Local SEO: Why It’s Important and What Factors Make a Difference
Local Optimization Defined
Local SEO can be part of traditional search engine optimization, but the goal of local SEO is to rank higher for geographic location related search queries. In General, It is the process of optimizing a website and other online properties for geographically related searches. Local optimization is supposed to help a business show up for users intending on finding local products or services in a certain area.
Do I need Local Optimization?
If you’re a local business – Yes. Local search engine optimization is becoming increasingly more important for local businesses. Without proper optimization, a local business may not be found online, and will certainly lose revenue. Over the past few years the number of mobile users has increased significantly making it more important for businesses to show up for local search queries.
I’ve Looked at SEO Before, and it’s Too Expensive
Perhaps the best part of local optimization, is the cost. If you know what you’re doing, have several hours to commit, a long-list of local business directories, and consistently build reviews, you can earn higher local rankings on your own. Because the goal is to rank for local less competitive terms, after hours of learning, you may be able to rank your website for local terms. In most cases however, a business owner or marketing manager’s time is better spent on other activities.
What Makes a Business Rank Higher for Local Results?
There are a long-list of things that can help a business rank higher on search engines, but most experts agree that – reviews, consistently accurate name, address, and phone number (NAP) information, social signals, user behavior on your website, creating and claiming profiles on several directories, on-site factors, and back links from local sources are among the most important.
List of Some Local SEO Factors (in no particular order)
- Genuine Business Reviews
- (NAP) Name, address & phone number information on business directories
- Social Signals
- Business Signals e.g. category and page titles
- (NAP) Name, address & phone number information on your website
- Website schema
- Website Content
- User behavior on your site e.g. time on site, page views etc…
- Geographic area in URL
- Diversity of incoming backlinks
- A users personalized search history
- Your domain’s authority
- Links pointing back to your website
- Your website’s security (SSL Certificate)
- Mobile friendliness
- Social Platforms for each business location
- Optimized social platforms
- Try to include the target city in page titles defined
- Brand citations (mentions online of your business)
Local Search Ranking Factors 2014 (moz.com)
Local SEO: How to Rank Your Local Business (searchengineland.com – Local SEO Factors )