Whenever you are stuck for ideas where do you go? When you want to win an argument where you do you go? …The internet.
When you want to buy a product or service the majority will turn online, specifically, Google, to find the best options for your needs. If you want your small business to be at the fingertips of consumers in your local area, who are ready to buy and spread the word around town, then you need to improve your local SEO.
Local SEO can be improved by optimizing your website and marketing your business online. This will help your website rank better on Google for your local audience. For businesses that rely on people physically visiting their storefronts, improving your local SEO will result in more foot traffic through your doors. Local searches show that 50 percent of mobile users visit stores within one day.
If you want your business to be the talk of the town, check out these five simple tips for improving local SEO for your small business.
1. Create a Google My Business account.
One of the simplest ways to get your business noticed by people searching for your products on the web is to create a Google My Business (GMB) account.
When a consumer searches for a Florist for example, GMB will display your address, phone number, hours of operations, photos of your flowers, and all the other info you entered your account. Your business will be more likely to be shown in the top three local listings that show up on mobile results.
Creating an account will also help you to be found on features like Google Maps which makes it much easier for your potential customers to contact you or head to your shop to buy.
2. Create local business profiles.
It is very important to have information on Google about your business to reassure potential customers you are in business and aren’t a scam. Make sure you have lots of contact information, photos, reviews and a social media presence.
Create local business profiles on popular search-and-discovery sites like Yelp, TripAdvisor, Yellow Pages, and Foursquare to boost your online presence and improve your local SEO. This is another platform for your potential customers to land on when searching online.
Don’t forget to look for any local online directories, or even your city’s website, where you can list your business information and link back to your website.
3. Collect reviews.
Getting reviews from your customers is essential, most people that are buying a product will look at the reviews to see if it really is worth the money, reviews also improve your local SEO too. According to Moz, online reviews are thought to make up 10 percent of how Google and other search engines decide to rank search results. That may not seem like a lot, but quantity, frequency, and diversity of your reviews on Google and other sites like Yelp play an important part in whether you rank on the first, second or third page.
To get reviews from your customers link your review profiles to your website and social media. Once a customer is happy with your service always ask them to write you a review online.
4. Optimize title tags with the local keywords
Another way to improve your local SEO is to optimize your site’s title tags with your local keyword. A total tag. A title tag is an HTML element that specifies the title of a web page, and you can customize that title to reflect what’s on your page and include a local keyword to get a better local SEO ranking.
For example, if your business is a bar named “Joe’s Bar” and you’re located in the city of Stirling, you can make your title tag “Joe’s Bar – Stirling.” Adding this in your title will allow the search engines to notify that your web page is directly linked to the city or town. This means your business will be more likely to rank in searches from your geographic area as well as searches that include the local term, like “bar in Stirling” for example.
5. Optimize your website.
Make sure you include your local information on every page of your website which is your name, address and phone number. The best place to have this is on a header or footer so it is on display no matter what page your potential customer goes on. This will further improve your site’s chances of being displayed in local search results.
One more simple tip is to improve your site’s internal linking structure. Many sites only have their important pages linked by the main menu navigation on the homepage or in the footer, but you should be adding relevant internal links within your pages’ content as well, including blog posts and service pages. After improving your site’s internal linking structure, your business is sure to rank better on Google.
Once you have implemented these 5 steps you should see an improvement on the local traffic to your website and shop.