How important is local SEO in your ongoing marketing campaigns? In the past, the notion of “more is better” was quite common; In theory, this strategy would produce the highest return on investment (ROI). The time has changed. Now, taking a localized approach takes center stage, and for good reason.
Studies have highlighted that 97% of consumers use local terms when searching for a product or service. Therefore, appreciating which ranking factors are most relevant will often make the difference between success and failure. Below, we take a look at the top seven local SEO variables and what each one entails.
Trust is essential today; particularly when establishing the reputation of a local business. Positive customer feedback will help establish a higher degree of transparency and thus web pages can enjoy a higher number of incoming visits. Google and Bing also welcome reviews.
On- page SEO factors are equally important as they will help determine the user-friendly nature of a web page. Some variables that fall under this category include the use of the most relevant keywords, a mobile optimization of the page design and NAP (name, address, phone number) listings so that search engines can know the physical location of a company.
Google My Business
Google My Business is arguably one of the biggest local SEO benchmarks today. This free tool allows businesses to work with Google Maps to provide users with a clear business profile. Additionally, search algorithms will use Google My Business to present results based on factors such as proximity to the person making the search query, relevant products, and contact details.
We can think of a backlink as algorithmic word of mouth. These links originate from another page and direct users to your website. However, they can also be used to establish an authoritative and confident appearance. Then, consumers will be much more willing to see what you offer. In fact, these observations have been reinforced by robust statistics. Research indicates that a staggering 92 % of all web pages never receive organic search engine traffic . This is largely because they have not employed any backlinks.
How are behavioral signals directly related to local search engine optimization? There are three main factors that can influence a business’s ranking on Google.
- Click rate . Indicates the number of incoming visits a web page receives.
- Click-to-call mobile widgets. It involves how many users contact a business through a click-to-call widget embedded in a web page.
- Interaction in social networks . We are not just referring to online platforms like Facebook and Twitter. Google has now developed algorithms that can determine how many people “check in” to a specific physical location (such as a retail store) with their mobile devices.
Citations are nothing more than listings found in local online directories. Search engines will use citations to learn how much digital exposure a page is receiving. Digital directories featuring a business name, address and phone number are great ways to strengthen brand identity and once again enjoy more inbound traffic.
Curating quality content is a final facet of the SEO equation. However, it must be given a decidedly local touch. Blogs about recent events, location-specific keywords , and links to trusted community news sources will fall under this category. While the notion of quality content is certainly nothing new, it is important to note that in this case a local flavor must be given. As a result, it will be much easier to engage with your target demographic