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What is local SEO? The short answer is location-based search engine optimization.
Slightly longer answer for What is Local SEO – It is optimization done to improve your chances of being found by people looking for you in the specific area where you work and/or offer your services. So, every time one of your customers searches in Google for ‘X-Service Near Me’, or ‘X-Service in Y-location’ (for example, ‘plumber in Lynn Valley’), they are engaging ‘local search’ mode. You need to be ready to activate ‘local service found’ mode and engage right back, right then and there!
The longest answer of all, including why you should care? Read on…
Targeting Specific Areas
Local SEO is all about improving your website and online presence in order to be ranked for relevant keywords within your geographical location and your target area – i.e., the suburbs, cities and/or regions where your customers or potential customers live and need your services.
As outlined in our blog ‘SEO for Beginners: 9 SEO Tips for 2020, this form of SEO is:
- The art/skill/magic of optimizing your online content, as well as website structure and technical background,
- In such a way that search engines (like Google) can find it easily,
- And then show it as a top result for searches of a certain keyword,
- In the unpaid, or organic section of their search results page
Local SEO is all of that but done to enhance your chances of being found online in a specific region – the region where you operate and where your potential customers live and need your services.
Who Needs to Use Local SEO?
Typically designed for smaller businesses, local SEO is perfect for businesses like landscapers, pest control, hair stylists, general tradesman, and other businesses who rely on local traffic and customers to make their money. They offer their services and/or products specifically to people within their geographic location.
Should You Invest In This Form of Optimization?
Are you a small local business, retail or otherwise? Or, are you a service-area business? Then yes. You should invest in local SEO.
Any business with a ‘city or area’ specific customer base, must adopt what is a local SEO strategy for their website. Here’s why: nearly two-thirds of all local customers search online to find the local businesses they are looking for. Whether you are a plumber, an electrician, a hairdresser, a dentist, or a restaurant owner, if you are not at the top of the local search rankings, know this: your competitors will be.
Need more convincing? These statistics, as outlined by HubSpot, regarding the importance, and successes, of local SEO should have you running to your local SEO experts for their help! And trust us, these are only a handful of 100s of statistics which prove the efficacy of local search in improving your business’s bottom line:
- 46% of all Google searches have local intent – i.e., the people searching are looking for local information. (GoGulf)
- “Near me” or “close by” type searches grew by more than 900% over two years. (Chat Meter)
- 72% of consumers who did a local search visited a store within five miles. (HubSpot Marketing Statistics)
- 88% of searches for local businesses on a mobile device either call or visit the business within 24 hours. (Nectafy)
- 18% of local smartphone searches led to a purchase within a day, compared to only 7% of non-local searches leading to a sale. (Think with Google)
The good news is that local SEO is actually a much simpler-to-implement, more cost-effective beast to tame than custom or conventional SEO:
- Costs typically range between $400 to $1000 + / month for local SEO,
- As compared to an average monthly retainer for conventional SEO running anywhere between $1000 to $5,000+/ month (Most of our clients fall somewhere in the middle of that).
- What’s more, the results from local SEO tend to be much quicker and extremely valuable, with visible results often appearing in as soon as three to six months.
Five Tips to Help You Make the Most of Local SEO
Google themselves have outlined five tips to help you understand what is local SEO and to navigate through the steps needed to ensure that your business is winning in this area. These five steps include:
- Ensuring you have click-worthy titles and meta descriptions across your website.
- Keeping a consistent, updated, and prominent online presence.
- Claiming your Google My Business (GMB) listing for full control of how Google and your customers see you online.
- Managing, responding to, and growing your customer reviews online.
- Implementing a structured data markup for local search.
We have gone into detail about how to do all five of these steps in a previous blog, entitled ‘Best Local SEO Tips and Resources for 2019’, which are still as relevant in 2020, if not more so!
If getting found right now, in all the right places, sounds good to you (and isn’t that the whole point of running a local business – to be found exactly where you operate when your customers need you?), it’s time to enlist the help of our local SEO experts. Get found in your own neighborhood today:
Or email firstname.lastname@example.org for your customized local SEO plan.