Search Engine Optimization or SEO is the way to put your business on the map. It has the capacity to single-handedly boost your business. However, SEO is also quite amorphous in nature and changes quite often. You cannot possibly employ the same strategy for a long period of time. Similarly, Local SEO (LSEO) is even more dynamic and the marketing strategy should adapt accordingly to attract more customers. A successful LSEO strategy will not just optimize on-site and off-site content but will also increase the traffic, offer your brand visibility, and increase your profits. LSEO will cut out any local competition and make your brand shine. Thus, if you are looking for a robust marketing strategy that brings out the best of SEO, then you have come to the right place.
Here are some tips and tricks to boost your LSEO skills and dominate the local markets:
Keyword research is the foundation of an effective SEO strategy. Keywords are a set of words or phrases that internet users use to seek out content, which includes businesses and services. Knowing and analyzing these words could give you an edge and rank high on the search engines. Google search engines are designed to detect textual matter pertaining to the keywords searched so that it can efficiently pick out the best websites suited for the user’s needs. Therefore, if you optimize your business page with the keywords, your website will have higher hits and a greater chance of making its way to the customer.
For Local SEO purpose, you may add geo-modifiers to your keywords so that someone from a specific location would run into your website first. You could choose a locality, city, or even a country based on the geographic expanse covered by your business. Remember, you should choose the keywords that are easy to understand and not very technical. This way, you can target a large audience, including the layman and regular internet users. You may begin your keyword research by simply speaking to those around you about what they would generally search for while looking for something related to your business. Start collecting this information in a list and use an effective keyword research tool, like Google’s Keyword Planner to get the approximate search traffic related to the keyword. The tool offers other information related to the keyword, like advertiser competition, search volume, and keyword trends. Here are the list of top 5 keyword tools that you can use
- Keyword Shitter
- Keyword Tool.IO
- Google Keyword Planner
It is essential that these keywords fit into your content organically and do not stick out like a sore thumb. It makes the content more enjoyable for the readers and is a soft marketing technique, making your business more alluring. Keyword research is a detailed process that may require a set of tools rather than just one.
Another important portion of your on-page SEO is the title tag. Title tags are the main text that is visible when you search for keywords (usually appear on the top of the browser’s tab). These tags are indicators to the search engines and offer a brief description of the information furnished by the webpage. They are also used to attract the internet user by using quirky and interesting titles. For SEO purpose, it is important for the title to contain the keywords that you wish your business to rank for.
Just follow these helpful guidelines and writing an interesting and efficient title tag:
- For the title to be displayed correctly, do not exceed the 70 character limit.
- Use your branding to make an impact. Follow the brand names with a list of your services.
- A catchy but descriptive title can definitely increase traffic. Use it wisely but do not stray from your core business.
- Adding a city name that you are targeting will also be of a great help
Have you ever heard of the adage ‘never judge a book by its cover?’ In the world of internet, it is exactly the opposite, everyone judges the website by the ‘cover’ that you offer. In this case, the ‘cover’ is the meta description. Meta descriptions are the preview of the page that can compel the visitor to click on your website. It contains a short synopsis of what the page contains. Incorporating your targeted local keywords in your meta description also helps the search engines to locate your website faster and rank it highly. Try to incorporate out-of-the-box ways through which you can pique the interest of the users so that they land on your page. Since the meta description has to be succinct, make good use of the limited 240 characters.
The essential information that you should display on your webpage should be Name, Address, and Phone/Contact Details (aka NAP). These three credentials related to your business helps Google in identifying the business location. Once Google picks up this information, it assesses the quantity and verifies this information. Once it is checked, Google associates a NAP (Name, Address, and Phone) ranking to your webpage that can give a fitting competition to other local business enlisted under the same location. A better ranking means your business has a greater chance of being spotted when a user searches something related to your business. This offers visibility to your business and aids in boosting your business. Use this information consistently and update it regularly if you make any changes.
Citation of your business on various directories and local listing will propel your business’ merit. Also ensure that you have claimed the ownership of your business so that it appears legitimate. Claiming ownership is easy and one can do it via Google My Business (GMB). Upload at least 3-5 high quality photos of your business. Also, update your GMB with business details like the working hours, services offered, payment modes accepted and so on. Complete the entire listing so that customers will have the ease of contacting you and knowing all about you.
Customer Reviews and Testimonials
Most customers willing to hand over their work to any business would definitely check out the customer review before making their pick. If your business has a 3+ star rating, your business is more likely to score the deal. Therefore, it is important to get positive reviews and testimonials against your business to help potential customers make up their mind. However, anonymous tip offs are not enough, the quality of the review plays a vital role. A review is believable if it is made by a trusted reviewer and carries a genuine testimonial. Honest reviews give more exposure to your business. Thus, customer reviews are something you cannot simply buy and hence you need to concentrate on delivering supreme customer satisfaction. Politely ask your customers for a feedback after you have offered them your services.
Since images cannot be read as texts, search engines rely on image descriptions that can act as image identifiers. Including image tags and description can improve the performance of your website.
Here is how you can optimize the images present on your webpage:
- Image Filename: The name of the file as it is stored on the computer is retained when you upload it to your webpage. Therefore, save the image file with the name that you wish the webpage to name it as. Here, you can include the keywords in the file name for greater hits.
- Title Text: Title text is the text that is displayed when the cursor hovers over the image. This too should include the keyword while describing the image.
- Alt-Text: Alt-text or alternative text is the set of main and other supplementary keywords that normally Google or search engines suggest if you look for a particular phrase. If the user searches for a keyword that is other than your main keyword then Google could still pull up your website on the basis of the closest match. Also, due to internet connectivity issues, if the image fails to load on your webpage, the alt-text is normally displayed. Alt-text also assists the visually impaired users.
- Size: Size of your image matters! Ensure that the images present on your website are compressed and have proper dimensions. Use online tools or Photoshop to get the image in the required form.
- Geo-Tag: Tagging images with your targeted location can also help you dominate the local search results. You may use https://www.geoimgr.com/ or http://www.geosetter.de/en/
Mobile Friendly Display
With technology making advancements by leaps and bounds on a daily basis, you should no longer concentrate on desktop view of websites. Users access the internet through alternate options like mobile phones and tab. Therefore, imagine their disappointment when they enter your website but it takes forever to load. Moreover, when the website does load, they are greeted by tiny text that they have to zoom to read. Mobile friendly websites are designed so that they fit the screen size of whatever device visits their website. Apart from improving the user experience, mobile friendly websites also feature highly on search engine results. In fact, search engine giant, Google, has been pushing towards encouraging mobile adaptation of websites. Failure of websites to comply with Google’s guidelines could result in a loss of traffic that uses mobile devices for internet.
Involve Social Media
Social Media is slowly evolving to become a game changer and you should exploit the power of social media in the promotion of your business. Begin with getting your business on social business portals like LinkedIn and then also create social profiles on popular social media websites like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, etc. This offers exposure of your brand to customers and you can use to connect with more customers. Have a social media management team and maintain the passwords of all these profiles on an Excel sheet.
Schema Markup (Structured Data Markup)
Making use of local structured data markup can help your business touch new highs. Structured data markups are the website codes that relay all your information to the search engines. This information includes all about your business including the products or services, and the reviews that you have received and so on. Very few businesses are making use of these schema markups against their businesses. Structured data markups assist the Google trawlers to understand your business better and keep a record of the content that your webpage contains. Make use of local schema markups to target local users.
Schema markups can offer rich and appealing snippets to the internet user before they click on your website. Due to this, a user has a greater understanding of what they should expect on visiting your website and if you do have interesting content, they will definitely be staying on your page longer, thereby, increasing the chances of them making use of the services that you offer.
This concludes the handy DIY guideline for you to dominate your local SEO. So create a checklist of these pointers and follow them for the overall inception and development of your webpage. It will give your brand visibility and shall attract new customers, through which you can marginally cut down most of your local competition.