While you may think that SEO and local SEO are two entirely different concepts, the two can actually be used together in a synergistic way in order to improve your overall visibility. Your content marketing can be used in tandem with your local SEO to give you a leg up on your competitors. Here is how you can use the two together to get your business noticed.
What is SEO?
SEO stands for search engine optimization. These search engines rely on powerful algorithms. While nobody on the outside knows the exact nature of these algorithms, we do have a general idea what the search engines like to see when they crawl your page. By using certain keywords and having a clean page with a positive user experience, you are taking your first step to getting on the search engine’s proverbial “good side.” The goal with SEO is to make your page as friendly as possible to Google and Bing so that they put you at the top of the search results for any given search term.
What is Local Marketing?
Local marketing is making your brick-and-mortar business or local service business more visible to the general public. This is similar to SEO but is designed to make you more visible when people search for a local business. Local SEO is a combination of organic search and social media strategy to gain visibility. Essentially, you want to be noticed by customers when they are on the go and then deliver on their expectations. Essential pillars of local marketing include review acquisition, mobile optimization, and customer expectation management. Many people use search engines to locate local businesses, and local marketing is essentially SEO to be found in your own geographic area. You want to do everything possible to show up at the top of the list when someone searches for a local business.
Backlink acquisition is ensuring that other sites and businesses link back to your business. This impresses the search engines who take backlinks as a sign that you have a following. One way to do this for your local business is by creating hyperlocal content that others without your knowledge and vantage point do not have the ability to create. This will gain some links and help you. Your goal here is to both speak to your audience and impress Google to get them to put your business high up in its local search listings. You will generally place this content elsewhere on a high-quality domain and then include a link back to your website.
Search engines will not always go out and find you. Sometimes, especially when your website is new, you have to go out and find them. One way to do this is by making directory submissions to the search engines. This is a way to build high authority backlinks. For SEO, submit your content to Google as you publish it. For local SEO, you would also submit your content to show Google that is it local and relevant. The first step in this process is setting up a Google+ page for your business. Not only should you submit your content to Google, but you should also seek out any other type of online directory that you can find and submit your website and content to it as a way to earn another link. There are both free and paid options when you make directory submissions. If the directory is broken down into niches, make sure that you properly categorize your business.
Online reviews can help your business in many different ways. They will make or break your reputation. In addition, Google reviews are known to boost your SEO. Search engines see these reviews and interpret them as a sign that your business is reliable and has a track record. Finding a way to get more online reviews will help make your business more visible. To manage your reviews, you will want to plant the seed in customers’ minds to review your business using a certain keyword. When it comes to local SEO, online reviews are a way to make your business appear higher in local search directories. Practically speaking, customers trust online reviews written by complete strangers nearly as much as they will trust a recommendation from family and friends. A string of positive reviews will show that your business is trustworthy and has a history of satisfying its customers. This and visibility build on each other to give you more positive mentions in prominent places.
All pieces of your marketing strategy fit together as you try to get your local business noticed by local customers online. Study up on SEO, especially how it applies locally, and methodically follow these steps to get noticed.
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