When talking about local SEO, it is not limited to finding your business in your vicinity, but also making your business visible to your market within the local search results page (SERP). However, making your business visible to online search results is not enough. It must be on page one to maximize local queries.
Local SEO at a Glance
Local SEO is the implementation of different strategies to make your business visible in the search engine results page. Over the years, local SEO is made mobile-ready as the number of searches for local businesses comes from mobile platforms. Therefore, getting you a mobile-friendly website is a great way to catch up with Mobilegeddon.
Improving Your Website Visibility
SEO always changes. The prominent strategies 5 years ago may no longer be as useful today. Therefore, keeping yourself updated with Google’s algorithms will help you grow your business in the long run. To maximize your time spent in boosting your online presence, you need to know the solid strategies to implement and stay updated.
Title and Meta Description Tags
Meta tags are essential elements to attract visitors to your website as these contain the description of the page that you want to optimize. Always remember that meta titles and descriptions are to be created according to the Google guidelines.
Also, titles and descriptions should be written creatively and uniquely to stand out amidst a cloud of competitors. The length of the title ranges from 30 to 65 characters, while a description is at 30 – 156 characters. Lastly, do not waste space with nonsense information. Include your business’ city address and targeted keyword in your meta tags.
Google My Business
Another way to optimize online exposure is to claim your Google My Business page, which is, of course, free. If you are wise enough to have optimized your website, you can be included on the three-pack list. Optimizing it includes indicating your business name, address, business hours, phone number, modes of payment, your shop’s photos, logo, a little description about the company, and other relevant information about your business.
NAP (Name, Address, Phone Numbers)
One way to be seen within the local search results page is to ensure that your full name, address, and phone number can be seen on every page of your website. These details (added with shop hours, if possible) must be the same all throughout and across various channels.
Local Business Reviews
Local reviews are also important for your business to thrive and become known. It has a direct impact on your local search rankings as well. Also, this is another form of marketing your business and your products.
Local Link Building and Online Directories
According to a study conducted by Google, there are 4 out of 5 people who do local searches through search engines, making it the most viable marketing activity a local business should have. Claiming your Google My Business page or putting your name, address, and phone number across all of your websites are still not enough to make your business hit the most of your target market.
Link building and enlisting in top online directories like Merchant Circle, Yelp, Better Business Bureau, and many others must be included in one of your strategies. Aside from that, putting your name, address, and phone number (NAP) on data aggregators like Facebook, Bing Local, Yellow Pages, and others can optimize your website traffic and online presence as well.
Structured Data Markup (Schema Markup)
The “Schema Markup” or “schema.org markup” is another way of beating online clutter and making your business more visible compared with your competitors. This can be added to your website’s code for easier identification of the information about your products, local reviews, and the services you offer.
Google is really encouraging businesses to use the structured data markup for them to easily determine what your content is all about. It even offers businesses a Structured Data Testing Tool to test if their markup is correctly applied.
Getting Ahead of the Competition
As local SEO is getting more and more competitive over the years, ads are also taking too much space on almost all web pages to compensate the amount of money spent in optimizing traffic amidst the competition. So, to keep your business more visible and to stay visible, you need to focus on your priorities – whether to earn from ads or to earn from optimization.