Whether you are a local business owner or an online marketer, you need to be aware of the challenges that come with local SEO marketing vs that of non-geo-specific brand marketing.

While word-of-mouth and local advertisements are effective marketing strategies, online searches can be equally impactful (if not more) in attracting prospects and making sales. A report from Social Media Today states that 97% of people use the Internet to search for local businesses, while 46% of the total Google searches comprised of people seeking local information. This is where the importance of local SEO comes into play.

You may be familiar with SEO campaigns, but local SEO is completely different, and the local search results are consistently and rapidly changing. Businesses that do not rank in the local search results are missing out on valuable traffic and customers. This only shows that local SEO is an essential digital marketing strategy that helps business owners, like you, stay in front of their high-intent local prospects. 

What Is Local SEO?

Local SEO is a search engine optimization strategy that improves the search engine visibility of local businesses, primarily those with brick-and-mortar locations, in the local search results on Google. 

Optimizing your website for local SEO can help increase traffic, leads, and conversions. Since this strategy focuses on staying relevant to your local prospects, local SEO helps small businesses compete more effectively with bigger brands. Focusing on specific local keywords gives you an edge over bigger brands that optimize for broader keywords and depend on brand recognition rather than value propositions to bring in traffic to your website. 

Using Local SEO to Improve Your Local Search Engine Rankings

1. Optimize Your Google My Business Profile

Google My Business is a free online directory where users can find accurate information about a local business. It enables businesses to have a listing within a year of launching automatically. However, you need to optimize your GMB listing to prevent errors on your automated list. 

How to optimize a GMB profile:

  • Provide all the necessary information about your business (name, address, contact details, business hours, etc.)
  • Upload images and videos of the location of your business
  • Include a listing of your products or services in your profile
  • Encourage customers to leave reviews and ratings
  • Update information or listings monthly or whenever necessary, and monitor them weekly. 

2. Identify and Target Local Keywords

Targeting geo-specific keywords can help local businesses increase their website traffic. Search terms with “near me” can increase your web traffic from 150 to over 900%, making it an extremely important local SEO strategy for many local businesses. Identifying and targeting specific local keywords, such as SEO services in Mississauga, not only amplify traffic but also improves the online visibility of your business.

Google’s Keyword Planner tool enables you to filter location-based keyword searches within 10 to 15 miles of your business. It provides you with a list of the popular keywords that are relevant to your business, helping you target local customers. 

3. Optimize for Mobile

Many ready-to-buy customers are using smartphones and tablets to search for local businesses, products, or services online. This only shows the utmost importance of having mobile-friendly websites. For instance, if you are selling a used compressor, optimizing your website for mobile devices ensures a good user experience, allowing your potential customers to navigate through your product web pages with ease. 

Here are several tips to make your site optimized for mobile:

  • Fast and responsive page display
  • Use readable fonts and subheadings. 
  • Structured text format with adequate white space.
  • Include relevant images and appropriate media display.

4. Write Relevant Local Content

Localizing your content makes it more relevant to your target audience. Create a blog post, a separate landing page, or release a press statement that connects with your local community. You can use your content to promote local events, offer insights about your community, or about your sponsorship or partnership with local organizations. 

5. Build High-Quality Backlinks

A backlink can be obtained from a third-party website linking back to your website. Backlinks from trusted websites can bring a positive impact on the ranking and authority of your website. 

Here are some tips on how to start building high-quality backlinks:

  • Partner with high-ranking websites and offer guest posts on their site
  • Take part in various outreach community activities and influencer engagement
  • Create and publish relevant, engaging, and shareable content
  • Monitor mentions of your brand through social listening

Creating relevant, in-depth content, and high-quality content is key to an effective backlink content strategy.

6. Create Location-Based Pages

If you run a business in different locations, we recommend creating location-based pages that include your company’s name, location, contact information, business operating hours, and store description. You can even have a testimonial section where customers can leave their reviews for your products or services. 

For businesses with only one location, such as ProScan Media Products, it is a good idea to include comprehensive information about your company, product info and photos, FAQs, and a Google Map of your location on your “About Us” page to get the best results. 

7. Encourage Customers to Leave Reviews

Customer reviews have always been a crucial factor in local search rankings. Gathering positive feedback not only work wonders on your online visibility in local search but also helps boost your business reputation. Be sure to encourage your customers to leave authentic and positive reviews for your business. 

In addition to your website and GMB listing, you can also collect reviews from various social media platforms and consumer directories, such as Facebook, Foursquare, Angie’s List, Yelp, and Thumbtack. 

Learn How to Rank Your Local Business Using Local SEO

8. Participate in Local Community Events

Taking part in different local events is always a great way to boost your local SEO. Participating in community programs can organically connect you with your target audience and promote your brand. 

Sponsoring events, partnering with organizations, becoming a panellist or industry expert in local news, or joining larger community events can help your business gain media exposure, strengthen brand awareness, and reach a wider audience by taking advantage of these opportunities.

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