The web is always getting more and more competitive and achieving high, global rankings on the search engines are harder to get. Ever since Google unleashed its ‘3-pack’, things became even more competitive as it resulted in less screen real estate in Google Maps.
However, for most businesses, particularly those that target local regions, the most relevant form of traffic originates from local search. So what can you do to ensure your website is properly optimized for local search?
Here are a few local SEO tips you can implement today:
1. Utilize Keywords to Target Local Regions
Targeting the local market can really boost your SEO as high rakings in this section tend to be less competitive. For instance, businesses targeting the term ‘hospital’ will have to compete with every other hospital on the planet.
However, a contractor targeting the term ‘Atlanta hospital’ will just have to compete with hospitals in Atlanta who have a site and are actively trying to search engine optimize their sites.
Something you may want to note is that adding local phone numbers and location modifiers that illustrate your key phrases and pages usually have a higher conversion rate ideally.
2. Pay Attention to Other Search Engines
Most companies tend to focus their local SEO efforts in achieving high rankings or visibility on Google only. While it is true that most people use Google for queries, focusing your efforts on other search engines like Bing and Yahoo can ideally be helpful as it increases your visibility.
Even so, we know that Google local SEO has the best potential and so, it is best to start there before proceeding to other search engines.
3. Get Listed in Online Directories
Getting listed on all the free online directories is one of the first steps towards getting local traffic. There’s no reason in this day and age to not get listed in Google Places/GMB or Bing Local.
Most individuals will go to these locations when trying to find a local business. Chances are you will see references to your business, but the information may be wrong. This is where you perform an audit and update the listings. Ensure that the information is correct and consistent with what is found on your website.
4. Register Your Domain with The Business
Another local SEO tip that most businesses don’t know about is registering their domain names with their company addresses. There is some evidence suggesting that Google utilizes the address that the site is registered under as a means to rank local results. Another indicator of relevance is the location of the company in the map ‘centroid’.
5. Claim Your Business
You can list your business with NAP or name address and phone, and other related information. If you discover that your business is already listed, you should attempt to claim the business listing and update the information accordingly. It is always a plus when people search for your business and find all relevant information including when you open and close on the first page of Google.
6. Create Multiple Domain Names
If you are providing services in more than one nation, you may want to create domain names for each country you operate in. To determine if a certain URL is relevant to search results in a certain country, Google looks at the top-level domain.
This can be an excellent strategy for both local and international businesses. Unfortunately, some companies try to abuse this tip by spamming with multi-location for key phrases. As such, it’s advisable that you tread carefully and consolidation with a helpful navigational architecture might actually be a better choice.
Also, keep in mind that if you start attracting a bad link neighborhood profile from the domains and ultimately bleeds into your primary website, your rankings may drop.
7. Stay Clear on Your Target
Some companies are focused on a local region, while others are countrywide, but would like to target a specific location. This can be hard as the SEO efforts required to get traffic from a specific region may undermine your efforts to get traffic from other locations, including globally.
As such, you need to emphasize that you offer services for the other parts of the country as well. With many offices, you can manage listings in a bulk manner.