SEO for local businesses is an important tool that allows your business to access a wide range of people in your area in a very short amount of time.
If you own a local business, regardless of whether you operate out of your home or you have a physical storefront, you can optimize your website to be seen by people who are looking for your exact products and/or services in your area. And who doesn’t want more READY TO BUY customers showing up at their door?
In this article, we’re going to explore what SEO for local businesses is and why it’s important.
What is Local SEO?
Before we dive into why local SEO should be a vital part of your marketing strategy, let’s first define what it is and how it affects your business.
Essentially, local SEO is the way that you promote or advertise your business to the people that live in your geographical region through search engines like Google. It’s the easiest and fastest way to connect with local customers who are looking for your EXACT services.
Local search covers all the search terms that are geo-specific, like:
What Are the Benefits of SEO for Local Businesses?
There are so many benefits to optimizing your businesses online presence for your geographic location, and we are going to take a look at our top five reasons:
1. People Will Find Your Business in Organic Search
By optimizing your business for local search, you’ll show up on Google’s organic search results. Google uses its highly sophisticated algorithm to place the most relevant content at the top so that searchers get the best results that perfectly match their intent.
What’s this mean for you as a business owner when you reach the top of Google’s organic search results? It means you get FREE traffic! Increased traffic=increased leads=more SALES!
2. People Will Find Your Business on Google Maps
Aside from showing up organically in your local area, the next best place is to show up in the Google Maps area, and it’s arguably even more important. Google Maps listing show up BEFORE organic listings in a local search.
If you have a local business, it’s vital that you optimize your site to show up in the maps so that searchers with intent are able to find your business, particularly on mobile devices. With so many people searching from their phones today, they want results FAST. Google recognizes this and caters to searchers by placing the best local results in the form of map listings that make it easy to contact them, read their reviews, and visit their website.
3. You can Be Seen Before Your Competition
This one is simple, if you optimize your site for local SEO, you’re going to show up before your competitors who aren’t bothering to do the same. When you show up in front of local searchers ahead of your competition, you get more leads, traffic, and sales.
4. You’ll Create Trust and Authority in Your Area
When SEO for local businesses becomes a priority and you’re sitting at the top of Google search results, your brand will automatically gain more trust and authority in your niche and within your geographic area. This is especially true if you have a lot of 5-star reviews, so encourage those reviews from your customers!
5. It’s a Long-Term Strategy That’s Sustainable
Of all the advertising options you have for your local business, SEO is the most sustainable and longest lasting. Think about it this way, if you’re spending money on ads, once you stop spending money, your ads stop too. Any traffic or leads you were getting from those ads will stop dead in their tracks. With SEO, once you get to the top, the leads will keep on coming on AUTO-PILOT! SEO takes a bit longer to see results but with a well-implemented local SEO plan, your business will continue to reap the benefits well into the future.
Local SEO Stats
If we haven’t already convinced you of the importance of SEO for local businesses, take a look at some of these stats from HubSpot:
46% of all Google searches are seeking local information.
72% of searchers who did a local search visited a store within five miles.
97% of people use online resources to learn about a company over anywhere else.
88% of searches for local businesses on a smartphone or mobile device either call or physically visit the business within 24 hours.
My Top 3 SEO Tips for Local Businesses
Sign up on Google My Business, Bing and other local directories… you can see a full list here.
Make sure you include your actual geographical location along with your keyword in your title tags, meta descriptions and on your website. Find the perfect SEO keywords for your business here.
If possible, add your physical address on your webpage and make sure it matches what you submitted to the local directories EXACTLY!!
You can also use the other best practices that are used for national businesses as well too!
As you can see, there’s a whole wealth of opportunity in local search. And these people are READY TO BUY! If your local business isn’t showing up in front of them when they’re conducting a local search, you’re giving that business away to your competition.
Need help with your SEO strategy? We can help! Get in touch today to learn more about the ways in which we can help you get your business to the top of Google so that you can reap the rewards.