Local SEO is the optimisation of a businesses bricks ‘n’ clicks (bricks = offline; clicks = online) presence to improve their organic rankings for location based search terms (e.g. Bondi Plumber; Accommodation in Sydney; Where can I buy Pizza in Elizabeth Street?). Like ‘traditional’ SEO there are multiple factors as to why you will and won’t appear in local search results. These are discussed below.
What is Local?
When we talk about Local Optimisation or Local we are generally referring to the entire optimisation and promotion process of bricks ‘n’ mortar locations in the online digital space. This includes the integration of Local SEO, PPC and Display to achieve best results.
The key ingredients that make up local optimisation are:
- Location accuracy on Maps – Provides good mobile user experiences
- Reputation management – Engaging with customers via reviews
- Brand awareness – Dominating Google visually for brand terms
- Organic rankings – Local packs, SERPs, Maps, Rich Snippets and Sitelinks
- Lead generation – Via click-to-call through the search engines
- Mobile search coverage – Across the paid and organic search space
How do we optimise for Local SEO?
Local SEO is possibly the most influential component of Local Optimisation, largely because a lot of it exists within the website owners control. There are a number of local search ranking factors, agreed upon by industry experts, that you can optimise to improve the visibility of a local business in the organic search space – This is done by creating strong and consistent brand/business signals.
Taking these factors into account some of the optimisation opportunities that exist are:
- Google My Business Pages
- Location landing pages (individual store pages) on your website
- Location Platforms that have information on your business
- 3rd Party Citations and local business listings
- Online Reviews & Ratings
- Localised Content for events, your neighbourhood, attractions and surrounding suburbs
- Keyword Optimisation
- Local Business Schema
- Mobile Friendly Optimisation
Some of the regular terms that are used extensively in the Local space, which have specific meanings are:
Relevance: Relevance is how well a local listing matches what someone is searching for. Adding complete and detailed business information can help Google better understand your business and match you to relevant search results.
Distance: Just like it sounds — how far is each potential search result from the location term used in a search? If you don’t specify a location in your search, Google will calculate distance based on what they know about your location.
Prominence: This describes how well-known or prominent a business can be. This is based on information Google have about a business from across the web (links, articles, and directories). Some places are more prominent in the offline world, and Google try to reflect this online as well.
For other regularly used terms and expressions please visit the Glossary of Local Search Industry Terms.
NAPtastic are local search industry experts with experience ranging from large enterprise clients with 1000s of locations down to small businesses with 1 location. We can provide detailed strategies and solutions for your business, big or small.