So, what exactly is local SEO? Local SEO enhances a business’s online presence to increase its exposure in local search results. Users frequently use “near me” in search engines like Google to look for businesses in their area. So, the businesses that employ local SEO techniques will appear on top results. As an example, suppose you own a bakery. Whenever people in your area search “bakeries near me,” your business profile will appear on the Google listing, so they can easily contact you, increasing sales and profits.
Local SEO is crucial for any business that wants to attract customers from a specific location. It can be any business or local shop like a salon, bakery, cafe, boutique, restaurant, gift shop, pet food shop, clothing store, medical store, jewelry store, or dental clinic, and it also can be used by service providers for their business like plumbers, electricians, lawyers, doctors, and digital marketing agencies like us.
Now, you might be thinking, how can you develop a local SEO strategy for your business? Or will hiring an expert local SEO marketing agency be more advantageous? Or how much time will it take to bring desired results? Is it worth giving it a shot? Don’t worry; we’ve got you covered and will try to answer all your questions and doubts.
Here is an ultimate step-by-step guide that you ever need to read to develop an unbeatable local SEO strategy for your business:
1. Claim and optimize your Google business profile:
The first and most essential step is creating Google my business profile, as it is the first interaction between your business and potential customers.
- Google business profile setup and verification: Go to Google my business, then click on “manage now”. Sign in with your business Gmail account. You can easily set one up if you don’t have one already. Next, enter the name and address of your business. You can select from the other options if your business is already listed. You can then verify your business by using your phone number or email address.
- Add a business description: After your business has been verified, you can add a business description. By adding keywords related to your business, your chances of ranking high will increase.
- Add relevant details: Next, you have to add relevant details about your business, like name, timings, address, and your business website’s URL.
- Add your products or services: Next, you must add the products or services that your business offers.
- Add latest images: Updating the images of your business or products will help your business establish credibility with prospective clients. Images and content that are up-to-date are ranked and preferred by Google.
- Manage your rating and reviews: You should encourage your customers to leave a positive review or give positive ratings on your Google business profile.
2. Research local keywords:
Find out what words and phrases people in your target location use to search for products or services related to your business by researching local keywords. By including these keywords in your content like meta descriptions, you will increase your business’s visibility and increase sales.
- Brainstorm relevant keywords related to your products or services: The first step in researching local keywords is to make a list of the products and services that your business offers, then brainstorm the list of seed keywords or basic keywords related to your business. For example, let’s suppose you have a bakery in Delhi, your keywords could be “best bakery in Delhi”, “best bakery in Delhi for cakes”, etc.
- Take advantage of keyword research tools: For researching keywords, you can use keyword research tools like Google keyword planner, SEMrush, Ahrefs, etc. Additionally, these tools provide information about search volumes, competition, etc. To improve your ranking, you should also research what keywords your competitors are using.
- Consider using local modifiers: Local modifiers are keywords that specify a geographical location. You should use them to target specific locations, such as “in Delhi”, “in Chandni Chowk”, “in Okhla”, etc.
- Use Google autocomplete: Start typing your basic keyword to use Google autocomplete. Auto-suggestions from Google will appear as you type. Using Google autocomplete, you can find long-tail keywords that Google suggests you target more specifically. You can then use keyword research tools to determine their search volume and competition.
3. Build local links:
The development of an effective local SEO strategy must include both internal and external link building. The purpose of this is to increase visibility, credibility, and traffic. Your business will also gain an advantage over its competitors by building local links. A well-backlinked business profile gets more organic traffic, and hence more sales.
- Create content: You must create high-quality content that will serve as a basis for building links. You need to make sure that the content you use is related to your business and the local area. It can be in the form of blog posts, videos, infographics, etc. To get your business profile ranked at the top of the search results, you will need to get backlinks from the authorized website.
- Register your business with local directories: Make sure your business is listed in local directories such as Justdial, Sulekha, IndiaMART, TradeIndia, Bing Places, Yahoo Local, etc. As a result of listing your business in other directories, you will help build your credibility and authority, and you will be viewed as more trustworthy than your competitors.
4. Make local listing citations:
By creating citations for your local listings, you will be able to improve your search engine ranking. It is important to ensure that your local listing citations provide accurate and up-to-date information about your business. There is a high probability of your business being found by your potential customers if your business is listed in different directories as it reaches a wide range of potential customers.
- Ensure NAP consistency: The NAP is the name, address, and telephone number of your business. Maintaining NAP consistency is crucial for any business. This means that all the local directories should have the same information so that customers can find your business easily.
- Monitor citations regularly to keep everything updated: You should keep checking for any inconsistencies or errors in the directories’ information and make sure that the information is up-to-date and accurate. It should contain the same punctuation, capitalization, and spelling.
5. Management of schema markup for local business:
Schema markup is a form of microdata that helps search engines better understand your business webpage, resulting in improved visibility, rankings, and better user experience. You can use Google’s structured data testing tool to create schema markup for your website. Google’s structured data tool will help you create an error-free makeup schema and implement it properly. You can use other free tools as well, like Schema.org and Technicalseo.com.
- Local business schema: To create a local business schema, you need to list all the relevant information regarding your business in schema markup tools for verification, including business category, name, address, operating hours, phone number, and website URL. Once the schema is complete, you can post it on your website. Ensure that you also include other relevant information, such as ratings and reviews.
- Location schema: Creating a locational schema is similar to the business schema. First, go to the schema markup tool and select the option “place” from the schema types available. Then you need to list all the relevant information in schema markup tools like the location’s name, address, phone number, operating hours, website URL, latitude, and longitude. Then you can add this to your website.
- Product schema: In Google’s Structured Data Testing tool, select the type “product” and enter the product name, image, description, brand, model number, SKU, price, and availability. You can then add this product schema to your website.
6. Measure your online reputation:
Analyzing your online reputation can provide insights into the gaps your business might have and how to improve them. Additionally, it gives you insight into how your customers perceive your company.
- Set up Google alerts: You can set up Google alerts to track brand mentions across the web. This will help in measuring the online reputation of your business. You can use reputation and other management tools like Hootsuite and Brand24, which offer free and paid versions.
- Monitor Reviews and Comments: You should monitor the online reviews, comments, and ratings that people post on your Google my business profile and other local directories to get insights about the perception of your business among the customers.
- Check your Google my business (GMB) profile regularly and check insights: To find and measure your online reputation among your customers, you should check your GMB profile regularly and click on insights to check on how customers are finding and interacting with your business online.
7. Measure the results:
Last but not least, you should measure the results of your strategy regularly to ensure that everything is working according to the plan. You should track rankings for your keywords, monitor website traffic, observe consumer behavior, etc., through tools like Google search console, Google search analytics, Ubersuggest, and SERPWatcher. Here are a few metrics you can check to ensure your local SEO strategy is working for you.
- Total business profile interactions: You can check the business profile interactions by logging in to your Google My Business profile, clicking on insights, and scrolling down to the section “interactions.”
- Phone calls: The increasing number of calls you get after implementing the strategy indicates that your local SEO strategy is working perfectly.
- Website clicks: You can also check this for free with Google Analytics. Click on the left-hand menu on “Acquisitions,” then click on “Overview” to see all the website traffic sources. To check new clicks on your website, look for the option “New users.” To see more detailed information about your website, select “site content” and “all pages.”
- Revenue: The revenue increase in your sales is the direct metric for measuring the success of local SEO.
- The number of newly acquired customers: The number of newly acquired customers is also the direct result of the successful local SEO strategy.
Conclusion: Suppose you are not leveraging the benefit of local SEO. In that case, there is a good probability that you might be losing your potential customers due to your low visibility online, inaccurate or incomplete business information online, and no reviews that could build the authority and credibility for your business.
We have broken down all the technical jargon for you in the simplest form to understand and implement the unbeatable local SEO strategy for your business so that you can stay ahead in your game.
We understand that all this is time-consuming and requires regular checks. Implementing a local SEO strategy requires patience and continuous monitoring. With the best local SEO agency on your side, you can save a tonne of time and effort while having professionals manage your local SEO. You can trust Inklik SEO experts, who are well-versed with the latest industry knowledge and best practices. Inklik has a proven track record of delivering results for businesses of all sizes. We ensure that our clients stay ahead of the competition and provide them with monthly reports to make the process transparent.
Make your website a magnet for attracting local customers with Inklik’s powerful local SEO strategies.
1. What are the three pillars of local SEO?
- Proximity: Proximity is a key factor in local SEO, as it helps to ensure that a business appears on local searches. This can be achieved by businesses by including their address, zip code, and other pertinent geographic information on their website and in their local listings.
- Prominence: Prominence is a measure of how well-known a business is in its local area, and is determined by factors such as reviews, ratings, and mentions on other websites. Prominence can be measured using tools such as Google My Business, Alexa, and Moz Local.
- Relevance: Relevance is important for local SEO because it helps ensure that the local business is being found by the customers when they search for a related business product or service near their location. It is also important for the business to be listed in the local directories and categories so that the search engines can accurately crawl and list the business in the search results.
2. What factors are important for local SEO?
Here are a few factors that are important for local SEO:
- NAP consistency: It is crucial to maintain the consistency of your business’s name, address, and phone number across all online platforms, including your website, Google My Business listing, social media profiles, and local directories.
- Reviews and ratings: Encourage your customers to give your business positive reviews and high ratings on Google My Business profile and social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram can improve your local search rankings and attract more customers.
- Local keywords: Keywords are one of the most important parts of local SEO. It Includes adding location-specific keywords in your website’s content and metadata which can help your website rank higher in local search results.
- Google My Business optimization: You should create and optimize your GMB listing with accurate and complete information, including your business name, address, phone number, hours of operation, photos, and reviews to get visibility and more traffic.
- Backlinks from local websites: To get authority and credibility for your business in your local area you should focus on building backlinks from other regional websites and directories.
- Mobile-friendliness: Make sure that your website is optimized for mobile devices, as most of the local searches are performed on mobile devices.
- Social media presence: To improve your online visibility you should create and maintain an active social media presence. It will also help you connect with potential customers in your local area.
- Local content: By creating content that is relevant to your local areas, such as local news, events, or community initiatives, can help improve your local search rankings and establish your business as a trusted local authority.
3. How can local SEO help businesses?
Here are some of the few ways that local SEO can help businesses:
- Improved online visibility: Local SEO helps businesses to appear in the top search results when people search for local products or services, which can increase their online visibility and drive more traffic to their websites.
- Increased website traffic: With better visibility in local search results, businesses can expect to receive more targeted traffic to their website, which can increase the likelihood of converting visitors into customers.
- Provides better user experience: Optimizing a website for local SEO often involves providing users with accurate and up-to-date information, such as business hours, contact information, and location. This can improve the user experience and increase the likelihood of people engaging with your business.
- Increased credibility and trust: Positive reviews and high ratings on local search directories can increase a business’s credibility and trustworthiness with potential customers.
- Increased foot traffic: For businesses with physical storefronts, local SEO can help drive foot traffic by providing accurate information about the business’s location and hours of operation.
- Cost-effective and long-term marketing: Local SEO can be a cost-effective way for businesses to reach their target audience and promote their products or services without having to invest in expensive advertising campaigns. Also, it works for a longer time, unlike paid advertising which is time-bound.