One of the best ways to increase your customers is to capture and own the local search space. This is called Local Search Engine Optimization. You know it is important, we know it is important, your potential customers unwittingly know it is important. Before accepting these truths, we need to fully understand what exactly local SEO is, why it is important, and how it impacts businesses.
This article gives you a clear picture as to why local SEO is vital and how it can help your business grow by leaps and bounds.
What is Local SEO?
Local Search Engine Optimization (Local SEO) promotes your business’ website visibility on location-based searches. In many ways, local SEO similar to regular SEO practices with one major exception. Local SEO focuses on making sure your website is found by users searching for it in that specific location.
Location-based searches include queries with certain geo qualifiers; such as New York, NY or “near me”. Additionally, Google can identify the geolocation of a user and thus provide relevant search results.
Local SEO is all the more important if your business has a physical location or specializes in serving a specific area. According to a study by Forbes, 95% of smartphone users have used their device to perform local searches. Around 61% of those users called the store directly from the search results; while 59% of those users visited the physical location within 24 hours.
Local results in search are becoming increasingly competitive. The stats from the Forbes study indicate that users who find your business in a local search are highly qualified. Or said more simply, they’re more likely to make a purchase at your business.
How to Improve My Local SEO
By now, you’re probably thinking “What can my business do to capture these leads?” The following tips will help guide you through optimization of your company’s website to help capture local search traffic.
One of the easiest ways to improve your local search presence is to
encourage customer reviews on Google. Online customer reviews are known
to impact search rankings, consumer trust, and click through rate!
Google requires a minimum of five reviews on your Google My Business
listing before it starts showing your customer reviews in search
Mobile Friendly Website
In recent years, searches via a mobile device have surpassed searches from a desktop device. Now more than ever it is important to have a mobile friendly website. For starters, Google prioritizes mobile friendly websites in their search rankings. Equally important in having a mobile friendly device is the user experience. We’ve all experienced the frustration of a website that isn’t mobile friendly. The majority of users will return back to the search results to find a mobile optimized site; ultimately costing your company a sale. Partnering with web design experts is the best way to ensure your company’s website provides a positive user experience.
How Does Local SEO Impact My Business?
If you own a small business, optimizing your local SEO can be extremely rewarding. Below are a few of the benefits of Local SEO:
- Local SEO helps potential customers discover your business. In a city like New York where tourists are plentiful, many users will use the “near me” tag in their search. If your local SEO is optimized, you stand a better chance at capturing that traffic.
- Local SEO provides potential customers with the information they want when they want it. For example, if your business has free WiFi, displaying that information will attract customers who are looking for exactly that.
- Local SEO creates trust. The more information people have about your business, by way of reviews, address, operating hours, etc, the more likely people are to view your business as trustworthy.
Now that you know how Local SEO can be beneficial to your business, you can better manage your online presence and increase your