make sure your business appears in all major map listings.
- Links and Backlinks – Being linked to and from other quality local businesses greatly increases the ranking of your business in search results. We have the contacts and knowledge to get you those high-quality links.
- Business Listings – As previously noted, being included in a local business listing offers excellent conversion rates. We’ll get you included in as many as possible.
- Statistical Tracking – Optimizing your ranking isn’t a one-time activity. It requires regularly adjusting strategy to adapt to the constantly changing marketplace. We use advanced analysis of statistical results to inform future changes in our strategy.