Local Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the process of optimizing your website and online presence so that you rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs) for local search queries. When people search for businesses like yours in their area, you want your website to be one of the first ones they see.
Local SEO is especially important for small businesses, as it can help you attract customers who are already interested in what you have to offer. It can also help you compete with larger businesses that have more resources.
Here are five local SEO tips for small businesses:
1. Claim and optimize your Google Business profile.
Your Google Business profile is one of the most important factors in local SEO. It’s a free listing that appears in Google Search and Maps when people search for businesses like yours.
To claim your Google Business profile, simply go to the Google Business website and search for your business name. If your business is already listed, you can claim it by verifying your ownership. Once you’ve claimed your profile, you can optimize it by adding all of your relevant business information, including your address, phone number, website, and hours of operation.
You can also add photos and videos to your Google Business profile, and encourage customers to leave reviews. Reviews are a great way to build trust and credibility with potential customers.
2. Use local keywords throughout your website.
When you’re writing your website content, be sure to include local keywords throughout. This means using keywords that are relevant to your business and the location where you serve customers.
For example, if you’re a plumber in Boston, you might use keywords like “plumber Boston,” “plumbing services Boston,” and “emergency plumber Boston.”
You can use a keyword research tool like Google Keyword Planner to find relevant local keywords. Once you’ve found some keywords, be sure to include them in your website titles, headings, meta descriptions, and body content. You can read more about this process by going to our On-Page SEO guide.
3. Build local backlinks.
Backlinks are links from other websites to your website. Search engines consider backlinks to be a sign of authority, so the more backlinks you have, the higher you’re likely to rank in SERPs.
To build local backlinks, you can reach out to other businesses in your area and ask if they would be willing to link to your website. You can also write guest blog posts for local websites and directories.
4. Get involved in your local community.
One of the best ways to improve your local SEO is to get involved in your local community. This could involve sponsoring local events, volunteering with local charities, or simply getting to know other business owners in your area.
When you’re involved in your local community, you’re more likely to be mentioned on local websites and social media pages. This can help you build brand awareness and attract new customers.
5. Monitor your results and make adjustments as needed.
Once you’ve implemented some local SEO tips, it’s important to monitor your results and make adjustments as needed. You can use Google Analytics and Google Search Console to track your website traffic and see where your visitors are coming from.
If you’re not seeing the results you want, you may need to adjust your keyword strategy or build more backlinks. It’s also important to keep your website content up-to-date and relevant.
Tools for implementing local SEO tips
Here are a variety of both paid and free tools that you can use to implement the local SEO tips above. There are obviously a gazillion other tools that you could use and we encourage you to do your own research. However, here are a few of our favorites to get you started:
- Google Keyword Planner: A free keyword research tool that can help you find relevant local keywords.
- Google Business: A free platform that allows you to create and manage your Google Business profile. Make sure to request reviews from your clients!
- Moz Local: A paid tool that can help you track your local SEO performance and build local citations.
- Yoast SEO: A free WordPress plugin that allows you to optimize all your site pages for local SEO. They also have wonderful training resources.
- Ahrefs: A paid tool that can help you analyze your backlinks and identify opportunities to build more.
- Detailed: A free Chrome plugin that allows you to check on-page SEO and also extract keywords from Google searches. We use this daily!
Tips for small businesses
If you’re a small business owner, the overwhelm of managing all your responsibilities can be tough. Make sure to take a deep breath and try to implement the following three tips when looking at boosting local SEO:
- Start by focusing on your most important local keywords. Don’t try to rank for every possible keyword related to your business. Instead, focus on the keywords that are most relevant to your target audience and the services you offer.
- Don’t overstuff your website with keywords. It’s important to include keywords throughout your website, but you don’t want to overuse them. This can make your content look spammy and hurt your SEO ranking.
- Be patient and persistent. It takes time to see results from local SEO. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t see results immediately. Just keep implementing
How BURK Digital can Guide You
Here at BURK, we have a team of dedicated specialists that is at the ready to help you implement all of these Local SEO tips and more. If you decide you need some guidance, we are at the ready to implement a comprehensive strategy and grow your online business. The great thing is that we are not only focused on SEO. We also do web design, graphic design and more. Think of us like an outsourced marketing department that is ready to bring all your dreams to fruition.