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Why Is Local SEO Important for Small Businesses?

by Nathan Zachary
Google App representing Local SEO

Search engine optimization (SEO) represents the various strategies that are used to improve a website in an effort to make it more visible on search engine results pages. Local SEO is a very similar process, but it focuses more on your local area and helps to ensure your website is seen among your target audience when they search for terms related to your company. By driving more local traffic to your site, you can increase conversions and consequently boost the success and profitability of your business. With that in mind, here are some key areas of local SEO you should focus on to support your small business:

Google My Business profile

With the goal of providing accurate business information, Google My Business is one of the most important directories for small companies. It appears in the right-hand section of search results, providing greater visibility and outreach to local businesses. But to achieve this, you will have to claim and confirm your listing on Google My Business. Complete your profile, ensure it’s filled with accurate and relevant business information, and include images and videos of your offerings to optimize your page. When you get reviews and ratings from customers, make sure to respond to each one in a timely and professional manner. All of these aspects are crucial to your listing’s success.

Ensuring mobile friendliness

Considering the fact that a significant percentage of Google searches today are performed using mobile devices, particularly local searches, you simply have to ensure your website is mobile-friendly. While this won’t exactly attract traffic to your site, it will ensure it stays there after it arrives. In other words, having an intuitive and fast website will allow you to keep consumers on your pages, rather than forcing them to consider your direct competitors. Make sure your site is mobile-friendly by focusing on critical factors such as readable fonts, good text formatting, responsive page display, and optimized media display. Increasing page loading speeds can be quite useful as well.

Creating localized content

Website content is another vital aspect of SEO. From blog posts to news releases, content can be used to promote local offerings, highlight any local events, or simply educate consumers about your business. The more natural, relevant, and higher-quality content you have on your website, the easier it will be to target the right keywords and attract local audiences. However, content creation can be challenging to master as well. That is why Australian business owners, for instance, often hire top ranked SEO companies in Australia to develop the right local SEO strategies for them, including content creation. With a focus on long-term growth and success, these experts could aid in supporting your SEO campaign as well.

Targeting local keywords

While localized keywords can be beneficial for any small business, they become especially important across countries such as the US, where competition tends to be particularly tough. What’s more, “near me” search terms have significantly increased in popularity in recent years, making these keywords even more effective for local SEO. Combine your business location with high-volume keywords to optimize your website and possibly appear in the Places section in Google’s search results. If you own a flower shop, for example, targeting a keyword such as “florist NYC” can yield a high return. Remember not to overstuff your content with keywords, as this could only create the opposite of the desired effect.

Creating a backlink strategy

Backlinks represent any links leading from other websites to your own. As long as these links are high in quality and come from authority websites, they could have a great impact on the credibility of your business website. That is why developing a good backlink strategy is key.

Of course, relevant and unique content can be of great help for this tactic as well, but you will also need to leverage a few other methods to reach success. For example, you could participate in link outreaches, engage in influencer outreach, go after brand mentions, etc. Strong backlinks will lead to an increase in organic traffic and overall profitability.

Encouraging customer reviews

Customer reviews are critical to the success of all companies, particularly when it comes to small and local businesses. Consumers tend to trust other customers much more than branded content and advertisements, not to mention that interactions through feedback represent a great method of streamlining customer support and enhancing customer experiences.

Try to obtain customer reviews through email marketing or a special pop-up on your website. Offer incentives to customers who leave reviews, such as special discounts and promotions. Then, make it a point to respond to all feedback, both positive and negative, to engage with your consumers and instill more trust in your brand.

Evidently, local SEO can be quite beneficial when it comes to supporting the growth of small businesses. Utilize the tips mentioned above, monitor your strategy continuously, and make adjustments when necessary to ensure success.

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