Today, getting new customers is very competitive and just as important as satisfying existing customers but the question is, how can you get new customers with speed and affordability? While many people rely solely on having an aesthetically-pleasing, informative and easy to navigate website, that alone will not get you the online success you’re looking for.
To achieve online success, our goal today is to help you by explaining, “Local Search Engine Optimization”, one of the key methods that allows your site to appear in the local organic results when a potential customer searches for you on Google, Yahoo or Bing.
Local SEO is now more popular than ever before due to the increased use of smart phones and while it’s very similar to traditional SEO, it’s also VERY VERY different. Here’s the inside scoop on why every business owner should get and utilize local SEO services.
What is Local SEO?
If you’re confused as to what local SEO actually is, it’s really not too difficult to figure out. If you’ve ever used Google to perform a search for a business, such as a hair salon, and you’ve seen the business results that showed up, that is precisely what local SEO is.
Local SEO services are aimed at providing you with the results that are relevant to you, based on your current location preferences set by your device or your browser. You’ll find that if you search for something like ‘best Mexican restaurant’, the results closest to you would appear, with the restaurant’s phone number, address, website and real reviews. Similar results are displayed both on a computer or a smartphone. Therefore, when someone is searching for a service or a product that you offer in your local area, your business will show up and they will know that you exist, which is exactly what you want. The unfortunate news is that, this just won’t happen automatically. As a business owner, you’ve got to take the initiative and steps to set this up.
Even as early as 2011 (way before Google released its Pigeon update), over 40 percent of mobile queries had local intent. This was confirmed by a study done in 2013 that revealed 4 out of 5 people use smartphones to search for local information. Moreover, 2 out of 3 people take direct action as a result of this local search; and 1 in 3 people went ahead to make a purchase.
Here’s a snapshot of what local seo results look like in a Google search.
With local SEO setup correctly, you can reach your most relevant audience at the most relevant time to them. Unfortunately, local SEO is a confusing matter, as it has always been. Do you know where to begin? Let us help you find your way to local SEO.
Local SEO services are Important to you for 3 Reasons:
- An increasing number of customers are using the internet to look for local establishments. In fact, 64 percent of customers turn to search engines and local directories to find a business. Twenty eight percent of people still prefer to use old paper directories, but this number is dwindling fast.
- Local SEO is highly targeted, convenient, and timely. In an era when not having a smartphone is an exception, using local search engines and online directories can promote your business at exactly the point customers need your products or services. No need to reach for bulky, dusty directories – with local SEO, you can connect with your potential customers when they need you.
- Local SEO has the highest conversion rates among local ad channels. Research reveal that local directory marketing has a 50 percent conversion factor on some directories, which is quite phenomenal! Converting 1 in 2 leads is awesome!
3 “Basic” Ways to Easily Optimize Your Website for Local SEO
Now that you know why local SEO is important, it’s time to create your very own strategy. Here are three of the easiest ways to optimize your website for local SEO:
- Create a local business page in all major search engines. Which means it’s time to hit up Bing, Yahoo, and Google and fill out their search engine listing forms to get started. Just fill out your business information such as address, phone number, store hours, among others, and you’re set.
- Optimize and categorize your business page correctly.To properly optimize your page, you need to upload some quality photos of your establishment, with details on your operating hours and a complete list of services you offer.Next step, and one of the most crucial, is to properly categorize your site into the right category. Local search engines offer various listings, but there are some that allow businesses to list in 2-5 categories to allow a more comprehensive view of what your company does. Getting listed is extremely crucial because according to Moz Local, search engines tend to ignore a business that is mis-categorized or not categorized at all.
- Ensure accurate and consistent business citations. Because all your pertinent business details are important in listing, optimizing, and displaying your local listings, it’s crucial to ensure all details are fill out. You have to make sure that your NAP (Name, Address, Phone) data is consistent across all listings. If someone else listed your business on other third-party business listing services that are perhaps related to your industry, you need to claim these listings which are referred to it as citations. If done right and of course, with quality, a company could do their research and find dozens if not thousands of potential third-party websites, forums, social media platforms and listing services, etc., that are relevant to their industry, add citations and increase their website traffic.
These are just the “BASICS” of local SEO services and there’s more advanced stuff too so that you appear at the top of local directory listings and standout so stay tuned for more info to follow.
Can’t wait? At Xtendly, we help you understand how to implement the right local SEO strategies that will ultimately benefit your bottom line. Talk to us today