Local businesses such as small companies, or those that have multiple locations can grow their customer base using local SEO strategies. Brand Equation, a full-service consulting and digital marketing agency based in Raleigh, NC, shares their expert insights into what local SEO is, and how companies can leverage this opportunity to grow their businesses.
An Introduction to Local SEO
Local Search Engine Optimization, or local search engine marketing, helps businesses to promote their offering to local clients who are interested in those products and services, at the exact time they are searching for them online. This can be done in a variety of different ways that can be quite different from standard SEO practices (and in most cases are simpler and more effective).
Understanding ‘Local Search’
Local search queries are different from standard informational searches, as the results that are shown will be based on location. As an example, any business based anywhere in the world could potentially rank in the SERPS for a search like ‘how to repair a pool pump’, but if the person searching has ‘local intent’ and they’re looking for a pool repair company, they’re likely to only see the results of businesses that are close by. This makes sense because if you’re based in Raleigh, you want a pool repair company that services your area, but if you’re wanting to make the repairs yourself, it doesn’t matter who published the guide on fixing a pool pump yourself.
Why is this important? Because according to Google, 46% of searches have local intent, and search engines have evolved to understand when the searcher is looking for business suggestions that are location-based. So, a strategy for ranking in the local SERPS is vital for local businesses.
What are local SERPs?
Ranking in the ‘local pack’ or the ‘3 pack’ is what local businesses are aiming for to improve traffic to their websites. This ‘pack’ refers to the business listings that appear at the top of the search results below the map after a user does a Google search that has local intent.
And you’ll notice that the results look different, featuring opening times, reviews and often photos of the business. This information is pulled from the local company’s ‘Google My Business’ profile.
Getting Started with Google My Business
Your Google My Business (GMB) is your business’s profile on Google, and this information is used for displaying results in the local pack as well as in Google Maps. It includes all the information that you choose to submit, including your services, contact information, a description of your business and opening times. Having an up-to-date, accurate GMB profile gives the business a better chance of appearing in the local pack and will also encourage a higher click-through rate.
Building on the Basics
Once you have your GMB in place, it’s time to start building your online presence by:
- Building citations, strategically listing your business’s NAP (name, address, phone number, and website) information online in directories and business listings.
- managing reviews and ratings, to showcase the quality of your service and grow your authority
- Getting high-quality, relevant backlinks, from reputable websites to establish your website as trustworthy.
Brand Equation is a full-service consulting and digital marketing agency that has the right combination of experience and expertise in local SEO marketing. They are uniquely positioned to offer local businesses creative, results-driven, local-ranking packages to help them grow.
The company specializes in assisting clients with brand-creative services, website development, customer software integrations, mobile web development, mobile apps, reputation management, social media marketing, and omnichannel digital ad campaigns.