Small business owners are always dreaming of expanding their business to a global scale. However, with a lot of well-established brand giants out there, the chances of getting ahead of the mega-corporations are very slim to none. Fortunately, small businesses can market their business in their locality. However, the advancement of digital technology has made competition among rival small companies to get a fair share of the market. Small companies should incorporate a well-managed digital marketing strategy to increase the visibility of their business in the digital landscape.
According to a recent study, almost half of Google queries are about local businesses and that seventy-two percent of the local questions will end up visiting a local store that is within a five-mile geographical location. It is, therefore, important for small business owners to take advantage of local Google queries by using local SEO to boost their websites’ search engine ranking results.
What is Local SEO?
Local SEO is the use of search engine optimization techniques to help your business’s webpage be more visible in local search engine results. If your small business is located in a city such as Brisbane, Australia, then you should focus more on optimizing your webpage so that local Brisbane residents will easily see your webpage when these residents search for services or products belonging to your niche.
Local SEO is mainly concerned about how to drive more local customers to your business’ website so that you can have more chances of getting more revenue. When you improve your local SEO, you are increasing the chances of people either picking up the phone and making a booking with you because they need your products or services, or walk through the doors of your brick-and-mortar stores. Local SEO is optimizing your webpage so that potential customers in your area can easily find your business on Google and other search engines.
Top Fixes to Boost Local Rankings
Optimize Google My Business
If you are a small business owner, likely, you have already created a Google My Business (GMB) profile. If you have not yet, then it is a must that you create one. If you already have a GMB profile, you may have already claimed your business listing a while back and have not done anything to it ever since. Having a GMB listing is like sitting on a gold mine; you need to learn how to optimize your GMB. Here are some of the features that you can optimize your Google My Business to help improve your local SEO rankings.
GMB posts are like mini ads that are displaying on your GMB listings. You can use these posts to inform your local clients about new promos, new product launches, events, and whatever else you think is relevant to your business. GMB posts are handy marketing tools that a lot of small business owners neglect to use. GMB posts make your listings stand out because you can use images and call to action buttons to attract local customers to your main website.
Questions and Answers
GMB has launched a new feature where potential and existing customers can ask questions about your products and services directly within your GMB listings. If you are serious about wanting to increase the reputation and reliability of your company, then it is best to monitor the questions as carefully as you would your customer reviews. Your quick responses to customer queries will increase your reliability, and your local customers will feel that they are valued.
Build Local Backlinks
Backlinks are links from other web pages that are pointing to your website. Links are one of the most reliable signals that Google uses to rank websites. The more quality links that you have pointing to your site, the higher you will rank. One way to boost your local SEO ranking is by creating more backlinks.
However, if your competitors have better links pointing to their website than you, then it is highly likely that they will outrank you in your local SEO results. To beat your competitors, you need to get better links pointing to your site. You can use SEO tools such as Ubersuggest to analyze the backlinks of your competitors.
To outrank your competitors, you should look at your competitors’ backlinks and identify the websites that are giving valuable links back to your competitors’ websites. After obtaining a list of websites, you should then identify and go through each link and replicate if not create better content than your competitors. For example, if one article of your competitor has gotten a lot of quality backlinks, then you should create a better version of that article for your website as well.
It might be a lot of work to go through all the backlinks of your competitors to improve your local rankings, but you can choose to hire a professional Brisbane SEO Company to do the work for you.
Build Local Citations / Optimize the Website with NAP (names, address, phone)
Another way that you can improve your business’ local SEO rankings is by building local citations. A local citation is a mention of your business on another website. Most of the time, a local citation from another website will mention your business name, business address, and your business phone number (NAP) and may include a link to your website.
Business citations are essential because they help search engines decide on how to rank in their local search results. Search engines also use local citations to help verify the accuracy of your business. It is always important that wherever your business is mentioned, the details and information about your company should always be the same. You can build more local citations for your business by joining online business directories such as Yelp.com or by joining your city’s regional chamber of commerce directory.
If you have not done it yet, you should submit your business details (NAP) to all the reputable online business directories that you can find since they influence your webpage’s rank. They help search engines determine that your business is legitimate. Once you have submitted your business details to reputable online business directories, you can focus your marketing efforts somewhere else.
Building local citations is only a tiny part of how you can improve your business’s local SEO rankings, but it can give you a solid foundation on which to build upon. Remember to have all your business citations one hundred percent identical across all directories.
Optimize Your Website to Load Fast
Another way to boost your local SEO results ranking is by making sure that your website is fast-loading wherever a visitor chooses to view it. Search engines such as Google have announced that page speed will be a factor for ranking your website in local SEO results. This means that your website’s page load speed should be at its maximum so that users will not abandon your website to switch to a faster loading one. Another thing that you must make sure of is the compatibility of viewing your webpage using different devices with different screen sizes. Your website mustn’t look distorted or disproportioned when viewed on a tablet or mobile device rather than on a laptop. You can optimize your loading speed by:
- compressing image file sizes to load faster
- eliminating webpage redirects
- improving web server such as using HTTPS instead of HTTP
- using Google’s AMP markup for mobile devices
Optimize Your Business’s Social Media Presence
With over two billion active users in the world, Facebook is one of the best local SEO tools that you can use to promote and market your business. If you do not have a social media page for your business yet, such as a Facebook page, then you should hurry up and create one. If you have, then you need to optimize the Facebook page of your business by adding services to your page. The services feature of Facebook allows you to list down the different services or products that your business is providing. However, you should first make sure that your Facebook page is registered as a local business to get the services feature.
The most critical Facebook feature that your small business can optimize is by using Facebook ads. Facebook ads can allow you to target your potential customers through the user demographic profiles stored on Facebook. You can easily filter your ads to target Facebook users that are located within a specific kilometer radius from your business. You can also filter your ads to reach specific gender or age.
As more and more people are using their smart devices to access businesses within their locality, you should also make your website easier to find by making it rank high on local SEO results by implementing the fixes discussed in this article.
Brisbane SEO company that aims to help you, small business owners, to improve the visibility of your business online so you can get more visitors, more leads, and more clients to eventually get more revenue.
Shaik Khaja, An SEO Content enthusiast who always keeps a tab on the latest happenings in the Digital Marketing Industry. Curious to learn and implement emerging things floating around the industry. Reach out me Gmail Twitter Facebook LinkedIn