Managing SEO for a Local Business
Local SEO is the positioning of a website on search engines for a specific area. Unlike traditional SEO, whose intent is to position a site at a national or international level (as for e-commerce sites ), with Local SEO, it is aimed at obtaining organic visibility in a well-circumscribed geographical area.
According to Moz.com, local search is “all about increasing search visibility for businesses that serve their communities face-to-face. These can be brick-and-mortar businesses with physical locations, like a grocery store or dentist’s office, or service-area businesses that operate throughout a certain geographic area, like an electrician or house cleaning company.”
How to take Advantage of Local Search to Promote your Company
1. Local and Mobile Devices
When we talk about local marketing, the reference to mobile is evident. For several years, Google has been improving the performance of mobile searches, starting with the “Pigeon” update, up to the Mobile Friendly label and the constant updates of the mobile ranking factors.
This also happens because most of the mobile searches have a very advanced purchasing intent, thus offering big potential for conversion for local businesses and, consequently, great possibilities of profit for Google.
But what about SEO? A very important difference concerns the typology of typed queries.
While on the desktop the long tail can be absolutely strategic, from mobile the essential makes the difference. So when you are going to optimize your site for mobile, do not give priority to the long tail keywords but dwell on short and essential sentences.
2. Voice Search
When we look for a hotel, a restaurant or a particular store and we are on the go, it is annoying to stop and write our query on Google. That is when we use voice search to communicate with our mobile device.
Today more than 20% of mobile searches are spoken and not typed. It is likely that new local search capabilities will be implemented because voice search will play a vital role for Google and sites like Amazon or Walmart.
Why is this new form of querying important for Local SEO? Because the semantics will become more and more important and all the search queries of the type “in my vicinity”, also linked to micro events, will acquire relevance. This element will probably generate further upsets from an SEO point of view.
This video offers more about the potential of voice technology and the future of local search:
3. Meta Tag Title and Description
They are the evergreen elements for excellence in SEO. Fundamental for the purposes of CTR and ranking, their optimization has become almost an art for SEO.
Some advice (both mobile and desktop) is to pay close attention as they are very important, even in the local context. For some time Google has increased the size of the page with search results to around 600px. This means more characters both for the title (between 65 and 70, including spaces) and for the description (about 170 characters including spaces).
Among the basic guidelines for a good Local SEO: include in the meta tag title and in the meta description the name of the brand, mention the place (city or area of reference), insert in these meta tags the most relevant keywords. It may seem trivial but it is absolutely not.
4. Google My Business
The optimization of the company profile on Google My Business is another very important activity that, if done well, will allow you to increase traffic to your site and to be found by customers in the area, interested in your business. Do not underestimate this tool in your Local SEO strategy!
Google provides a range of resources to understand how it works and keep the account up-to-date. Here’s how we optimize your Google My business:
- Create a complete, properly formatted company description that includes keywords and links to the site’s strategic pages.
- Choose the correct categories from those suggested by Google.
- Upload descriptive photos, high definition and organized.
- Add a phone number.
- Enter the address of the location performing the verification requested by Google.
- Add a high definition profile image.
- Add the times of opening and closing.
You can click here and see even more details on optimizing your GMB site, or contact our team and let us do the work for you. We have proven methods that will help you get more calls to your business.
Local SEO: What can I do today?
An important piece of advice is to map all the local elements of your company spread across the net. Make sure your site shows up on local business directories like The Chamber of Commerce along with the key national citation sites such as Yelp and Yellow Pages.
Any incorrect or duplicate accounts on Google My Business or citation directories must be corrected, organized and merged as soon as possible. You want your company to be ubiquitous with no confusing information.
Giving a unique brand idea is essential. Then try to standardize your contact information, your company’s images (update them if they are obsolete), the services you offer or products you sell.
Once you have finished these steps you can dedicate yourself to the strategic part of Local SEO: the analysis of the territorial context and of the competitors already present. Try also to search the web for examples of communication strategies that are inspirational and are currently working for other companies.
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