5 Key Steps to Mastering Local SEO

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Mobile searches aren’t always locally-focused, but when they are, they represent extremely low-funnel traffic – a study last year indicated that four out of every five local searches on a mobile device results in a conversion.

What this means for marketers is obvious – you need to be optimized for local searches. But how?

Here are some key steps to take: 

Optimize Directories 

optimizelocaldirectories

Be sure that your brand’s directory presence (yes, this includes social media) is optimized. Google My Business, Facebook, FourSquare, Yahoo, Bing, YP and Yelp are the big directories to focus on, but don’t stop there; valuable traffic can be earned from SuperPages, Best of the Web, CitySearch and Factual, as well as from industry-specific directories that may bring even lower-funnel traffic to your site.

Make sure that each directory has your NAP (Name, Address, Phone) information and include your business hours, average product cost and any other relevant information. Don’t forget to use these pages to showcase photos or videos of your store, too!

 

Optimize Location Pages 

optimizelocationpages

Make sure that your store location pages have location-optimized URLs – that is, URLs that include the name of the city, town or neighborhood where your store is located. These pages should also have NAP information and relevant multimedia, and additionally, be sure that each store page has a Google Map embedded in it.

 

Earn Positive Reviews 

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It might be common sense, but earning positive reviews takes effort from your sales, service, product development and marketing teams, so it’s no easy task!

A four- or five-star rating on Yelp may drive more business than any sale or promotion that your company might be having, and that high rating will stick around long after the sale is over. If you’re struggling to earn positive reviews, be proactive about reaching out to those who haven’t had the best experience.

It will take time, but the goodwill generated from strong customer service may result in updated reviews and even repeat business.

 

Optimize Your Content 

If your company uses Webmaster Tools, you’ve got a great tool for crowd-sourcing content. The Search Queries report in Webmaster Tools gives you a firsthand look at the questions your audience is asking to get to your site. And if you really want to target mobile users, you can do so by segmenting that report by mobile users to find out what questions people are asking Siri, Cortana or Google to find your brand.

Once you know what they’re looking for, you can use your content marketing team to create copy, infographics or videos that answer their questions and help them find you more easily!

 

Use Your Tools 

Is your company about to open a new store, or maybe even enter a new market? Did you recently partner with a charity for a successful event (or are you about to)?

Use social media and content marketing to promote these events – and do it months, not days, in advance. The homepage is also an undervalued tool when it comes to promoting brand growth – don’t hesitate to use your homepage to spread the news about your expansion or great deeds!

 

inconclusion 

Local SEO is hard. It’s the crossroads of development, reputation management, customer service, content and SEO, meaning that many of your team members will have to work hard to ensure that your brand wins in local search.

As more and more of us go mobile, winning local search means winning more customers, and who doesn’t want that?

 

Ryan Durling

Ryan Durling is Digital Project Manager at 451!

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