11 Tips on Building a Local SEO Marketing Strategy
Local SEO marketing has become increasingly important for businesses looking to drive more foot traffic and sales. With 46% of all Google searches being local in nature, having an effective local SEO strategy can help businesses connect with customers who are actively looking for products and services in their area.
Implementing a solid local SEO strategy not only boosts your visibility on Google and other search engines but it also helps build trust and credibility for your business within the community. By optimizing your website and online presence for local SEO, you make it easier for nearby customers to find and patronize your business.
Below are some tips to help build an effective local SEO marketing strategy for your business. Follow these tips to boost your local search visibility, attract more customers from your area, and ultimately grow your bottom line.
Optimize Your Google My Business Listing
Google My Business (GMB) is the cornerstone of any local SEO strategy since it powers the local pack and map listings in Google search. To maximize your GMB presence:
- Completely fill out your business information like address, phone number, website, and opening hours.
- Upload high-quality photos of your storefront, products, services, and staff. If you don’t have original images handy, consider using high-quality stock photos that represent your business well. Ensure they resonate with your local audience.
- Add detailed attributes like parking availability, payment options, menus, and services offered.
- Respond to all customer reviews to showcase your dedication to service.
- Post updates showcasing new products, offers, and events to give customers a reason to visit your page.
Claim and Optimize Your Local Knowledge Panels
Knowledge panels are the sidebar sections that prominently showcase key business details directly in Google and Bing search results, so optimizing them can enhance your local presence. Start by claiming your business knowledge panel in Google and Bing to gain control of your information. Fill out as many details as possible, like your bio, hours, website, phone number, and complete address.
Add a nicely designed logo, cover image, and profile pictures where possible. Monitor impressions and clicks over time, as well as usage of features like the call button. Keep all knowledge panel details in sync across search engines for consistency.
Focus on Earning Positive Local Reviews
Reviews are social proof that convinces new prospects to become customers. To leverage reviews for local SEO:
- Make it easy for happy customers to leave reviews on Google, Facebook, and Yelp.
- Politely respond to negative reviews to show you care about feedback.
- Highlight positive review quotes on your website and social media.
- Incentivize customers to leave reviews by offering discounts for reviewers.
- Monitor review sites regularly and claim business listings to manage reputation.
Build Local Links and Citations
Earning links and citations from local directories, partners, and media outlets helps search engines understand your business is trusted locally.
- Claim and optimize your listings on top citation sites like Yelp, Yellowpages, and Mapquest.
- Partner with local vendors, nonprofits, and events as a sponsor and request links back to your site.
- Pitch relevant guest posting opportunities to local blogs and publications.
- Prioritize high authority .edu and .gov links from local colleges, governments, and libraries.
Optimize Your Website for Local SEO
Your website is a critical hub for your local SEO efforts. To optimize:
- Include your business name, address, and phone number prominently on each page.
- Craft page titles, meta descriptions, headers, and content optimized for local keywords.
- Add schema markup highlighting business info for search engines.
- Feature an interactive Google Map on contact pages with directions.
- Make sure the site is mobile-friendly and loads quickly.
Leverage Google Posts and Other GMB Features
Google My Business offers several useful features beyond just your main listing profile that are worth utilizing for local SEO. For example, frequently posting updates, announcements, sales, events, and news via GMB posts can help drive traffic, as pinned posts in particular, stand out at the top of your listing. Populating the FAQ section with commonly asked customer questions can help provide quick answers and value right in local search results.
Listing as many relevant service categories as applicable to your business also helps you get discovered by more local searchers. Maximizing your use of attribute fields like menus, price lists, health and safety details, and more provides helpful information to prospects. For multi-location businesses, unique open and close announcements for each location add a nice local touch.
Create Location-Specific Landing Pages
For multi-location businesses, create unique landing pages targeting each individual location.
- Tailor page content to each location, covering addresses, hours, directions, and highlights.
- Avoid duplicate content by making each page distinct for the area.
- Link to the location page from your GMB listing for that area.
- Use geo-modifiers in page titles and meta descriptions. Ex: Best Pizza in Downtown Austin
Produce Hyperlocal Content
Create locally-focused blogs and content that would appeal to nearby searchers.
- Blog about local events, news, and happenings in your community.
- Interview local customers and link to neighborhood businesses.
- Share local offers, events, and promotions on your site.
- Hire local photographers for neighborhood-specific images and videos.
- Solicit guest posts from local influencers and partners.
Get Involved in the Community
Being active locally raises awareness and earns goodwill in the neighborhood.
- Sponsor local charities, events, sports teams, and nonprofits.
- Attend local networking events and introduce yourself as a local business owner.
- Partner with local chambers of commerce, business associations, and community groups.
- Support local causes on social media and link to their sites.
Leverage Social Media
Promote your local content and offers on social media to boost engagement.
- Share local events, news, and happenings on your social channels.
- Engage followers by giving local business updates and highlighting community members.
- Join relevant local Facebook Groups and LinkedIn Groups to connect with customers.
- Use local hashtags like #cityname, #neighborhoodname.
Analyze Your Local SEO Metrics
Track website analytics to monitor your local SEO progress.
- Review traffic sources to identify top local keyword drivers.
- Check rankings for your target local keywords and location pages.
- Set up location modifiers in Google Analytics to analyze hyperlocal traffic.
- Monitor clicks, calls, directions, and reviews from your GMB listing.
Implementing local SEO best practices takes time but is well worth the investment for increased visibility, website traffic, and new customer acquisition. By optimizing your online presence for local search, you can connect with customers who are actively looking for your products or services in your geographic area.
Focus on earning positive local reviews, creating location-specific landing pages, optimizing for local keywords, producing hyperlocal content, and analyzing your performance to continuously improve your local SEO strategy. With this comprehensive approach, you can boost your local search presence and attract more customers from your surrounding area.