Google has changed the game again. Local SEO is the new way to market, just like it was generations ago. With the newest updates from Google, local businesses have an opportunity to reach more of their local customers and position their business as the local choice.
5 Things You Need to Do to Get Your Business Ranked Locally
- Make sure you are listed with Google business listings and your listing is optimized.It’s important to use the actual business name and list your business in the correct categories as well. You have a greater chance of ranking high for “Residential pest control” than for generic terms like “Exterminator”. Make sure every detail about your business is up to date. Hours of operation, phone number, credit cards taken, etc. Anything that might be relevant to a potential customer must be current and easy to understand. Images are also important so make sure are using fresh, relevant images at high resolutions.
- Have a unique page on your company website for each of your local locations.If your company has a multiple store locations, make this easy to find, not just information that is in a post or a search form. Each location for your business must have a unique URL for all of your stores. These unique pages must have unique content as well, such as local information, local points of interest and general information about that community. Google pays close attention to this factor and it definitely affects your local search rankings.
- Have a consistent NAP (Name, Address, Phone Number) across all of your online listings.Google’s recent emphasis on providing more localized results to searchers makes it important to have your NAP information up to date and consistent across all your listings. Each of these listings is known as a “citation”. These citations tell Google that your business is legitimate and makes your company seem more trustworthy to Google and potential customers. Citations just make it easier for local searchers to find your company and become your next customer.
- Make sure your website features unique, local content.The more local content your website features, the more likely it is that your company will show up when someone local searches for your product or service. The keywords in your content must include local elements to rank highly in a local search. “Chicago Pest Control” will attract searchers who need pest control in Chicago as opposed to “Pest Control” which will not rank well when it comes to local marketing. Local content should be published consistently, the more the better. Google rewards websites with fresh content, especially when it comes to local marketing. A single blog post or article, no matter how original and relevant, will never be enough on its own for local ranking so the more often you provide local content, the greater your chances are of Google ranking your company higher in local searches. Show your relevance to your customers by providing content that presents your company as the local authority. Tell your customers not only about your business, but also about how you and your employees live and work right there in the same community as your customer. Focus more on engaging, informing and entertaining than on your company. Your customers will appreciate your efforts to provide good content about their local community rather than outdated attempts to sell your services or products.
- Get REAL reviews from customers across your service areas. Customer reviews are more important than ever with Google’s increased emphasis on local marketing elements. According to a recent study from conversionsciences.com,
63% of the time, Google’s top three local listings are ones with the most reviews. So it’s important not only to have good reviews but also important to have a lot of reviews in general. Your local customer cares about reviews when looking for a business and so does Google.