Optimising Your Website for Local SEO
Being a business owner, you are aware of the significance of having a good online presence. However, just having a website is not enough to get the visibility you need and to attract new web leads. To appeal to your desired audience and acquire more customers, you must enhance your website for local SEO.
Optimising your website to rank higher in local search results is known as local SEO and involves refining your website and using off-site techniques. When potential customers search for products or services within their vicinity, it is important for your business to appear at the top of the search results. This guide will provide you with a step-by-step approach to optimize your website for local SEO.
Keyword Research for Local SEO
Keyword research is the best starting point for any local SEO strategy which involves identifying the keywords that are frequently searched by potential customers within your local area.
Local keyword research tips:
- Use Google Keyword Planner to discover local keywords (short and long tail) that are related to your products or services.
- Visit competitor websites to analyse the keywords they are targeting.
- Employ Google Trends or other SEO software to find seasonal trends and search volumes for keywords.
- Find long-tail keywords that include your location – for example, best financial planner in Manchester.
Create High Quality Content
Google still regards high-quality, original content as a central webpage ranking factor. Creating engaging and useful content will help you to attract local customers and beat the competition.
- Write page content and blog posts that contain your local keywords and give your target customers valuable information.
- Develop webpages that are location specific, promote your business and services, and contain your target keyword(s) in the URL – for example, financial-planner-manchester.
- Write content that is curated for a specific user intent or search question.
Optimise Website Content for Local Keywords
There are a multitude of ways to optimise your website. Your first step should be to optimise website content with your chosen keywords.
- Incorporate your keywords in your page titles, meta descriptions, headers, and content.
- Utilise schema markup to highlight your business’ location and contact details.
- Create landing pages specific to locations to target different areas.
- Ensure your website is mobile-friendly and loads promptly.
Create and Optimise Your Google My Business (GMB) Profile
Google Business Profile (GBP) is a free tool that enables you to control how your business appears on Google Search, Google Maps, and Google Shopping.
- Create and verify your GMB listing.
- Verify that your business information is precise and up to date.
- Add photos and videos of your business.
- Encourage customers to leave feedback or reviews on your Google My Business listing.
Get Customer Reviews
With Google accounting for over 90% of all searches, accumulating reviews on your GMB profile is a great way to enhance visibility on the search engine’s results pages while also putting positive third-party reviews in front of potential customers.
- Ask satisfied customers to leave reviews on your Google My Business listing or other review platforms.
- Respond to both positive and negative reviews in a prompt and professional manner.
- Listen to feedback to improve the customer experience.
Build Local Citations
Local citations are entries online that include your business’ name, address and telephone number – commonly called ‘NAP’. Citations could include other local websites, business directories or review sites.
- Claim your business listing on local directories such as Yelp, TripAdvisor, and Yellow Pages.
- Ensure that your business information (NAP) is uniform across all directories.
- Motivate customers to leave reviews on local review sites.
Optimising your website for local SEO is essential for most businesses and especially if your business is small-medium size and operates on a regional basis. A stellar local SEO strategy can often let you out compete bigger global brands that are not based in your area.
Proper keywords research, an optimised GMP profile with reviews, local citations and the regular publishing of high-quality content should see you build your search engine ranking for keywords. As always, optimising your web presence for local SEO performance is a continuous process and requires regular effort.