It is crucial for a business to be found by location. A good quote from local SEO tool builder Bright Local sums it up: “The number one reason people search online is to find a location of a known business.” But how does Google decide what businesses turn up by location and how do you get your local business appear in location results? In this article we will discuss Google ranking, local SEO, how to do local SEO with or without a storefront, and why local SEO is important to your business.
How does Google Ranking Work?
Google uses a proprietary algorithm to rank websites for various search results. The ranking dictates when and where a site will show up in a Google search. Sites with a higher Google ranking will appear more frequently and above lower ranking sites. The factors that determine Google ranking are a sites usefulness, relevance, quality of content, speed, keyword usage, and structure. However, Google ranking is constantly adjusting search results which is why it is so important to stay on top of keywords. Many growing business accomplish this by hiring an SEO expert. A factor that is not usually considered is a business’ local presence on the website, also known as Local SEO.
What is Local SEO?
Local SEO is a marketing strategy aimed to help local businesses appear in search results based on the geographic location of a potential customer. When someone is searching for a business near them, Google ranking will list local businesses that they determine to be the best options.
5 Local SEO Strategy Tips
Businesses looking to have a highly effective local SEO strategy need to make their physical address easy to find. Here are 5 tips to improve your google Google ranking and Local SEO:
- Your business needs to have the company’s name, address, and phone number on the website.
- Your business’s name, address, phone number should be on local citation sites. Examples of local citation sites include Yelp, Google My Business, Bing, and Angie’s List. Google My Business is one of the most important citation cites because it helps your business to turn up in a local search, Google Maps, and Business Google.
- Ratings and reviews are extremely important. A good rating and review on local citation site will increase Google ranking because it will prove your business is providing quality service. Think about adding a comment section into your website.
- Local Directories – although many local directories use paid models, many free local directories are available to help your maximize your local SEO footprint
- Automated Local Listing Services – These are software companies that aggregate local directories to manage and target local SEO for your company. It may be worthwhile to obtain these services through an Agency or consulting firm like SunCity Advising because they have access to better rates and can integrate it into your monthly service fees rather than all upfront.
- Moz Local – Moz only works with roughly 20 directories and although they claim to be hitting most of the major directors, we have found that there are omissions of major search engines like Yahoo and other prominent directories. Although cheaper than Yext, we find that it does not offer the same bang for your buck. Keep in mind, this is not Moz’s core competency.
- Synup – A newer player in this space, Synup offers similar services but we have found that the directors are smaller than Yext and of a lower quality. A word of caution: If you request a proposal or demo, be prepared for a bombardment of calls and emails!
We have personally had great success with local automated listings but it’s not a one-trick-pony, we utilize all 5 of these local SEO strategies to stay in the top spot for local searches. Keep in mind when focusing on Local SEO, you need a consistent format with your name, address, and phone number on all sites.
What if my business doesn’t have a local address?
Throughout this article, we have been discussing the importance of local SEO and Google Ranking for local businesses. But what if you do not have a storefront then how can you compete with other businesses.
There are three main options for businesses with no storefront to do for local SEO.
- Write content into your site that introduces a specific area you can service. Make sure to add a specific location to the title of the page, into the headline, and the meta description.
- Add individual pages that introduce projects that you have done at specific locations.
- Use Google My Business & website plugins to outline the area you service or pin specific locations and add map to your site.
Why should Businesses care about Local SEO?
- Local SEO assists in higher visibility for local searches. Everyone is going to get a different results based on geography. Creating a higher chance for your business to be discovered.
- Local SEO searches are often used to find a business or product. Meaning there will be a higher conversion rate from search to sales.
- Local SEO is an easy and effective way to advertise your business.
- Local SEO will target local customers. Assisting in creating a customer base.
- Local SEO can brand your business as trustworthy. if you keep consistent business information and show high reviews then customers will believe you are a good company.
SunCity Advising is a local SEO company in San Diego. We have helped multiple businesses be discovered through SEO, keyword research, writing content, and website design. Check us out to get started on improving your company’s visibility and start getting discovered by customers.
Author: Daniel Barry
Daniel Barry is an Advisor at SunCity. His background is in digital marketing, SEO and operational management. His client portfolio includes successful partnerships with startups, small businesses, medium-sized firms & large corporations.
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