Local Search Basics

Local Search Basics

 April 09, 2014 |  Views:979 |  Posted by: John Marx |  Reading Time: 3 Minutes, 2 Seconds |  Article Tags: 

The internet has people believing in removing the need for having a physical address. This may be true for some types of businesses that can survive solely online. Most businesses though still require a physical address as they are in your local community. Local search engine optimization (SEO) for these businesses are critical as it helps their business on the search engines. Many small businesses will benefit from doing local SEO and is something businesses need to work on.

What is Local SEO?

Local SEO is rethinking your keywords for your website to include and concentrating on geographical keywords and keywords using major tourist information to help increase visibility in your search results. If you are a coffee shop in a town, you will want to use keywords that mention your town (e.g. “Chesterton coffee shop”, “Indiana Dunes coffee shop”) rather than just “coffee shop”. By providing more localized information, you stand a better chance of not missing potential revenue.

Local Services

The first place to start is by creating listings for your local business. Google, Yahoo, Bing and SuperPages all offer services to help your customers find you. Filling out and verifying the information will take some time for each one and may require a post card or phone call to verify that you are the actual owner of the business. Doing this the first time will take the most amount of time but is something that should also be looked at and verified for accuracy and changes on a monthly basis and should be part of any SEO strategy you have.

The information you put into the local search categories should be the exact same for all of the search engines. Your name, phone number, address and description information should always match so that you provide a consistent and accurate image of your business. Whenever possible you should include your hours, link to your website, Facebook and other social media pages.

Citations

The ultimate free advertising is when other businesses, whether it be your local chamber of commerce, newspaper or other source positively mentions your company name, address, website and/or phone number on their sites. This citation information plays an important factor for Google and Bing is ranking algorithms to help you move up in the search results.

Reviews and Testimonials

Collecting reviews and testimonials for your business online can also boost your local SEO efforts. It sounds easy to write tons of fake reviews to help you on your way, but it is not so simple. Search engines have become smart in figuring out what real and fake reviews are. When they spot fake reviews it can actually lower your websites credibility and move your search results off pages one.

Social Media

Using social media can also improve your local SEO. You can use Pinterest’s new Place Pins service. This service allows users to create personalized journeys through local areas such as “50 best coffee shops in Chesterton”. Given time, search engines will begin to index and incorporate these pages into local search results.

Conclusion

Local SEO can appear quite daunting when you realize you are going up against the every business. The key with local SEO is you are only going up against those in your local area. This is a much smaller and market than the entire internet and can show many more gains for your business than doing organic SEO alone.

<a href='mailto:john@jm2marketing.com'>John Marx</a>

CEO / Code Ninja
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John Marx

John has been an entrepreneur and pusher of all things “normal”. He was brought up where a handshake is as good as any word and even more important than any legal speak. John believes in giving back and giving people more than they expect. This is the foundation and basis of JM2 Webdesigners & Marketing. The prices will shock you, the amount you get will shock you even more, and the skills his entire team brings will completely amaze. He has built a team of experts that are talented, young, and efficient. Each one has the characteristics of the company in wanting to see a small business grow and each one goes above, and beyond which makes John beyond proud of them.

So why is John considered the “Code Ninja”. It’s isn’t because people fear ninja’s (they should). They will fight until their last breath defending, achieving the mission, and helping (in this case small businesses). John believes in very surgical strikes to help a business grow using agile methods that change rapidly, in ways people don’t expect, and with a relentless passion to achieve greatness.

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