When it comes to boosting your business’s search engine optimisation (SEO), focusing on local rankings is a must. By increasing your visibility on local search, you can reach more potential customers who are looking for businesses like yours.
What is local SEO?
Local SEO is a digital marketing strategy that focuses on optimising your online presence to attract potential customers in your local area. This can include things like improving your website’s visibility on Google, and enhancing your Google Business profile, local directory listings, and online reviews.
Local SEO is especially important for any business that wants to attract customers in a specific location. Because of this, many people think local SEO is only relevant for businesses like restaurants and cafés, retail stores, home services, and hair salons.
In reality, local SEO is important for many professional services, like lawyers, accountants, and financial advisors. This is because building a local presence helps with trust and credibility. Ultimately, any business that relies on local customers should prioritise local SEO to ensure they optimise their online presence for local search and that they are reaching their target audience.
By implementing effective local SEO strategies, you can increase your visibility to customers who are searching for businesses like yours in your local area. Basically, this helps you attract more foot traffic to your physical location, generate more leads, and — if done correctly — increase your revenue.
3 key methods for boosting local SEO
1. Use location-specific content to improve visibility
When it comes to local SEO, location-specific content is key. It’s not enough to just include relevant keywords and phrases — you also need to make sure that you tailor your content to your local audience. This means incorporating information that’s useful and relevant to people in your area.
If you’re a recruiter located in St Kilda, for example, you might want to create blog posts articles that highlight employers located along the St Kilda Road corridor, news, or trends related to topics like interviewing tips and resume writing.
Maybe there are local businesses you could collaborate on some content with, or networking events you can recommend that are happening nearby. By keeping your content up-to-date and relevant you’ll not only attract more local customers, you’ll also establish yourself as a trusted local resource.
Of course, keywords are still important. Including phrases like ‘senior software engineer jobs’ or ‘Melbourne recruiter’ will improve your chances of showing up in search results when people search for those terms. But, don’t overdo it. Keyword stuffing can actually hurt your SEO. Instead, focus on creating high-quality, relevant content that incorporates keywords more seamlessly.
2. Optimise your website and Google Business profile for local search
Another way to improve your local SEO is by including location-specific information on your website. Make sure your address, phone number, and other contact information is easily accessible. You might also want to include a map of your location to make it easy for people to find you.
If you’re managing your business from home, or you’re located in a less than desirable location, consider signing up to a virtual office address. Having a virtual office address in a highly recognised area or street can significantly improve your local SEO.
Search engines like Google use various factors to decide on a business’s local search ranking, including location and address data. When you have a virtual office address in a prestigious location, it can signal to search engines that your business is relevant and reputable in that area, boosting your local search visibility, and helping build trust with potential customers.
Another important factor to consider is customer reviews. Encouraging satisfied customers to leave positive reviews on your Google Business profile can not only improve your ranking, but also provide social proof for your business. Meanwhile, negative reviews can harm your reputation and decrease visibility, so it’s important to address any issues promptly.
3. Develop a strategy for local link building
Building a strong network of local links can improve your rankings in local search results. Local link building involves getting other local businesses to link to your website, which shows search engines that your business is highly recommended in your community.
Consider collaborating on promotions, events, or content that features another business. If you’re an accountant, for example, you could partner with a local financial advisor to offer a promotion or special service. This could be promoted on both of your websites, with links back to each other’s sites.
Another way to build local links is to create valuable and shareable content that is relevant to your local community. This could include blog posts or videos that highlight local events, attractions, or businesses. Share this content across your social media, and reach out to other local websites or platforms to see if they would be interested in featuring it on their site with a link back to your own.
Though local SEO is often overlooked by businesses, it’s a critical step in getting you in front of more potential customers. By creating location-specific content, leveraging local listings, developing a strategy for local link building, and building a network of local business partners, you’ll be well on your way to improving your local search rankings and attracting more customers.