If you are a business owner who has a physical store location, then you must include local search into your overall digital marketing strategy! This is especially important for small to medium sized businesses in bustling cities like Melbourne and Sydney where the competition level is extremely high.
Let’s say that you own a café right in the heart of the Melbourne CBD. Your targeted customers would probably be people who are looking for good cafes around the city, and if you want them to find you online, then you must have a local SEO strategy for your location.
For example, if one of your potential customers is walking around the city with a friend and they have got a sudden urge for a great cup of coffee, they will most probably whip out their mobiles and search for something along the lines of “best café in Melbourne”. Now, if your business name doesn’t pop-up on the search results, it’s very likely that they will head over to another café. And if you consider the fact that thousands of people are doing the same search in one day, this could mean a huge loss in revenue for you and a massive gain for your competitors!
Local SEO techniques are slightly different from national SEO. Both these methods have a lot of elements (backlinks, social signals, on-page optimisation, indexing and so on) in common but local SEO includes a few unique techniques that can help boost the visibility of your business in the local area.
So, if you are still fairly new to local Search Engine Optimisation, here are a couple of basic things that should cover:
- Claim a listing for your business on Google Places for Business and create a Google+ Business Page. Remember to include accurate NAP (name, address, and phone number) details as these will all show up on Google Maps at the top of the search engine results page.
- Remember to also include all the NAP information on your website as well. And it is very important to make sure that the NAP details on your website, business listings, and Google+ page are consistent.
- Include local keywords into your on-page SEO strategy.
- Citations – Create listings on other industry related websites and local business directories.
- Include rich snippets and try to get reviews for your business. Search engines will use these factors to determine the quality of your website or listing. And the better the quality, the higher the rank.
These are only a few of the basic local SEO techniques that you can use to improve your visibility when your target audience is looking for you within their proximity. If you still have not implemented these simple elements into your business’ digital marketing strategy then you must start doing it today!