Local SEO: Get found on your doorstep

Local SEO (search engine optimisation) is the process of optimising your online presence to attract more local customers. This is especially important for small businesses that might often rely on local local sales (especially if they offer a face-to-face service). Getting to grips with your local SEO doesn’t just relate to your website, it extends to your social media and whole digital presence.

Why is local SEO so important for small businesses?

Increased visibility:
Local SEO can help your business appear in more local searches, such as when people search for businesses near them or for specific products or services.

More targeted traffic:
Local SEO can help you attract more qualified leads, as people who are searching for local businesses are more likely to be interested in what you have to offer. Depending on the service you offer, you would likely be much more interested in finding that perfect client who is just down the road as opposed to someone a million miles away. 

Improved brand awareness:
If you can build your brand presence and awareness in your local community it will help your local SEO, making it more likely that people will choose your business when they are on the look out for a product or service that you just so happen to offer. They will have familiarity from the brand awareness backed up by relevance from search results.

How to improve your local SEO

Optimise your Google My Business listing:
Make sure your Google My Business listing is complete and accurate. This includes your business name, address, phone number, website, and business hours. You should also add photos and videos to your listing.

Use Long-tail keywords
These are specific and detailed phrases that people use to search for something online. For a local business, long-tail keywords are helpful as it is your opportunity to show up in more relevant searches, attracting customers who are specifically looking for what you offer in your area. For example, you might be looking for marketing and web design services in Thetford. Just make sure it’s relevant.

Build backlinks:
Backlinks are incoming links from other websites to yours. They act as votes of confidence from other websites, telling search engines that your website is authoritative and trustworthy. The more high-quality backlinks you have, the higher your website will rank in search results. The emphasis is on high quality, don’t start thinking you can plaster your site with random links between unrelated sites and trick Google. Relevance is key. 

Get involved in your community:
Get involved in your local community by attending events, sponsoring local fun days, sponsoring / partnering for local charities. This will help you build relationships with potential customers and increase your brand awareness and see your business name popping up in local results.

Create local content:
Create content that is relevant to your local area. This could include blog posts about local events, products, or services. Make it clear you are talking to your local audience. The more specific and relevant you can be the better. There is no point trying to be all things to all people – know your audience and talk to them.

Use social media:
Use your social media to connect with your local community. Share your local content on social media and engage with your followers. If you want to dip into your pocket you can also use social media to run local ads.

Some extra local SEO tips

Make sure your website is mobile-friendly:
Mobile-friendly websites are almost (should be) a given these days. The chances are your customers are out and about, on the go…and will most likely be accessing your website from their mobile phone. Make sure your website is responsive – You don’t want potential customers resorting to binoculars trying to read your services page.

Use local keywords:
Use local keywords in your website’s content, meta descriptions, and title tags. This will help your website appear in more local searches. When people search for businesses in their area, they are more likely to click on results that include local keywords. By using local keywords, you can make sure your website is visible to these potential customers.

Respond to reviews:
Respond to both positive and negative reviews. This shows potential customers that you are engaged with your business and that you care about their feedback.

Get blogging:
This is your tool to be evergreen and current. You may find that once you’ve created info on your website, some of it might not change very often. Blogging is your opportunity to keep content fresh. Be proactive, share your knowledge. If you are proactive in creating new content you can remain fresh and relevant with your target audience (and search engines).I’m now off to follow my own advice 😜

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