Local search marketing, or local SEO, is the set of digital marketing strategies that help your business rank higher in relevant search queries and show up on the map in “near me” and local searches.
When an online user searches for a local business, they often include the phrase “near me” in their query. One study found that “near me” searches have increased by 500% in recent years (from businessdit.com).
The “near me” phrase, or any keywords that indicate the user wants a business close to their current location, generates a list of local businesses in the search results. The local businesses that best match the query and use best practices for local SEO will show up in the Local Pack.
The Local Pack is the list of three businesses listed next to the map in local search results. This result ranking is the best place for your business to show up for a relevant search!
The best way to get your business to show up in the Local Pack for local search queries is to implement local SEO marketing best practices. Here is why investing in local SEO marketing is worth it:
With so much business possible from local SEO, it’s important to get it right!
Ranking higher in local searches and getting into the Local Pack is multifaceted. The most crucial step is ensuring your business’s listings on all search engines and platforms have consistent and accurate information.
Every search engine and directory platform will have specific information they want to see about your business. Most commonly: business name, address, website, phone number/contact, hours, photos and reviews.
When information is consistent and accurate across search engines and directories, search engine algorithms will be more likely to rank your business higher in relevant search results. If your business’s listings on popular directories and search engines contain inaccurate, inconsistent information, the algorithms will skip over your business and will serve your competitors in the search results instead.
When your business isn’t showing up well in local search results, you’re missing out on business, even if you provide better service or deals than your competitors.
If your business is new, or you’ve never set up business profiles on search engines and directories, you’ll need to create profiles on those platforms. If your business’s listings have been posted for a while, ensure they are claimed and verified and have correct and complete information.
Here are some of the top search engines and directories to focus on:
These platforms can significantly impact your local search ranking, so ensure your information is correct and consistent across all of them!
Once you’ve claimed and verified your business’s listing and added the necessary information, you can get more specific with what kind of local searches you want your business to be ranked for.
Choosing the right category for your business is imperative for the algorithms when they are ranking businesses. Be as specific as possible when adding your business’s category to listings. For instance, "restaurant" is too general when adding categories to your Google Business Profile. You want to specify what type of restaurant it is.
If you run a pizza delivery restaurant, use the "pizza delivery" category so that Google knows to place your business in "pizza delivery" searches when local consumers are looking.
According to Google's guidelines, you should use as few categories as possible.
Here's how you can further clean up your business’s directory information.
Establishing a competitive local SEO strategy takes time but will be worth it in the long run. Without local SEO marketing, every other digital marketing strategy you employ for your business suffers.
Local SEO takes time and effort. As a busy business owner, you may not have the bandwidth to give it the attention it needs to succeed. That's okay!
Hiring a digital marketing partner can make all the difference in how your business ranks in local searches and how quickly your business grows and scales.
When you're looking for a digital marketing company that offers local search services, keep these factors in mind:
For more on how to choose the right digital marketing agency, read our blog!
If your business isn’t taking advantage of local SEO marketing, now is the time to start! Even if you’ve tried local SEO practices on your own and haven’t seen positive results, hiring a digital marketing agency can give your business the extra boost it needs to get into the Local Pack and rank higher in search results. There are hundreds of online directories where it’s important to have your business listed, and an agency can take care of all of that work for you so you can focus on running your business!
To learn more about how RevLocal can help your business with digital marketing, contact us today for a free consultation.