Local SEO (search engine optimization) is often times over-looked by small business owners. Perhaps, this is because they may not fully understand what SEO is or how powerful it can be – if done right. I’ve heard many business owners (especially startups) who think that having a professional and responsive website is all they need to get found online. That may have been the case to a certain degree some 20 years ago, but it doesn’t hold water today.
Having a website that is responsive (mobile-friendly) and highly optimized is certainly the first step to creating a solid online marketing strategy, but it’s not the last step. With the vast majority of customers finding local businesses online these days, it’s imperative the create a strong web presence outside just having a great website. Social Media marketing is key to creating online and expanded branding, as is creating videos and blogs. Yet, Local SEO is a strategy in and within itself that helps get your business found online ahead of the competition.
A big part of developing your Local SEO is by creating your local online listings, such as Google Maps. When customers search for a local service on the Web, they undoubtedly find the top three Local Maps listings at the top of their browser, followed by various company URLs or online listing such as Yelp, Foursquare, Manta, etc. Getting on Google Maps and on the other online listings do not happen automatically. You need to create those business profiles.
In fact, there are over 40 main local online listings that every business should set up. Each profile listing should be completely filled out and SEOed with images and targeted keywords strategically placed in the description sections. Google loves consistency, so make sure that each listing features exactly the same information. Also, add new listings each month. Adding 20 or so online listings each month would help greatly. There are literally thousands you can set up. Need help with all this? It’s what we do. Contact us.
Lastly, try to get your website URL on as many other sites as possible. These are called “backlinks”. Just don’t buy those 10,000 backlink bundles that they sell online for cheap. You will not only waste your money, but your Google rankings could take a big drop. Rule of thumb is that quality always trumps quantity. Getting found online involves a comprehensive strategy of digital marketing, with Local SEO being just one, albeit an important, component.
If you are not sure of your local online profile listings or Google Map, click below for a free scan. The analysis will determine which of the main local profiles your business is listed on, and what the accuracy rate is. If you need assistance to cleaning up your current listings or adding new ones, please let us know, We can help.