Local search engine optimization (SEO) is important when it comes to your digital marketing strategy.
Whether you have one location or multiple you want to drive more brand awareness and increase revenue. Studies have shown that 46% of all searches on Google are local. Is your brand being found?
Local SEO is especially important for brick-and-mortar stores or for businesses that can only operate in a certain service area.
What is Location-Based SEO?
Location-based search engine optimization (SEO) is getting your brand and content to appear for a target location. It is important to have set up as you want to maximize your search traffic and dominate in local searches to increase your revenue.
Location qualifiers are the city, state, zip code, or service area.
When you have multiple locations, you want to have a strategy in place so that search engines like Google can distinguish the different locations and give the searcher the correct one.
Starting Point or House Keeping
The starting point is that your brand must have a physical address or location to show up on local search results. Your business has to populate on Google maps or other search engines.
Also, if your business address is not updated in Google My Business then it will not show up when someone runs a “near me” search.
The next step is to make sure that your brand’s name, address, and phone number are consistent across all online directories. If there are any discrepancies, this will cause a problem with Google search.
Now that the housekeeping is done, the real work begins.
Each Location Needs a Page
Whether you have one location or multiple they need their own page. Most brands will have all the locations listed on a home page or a contact us page and they stop there. This is not the way to get your location ranking on page 1 of a search engine.
Often clients will ask us “is that really needed”? Won’t the page have the same information? We tell our clients yes, it really is an essential step.
When creating a website, it is about organization and ease of navigation to give the best user experience. Part of that ease is also so that search engines can understand the website and in turn getting a better search ranking.
When creating location pages there is no difference, first, the URL should be very clear. The best way to do this is business.com/locations/city or state. You want it to be very clear and specific. You want the pages to be indexed correctly by Google.
SEO on Location Page
The next step in the process is optimizing the pages so that search engines understand what they are about.
Title Tag – The Location and Service or Product concisely listed.
Meta Description – The keywords, location, and enticing service or product information need to be in the allotted character count to make the user click on the URL.
Alt Image Text – The images on the page need to have location and keyword descriptions for best optimization.
Content – The content should contain the keywords and include location keywords.
Google My Business
Google has a service Google My Business to help control how a brand appears on Google & Maps. You will want to set up a GMB account and optimize it which also helps local customers find you.
GMB has guidelines to optimize each of your locations which include verifying each location, listing hours, add photos, and manage and respond to reviews.
As a brand, you will want to get reviews for all of your locations, as social proof is an important part of gaining new visitors. Reviews can make or break a brand’s reputation.
While getting reviews is an important part of SEO, so is managing reviews for all locations. Ignoring this can break your local SEO. Google displays reviews next to business listing in search results. Be sure to comment on all reviews, thanking positive ones and giving a calm professional response to bad reviews.
Consistency Wins the Race
SEO does not happen overnight, so you must be patient. SEO can take some time to see drastic results. Be sure to study the reports and analytics. The more work that you put in and the more consistent you are, the better your results will be and continue to be.
If your brand does not have the additional time to put into SEO or any other digital marketing strategies, MaxAudience can help. Our team is trained in web design, content marketing, SEO, PPC, social media, and CRM marketing. We will get you more customers and blow away your competition. Schedule a consultation today.