How to improve your local SEO in 6 easy steps

improve your local seo results and gain additional organic search traffic to your website.

How to improve your local SEO in 6 easy steps

You’ve been working hard on your content marketing and you’re sticking to your clearly defined content strategy.  This has gradually increased the traffic to your website, but unfortunately most of the traffic seems to originate from outside your local target area!

As a small business your web marketing budget is limited and you don’t necessarily want to waste time and money on acquiring traffic you will have very little chance of converting.

To enhance your website performance you must improve your local SEO

Importance of Local SEO

 

Organic search is still by far the best way to drive visitors to your website, accounting for over 51% of all traffic. This is true for both Business to Business (B2B) and Business to Consumer (B2C) websites. Drilling further down into that figure, we’ll be able to deduce that 25% of all visits to business websites will be local people!

So as you can see, the importance of local SEO is paramount, not only due to traffic volume but also context. If you are a service based business, i.e. Plumber, Electrician or even digital marketing , there is a good chance that targeting visitors from your local area will help improve your chances of converting traffic because chances are they may be looking for someone local to them to do the work required.

Surveys have indicated that more than 80% of local businesses said SEO was their best channel for attracting customers.

 

Ensure contact details consistency

 

Your contact details or what is more commonly referred to as NAP (Name, Address and Phone Number) needs to be consistent across the internet.

The chances are, that in order to try and boost your profile, you have no doubt have registered on all Free Business Directories as possible. If you haven’t this can sometimes, depending on your type of business, be a good way to gain some exposure for your business.

Although links from these business directories no longer provide any real SEO value, they still my help to improve your business profile, by ensuring your business is visible everywhere potential clients may be searching.

Registering your business using Free Business Directory services like Scoot, Yelp, FreeIndex, thebusinessindex may be worthwhile

Do not

Use your primary email address

Use mobile phone numbers

Pay for any listings

Business Directory websites have been known to pass on your details to other third parties so you may potentially be increasing your profile but also exposing yourself to greater risk of spam and unsolicited contact.

Email Addresses

You may want to set up a general contact email address like

  • enquiries@somecompany.com
  • hello@somecompany.com
  • contact@somecompany.com

This should be shared mailbox and you should place spam filter rules and automation rules on to eliminate potentially high levels of spam mail you may experience.

Phone Numbers

Using a service like switchboardfree.co.uk is also a great way to create a number you can publicly share on your profiles which will help to control spam calls.

 

Taking time and effort to create and use central phone numbers and email addresses will help reduce not only unsolicited contact but also administration time and enable you to be consistent with your contact details across the internet.

 

Register on Google My Business

 

One of the most important Business Directories you should register on is Google My Business.

Using your Google Account, which incidentally you should already have because you have created a Google Analytics account? If not then these two items should be a priority!

Google have made the process of registering your account wonderfully easy, so go ahead and search for Google My Business and get started!

 

Make use of Structured Data Markup

 

This is where things may get a little tricky if you do not understand some HTML basics or not technically proficient with Web Development.

Google and other search engines have formulated certain standards to assist in the identification of important elements on web pages. The elements are known as Structured Data Markup.

Basically Schema Markup are code elements you place on your website to help search engines provide more informative results for users. You can use the Google Structured Data Markup Helper to help define the structured data required for your website.

If you are using WordPress there are a number of plugins that will assist you in doing so.

 

Use Schema markup for your Address Details

 

Any area you display your physical address details on your website you should use structured Data markup in your HTML to define your address, as illustrated below.

 

Use locally focused keywords in your content

 

Targeting the right keywords is extremely important for any business. Spend some time on researching and determining the most relevant keywords for your business, then add a local variation.

For example, if you’re targeting the keyword “new build plumbers”, add in your location to turn it into a local keyword (such as “new build plumbers in Wiltshire”).

You also need to ensure that you’re not overly focusing on local keywords. Add location-free head keywords as well to balance out the keyword distribution.

 

Build Citations

 

Citations are essentially mentions of your business’ information on other websites – even if there is no link to your website.

This is a little trickier to accomplish, and may actually require you to network with businesses in your local area and attempt to get a mention in one of their blogs or such like. There is no real formula for this other than just continually networking or maybe doing business with local firms.

Even a phone number by itself is counted as a citation. For example, your business might be listed on yellow pages but your website is not linked to it.

Citations are a key component of search engine algorithms. Businesses with a greater number of citations will probably rank higher than the businesses with fewer citations.

 

Build Reviews

 

Local reviews have a direct impact on local search rankings.

Obviously trying to get a few Google Reviews is a good, your focus should not only be limited to Google though. Venture out to get reviews on Yelp, local directories and local blogs.

Keeping in frequent contact with your customers, as defined in your customer contact strategy you could incentivize your customers and persuade them to leave reviews for you on your website.

Build Links

 

The last but not least tip, is to simply continue to build links to your site. Link building is a fundamental and integral component of an SEO strategy.

Local SEO relies on links from other local websites that are closely related to your business or location. Relevancy matters more than simply getting links from unrelated domains with a high domain rating.

You should endeavour to ask any of business partners, manufacturers, accountants, lawyers, suppliers etc to add a link to your website from theirs.

You can also search for any local websites and blogs that cover small businesses and connect with them and attempt to engage in a link exchange programme with them.

It is a good idea to contact these blogs individually and send them a personal pitch. Tell them what makes your business special. You can further entice them by arranging special discounts and deals for the blog’s readers.

Time for action

 

Using the tips and tricks outlined above you should be able to build your local SEO process and boost your business’ rankings and revenue.

It is important monitor and track your results of your SEO rankings, installing Google Analytics, monitoring results in Google My Business and share your results in the comments below!

Need help with your local SEO ?

Call 0843 289 4539

 

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Gary Woodfine

Helps businesses by improving their technical proficiencies and eliminating waste from the software development pipelines.

A unique background as business owner, marketing, software development and business development ensures that he can offer the optimum business consultancy services across a wide spectrum of business challenges.
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