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Every small business can expand its company and reach more customers using local SEO methods. Local SEO, sometimes referred to as local search engine marketing, is a highly effective way of marketing your local company online, as it helps businesses promote their offerings to local audiences right at the time they’re looking for them online. This is done through several methods, some of which are vastly different from what’s typically used in standard SEO, while others are very easy to manage using SEO tools and may need specific local SEO services.
Understanding local SERPs
One of the effective ways to boost traffic to your website is to boost visibility on the famous local pack or 3-pack. This is a group of three business listings that are seen below the map in the search results displayed after a Google search with local intent. For instance, a geo-centric keyword query like ‘plumbers Las Vegas’ will prompt the local pack.
In contrast to the standard organic results, the local pack shows review ratings, business hours, and some photos. While Google is getting savvier at pulling this information directly from your website, it isn’t the main source of these elements. Everything that’s shown in the local pack is outsourced from your company’s Google My Business profile, a key player of local SEO that’s quickly getting important as Google attempts to satisfy more search users directly with the SERPs.
What is Google My Business?
Once referred to as Google local and Google+ Local, Google My Business (GMB) refers to your business profile on Google. This Google listing feeds your company information to various online places like the local pack and Google Maps search results. By setting up and optimizing your GMP profile, your business can be displayed in Google’s local search results, Google maps, and standard search results.
Make sure to claim your local business, but don’t just end there. After claiming your account, fill every field with accurate information so Google can collect as much information as needed to work with. Also, check your notifications if any users have put suggestions of any modifications to your profile and verify the accurate edits if so. Include several photos and videos, your business hours, and verified contact and location information. GMB also has a Q&A section so try to answer every question as much as you can.
Other tips to optimize your local SEO
One of the impacts of the evolving nature of Google is that local SEO has a lot to work on. It’s an ever-changing field that can take lots of time and effort to get right. Hence, the reason why many SEO companies and experts invest in learning more about local SEO instead of the broader, generic SEO. While both are still SEO, the rules vary a lot since you’re aiming for different goals. Moreover, many clients are fine with having more direct contact and foot traffic than website visits as a result of their business’s high visibility in local search and business listings.
Below the things you can do, apart from optimizing our GMB, to achieve success in local SEO:
Website localization entails including your city, region, state, or county name, naturally within your website. Specifically for businesses with numerous locations across the country, this could mean having separate pages for every location. Other methods can be involving yourself and your business with local community events and publishing articles and information about them on your website.
Make sure to check if your site features citation websites and online business directories. Having these citations will help customers find your company. On top of that, featuring your business name, address, phone number, and website URL on various citation websites and putting more information to business listings will also help boost your search rankings.
Getting quality, relevant backlinks
Naturally earned backlinks from reputable websites help search engines see your site’s worth and credibility when it comes to providing information. Links from bloggers, local media outlets, citations, and business associations can help increase your search visibility.
Managing reviews and ratings
Genuine reviews are crucial for highlighting the quality of your service and earning brownie points from search engines. That’s because these honest reviews are like validations that your website and service are indeed trustworthy and helpful. Factors like the amount and overall quality of reviews and the authority of the review sites all play integral roles in improving your local search rankings.
Local SEO grows your business
The local SEO field is already incredibly competitive, and it’s only going to get more intense in the future as search engine algorithms continue to evolve. Now is the time to leverage local SEO services and grow your company before your competitors can catch on.