Word-of-mouth and local ads may be a good way to attract customers, but the internet is rife with ways to connect with people near your geographic area. One of these popular avenues are social media sites and studies have shown that 97% of people have looked online when they were looking for something.
When a business doesn’t rank on local search engines, they are missing out on valuable customers and traffic. In order to be relevant and keep growing, they need to have an optimized local SEO strategy.
If you don’t have any experience with local SEO, there’s no one better to teach you the ropes than yourself. This guide will help you understand some of the basics and give concrete solutions for your website. So let’s get started!
What is local SEO and why do I need it?
To fully understand the definition of local SEO, we first need to define what a local search is. The terminology refers to any time someone is searching for businesses, products or services in a specific location. For example, if they were looking for information on seafood restaurants by the water in Newcastle on Google, the first things to show up will be the local search engine results.
In simpler words, a local search is more specific than general Google searches. Local SEO refers to the process of using your online profile in order to rank separately in those localized ranking results. It might seem like an unfamiliar concept at first, but once you get into it, it is really useful for promoting your business and attracting new customers.
Local SEO is crucial because it helps you:
- Boost your online visibility
- Bring in more foot traffic to your brick-and-mortar location
- Attract more targeted traffic, which improves your chances of conversion
- Enhance your credibility and build trust
Organic search results vs. local pack
Local SEO is one of the best ways to boost your visibility online. It can be done through the use of a local pack. A search result from Google, for example, would place sponsored results at the top, followed by a page of organic results, and then another page with other advertising content called “local pack”. While the sponsored results appear prominently at the top of search results pages with the “Ad” or “Sponsored” label, they cost money.
The local pack results follow, appearing in a box that highlights the top three business listings related to that particular search. This shows up more prominently than organic local search results, which means there’s a better chance of visibility if you get featured in the local pack.
And the best part is, not every local search page features sponsored results. So your business could sit prominently at the top of the search results page, as you can see below.
The organic results are further down, below the local snack pack results. So even if you rank on the first page of local search results, you might not show up as prominently as the businesses that manage to get featured in snack pack results.
The goal of your local SEO strategy should be to rank on the first page of organic local searches as well as in your local snack pack. This ensures optimum visibility and improves your chances of attracting targeted traffic.
To learn more, book a call with us today!