28 Feb

Posted by Lorna Casswell

If you have a local business you’d like to drive footfall into then optimising for local search (or ‘local SEO’) can help you achieve your goals.

In today’s post we have some quick tips on how to optimise for local searches so you can get your local business in front of the people who need your services, at the time they need them.

First let’s set the scene; Google is continuously trying to provide a better search experience for its users, and providing local search results to people searching on mobile and desktop devices is one of the ways they are trying to do this. Here are two examples of how local search results can look:

1. Local Google Search Results on Desktop Devices:

Local Google Search Results
In local results displayed on desktop devices, you will typically see a map and prominently featured star ratings and reviews.

2. Local Google Search Results on Mobile Devices:

Local Google Search Results on Mobile Devices
The presentation of the local results differs on mobiles. Google offers ‘directions’ and an easy option to ‘call’. It’s likely that if you’re on the move, and are searching on a mobile device, these are the things you’re most likely to need.

Quick Tips to Improve Local SEO
Here are four quick tips on how you can optimise your business for local search:

  1. Create a Google Places account. If you don’t have one already this is one of the first steps you should take when optimising for local SEO. When you’re creating your Google Places profile make sure you use all of the available options when updating information – this means adding plenty of descriptions and uploading images (and videos if you have them). You should also encourage your customers to leave reviews here too.
  2. Have location specific pages on your website. Whether you have one or more business locations, you should dedicate a page to each of them on your website. This page should clearly feature contact details, perhaps an image of your business, open hours and consider embedding a Google map on these pages too.
  3. Feature addresses and phone numbers accurately and consistently across the board. You will be surprised at what a difference it can make if you have variations of your business address(es) scattered around the web. Google assigns authority to addresses, and if all of the addresses vary (even slightly) then Google can’t assign this authority effectively. Use the exact same address format and details on your website, your Google Places profile, your social listings and in any directories.
  4. Feature “local” keywords on your website and in meta data. This does not mean stuff your meta titles and descriptions and page content with your address or location details, instead use a common sense approach and feature locations in relevant parts of your website, such as your website footer.

There is a lot more to local SEO than these four tips, but these are definitely a good starter for ten. If you’d like some more extensive support or advice with your local SEO, then why not get in touch?

 

 

 

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