6 Ways You Can Improve Your Local SEO Rankings
If you’re like most business owners, you want your website to show up as the top result in local search engine results pages (SERPs). After all, that’s where most of your customers are likely to be looking. And if you can’t be found by potential customers online, you may as well not have a website at all. Fortunately, there are several things you can do to improve your local SEO rankings and get your business in front of more potential customers. Here are some of them.
One of the most important factors in determining your local SEO rankings is the quantity and quality of reviews your business has. And while it may seem counterintuitive, having a large number of negative reviews can improve your rankings, since it indicates that many people are discussing your business online. To improve your SEO results with reviews, start by asking satisfied customers to leave feedback on review sites like Yelp or Google Plus. You’ll need to know how reviews impact local SEO rankings to start doing this. You can also reach out to past customers, especially those that have purchased high-value items from you and ask them directly for feedback. Finally, make sure all of your customer communication channels feature prominently in any marketing materials or advertisements you create for your business.
2. On-Site Content
In addition to focusing on reviews, it’s also important to make sure your website’s on-site content is optimized for local SEO. This means including relevant keywords in your titles and throughout your site’s text, as well as making sure your website’s coding is up to date and compliant with current best practices. You should also create separate pages for each of the locations your business serves, and include location-specific information such as an address, phone number, and hours of operation on each page.
3. Social Media
Another great way to improve your local SEO rankings is through social media. By creating profiles on popular social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, you can increase your business’s online visibility and reach a larger audience of potential customers. Plus, you can use social media to actively engage with your customers and build relationships with them over time. In addition, be sure to include links to your social media profiles on your website and in any email marketing or other online communications you send out.
4. Directory Listings
Another important factor in local SEO rankings is having your business listed in online directories. Not only do these listings help potential customers find your business, but they also help search engines validate your business’s contact information and categorize it correctly. There are several free and paid online directories you can submit your business, so start by claiming any existing listings for your business and then add your listing to as many other directories as possible. Also, be sure to categorize your business in each directory you submit it to, and don’t forget to include keywords that are relevant to your industry.
5. Quality Links
Be sure to build quality links back to your website from other websites in your niche or industry whenever possible. These links can come from guest posts on blogs, articles on online publications, or even partnerships with complementary businesses that have an existing audience of their own. You can also create a press page on your site and pitch stories or interviews with yourself or members of your team directly to local media outlets to gain exposure and link-building opportunities. Link-building is important because it helps search engines understand which websites are authoritative and relevant, both of which are major factors in determining local SEO rankings.
6. Google My Business
Last but not least, be sure to claim and verify your business through Google My Business. This is a free service provided by Google that allows businesses to manage their listings and control how they appear in Google Maps and other Google properties. By claiming your listing and providing accurate information about your business, you can improve your chances of appearing in local search results and getting customers to visit your store or website. For example, you can use Google My Business to upload photos, respond to customer reviews, and update your business hours. Plus, you can link back to your website from your Google My Business listing to help improve your website’s SEO.
By following these tips, you can improve your local SEO rankings and get more customers through the door. However, keep in mind that SEO is an ongoing process and it takes time to see results. Be patient and consistent with your efforts, and you’ll eventually start to see a difference in your business’s bottom line.