SEO Local For Local Businesses
Local search engine optimization (SEO) refers to the act of improving the volume or quality of traffic visiting a particular website from a local area. Local search engines such as Google and Yahoo! Both employ Local SEO strategies for optimizing websites for specific geographic regions, or local areas, like a city or a state. There are also companies that specialize in optimizing websites for local search traffic. However, Local SEO is the most challenging for new businesses and upstarts, given the fact that a business needs to get into contact with the local market for promotion and advertising purposes.
Local search engine optimization is like SEO in that it too is an on-page process influencing the relative prominence of a site or a page in the paid results of a search engine, usually referred to as the “organic” or “unpaid” results. The two are closely related, however, since the amount of money paid to search marketers for placement in the organic or paid results is directly proportional to the volume and quality of traffic the site attracts from local searches. Thus, SEO Local Marketing is an extension of organic SEO, just on a smaller scale.
Local SEO encompasses many of the same practices of traditional Search Engine Optimization. Keywords and key phrases, title tags, meta tags, and the like are still used. Link building is still done through article marketing, blog posting, press release submission, forum posting, and the like. Social media is also used to great effect as a tool for promoting a business’s website. In fact, social networking sites like Twitter, Facebook, StumbleUpon and others have become integral aspects of Local SEO marketing campaigns.
By contrast, off-page SEO methods are those practices outside of the major search engines that influence consumers’ decisions regarding the presence of a site in their location. These include things like pay-per-click advertising, local citations on the search results page and so on. These strategies are geared towards increasing business visibility in the local environment. By influencing how a consumer or client thinks about a particular product, service or business, these strategies can go a long way toward boosting a company’s profitability in the local economy.
SEO Local is part of a growing trend of off-page SEO efforts designed to drive more traffic to websites. Off-page SEO seeks to increase the popularity and authority of certain businesses within their own market space by improving their local search presence. These businesses combine SEO strategies with traditional SEO techniques in the hopes of increasing their visibility to clients and customers in their chosen industry and increasing conversion rates for existing customers who find them through a local search query.
A prime example of an off-page strategy is a blog, which is generally written and maintained in the geographic area in which the business operates. In this way, blogs can be effective tools in local SEO efforts. A blog should be set up specifically for the business’ local market. This ensures that any content – such as posts or comments – are written in the language and tone of the local audience.
Local citations, which include appearing in online directories such as Google Places, can also help a company to optimize its website. When a website is listed in local online directories, a link to the company’s website appears in listings that result from searches performed in the area. The results generated by a given search will then have the business’ website listed as a suggestion to users searching for similar products or services.
Another strategy to consider is creating an inbound call to action linked to the business’s website. A call to action can be as simple as a question – “call now” or as complex as a coupon or discount code. The call to action provided on a business’s website can improve the ranking of the site on search results pages when a user searches in the local area for the type of goods or services offered by the business. SEO Local is another important aspect of marketing for small businesses.