Local SEO Checklist 2023: Simple Tips for Local Ranking
Local SEO is a critical aspect of online marketing that businesses cannot afford to ignore. It involves optimising a website’s online presence to attract more traffic from local searches, which can help businesses increase their visibility in the local community and attract more qualified leads.
The local search ecosystem comprises various platforms and directories such as Google My Business, Yelp, and Facebook. These platforms allow businesses to create profiles and provide information about their products or services. Optimising these profiles can help businesses appear higher in local search results.
One of the most important factors for successful local SEO is creating high-quality content that accurately describes your business and its offerings. This content should be optimised with location-based keywords that are relevant to your target audience.
Another essential component of local SEO is ensuring that your website is mobile-friendly. With more than half of all internet traffic coming from mobile devices, it’s crucial to optimise your site for smaller screens and slower connections.
Understanding How Local SEO Works and Checking for Local Intent
Local SEO is a digital marketing strategy that focuses on optimising a website’s online presence to attract more traffic from location-based searches. It is crucial for businesses targeting a specific geographic location to understand the concept of local SEO. This type of SEO helps businesses appear in search results when potential customers are looking for products or services in their area. In this section, we will discuss how local intent works and how businesses can optimise their content for local SEO.
What is Local Intent?
Local intent refers to the search queries that include location-specific keywords such as “near me” or “in [city name].” These types of searches indicate that the user is looking for something in their immediate vicinity. For example, if someone types “coffee shops near me,” they are likely looking for coffee shops within walking distance.
Checking for Local Intent
Checking for local intent can help businesses optimise their content for local SEO. One way to check if there is local intent behind a search query is by using Google’s Keyword Planner tool. This tool allows users to see how often certain keywords are searched and provides suggestions based on those keywords.
Another way to check for local intent is by analysing the search results themselves. If most of the top results are businesses with physical locations, it’s safe to assume that there is local intent behind the search query.
Factors That Affect Local SEO
Several factors affect local SEO, including Google My Business listing, local citations, and reviews.
Google My Business Listing
A Google My Business listing is an essential component of any local SEO strategy. It provides information about a business, such as its address, phone number, hours of operation, and customer reviews. Having an up-to-date Google My Business listing can help businesses appear in Google Maps and other location-based searches.
A citation refers to any online mention of a business’s name, address, and phone number (NAP). Local citations can come from a variety of sources, including directories, social media platforms, and review sites. Having consistent NAP information across all these sources can help improve a business’s local SEO.
Online reviews are another crucial factor in local SEO. Positive reviews can help businesses rank higher in search results and attract more customers. Encouraging satisfied customers to leave reviews on Google My Business or other review sites can help boost a business’s online reputation.
Building Customer Love and Loyalty in a Mobile World with Email Optimization
Use Mobile-Optimised Landing Pages to Enhance the Customer Experience and Increase Conversions
In today’s mobile world, it is essential for marketers to optimise their landing pages for mobile devices. The majority of people view emails on their smartphones or tablets, so it is crucial that landing pages are optimised for these devices as well. By doing so, customers can easily navigate through the page and have a positive experience with your brand.
Personalise Emails to Connect with Local Customers and Build Brand Loyalty
Personalisation is key; you can create a connection between your brand and the customer. This personal touch helps build trust between the two parties, which leads to increased loyalty.
Incorporate Social Media and News Updates to Keep Clients Engaged and Informed
Social media has become an integral part of our lives, so incorporating updates from social media platforms in emails can help keep clients engaged with your brand. Additionally, providing news updates relevant to your industry shows that your company is knowledgeable about current events in the field.
Include a Phone Number in Emails for Easy Access to Customer Support
Providing easy access to customer support is crucial for building trust with customers. Including a phone number in emails allows customers to quickly reach out if they have any questions or concerns regarding products or services offered by your brand.
Use Video Content to Showcase Industry Expertise and Highlight Quality Products or Services
Video content has become increasingly popular over the years due to its ability to engage viewers effectively. Using videos in emails can showcase industry expertise while highlighting quality products or services offered by your brand. This type of content also helps build trust between brands and customers.
Offer Exclusive Deals and Promotions to Show Appreciation for Customer Loyalty and Drive Success for Local Businesses, Such as a Bike Shop
Offering exclusive deals and promotions not only shows appreciation for customer loyalty but also helps drive success for local businesses. For example, a bike shop can offer exclusive deals to customers who have purchased from them before. This type of promotion encourages repeat business and builds brand loyalty.
Optimising for Local Voice Searches and Using Schema’s Geographic Markup
Voice search is becoming increasingly popular among local searchers, and optimising for local voice searches can help businesses rank higher in local search results. This means that businesses need to focus on optimising their content for voice search queries, which are typically longer and more conversational than traditional text-based searches.
One way to optimise for voice search is by using schema’s geographic markup. This markup helps search engines understand the location of a business and its relevance to local queries. By including this markup on your website, you can improve your chances of ranking higher in local search results.
In addition to using schema’s geographic markup, it’s important to create local content that includes relevant keywords and is optimised with title tags and meta descriptions that include the location(s) being targeted. This will help ensure that your content is visible to local searchers who are looking for products or services in their area.
SEO tools like Moz Local can also be helpful for businesses looking to manage their local listings across multiple locations and directories. These tools allow businesses to update their information across all platforms at once, ensuring consistency and accuracy across the board.
Creating separate local pages for each location can also improve local search rankings and make it easier for customers to find the information they need. By creating dedicated pages for each location, you can provide detailed information about each location, including hours of operation, contact information, directions, and more.
When optimising for local search, it’s important to consider the specific needs and behaviours of local searchers. For example, many people use “near me” searches when looking for products or services in their area. By including these types of keywords in your content, you can increase your chances of appearing in relevant searches.
Another important factor to consider when optimising for local search is ratings and reviews. Many people prioritise businesses with high ratings or positive reviews when making purchasing decisions. By encouraging customers to leave reviews and responding to feedback, you can improve your online reputation and attract more customers.
Filling in Every Data Point Possible and Integrating Google Data for Local Analytics
Filling in every data point possible is the best way to start optimising for local SEO. The more information you provide, the easier it is for search engines to understand your business and match it with relevant search queries. This means that you need to fill out every field in your Google My Business profile, including your business name, address, phone number, website URL, hours of operation, categories, attributes, photos, videos, and reviews.
Integrating Google data allows you to track your progress and make data-driven decisions. By linking your Google My Business account with Google Analytics and Google Search Console, you can get insights into how users are interacting with your business online. You can see how many people are visiting your website from Google Maps or Search results, what keywords they are using to find you, how long they are staying on your site, which pages they are viewing the most or least, and where they are located.
In fact, according to a recent Whiteboard Friday by Moz titled “How Can We Improve SEO When We Don’t Control Content?” businesses that fill out all their Google My Business information are 70% more likely to rank in the map pack results. The map pack results show up at the top of local search results when someone searches for a product or service near their location. Being featured here can greatly increase visibility and traffic to your business.
Using tools like difficulty score can help you prioritise which data points to focus on first. Difficulty score measures how hard it is to rank for a particular keyword based on factors such as competition level and search volume. By targeting low-difficulty keywords first and optimising for them thoroughly (e.g., adding them to your business name or description), you can quickly improve your local SEO performance without wasting time on high-difficulty keywords that may take months or years to rank for.
Another important data point to fill in is your business’s service area. This tells Google which geographic regions you serve and helps it show your business to users who are searching for services in those areas. You can specify your service area by city, state, or postcode or by drawing a custom shape on a map.
It’s also crucial to keep your NAP (name, address, phone number) consistent across all platforms where your business is listed. Inconsistent NAP can confuse search engines and users alike, leading to lower rankings and fewer conversions. Make sure that your NAP is accurate and up-to-date on your website, social media profiles, directories, and review sites.
Reviews are another important aspect of local SEO that should not be overlooked. Encourage satisfied customers to leave positive reviews on Google My Business or other review sites relevant to your industry. Respond promptly and professionally to negative reviews as well, showing that you care about customer satisfaction and are willing to address any issues.
In addition to filling in every data point possible on Google My Business, you can also use other tools such as Google Posts and Q&A to engage with potential customers directly from the search results page. Google Posts allows you to share updates about events, promotions, products, or services with a call-to-action button linking back to your website. Q&A lets users ask questions about your business that you can answer publicly for everyone’s benefit.
Tracking the performance of these efforts through Google Analytics and Search Console will help you identify what’s working well and what needs improvement. For example, if you notice that most of your traffic comes from mobile devices but your website is not optimised for mobile viewing or has slow loading times, you may need to invest in responsive design or site speed optimisation.
Finding Citation and Link Opportunities with Link Intersect and Building Backlinks with Location in Anchor Text
Use Link Intersect Tools to Find Citation and Link Opportunities
Link intersect tools are an excellent way to identify websites that link to your competitors but not to your website. This provides an opportunity for you to reach out to those websites and request a backlink or citation. By using these tools, you can also identify other websites in your industry that may be worth reaching out to for link-building opportunities.
One of the best things about using link intersect tools is that they allow you to see which websites are linking to multiple competitors. These are the sites that are most likely receptive to linking with your business as well.
When using these tools, it’s important to focus on high-quality opportunities rather than simply trying to get as many links as possible. Look for websites with high domain authority, relevant content, and a good reputation in your industry.
Building Backlinks with Location in Anchor Text
When building backlinks, it’s important to include location in the anchor text. This helps search engines understand the relevance of the link to the local area, which can improve your local SEO rankings.
For example, if you own a pizza restaurant in London and want to build backlinks, including “London” in the anchor text can help search engines understand that your website is relevant for searches related specifically to pizza restaurants in London.
It’s important not just to include location keywords but also make sure they flow naturally within the sentence so as not to appear spammy or forced.
Utilise Citation Management Tools
Citation management tools can help you keep track of your business’s citations across various citation sources such as Yelp, Google My Business etc.. This ensures that your business information is consistent and accurate across all platforms.
Inconsistent NAP (Name Address Phone Number) citations can hurt local SEO since search engines rely on this information when determining how trustworthy a business is. Consistent NAP citations signal the trustworthiness and reliability of your business.
Identify High-Quality Citation Sources
Not all citation sources are created equal. It’s important to identify high-quality citation sources that are relevant to your industry and location. This can help improve your local SEO rankings.
For example, if you own a dental practice in Los Angeles, getting citations from local directories such as LA Times, Yelp or Citysearch can be more valuable than getting citations from national directories.
Include NAP Citations in Your Backlink Strategy
NAP (Name, Address, Phone Number) citations are an important factor in local SEO. Including NAP citations in your backlink strategy can help improve your local search visibility and drive more traffic to your website.
When building backlinks with NAP citations, it’s important to make sure the information is consistent across all platforms. Any discrepancies between the information on different platforms can hurt your local SEO efforts.
Local Organic Rankings, Rebuilding Organic Traffic after Website Relaunch, and Local SEO Keyword Research
Local Organic Rankings
Local organic rankings are essential for businesses that want to attract customers from their local area. These rankings are based on organic search results, which means they are not influenced by paid advertising or other forms of promotion. Instead, they rely on a complex algorithm that takes into account various factors such as relevance, distance, and prominence.
Organic rankings refer to the natural search engine results that appear when someone types in a query. They are different from paid ads, which appear at the top of the page and have a small “Ad” label next to them. Organic results can be more valuable than paid ads because they indicate that the website is relevant and trustworthy enough to rank highly without having to pay for it.
Search Engine Optimisation
Search engine optimisation (SEO) is the process of optimising a website’s content and structure to improve its visibility in search engine results pages (SERPs). It involves various techniques such as keyword research, on-page optimisation, link building, and technical SEO.
Rebuilding Organic Traffic after Website Relaunch
Rebuilding organic traffic after a website relaunch can be challenging but is essential to maintain or improve local organic rankings. This process involves optimising the website’s content and structure to align with SEO best practices and local ranking factors.
One critical factor in rebuilding organic traffic after a website relaunch is ensuring that all URLs redirect correctly. Broken links can negatively impact user experience and cause search engines to devalue your site.
Another important factor is making sure your site has high-quality content that targets relevant keywords. Keyword research will help you identify what terms people are using when searching for products or services like yours. Once you know these keywords, you can incorporate them into your site’s content strategically.
Local SEO Keyword Research
Local SEO keyword research is critical for businesses that want to rank well in local search results. This process involves identifying relevant local keywords and incorporating them into the website’s content and metadata. It also involves analysing local search results and identifying opportunities to improve rankings.
One way to identify relevant local keywords is by using Google’s Keyword Planner tool. This tool allows you to see how many people are searching for specific terms in your local area and provides suggestions for related keywords.
Another way to find relevant local keywords is by analysing your competitors’ websites. Look at the terms they are targeting and consider incorporating similar phrases into your own content.
Local directories are an important ranking signal for local SEO. Businesses should ensure that their listings in these directories are accurate and up-to-date, as this can help improve their local rankings. They should also consider submitting their listings to additional directories to increase their visibility in local search results.
Directories such as Yelp, Yellow Pages, and Google My Business provide valuable information about businesses, including hours of operation, contact information, and reviews from customers. Having a presence on these directories can help potential customers find your business more easily and build trust with them before they even visit your site.
Advanced Tips and Strategies for Local SEO, Competing for Local Queries with No Physical Premises, and Sponsoring Local Events
Utilise Local Marketing Strategies to Boost Your Local SEO Efforts
One of the most effective strategies is to create content that is specific to your local area and targets local keywords. This can include blog posts, videos, infographics, and other types of content that are relevant to your business and the community you serve.
For example, if you run a restaurant in London, you might create content about the best pizza places in the city or the top-rated Italian restaurants in your neighbourhood. By doing so, you’ll not only attract potential customers who are searching for these topics but also improve your search engine rankings for relevant local queries.
Another effective strategy is to optimise your website for local keywords by including them in your page titles, meta descriptions, headers, and content. This will help Google understand what your website is about and improve its relevance for local searches.
If You Have a Local Business with No Physical Premises
If you have a local business with no physical premises, such as an online store or a service-based business that operates out of clients’ homes or offices, optimising your online presence is crucial for improving your local SEO.
One of the first steps you should take is to claim your local listing on Google My Business and other sites like Yelp and TripAdvisor. This will allow potential customers to find you when they search for businesses like yours in their area.
Make sure that all of your NAP (Name, Address, Phone number) information is consistent across all platforms where you have a presence. Inconsistent information can confuse both search engines and users alike.
Sponsoring Local Events Can Be a Great Way to Increase Your Visibility
Sponsoring local events can be an excellent way to increase visibility in the community while also improving your local SEO efforts. When sponsoring an event make sure that it aligns well with what services/products are being offered by the company. For instance if there is a marathon event happening in the city, sponsoring it will give your company visibility and also help promote healthy living.
Make sure to promote the event online and on other sites to maximise its impact. This can include creating social media posts, blog articles, and press releases about the event, as well as reaching out to local news outlets and influencers who might be interested in covering it.
Stay Up-to-Date with the Latest Best Practices and Tools for Local SEO
Local SEO is an ever-evolving field, so it’s important to stay up-to-date with the latest best practices and tools. One of the best ways to do this is by following industry news sites and resources like Moz Local or BrightLocal.
Regularly auditing your website’s performance against competitor sites is also crucial for identifying areas for improvement. Use tools like Google Analytics and Google Search Console to track your local SEO efforts over time, identify trends in user behaviour, and optimise your site accordingly.
Optimising for mobile devices is another critical aspect of local SEO that cannot be overlooked. With more than half of all internet traffic coming from mobile devices, having a mobile-friendly website is essential for both user experience and search engine rankings.
Technical Considerations for Your Local Business Website, Registering Your Business with Google Business Profile and Manager, and Moz Local Closes the Marketing Loop for Clients
As a local business owner, you know how important it is to have an online presence. But simply having a website isn’t enough. Technical considerations for your local business website are crucial for optimising your site’s visibility on search engines.
One of the most important things you can do is register your business with Google Business Profile and Manager. This is a must to ensure that your business information is accurate and up-to-date. Having a complete and accurate business profile on Google Business Profile can help improve your website’s proximity to potential customers searching for businesses in your area.
Creating a checklist of technical considerations and regularly checking your GMB profile can help prevent problems with your website’s visibility and ranking on search engines. Here are some key technical considerations:
A slow-loading website can negatively impact user experience, which in turn affects search engine rankings.
With more people using mobile devices than ever before, it’s essential that your website is optimised for mobile users.
An SSL certificate ensures that any data transmitted between the user’s browser and server remains private.
Structured Data Markup:
Structured data markup helps search engines better understand the content on your website, which can lead to improved rankings.
A well-organised site architecture makes it easier for users to navigate your site, which improves user experience and search engine rankings.
Content Quality: High-quality content that provides value to users will keep them engaged on your site longer, which signals to search engines that your site is authoritative and trustworthy.
Now, let’s dive deeper into Google Business Profile and Manager. Having a complete and accurate business profile on GMB can lead to more business opportunities and increased visibility for your local business. Here are some tips for optimising your GMB profile:
Business Listing: Make sure your business listing is accurate and up-to-date, including your business name, address, phone number, website URL, hours of operation, and services offered.
Add high-quality photos of your business to help potential customers get a better sense of what you offer.
Encourage satisfied customers to leave reviews on your GMB profile. Positive reviews can improve search engine rankings and attract new customers.
Use the Posts feature to share updates about your business, such as promotions or events.
Enable messaging so that potential customers can reach out to you directly through GMB.
The Importance of Local SEO and How to Dominate with Google Posts, Q&A, and Reviews
In the world of SEO, local search engine optimisation is becoming increasingly important for businesses. With more and more people searching for products and services online, it’s crucial that your business shows up in local search results. This is where local SEO comes into play.
One important ranking factor for local SEO is positive reviews.
Having a high number of positive reviews can greatly improve your chances of ranking higher in local search results. Not only do they provide social proof to potential customers, but they also signal to search engines that your business is trustworthy and provides quality service.
But how do you get more reviews? One way is by utilising Google Posts. Google Posts allow you to create short updates about your business that appear directly in your Google My Business listing. These posts can include calls-to-action such as “Leave us a review” or “Tell us about your experience”. By making it easy for customers to leave a review, you increase the likelihood of receiving more reviews.
Another way to improve your local SEO rankings is by utilising the Q&A feature on Google My Business listings. This feature allows potential customers to ask questions directly on your listing which can be answered by either yourself or other customers who have had experience with your business. By providing helpful answers, you not only improve the user experience but also signal to search engines that your business is active and engaged with its audience.
Finally, don’t underestimate the power of reviews when it comes to local SEO. Encourage satisfied customers to leave positive reviews on platforms like Yelp or Facebook as well as on Google My Business listings. These reviews not only help with rankings but also provide valuable feedback for improving customer satisfaction.