Proper local SEO execution requires a process and attention to detail. Once marketers have a plan, they are able to perfect every step of the process for maximum return on investment. SEO experts know that there is more to a local search campaign that meets the eye, and preparing now will make the process run a lot smoother down the road. For small or local businesses, garnering attention within their surrounding communities is a move in the right direction and can significantly increase their sales.
But understanding of the process is necessary so marketers can tweak and adjust it for their individual business. Each industry and community is different and may respond to website content differently, but companies should be equally aware of what strategies will make their site rank highest on Google or other search engines. Most of all, starting a new program means timing everything so the site's SEO is accurate and successful. Here are five things to consider when planning a local SEO strategy to spread brand awareness locally:
1. Data providers
Search Engine Journal stated the first step is determining major data providers and updating business information on those sites. SEJ also advised marketers to be patient when waiting for search engines to update the information.
2. Search engines
SEJ also recommends heading over to search engines once company information is updated on data suppliers. Pinpoint Google Places, Bing, Yelp and Yahoo, among others. As this step is completed, start building the local listing.
3. Local directories
Target niche audiences by keeping track of local business directory listings. Directories take information provided on the web and often offer a bit more information than other sites, such as customer reviews.
Search Engine Watch says that citations are becoming as important as link building. Citations are mentions of the company on other online platforms that get the brand name recognized. They help get the name spread beyond what normal online marketing can offer and provide more information to a wider audience.
5. Link building
Link building is still an integral part of SEO, especially local. SEW suggests garnering a strategy and utilizing press releases, blogs, forums and PPC ads, among others, to bring interested prospects to the website.