6 Ways to Dominate Local Searches
Ok, hold on to your hat, this could get a little “techie.” Should that really be a big surprise though? After all, when it comes to computer stuff, it can just be techie sometimes. Yes, the computer is there to make things easier, but sometimes you just have to tech it out. Hang in there though, not all of this local search stuff is just technical, there are lots of things that you can and should be doing yourself.
1- Claim Your Business
I know, this one sounds funny, right? Why should you have to claim a business you already own? In this instance, we’re talking about claiming it on Google My Business (and it wouldn’t hurt to claim in on Bing Places for Business as well). You’ll want to go to google.com/business and start the process. It’s pretty straight forward and Google provides simple directions to make it happen.
Once you’ve claimed the business though, don’t stop there! Populate your profile. It is so common on social media that people put up a business page and then never bother to put anything on it. That’s a mistake and it is also a mistake for Google My Business. You have the option to upload a logo. Do it. You have an option to upload photos of your business. Do that too. No less than three of them. Type a description of what your business is, add hours of operations and anything else it will let you do. The more information you fill out in the profile the better.
2 – Meta Tags Are Still Important
This is one of those techie things. SEO professionals should understand that your title and meta description tags are very important to SEO. In the past couple of years Google has expanded the area that can be used for the title and the description, which both show up on Google. If you don’t fill out the meta tags with useful information, you’re missing an opportunity to tell Google what your website is about and that it is important to rank it higher. If you don’t know what the heck this paragraph means, then get with your webmaster or an SEO professional like Provaro Marketing to do some analysis on your website and see how you’re performing.
3 – Create Content That is Local
It doesn’t really matter that you have figured out a new system for mowing lawns that will make my neighbors green with envy. What people want to know is that you’re close by, that you’re a neighbor yourself. How are you engaging with the community? Are you sponsoring a local soccer team? Are you involved in a project that people can drive by and look at? What local social events are you engaged in? All of this content shows up in search engines as local content and will help with ranking.
4 – Get in the List
This is another thing that is usually only known by the techies. There are literally hundreds of other search directories out there that are either contributing to your Google success or possibly fouling it up. Beyond Google, Bing, and Yahoo, your information could be listed on everything from Yelp to the Yellow Pages to industry specific listing engines and many more. With all of those other places that people might find a service like yours, wouldn’t it be a good idea to make sure your business is listed there too? If this sounds daunting, we’ve got a simple tool that helps you check your listing on over 50 different directories in one shot.
5 – Online Reviews are Important
Not only are they important, but getting them in a variety of places is very helpful. You may have some great Yelp reviews, but don’t forget Google My Business and Facebook business pages. Having great reviews in these locations is critical if only because Google is the highest ranked search engine in the world and Facebook is the giant of all social media platforms still. You want to have a great presence across the board! Don’t know where to start in getting more reviews? Check out our easy system to generate reviews from your biggest champions.
6 – Consistency Counts
As we mentioned in number 4 – Get in the List, you’ll want to get on other listing directories. Consistency matters because Google is looking at everything. The challenge is that your business may not be listed consistently across all of those engines. If that is the case, then Google may shy away from your listing because it’s not sure which information is correct. There are tools available that will help clean up this maze of directories, such as Moz, but they are not for the faint of heart and may be another good reason to use professional services instead of taking on this task yourself.
This article only touches on six different ways to dominate local search. There are other ways to draw people in and convert them to clients, but this is a good start!
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