Never before has your presence on the internet been so critical. If there is one thing that the pandemic taught us, it is that virtual is everything. Whether we will have to go through shutdowns again or in the future, or not, your local SEO is highly critical not just to the growth of your organization, but to its survival. The good news is that there are many things that you can do, which take very little time and no money, but make a huge difference!
As a 5-star rated SEO company in South Carolina, we thought we’d dish out some useful tips so you can supercharge your local SEO campaign.
Create Consistent Listings Using NAP
Many businesses have more than one listing on the internet. All of your business listings must be consistent. There will be some who will find you on Facebook, others that might find you doing a Google search, but wherever you find them, you want to ensure that they have the right information! When checking through the many places where you give information, make sure to:
- Get your NAP correct, what we mean by NAP is your name, address, and phone number. These three keys are what you need to have the same everywhere, period.
- Keep inventory of what directories your business is listed or appear on using a spreadsheet, that way, you have a record in case some of your information changes about where you have to go
- If any portion of your NAP changes, then you have to change it on all forums that your business appears
Don’t only focus on the places that drive the most business and ignore all of the areas where your business is listed. Although one might bring more wealth, that doesn’t mean that you should forget the others. Every loss of a potential customer is just that. Also, if you frustrate one, that could lead to a bad review, which is always a bad thing!
Optimize your Google My Business
If there is one King of the Mountain for local SEO optimization, it is Google My Business. It is a business listing that is the most important to focus on. If you haven’t yet claimed your Google My Business account that is the first step and you should do that NOW. When you sign up, you can alter the way that your listing appears on local searches. If you aren’t involved, other people can likely add comments about your business and represent your store, and that is not what you want. You want to control your brand!
By being active on Google My Business you can:
Share Hour Changes
If you are going to be open seasonally for additional time, Google my Business is where you will want to make sure to list all of your open times and days. Whenever someone Googles your business or looks for a product or service that matches your area, they will see your store hours, making sure that they are correct year-found.
List Your High-Quality Image
If people are one thing, these days, it is visual! When you control your GMB page, you can add high-quality images and enhance your brand identity. For industries like hospitality and restaurants, it is going to be key to show off what your establishment and/or food looks like in real-life!
Reviews, Reviews, Reviews
Nowadays, your reviews are your word of mouth and form your reputation. Although you want to avoid a bad review, when you use GMB, you can start a conversation if someone does rate you a little lower than you would like. Being open to criticism and addressing it in a public forum is the best way to turn what could be a negative into a positive!
Book Appointment Functions
No one wants to go the extra step to pick up a phone anymore. If you use GMB to add a “book” function, you are more likely to create a call to action where people will follow through. You can add a button right onto your Google my Business page for people to “get it done”.
Posts With a Call to Action
Speaking of a call to action, when you use your Google my Business account, you can post special promotions, and images of your latest projects or products and provide useful tidbits that will make people feel like they are getting value-added! Being active is highly critical for your call to action and the reaction that it receives.
So Much More…
Google My Business is constantly looking for more resources and tools for business owners to enhance their local brand and presence. When you actively take part, you get to use all of the many functions they provide to put you in from the right audience to increase sales and your bottom line!
Entice Reviews From Your Customers
Reviews have more power than nearly every other form of digital advertising when it comes to swaying opinions and getting people to act. The best way to improve your local SEO is by encouraging your clients to review and rate you on Google. Some business owners get fearful that a bad review could lead to some severe consequences, so they almost think no reviews are good reviews, but that is not the case.
Most internet users like to see that you are active in the community, and if there are some not-so-good reviews, then you can use the power of control to comment and make the situation right! Let your customers provide feedback not just to better your business, but also to bring people in who trust that you are transparent and do the best you can for customer satisfaction, even if it might not be 100% all the time.
Add The Right Keywords With The Correct Density
Keywords are the key-words that your site and all of your content need to have to signal Google about how to match organic searches correctly. Adding local keywords is critical for Google to know where you are located, physically. Even big companies recognize the importance of being “local”.
Conglomerates such as Walmart, list each of their store’s addresses independently so that they have a local presence. If they are taking the time to input the data, you should too! Go through your current site and see where you can sneak in your location throughout so that you are found locally on a search and correctly!
Pimp Yourself For Local Press
It might sound disingenuous to go for the gratuitous press, but it can help your presence tremendously! Receiving recognition from local newspapers and features will greatly enhance your SEO. If you get news coverage, all the better. Put yourself out there and make it easy for a journalist looking for a story to make you theirs! Make sure that you add a contact us button prominently and let it be known that you welcome the press!
Next, utilize the press release! You can add relevant stories about your promotions, changes, and news-worthy events locally and spotlight your business. Journalists love a tale to tell, so give them one. Once you get a journalist on board, you will likely be on the press circuit and receive more attention just from breaking in.
Conclusion – Local is Where it is At!
If there is one thing that your small business needs, it is local SEO. These are super quick, easy, and free things that you can do to make a big difference. If you are having a hard time gaining traction, then let Fu Dog Media help! We are the leading SEO Company in South Carolina and we will help you dominate your local market! Contact us today to get started.