How to reach more customers with local SEO
Local SEO is the process through which you optimise your website to make it easier for potential customers and clients in your local area to find you.
Unlike traditional or international SEO, which aims to bring people to your site searching from anywhere in the world, local SEO concentrates on your immediate area. This may be your local suburb, town or state, depending on the area you serve and how much competition there is around you.
Local SEO is becoming more important than ever before, especially as the number of people using their mobile devices as their primary source of information continues to increase. One in three Google searches is related to location, and 78% of local searches on mobile result in a physical offline purchase.
So what can you do to improve your local SEO and reach more customers in your local area?
1. Conduct Local Keyword Research
Keyword research is important for general SEO and vital for local SEO. Conducting keyword research means that you gain an insight into what searchers are typing into search engines like Google to find businesses like yours.
Local keywords will usually have your location such as “pool cleaning service Sydney” or “Perth florists.” The people searching for keywords such as these are looking for your products and services if they’re in your local area, so, by including these keyword phrases in your website content, you can help them to find your business online.
2. Blog About News and Projects in Your Local Area
By publishing regular content relating to your local area on your website, it helps Google and other search engines to know your location and understand that you’re serving the local community.
Helpful information about local events also increases your brand visibility for local searchers. For example, if you’re running a childcare centre, you might want to blog about events for families and kids in the area. Locals looking for information about these events will then find your site and may well click around to find out more about you.
Publishing local information can also help to attract links from other local sites, which further helps with SEO.
3. Add Your Website to Business Listings and Directories
Listing your business on local directory sites is known to be a ranking factor – i.e. it will help to improve the visibility of your website for local searches.
As well as boosting your search rankings, business listings can also provide referral traffic, as some web users will go directly to these listings to find the businesses they’re looking for locally.
There are many Australian business directories and you should add your site to as many as possible. Yellowpages.com.au, truelocal.com.au, and yelp.com.au are good places to start.
4. Optimise Your Google My Business Listing
Your Google My Business Listing provides convenient information about your business such as location, opening times, and reviews, and can also help to improve your SEO.
You can optimise your listing by making sure your location and associated business information is all complete and correct, writing a good description including relevant keywords, and publishing additional content such as photos and My Business posts.
Getting Local SEO Right First Time
As with other forms of SEO, local SEO is part science and part art. While it’s important to understand the basics of site optimisation, not every business owner has the time or resources to devote to SEO.
This is why many small businesses find that it makes practical and financial sense to partner with a local SEO expert with the experience and skills to develop an effective SEO and online marketing strategy to attract local customers.
Author - Maz Hancock
Maz is a SEO Specialist based on the Gold Coast and enjoys working closely with digital marketing teams and ambitious local business owners to implement SEO in a way that’s results-focused, simple and effective.