Local SEO involves optimizing sites to rank very high for a local region; community focus optimization. A physical business such as a restaurant, a plumber or a laundry service primarily services a local territory and only benefits when ranking high in local searches. If you’re a residential electrician do you really want number one search engine spot 1,500 miles away or in the community you live and work in? There are methods to increasing your local ranking and they are a bit different than the general SEO approach. Lets go over some of the key elements that help your local SEO score.
Homepage Who, What, Where
Your homepage must spell out to search engines your business name, phone number, location as well as the services / goods you offer and where you offer these services / goods. When optimizing your site for local SEO, its okay to list the towns you service or sell to. For global optimization search engines dislike keyword stuffing.
Each Service / Product Has a Landing Page
Your most optimal setup is to have unique pages for each service or product you offer, as well as a single service page that lists all of your Services or Products on a single directory page. The beauty of having single page per service or product is that you can fine tune the actual content, cover a wider range of keyphrases, locations, and so forth. You can also tell the search engines bots in the meta description and title information what this particular page focuses on.
NAP, NAP, NAP
Wait did I just say that? I meant to say use Name, Address, Phone Number (NAP) on every page and try to make it a universal component (always in the header and/or footer).
Get a My Business Page
Both Google and Bing offer a business page (Google has My Business Page and Bing has Bing Places for Business). These are key pages to own and control as they provide rich data snippets to the search audience. This also allows you to add supplemental information about your business, insert other photos and so forth. This also allows your customers to write reviews about your business which may help and generate more business provided your reviews are very positive. Speaking of Reviews…
Reviews are Critical
When your customer had a great experience with you, why not ask them for a little support, politely nudge them to write your business a review. Remember that a search engines goal is to serve up the most optimal information someone is looking for and that includes suggesting businesses that rank high in customer satisfaction.
Get Links to Your Site
Link reciprocity from other local businesses is a must. A search engine that sees numerous sites link back to you especially on a certain keyphrases (i.e. great residential plumber, fantastic pizza delivery, etc…) will consider you to be a specialist in a particular service or product. Otherwise, why would all these other sites keep mentioning you and linking to your site? Its wise to reach out to other businesses and directories to try and get yourself linked from them.
There are numerous other tweaks that can help you rank high locally but the above mentioned are things you should start to plan out and go after as soon as you can as they do carry a good weight in search engines. Feel free to call 617-466-9286 (eastern standard time) or contact me here if you already have a site that needs help with local SEO work, or if you need any other web work!