Local SEO Tips For Small Businesses

SEO requires constant effort and tweaking. You should always be aiming to improve your rankings and get as close to the number one spot as possible. But as a strategy, optimisation is changing. Search engines want to connect local business with customers quickly and easily. If you’re a small business who wants to improve outreach, check out these local SEO tips.

It’s not just a case of being keyword savvy anymore.  Algorithms are far more dynamic and operate to deliver the most suitable information to customers. So if you can implement some tricks to stay ahead of competition, this will actually work in your favour.

Small businesses don’t necessarily have to compete with rankings on an international level. But if a potential lead Googles say, “tech repair south Dublin”, you need to be the first option. Depending on where you rank locally will dictate the return from your digital strategy.

Implementing these features, as originally offered by Forbes, will set you on the right path.

Local SEO tips

Create Local Places Pages

Unless a potential lead Googles a specific competitors name, they’ll usually search for a service and/or location. In this scenario, local place pages are incredibly effective. Like the example above, a customer will enquire about a service they need in their local area with generic terms.

Local place pages will pin your contact info first and if on mobile, leads can find themselves calling you within seconds of a search. In most cases, they won’t even consider alternatives because the contact info has been supplied so efficiently.

If you don’t have these pages set up, you’re falling behind in SEO tactics. It’s actually behind the times now to be forced onto a website just to get a number or address. Make sure local pages are set up on all major search engines and your accessibility will increase significantly.

Optimise and Properly Categorise Your Page

Optimising your local pages means uploading quality imagery to be eye catching and captivating. These need to detail your hours of operation, and list services offered. Blank text doesn’t rank as high and gets lost on a screen. Titling pictures properly can also help your general SEO efforts.

Secondly, you need to categorise your business correctly. This is the most crucial step to optimising your site for local search. Several local search engines offer you the ability to place your business into 2-5 categories to help them understand what your business does.

Search engines will not display a business that isn’t categorised at all or miscategorised. You need to make sure you’re active for your relevant keywords. If a lead is searching for your business and you haven’t done this, you’re literally throwing away opportunities.

Accurate Business Citations

All of your information needs to be detailed properly and consistent. Your name address and phone has to be listed on all site and local listing pages. It’s surprising how many businesses do this incorrectly.

It’s possible your business is listed wrong by someone else, but don’t worry. You can claim such  listings, often referred to also as a citations. Use tools like Yext or Localeze to help see where your company’s local listings are found online. Also consider using Google MapMaker to search for your business and phone number to help you see if there are any duplicate listings.

You’ll have to verify that you’re the owner of the business, but it’s important to eradicate mistakes. Imagine if a customer wanted to avail of your service, but gave up after calling an incorrect phone number. Nothing would be more frustrating, I’m sure you’ll agree.

Online Reviews

Reviews are everything when it comes to local authority. Testimonials prove your expertise, but it strengthens local SEO efforts too.

Google looks at reviews as a major factor for ranking on the new carousel design. More than anything though, your reviews show up on local place pages so it’s imperative that they’re plentiful and positive. Reviews are quick and easy ways for consumers to decide which link they want to click.

There are different ways to improve your number of reviews. Don’t fake them but maybe offer small incentives for those  who offer their opinion. Prompt visitors to leave a review after purchasing something or visiting a particular landing page. This will give you natural and genuine responses, which will strengthen rankings and authority.

Quality Photos

This point goes back to optimising your listing. It’s so important though that it deserves its own number. When people are searching for local businesses, they want to see photos. Most local accounts including Google+ Local allow you to upload at least 10 pictures.

Your goal should try to be to have that many photos uploaded. It’s also important to take photos of your actual building, both inside and out, and even take pictures of your products. Your logo does work, but it’s always best to have an actual picture of the company building as your main photo.

All you have to do to upload photos is visit your local listing and click a little link that says “add photos.” It’s as easy as that. It’ll go a long way in captivating local custom and improving your ranking efforts.

Generally Optimise Your Site

Part of local search is obviously based on your actual website SEO performance. It’s not just your local listings and pages and both strategies need to be approached holistically. Ensure you have your contact information and preferably a phone number somewhere on your website – not just local listings.

It’s important to try and include city or regional keywords wherever possible and write content that is specific to your local area. It’s also a good idea to reach out to these organisations and establish connections. The more people you’re in contact with, the better. You’ll maximise the chances of them visiting your website and hopefully linking back.

What Works For You?

Have you benefitted from improving your local SEO strategy? For small business it’s becoming more important every day. If you want to enhance any of your digital marketing efforts, get in touch or check out our other blogs.

We’d love to hear about your experience or help in any way we can!

Comments are closed.