When you own or manage a small business, local SEO strategies are important to your success. You must provide the searcher with the most relevant answer to their questions in order to appear high in the local search results.
For example, if you are searching for a flower shop, you want to find the one closest to you. When you target search strategies to your local area there is a much better chance that you will show up in a local search for your products and services than if you were competing with everyone in the world that offers the same things you do.
Here are some essential steps to take to help you improve the local search results for your business.
Claim Your Business Listings
You should immediately make sure your business is claimed, verified and optimized on Google, Bing and Apple Maps. If your business already shows up in these local directories, whether you added it or not, you can start by claiming your listing.
Choose the Right Business Categories
It is important to properly categorize the local search page for your business. While you are claiming your business page, you will have the option to choose the categories for your business. This part of the process is extremely important for the right audience to find you.
The number of categories you can choose is based on the platform where you are listing your business.
Be sure that you consistently list your business the same way on other places across the web. You should have the same business name, address and phone number (referred to as NAP), and as many of the same categories as possible in each listing.
When all of this information is consistent across the web, Google and Bing have much more trust that the information is accurate and will reward your listing with higher search results.
Get More Quality Reviews
A lot of times reviews are displayed within the search engine results page. Work to get more local reviews to provide social proof for your business. For local searches, Google places a pretty high value on reviews when ranking your business.
Work to Attract Quality Links
You should try to gain a good amount of valuable incoming links from authority websites. You can get these from local directories, other local businesses, community bloggers and online newspapers.
With blogging, social sharing and content development, you can greatly improve your chances of attracting quality inbound links.
If you take the steps outlined above you’ll be miles ahead of many of your competitors. If you need help with all of this you may want to consider our Local Search Optimization program.