According to statistics, nearly a third of all online consumer searches are for local businesses. Also, a third of all Google searches are queries about local information.
As a business with a physical presence in a specific geographical region, ranking for such search queries can be a big source of business. But ranking for local search results will require you to nail your local SEO strategy.
But don’t fret, as this post highlights five factors you may want to focus on to maximize your local reach.
Have a Strong Website Foundation
Your website is the foundation for local SEO. Without a good website as the foundation, no level of content optimization will yield desired results.
One area of your website you may want to pay attention to is responsive design. A responsive website renders well irrespective of the device used to view it, which is a critical ranking factor for Google.
Besides having a responsive design, you will also need to work on your website speed, URL structures, and internal links.
Get Professional Help
While maximizing your reach in local results may sound easy on paper, it may not be quite as simple when doing it practically. Also, you may not have the time to work on your site’s SEO and run the business simultaneously.
So you may consider hiring a local SEO agency. For example, if you have a physical location in Dallas, you could get a local agency to refine your strategy for the best results.
A local agency in Dallas is better suited for navigating the local market because they understand it better.
Optimize Your Google My Business Profile
Google Business Profile, formerly called Google My Business, is a crucial local SEO tool at the disposal of local businesses. This free Google service enables businesses to establish a profile with their contact information, location, and customer reviews.
If you are yet to create a profile, you need to set up one immediately and ensure it’s well optimized. A good way to do this is to ensure all the information you entered is accurate, from working hours, phone numbers, business websites, and physical addresses.
Additionally, aim to fill out every section of your profile to ensure your audience gets as much information from your profile as possible. You may also need to upload a relevant picture, for example, the building where you are located.
Identify and Incorporate Local Keywords
When ranking for local searches, it is essential to identify keywords you want to rank for. Keywords are the phrases internet users type in search engines when looking for information online.
For example, a homeowner with a plumbing problem in Dallas could type “best plumber in Dallas.” So when creating content for your plumbing business in Dallas, you may want to ensure you use such keywords in your content to rank in Google results.
There are two main types of keywords; short tail and long tail keywords. Short tail keywords such as “Dallas plumbing” will be more competitive, and your chances of ranking as a small business may be slim.
Therefore, use longer keywords such as “experienced plumber in Dallas.” Long tail keywords are less competitive, thus increasing your chances of ranking in search results.
Encourage Customer Reviews
Your Google Business Profile has a section where customers can leave reviews. When ranking businesses for local searches, Google considers these reviews, so you may want to ensure you gather as many reviews as possible.
The best way of getting good reviews is by asking happy clients to leave a review. Often happy customers will be more than willing to do you that favor.
It is also important to consider that not all reviews will be positive. Disgruntled customers can also leave bad reviews, hurting your business and, consequently, Google ranking. However, how you handle bad reviews also matters because Google considers that when ranking your business.