If you run a local business with local customers, the main focus in your digital marketing strategy should be optimizing your website for local searches. This article will present a few tips that will help you build a strong online presence in local searches, giving you a great starting point for more elaborate online marketing strategies.
Register Your Business on Google My Business
One of the first things you should do when operating a local business is to register it on Google My Business. This is a service provided by Google which puts you on the map, quite literally. Once your business is registered in the Google directory, its information will appear on Google Maps, Google searches, etc.
Research Keywords for Your Local Searches
A lot of the SEO of a page is based on keywords. Before you start optimizing your website for local searches, you should do a research on the keywords that prospects use to find your business and the websites of your competition.
How to Optimize Your Website for Local Search
Once you know which keywords are more effective for the local search, you can start optimizing your pages by including them in your content. Include them in your page descriptions, blog posts, and so on, but try to think beyond the obvious. For instance, make sure to include your keywords in the meta descriptions and picture tags too.
List Your Business in Local Directories
Try to think beyond just Google My Business. Check other online directories too and list your business if it doesn’t appear on them yet, or claim the listing if someone else entered it first. It is important to claim all your listings since is how you ensure that the information is correct and updated in a timely manner. If you’d like a shortcut on finding out which sites to claim, get a free local SEO report here.
Encourage Reviews from Your Customers
Reviews are a big part of what your potential customers will consider when choosing between you and your competitors. This kind of organic feedback is highly valued as it represents uncensored, genuine, honest feedback from people who have had first-hand experience with your product or service. Focus your review efforts on Google My Business and Yelp.
Team up with Other Local Events and Businesses
If you want your business to be relevant on a local level, you should start networking. If you pair up with other local businesses or appear as a sponsor or partner in local events and charities, you will gain exposure to potential customers that you already know a thing or two about. An effective way of finding such opportunities is to check the backlinks your competition gets, and try to get them yourself.
These few tips are great for a small business to include in its online marketing strategy, whether it is just starting or it already has a customer base. For great results in local searches, the key points above should be checked regularly and part of your marketing routine. If you don’t have the time or expertise to do it yourself, hiring a professional marketing agency to handle your online strategy is the best solution for you.