You’ve spent months building the perfect website for your local business.
You’ve beefed up your security strategy, come up with an awesome list of blog post ideas, and you’ve studied up on all the latest trends when it comes to website design.
But are you overlooking one of the most important things of all when it comes to growing your customer base, rising in the search engine rankings, and beating out your competition?
If your digital marketing strategy doesn’t include local SEO solutions, then the answer is likely “yes.”
Instead, read on to learn about the best and most effective local SEO strategies you can start putting into practice today.
1. Testimonials Rule Everything
The most important thing to remember when it comes to local SEO solutions?
If your website and your other local business pages (think your listings on Yelp or within local digital directories) don’t contain reviews/testimonials, we can pretty much guarantee that you’re going to lose almost all of your business to your competitors.
After all, almost 90% of online shoppers say that they value the customer testimonials section of a website as much, if not more so, than word-of-mouth reviews from friends and family.
Never be afraid to ask your most loyal clients to leave you a review on Yelp, Google My Business, or simply to contribute a testimonial for your website.
Be sure that you’ve also asked if they’re willing to provide their contact information to potential clients, since many may want to verify that it is actually them (and not you!) writing that glowing review.
And once you have those testimonials? Make sure you’re responding to all of them (yes, the good, the bad, and the just plain crazy) to show that you value customer feedback.
2. But Your Keywords Matter, Too
Testimonials are an important part of the top local SEO solutions. However, no one is going to be able to read them if they never make it onto your site in the first place!
This is where location-based keywords come into play. We know that it can be tempting to position your company as a big fish in an even bigger pond when it comes to your target market and overall service area.
However, generalizations will often get you nowhere.
First of all, you’ll be competing with much larger chains/competitors for those popular keywords. This means that by using them in your content, you could be doing your competitors a favor. Additionally, generalized keywords won’t put you out in front of your local market, the people most likely to actually use your products/services.
When you’re creating location-based keywords, look for options that reference your state, city, neighborhood, county, and even your street. For example, instead of “Japanese restaurant” try “best local sushi Beverly Hills” or “top window repair companies Trenton NJ.”
3. Google It
Just like it did in 2015, 2016, and 2017, Google will continue to dominate both local and larger search engine results and will remain the number one influencing factor on your local digital marketing strategy.
As a result, you need to claim your Google My Business listing.
In today’s world, no one wants to have to go wading through several pages of a website in order to find out things like hours, location, accepted forms of payment, and more.
Your Google My Business page serves as a one-stop-shop for all of the most important information about your business. It will also help you to skyrocket to the top of search engine results in the local market.
If you really want to make Google notice you (and drive up your business in the process) then you can add a Google map to the contact page of your website. You might also consider adding that same map to the bottom of every internal page.
This isn’t just so the directionally-challenged can easily find your place of business.
It’s also because people can then instantly plug that map into the navigation systems on their mobile devices. If they’re already in the car or taking a walk around the neighborhood, Google will guide them to your store in just a few minutes.
P.S. — If you have a WordPress powered website, check out this super easy tutorial on how to add a Google Map to your site.
4. Never Underestimate the Power of Details
When it comes to finding the right local SEO solutions for your business, sometimes, you need to think small.
Take a look at your website’s current URL address.
Is there anything relating to the location of your business in it? Do your meta tags mentioned your city, state, or county? What about the image file names, and even the titles and headers within your content?
If you answered “no” to any (or all!) of these questions, then it’s time to beef up the local presence of your website’s content.
This will make it easier for Google and other search engines to figure out exactly where you’re located, so they can send more of your target market your way.
5. Link Build With Other Local Businesses
Last but not least, when you’re looking for local SEO solutions, don’t forget about the other local businesses in your area!
Not only will this help to get your name in the minds of more people, but it will also boost your search engine rankings.
Reach out to other small businesses on your block and talk to them about linking to each other’s websites and product pages on blog posts and other content. You might even team up with them to do a social media posting, guest post, or even to sponsor a local sports team in your area.
Take Advantage of These Local SEO Solutions
We can’t wait to hear about how implementing these local SEO solutions have helped to increase your website’s conversions, build your brand recognition, and made you a local hero.
However, in the wide and ever-changing world of digital marketing, local SEO is hardly the only thing you need to pay attention to.
Looking to generate blog ideas, understand the basics of SEO, or know what to ask a professional SEO company you’re considering hiring?
Check out our blog to learn more about how to master all things SEO.