Local SEO for Local Businesses
SEO (Search Engine Optimization) can be one of the most important aspects to digital marketing. Whether you own a large or small business, and no matter how many years you’ve put into it, there’s a lot of potential in SEO for your company. Local SEO can make a significant impact.
When it comes to local SEO for local businesses, making sure that you’re visible to people who search for your business or services from your locality is extremely important. SEO holds a dominant position in online marketing, and can help you grow your business.
What is Local SEO?
Search engine optimization helps your company land a top spot on Google searches; local SEO promotes your business and increases visibility in searches that are location-based. It’s a variation of typical SEO that’s specifically aimed at making sure your business is found by people searching for it at that locality. This includes searches that have geographic qualifiers, such as city, state, and zip code, or “near me” searches.
Why is it Important for Your Business?
Local SEO is very important, primarily if you only provide services in a specific locality, because people tend to select a business based on Google searches or searches conducted on their smartphones. Seeing your business pop up at the top of the search leads people to call you or visit. Many of them even call or check out your website by clicking what they see on their phones or laptops. Leads from location-based searches are a major avenue to gain potential customers.
Local SEO Basics
How can you begin to improve your business’ local SEO? It’s important to keep in mind that this SEO is specifically for location-based searches. This means that a physical location or address is required, in order for a business to show up on local search results. If your business’ address isn’t updated or you run a business that doesn’t have a permanent address, it will not show up when a customer conducts a “near me” search.
On top of your address, you need to make sure that your business’ name, address, and phone number (NAP) information is updated and consistent across all the online directories you’re listed in. If there are any differences, no matter how small, Google will likely avoid listing your business. There are some applications and tools available that manage all your online listings for you, so you don’t have to worry about manually updating everything.
Another great way to improve your local SEO is by citations; a citation is when a third party website lists your business, as a point of reference. This would be something like a food blog naming your restaurant as a good place to eat at, and even providing a link to your restaurant’s website. This could increase internet traffic to your name, location, and contact info. This lets many customers know that your business is trustworthy, and can rank you higher on Google searches.
How Will Your Business Benefit from Using Local SEO?
There are many benefits and rewards to optimizing your local SEO. It helps even more potential customers discover your business; many searches originate from non-locals who are looking for businesses, and you can capture that audience.
Local SEO also provides customers information beyond your address and phone number; if they’re looking for a café that has free WiFi or is pet-friendly, displaying that location as an aspect of your local SEO attracts customers looking for that specific aspect. This is a great way to utilize local SEO if you believe you offer something unique that your competition doesn’t—such as outside fireplaces if you’re a brewery, or an insurance company that offers complimentary coffee and tea.
With local search engine optimization, you can help your business stand out in local searches, and you can drive traffic through online leads. An online presence can impact people’s decisions in favor of your services, and this can build a strong foundation for your relationship with customers, as the more they know about you, the more trustworthy you will be. Adding local SEO to your marketing technique increases your search engine rankings, and helps to put potential customers at your doorstep, instead of with your competitors.
Using Social Media for Local Internet Marketing
The increasing number of people joining popular social media platforms like Facebook presents major advertising opportunities for businesses. Imagine millions of people using these networking sites and the high chances of finding potential customers among them. Social media provides an opportunity for large and small businesses alike to reach their target customers cheaply and effectively. With the right amount of creativity and computer skills, small business owners can boost their businesses through local Internet marketing in these social media sites.
Among all social media platforms, Facebook is the most versatile when it comes to content presentation. People can share pictures, videos, documents, and links to other pages here. This also applies to businesses with Facebook pages. Having an account or page in this website alone enables a business to reach millions of potential clients. Through local Internet marketing techniques, businesses can specifically locate their target market. From there, the next thing to do is gain as much exposure as possible by linking relevant content that will lead to the business page.
With the continuous improvements on the social networking site that caters to a variety of audience and users, it is safe to say that Facebook is now a miniature Google when it comes to usefulness. Its users can now utilize it for socialization, advertising, marketing, finding places and people, and other functions related to social networking. It is now easier to look for places, people, and things on the page’s search tool that specifies using location, age, and other helpful filters. Small businesses can set up a page and upload content, then Facebook will link the page helpfully during searches closely related to them. Local Internet marketing is made simple as possible on Facebook.
Aside from letting Facebook link the page on related searches, businesses can improve their visibility by connecting with the target audience themselves. This is easily done by searching for people who live in the area and adding them as friends on Facebook. By continuously adding more people who live nearby the business area, local Internet marketing is done. These people become familiar with the business establishment’s existence even without actually going there. By showing them the telephone number of the business on the Facebook page, there is a great chance of booking transactions virtually as much as in the actual business establishment.
Using Facebook and other popular social media sites is the best platform for small businesses who aim to capture local consumers. Majority of users log in to their social media accounts at least once a day. That means a chance of being seen at least once a day by thousands of people who might need your business’ products and services. Small businesses may or may not employ the help of IT experts in order to succeed in this form of local Internet marketing. Even a single person can do it, armed with enough creativity, imagination, and excellent target marketing skills. This makes Facebook one of the most affordable yet highly effective local advertising websites today.