Is it rare to find a person without hearing the word SEO? It’s just a common term ‘Search Engine Optimization,’ but here we are going to discuss something a bit unknown to many, which is called ‘SEO for local visibility.’ It’s unknown because appearing in the local search result is desired by most of the companies, but the process is not that simple.
It’s the very first step after going online. To get exposure in the lucrative digital world & appear top in the SERPs(Search Engine Result Page), you have to focus on SEO. If your business is locally based, then you should have the understanding of SEO for local visibility. Yes, there is no shortcut unless you want to spend a serious amount of money & time to appear on the first page of search as SEM(Search Engine Marketing)! Here I am going to dive deep & try to discuss best tips & tricks to SEO for local visibility.
Why should you know about SEO for local visibility?
Suppose you are a local business owner and after going online, you want to appear on the top page of SERPs. Or you can be a person who is working on SEO for a local company & the very first thing you need to know is SEO’s importance for local visibility.
You already know that Google uses your location & whenever you search for something, it shows the result of local sources. To appear above your competitors in the search, you should have a clear concept of SEO for local visibility. After the Pigeon update of Google, it’s now clear about the importance of SEO. The fascinating part is that you can appear on SERPs at organic search without investing huge money SEM. Organic results are the free & efficient way to spread your website.
What are we going to discuss here?
Considering the competition on the market & a lot of effort on SEO, there is no other way rather focus on SEO for local visibility. You can spend less money online and reach maximum customers considering the cost of offline marketing. And in this era of the digital age, you should focus on your presence online. But what you need to learn? What are the basics? You will find this article helpful if you want to know some first knowledge of SEO for local visibility.
What will we not discuss here?
Here we will focus on pure SEO and its impact on SERPs. Remember, focusing on SEO will let you win in a long-term run & it’s cost effective. Here you will not find any direction about SEM. I will discuss it in my future articles. Though I have kept a small section on content writing considering its importance, I have also avoided detail discussion on it. To learn more about content writing read here.
The core of SEO for local visibility:
You should always remember the importance of SEO for local visibility to your business’ success on the internet. People every day spend time on the internet to search their desired product or service. If you don’t concentrate here, you are likely to lose potential customers of your website or service. There are several important factors of SEO for local visibility, but here I am going to discuss the essential steps for long-term success.
Most important steps to SEO for local visibility:
Secure your place at Google My Business Page
Website & landing page preparation
Focus on citation
Organic Links & Penalty
Nourish your review
Emphasize on Social sites
Strategy based on your opponents
Secure your place at Google My Business page:
Have you heard of Google My Business Dashboard? Here you need to input your company profile & your NAP (Name, Address & Phone number). If you already have a My Business Dashboard then you’re halfway done. You need to be sure that you own the account.
If you find any duplicate entry, just destroy them without any hesitation. How will you find the duplicate entry? Just search on google map using your business phone number. If you find more than one entry, then you need to remove others and keep the original one. It’s necessary to SEO for local visibility.
Name, Address & Phone number needs to be accurate & same at all positions. A slight change can lead your customer to an entirely different location. Google even said that you should represent your business exactly as it appears in the offline world. All over the internet world, your NAP should be same.
The address should be physical and also accurate. If you have changed your office, then you need to input it & verify your page again. Suppose you have a big business and you have different offices at different locations. Then you need to input the local office address here. It’s mandatory to fulfill the SEO for local visibility. After the Pigeon update, presence in local search is not possible if you are not in the area. Phone number needs to be accurate too & landline number is preferable.
Associating proper category
When inputting your Google My Business Page, be extra cautious selecting your business type. You need to input them in 2 different location. Suppose you have a restaurant then you need to choose associating business type “restaurants” twice. It’s the most important thing at google listing & for the SEO for local visibility. You need to ensure that your primary category is your core group.
What you need to check is there any penalty in effect. How can you check it? The most possible and hustle free process is go to google map & search using your phone number or keyword or business name. If it appears but doesn’t appear at google search then “Houston, we have a problem!”. To remove a penalty, you need to work with a penalty expert. If there is no penalty, then you are ready to launch, and you can work further on SEO for local visibility.
Your Google My Business Page should be verified to get all the benefits of your business listing. There is two way of verification, one is by phone & another one is by postcard. Usually, the postcard process needs several weeks to reach the postcard to you. Phone verification is not available for all countries.
You need input a public email address under the contact information box at Google My Business Page. It will help your customers to communicate with you. Your domain email address is recommended.
At My Business Page, provide an accurate & proper website URL of your website. If you have a single office at a single location, then you can use a single URL, but if you have multiple offices, then you need to use appropriate URL. Site construction should be stable and user-friendly. A poor & inappropriate site structure can lead to a bitter consequence. You need to provide proper URL of your website where your customer will get best user experience otherwise your hard labour on SEO for local visibility will go in vein.
Introduction of your business
In Google My Business page, you will get a field to input a brief description of your business. The description should be spam free, unique & at least 50 characters. It reflects your business page & spamming is not recommended.
Other necessary information:
Add a high-quality picture and locate your business at google map will let your customer get an idea about your business without visiting your website. Office hours & days should be mentioned carefully. You can check your profile completeness status and work there to get the maximum percentage. You can hire a Google trusted photographer photography & let your customer enjoy a virtual tour of your business place. These are the first step of your SEO for local visibility.
2. Website & Landing Page preparation
Here comes to hard parts. You need to optimize your website and landing page for better user experience as well as let google crawlers get information from your site. This will lead to a better page ranking on SERPs.
Already you have provided an URL at Google My Business Page, and now you need to make sure that it’s well managed and easy to read for Google crawlers. For better SEO for local visibility, always remember that Google is not a human being but a code, which crawls in your provided location & tries to read & identify your submitted data.
You may have provided a website link or a landing page link but first, let’s find out what website address is & what is landing page. All website have a landing page. Whenever you click on a web address, it shows you a page, and it calls landing page. If you have a single location business, then it’s recommended to use web site address. But if you are using multiple locations then you should customize different landing pages so that customers from a different location can get appropriate data.
It’s natural that you have provided your business name, your address, your phone number and other information on your landing page. But is it readable for Google crawler? Remember that Google can see the picture and read it. So if you keep your information on a picture at the landing page, be 100 sure that Google crawler has failed to read it. The result will be severe. Try to use ALT Text so that crawler can read it. Even don’t forget to mention your business hours at our landing page for a better SEO for local visibility.
The place where you are going to bring your potential customer should be prepared for that. Site construction should handle the viewers. It should have enough information about your service as well links to different pages. The presentation should be attractive so that viewers can find your website interesting. If they just leave your site after a staying there for a short time, your bounce rate is going to climb high. High bounce rate will let Google mark your site an irreverent website, and your hard labor on SEO for local visibility will go in vein.
Content is the most important part of your landing page. It should be spamming free & unique. It should describe your nature of business as well as a short description of your business. Content is a very important part of a website & I discussed how to create high-quality content in another blog. If you are needed then go through.
Meta title, Meta description & indexing
Meta title & Meta description are the most important part of a proper website. Meta title lets Google read & decide your website’s name. As well as Meta description shows what the website is all about. It’s also an essential part of a proper website. How can you know what is your website’s Meta title & Meta description? Just go to your website or landing page & press Ctrl+U, and it will show website’s Meta title & Meta description. Both Meta title & description should have your Business name, city or state name as well as your contact number. Avoid grammatical mistakes for a better SEO for local visibility.
Also, check your website for proper indexing. Use a different browser and get the link to your website. Then just copy past it into the search bar. If it appears on the search than your website is indexed. If not then “Houston, we have a problem. Again!”
You can keep driving direction, payment information & some other critical information on your landing page for a better SEO for local visibility. Like all images should have ALT text & reviews. Also, secure your authority on the domain address. Loading page speed is also critical. You can easily check your website’s loading speed at Google Insight.
I will also recommend keeping the business address at the footer of the website. It will help viewers to identify the address of your business location. On a nutshell, make your landing page easily readable for Google crawler. Also, keep in mind about making the website mobile friendly. You can check the mobile view of your website easily and to check its speed go to Google Insight again. Now the most important task for you, install Google Analytics to get an idea about website’s traffic & all critical information needed track conversions. Google Webmaster Tool is also very useful tool for tracking a different kind of errors & penalty of your website. It will also show crawler related errors & whether it is indexed or not.
3. Relevant Contents:
Relevant content is the most important part of your SEO for local visibility. Google puts extra emphasis on contents. Read this article on content to learn more about how to prepare content for a website. Let’s go some basics,
Content should be & must be SEO friendly. There are several criteria needs to be fulfilled for content to be SEO for local visibility friendly. Need proper keyword density (1-2.5 keyword per 100 words), a big no-no keyword spamming, 100% unique, etc. If you can mingle all these in a single content than its SEO friendly.
Contents need to be relevant. If a viewer finds your content irrelevant than he or she may leave your website immediately and it will increase your bounce rate. As a result, Google will mark your site irrelevant, and after making all efforts, your site will not get a handsome ranking!
Let’s check an example,
SEO friendly content is a must in every website but to make it SEO friendly you need to work on SEO friendly content.
In the example, the keyword “SEO friendly” used 3 times in a single sentence which is called spamming. Such use of keywords are not recommended for a proper content.
Make it simple & understandable
Always focus on the simplicity on your contents. If you complexly write contents than it will be hard for your audience and remember the internet is a place where every type of people searches for different ideas. You need to write your content for every type of individuals. If someone finds it hard then, they will just leave your site which will not be a good sign for you. Otherwise, your hard work on SEO for local visibility will go in vain.
It is true that you can find tons of articles on different topics on the internet. But never copy a content for your website. It will just give Google crawler a wrong signal. You can read them & create a new one. The presentation needs to be interesting & unique.
Since this article is on a different topic, so I am not going to discuss any further about content. Go to the provided link to learn more about content.
4. Focus on citation
After the Pigeon update of Google, the importance of citation on doubt but not minimized. It plays a good part on the algorithm of SEO for local visibility. Citation can be divided into two categories. They are,
1. Structured citation
2. Unstructured citation
But before going deeper, let’s know about the citation.
Citation means the listing of your NAP (Name, Address & Phone Number) in the web. It plays a vital role to SEO for local visibility. But how it works? Suppose a local newspaper has made a coverage on your business & your NAP is also written in their online article. It’s called unstructured citation. If you have listed your business along with your NAP in a local business directory, then it will call structured citation.
For citation, you need to focus on quality over quantity. Tons of citation on useless places over the internet will not fulfill your need. But citation on a quality directory is significant. It can be done on local phone book listing, local association, local business listing, quality news service, etc. Depending on your business you need to identify top listing sites & areas for your citation. Google’s actions are very severe & if they found guilty, then they will just remove the site or page from the index & probably from their search database!
5. Organic Links & Penalty
Organic links bring visitors in your website. To get more, there is a way of using backlinks in different sites. To this one can use spamming way which is illegal. It will bring visitor for a shorter period, but for a long time, my recommendation is to avoid spamming. Google has emphasized on this after their latest update. They like high-quality links to your website but not spamming. Spamming will ruin all the works in SEO for local visibility.
Quality backlinks are very useful on the path to SEO for local visibility. But if there is manual web spamming then it should be removed. But how? I have already discussed previously that your page should be verified at Google webmaster tools & from there you can easily find the manual webspam. Click on the manual action tab of Google webmaster tools, and it shows any result then you need to remove them. If it shows nothing, then sit back and relax.
Always keep an eye on the Google analytics. If you see a sharp change (I mean a drop) on your viewers’ numbers than you should check the algorithm. To track it properly you can keep a record of your algorithm update & review the number of viewers can identify the algorithm problem. You can also use the Penguin Tools to do it easily. It will help a lot to SEO for local visibility.
Always be careful about penalty. It’s very easy to get penalty from Google but very hard to solve & remove the penalty. Penalty removal process is very lengthy so considering the long run always avoid penalty from search engine.
6. Nourish your review:
For a better SEO for local visibility, reviews are the most important part of your business or your website. Even if you have a higher ranking at SERP but bad reviews from your existing viewers will not help you in the long run. You need to read your reviews daily & take necessary actions if it is needed. Google My Business page also have a review system, and you need to focus on them also.
If the reviews are good, don’t sit back and relax. You need to improve your service to keep that ranking consistent. Having everything ok and a bad review can destroy all the hard work. There are 3rd party review sites available depending on your business. You can find them online & offline & even in the social site. You can use these sites and get some review.
If the reviews are bad, then you need to improve your service. You can do anything to get the review even if you have bad service. Your service should be evolved according to the reviews.
Don’t spam and get the review from the same person again & again. It will not help you in the long run. Reviews should be natural & unique. If it’s negative, then work on it to solve the problem.
7. Emphasize on Social Sites:
Considering the evolution of social sites, you need to focus on them too. Facebook, Google+. LinkedIn plays a vital role for your business. For a successful SEO for local visibility, you need to secure your presence there using the same NAP of your company. Let’s have a better look on this topic,
You can get a quality review from these social sites. They are the loyal viewers of your website who has already connected to you by your social site pages. You can get their review from there easily and take proper measures. They will provide the review on your every service by giving you like or other appreciation signs.
If someone wants to connect to you & your service they can easily subscribe to your company page on these social sites. They are always connected to you don’t need to invest here twice to let them know about your new services. Amazing isn’t it?
Share your new services easily:
Through a group of already subscribed audience, now you can share your new service or any modification of your existing service easily within minutes. There is no cost here. You can also reach to a local community by paid advertising here which will help a lot to SEO for local visibility.
You can also share pictures, interesting videos & interactive contents to attract more audience to your website. It will boost your audience as well as your business without massive investment. Selling your service is also possible here and it’s a running practice for different Facebook based companies.
A strategy based on your opponents:
Here comes the important part. You have already spent time & money on SEO for local visibility but is it finished?n No! The constantly evolving search engine, as well as endless competition, will not over ever. So you need the practice running. You can easily follow your competitors and analysis their strategy. Base on their strategy you can easily modify your own.
After reading this article, SEO for local visibility should be clear to you, and now you need to keep working on them. It’s not a hard part but relatively easy part of SEO. Always focus on the long run. Using cheating & automated tools, the success can be achieved, but the penalty will be inevitable. If your opponent follows cheating, just keep working on your own, you will get your reward.
After getting a good position on SERPs, you need to keep working on some key parts such as,
- ● Keep your social sites alive by regular interesting posting.
● Create quality content for your service.
● Analyze reviews regularly.
● Earn quality links.
● Focus on strong structured & unstructured citations.
● Keep developing your sites as well as your service.
I hope this article will help you a lot to SEO for local visibility. Nowadays, presence in the online world is very crucial for a business and even mandatory for its existence. Using the Google Search Engine, millions of people search daily for different items. To get their attention & make business, you need on focus on SEO for local visibility. If this article helps you in any way, I will consider it a success for my hard labor.