Growing a business in pandemic times has been nothing but an easy task. With limited resources, every step that a business owner takes must be strategically calculated. Gone are the days when businesses have the luxury to invest in marketing tactics that don’t bring quick results.
Are you up to crafting a quick-win marketing strategy? Then you’ll certainly want to add Local SEO to the mix and we’re here to tell you why!
What is Local SEO For Dummies
Online marketing and advertising are nothing new, as millions of people use the Internet for business every day. Not every store or business is online as ecommerce is not universal, but every business should use online marketing to maximize available modern tools.
Part of online marketing is SEO or search engine optimization, and there are different focuses within SEO. One vital part of SEO is local SEO. Local SEO focuses on optimizing your website, including content, link building, and on-page optimizations targeted for local viewers, so your website ranks higher in local searches.
Let’s say you own a beauty salon and you want to drive new customers. How do you think your future customers find a hair salon? They will probably search for “hair salon near me”, “best hair salon in Austin”, “hair salon specialized in highlights near me”. A winning SEO strategy will position your hair salon at the top of their options. Wouldn’t it be cool if those who are ready to book their hair appointment could find your amazing hair salon before they see your competitor? Of course you’re saying yes (we can read your mind).
Who needs local SEO?
Local SEO might not be a top priority for businesses that serve a large area or cover an entire country as everywhere is local to large companies. However, local SEO is critical for businesses that serve a focused area such as a certain city or state.
When you use local SEO correctly, customers can easily find your store information rather than searching through layers of search results. Google has amazing features that allow your potential customers to engage with your business, before they even call you. They could take a tour, read reviews, watch videos, and before and after pictures. Those actions are called “consideration steps”. So, a winning SEO should get you more clicks, but even better, more revenue.
Local SEO might be yet another thing you must improve, but it is well worth the effort for businesses that rely on community.
How Do You Check Your Local SEO Rankings?
- Start with the Google Search Console tool. If you haven’t created an account yet, create an account on Google Search Console.
- Your local SEO rankings are on your Google Search Console. To see which keywords are bringing traffic to your website, explore the performance menu on your Google Search Console.
- Filter your results, starting with “near me” . This will show you the queries (which are also keywords), impressions, and clicks. Export the report so you can save that data.
- Identify the keywords that are bringing the most impressions and clicks.
- Run a Google Search (using incognito mode) using the exact keywords, for example: “botox near me”. This will display what your future customers are seeing, when they search.
A Pro Tip: Filter your performance report by mobile search so you can explore your data from mobile searches as well. Google doesn’t always show the same results for mobile searches.
How To Find Your Local SEO Keywords
Your Google Search Console is a great place to start. Also, if you have Google My Business, you will be able to see which terms are delivering visits to your listing.
From your Google My Business- go to Insights – New profile performance
Google will show you searches that triggered your Business Profile.
Grow With Local SEO
Your Google ranking will influence users when they are considering doing business with you.
Your friends might appreciate you. However, if they need a service, they will do business with companies that they can trust. That’s why Google reviews exist.
Local SEO is considered as the digital word of mouth. If Google doesn’t talk about your business, your future clients won’t know that it exist.
Many people will search for businesses near them, whether that be lawyers near me, sporting stores in a specific city, or any other location-based search, and you want your business to come up in those results.
What Improves Your Local SEO?
A strong local SEO strategy focuses in maximizing the following:
- Business listings
- Social media
- Google My Business
Unlike many SEO providers will tell you, local SEO isn’t about keywords.
Local SEO requires a multidisciplinary set of online marketing skills, performed with one simple goal: getting you conversions.
Your Local SEO is based on your current rankings, as that will dictate the opportunities that you have. For this reason, a strategy is personalized.
What is a black hat SEO technique?
Black hat SEO techniques are considered spam by Google and they will get you penalized. For this reason, you must ask your Local SEO service provider if they will be using any of those practices. In particular, ask if any of their clients have gotten flagged by Google. If the answer is yes, stay away.
Does black hat SEO work?
Black hat SEO still goes on, it still works (for a short time), is still successful at zooming a website up search engine rankings, and still makes some people of lot of money.
The keyword here is: short time.
You certainly want to grow a business with a long term approach in mind.
Local Vs. National SEO
SEO extends across many areas of online marketing, but there are differences between specialties. Local SEO focuses on search results for a particular area, while national SEO aims to make a business rank higher across an entire country or the globe. While both tactics use general SEO practices, national SEO will target more general keywords or phrases rather than area-specific terms you find in local SEO. You can use both local and national SEO elements, but you cannot expect to get local results using nation SEO methods as they target different goals and use different search keywords.
Google My Business Strategy
Getting a local business listed on Google My Business (GMB) and other online directories is one of the fastest and easiest ways to get a local business to start showing up for local search results on Google. Google My Business connects businesses directly with their customers — whether they’re searching on Google Search or Maps.
Most SEOs who work with local clients consider claiming their GMB listing the first step in their SEO strategy. Surprisingly, 56% of local businesses haven’t claimed their Google My Business listing, according to Local Business Institute.
I know you want to optimize your website and landing pages with SEO, but you might just need to focus on GMB first.
How much does it cost to put your business on Google?
Google My Business is a free tool. However, the strategies and efforts needed to implement those, so you can rank will require time and resources.
Finding a reliable provider for your Local SEO services will be worth every penny.
Local SEO Services
Local SEO also gives new businesses far more of a chance than national SEO as smaller businesses can enjoy their niche market rather than competing against massive corporations with larger budgets. A new business can hit the top ranks with proper local SEO, which gives more small businesses chances to flourish with a broader customer base. Local SEO also helps your business nail down a micro niche to control. Once you find your market corner, you can truly stand out from the crowd by using local SEO to make sure customers know your business in conjunction with your industry. Over time, your business will become synonymous with your niche and industry in your local area, which means your brand’s reputation only grows year after year.
Businesses that focus on local SEO must focus on more than just local keywords as your content also impacts your local rankings. Do not assume local keywords will carry your business to a good rank and ensure your posted content is relevant to your local customers. There is no point in wasting resources to make globally appealing content if you only target people in the midwest. Use your marketing budget to position your business with strategic content and backlinks to pull even more people into your local content.
SEO Can Be Tricky, Hire Help If You Need It
For how important SEO is for all businesses, it is still a relatively complex topic that takes time to understand. Most business owners do not open a business with SEO skills in tow, and it can be hard to learn on the fly. And sadly, many SEO guides and teachers explain SEO wrong. They offer keywords and traffic, without providing a clear plan on how to grow the bottom line. Learning the details of SEO is important, but if you want to fully use the tools, you must understand how everything leads to your ultimate goals. It is not enough to fiddle with numbers if you never understand how those numbers feed into your bottom line.
You can implement basic SEO without much effort or training. While basic SEO can get your business going and start the process of lifetime rankings, it will take a more knowledgeable hand to dial in your SEO. Anyone can learn more advanced SEO methods, but you can also call a professional marketer to do the hard work for you. Instead of needing to learn a new disciple, you can cut hundreds of wasted hours of your life and leave the details of SEO and online marketing to a professional agency. You can even find agencies that specialize in local SEO and helping small businesses. If you are stuck on SEO, you can still get all the benefits by calling in professional help.
Go Further With Our Local Marketing And SEO Services in Austin, Texas
Another fantastic way to pull in local business in tandem with local SEO is to partner with another local business or influencer. If you sell beauty products, it is worth finding an influencer in your city to work together on a campaign. Hometown heroes, favorite local businesses, and other popular businesses can shine a spotlight on your business while creating a positive result for everyone involved. Your industry never operates in a true bubble, so reach out to a hair salon or nail studio to work out a partnership, so everyone gets a boost. Combining all the local SEO tactics will get any business off to a good start, but you should use every method to make your business go further. Anyone can go from beauty product enthusiast to beauty business owner by doing proper research and using the best marketing methods available.
Got SEO Questions? We got SEO answers!
We are a boutique firm with a focus on growth metrics for small business owners individually assessing their unique “pain point” and building a solution for that business. We decode your numbers using Forensic Marketing principles to build a strategy unique to your revenue goals.