What are the Benefits of Local SEO?


Published: December 7, 2020 Author: Jason Holicky - Hometown Design Studio Inc.
What are the Benefits of Local SEO?

When today’s consumers are looking for a new business to visit, 46 percent of them turn to Google to search for local results. Whether they’re looking for appliance repair, pizza delivery, or a new dentist, Google is likely to supply the information. What’s more, when these searches happen on a mobile device, the likelihood that the search will result in a visit to the location increases by 35 percent. In other words, the benefits of local SEO cannot be understated.

What is Local SEO?

For business owners, local SEO means improving your business’s digital profiles to increase your visibility among potential customers who are using search to find new places to go. The benefits of local SEO are the greatest for businesses with physical locations and those that serve a specific geographic area, such as a landscaping service or painting company. Optimizing your online presence to gain more business from these local searches is what local SEO is all about.

Benefits Of Local SEO

The first and most crucial step is to claim your Google My Business listing as one of the first places Google will turn to for information about your company is one of its own assets. Plus, only half of all listings have been claimed by their owners so taking this step puts you far ahead of many others. If the word “claim” seems odd, you may not be aware that your company likely has a GMB listing that was created for you. The information contained on this profile includes your address, website link, phone number, and hours of operation. It may also have photos and reviews left by customers.

If you leave it to Google to fill in those blanks for you, the information may not be as accurate and up-to-date as it should be, and your customers may find themselves disappointed. Plus, you should always be aware of what people are saying about you in the review section as customer feedback is one of the most important things people consider before visiting a new business.

Every Business Should Have a Local SEO Strategy

While there is a chance that your business will have some visibility among local searchers without a local SEO strategy, we think it’s better to take the time to make sure you’re seen. The good news is that your local strategy will contain many points that will boost your overall digital marketing efforts, so there’s no reinventing the wheel. Here are the basic steps that every business should follow:

  • Your Website. Be sure your website is optimized for local search, starting with optimizing your site for mobile visitors. Not only are local searchers more likely to actually visit a store if they’re searching from their mobile device, but smartphone ownership in the U.S. is now 81 percent of all Americans! Leaving this group with a bad interaction with your digital assets is a critical error.
  • Keyword Considerations. Next, you’ll want to check the keywords you’re targeting with your SEO strategy to include words that show local intent and contain the kinds of problems people are trying to solve in their search. For example, let’s consider a residential plumber in Chicago. Some keywords they may want to consider include “plumber in Chicago,” “clogged drain Chicago,” affordable plumber Chicago.”
  • More Profiles. There may be only a handful of people using Bing, but every customer counts, so be sure to claim or create your Bing Places profile, which is essentially Bing’s equivalent of a GMB profile, and update the information. If you’ve already completed your GMB profile, you can even import that data into your Bing Places listing. Then, head over to Apple Maps and do the same.
  • Mind Your Reviews. From Google to Yelp to TripAdvisor, you always want to be aware of what people are saying about your business and reply to these reviews whenever possible. It’s especially important to respond to any negative reviews to apologize for the situation and try to make it right as potential customers will see them and will be looking closely to see how you handle the occasional slip-up.

Once these main steps are completed, you’ll be in good shape. Depending on how competitive your market or area is, there are a few more advanced steps that you can take to improve your local SEO results that include a bit more optimization of your website, scouring directories for accuracy, improving your social media profiles, and link building among local area businesses.

How Can Local SEO Help Grow Your Business?

One of the most significant ways local SEO efforts will help grow your business is that it’s an extremely cost-effective marketing solution. By taking the time to make sure your profiles and website information are accurate and optimized for your location, you’ll be making sure that people will find your business. This allows small business owners to compete with national names and big budgets.

How Can Local SEO Help Your Business

What’s even more exciting is that you’ll be capturing the attention of these consumers when they are ready to buy, especially when we’re talking about mobile search. Consider someone who is already on the move and away from their home area. She’s ready for some lunch but is unfamiliar with the area. What does she do? Grabs her phone and enters “sushi near me” into Google Maps, gets a list of relevant local businesses, and off she goes.

Plus, the traffic your website receives from everyone else is likely to be visits from very qualified prospects. Google and other search engines want to provide their customers (that is, people who are searching) with the best and most accurate information. That means that it’s less likely for your information to show up to people who are too far or whose needs are not close enough to the products or services you provide. Only those who are near enough and a good enough match will visit your site, and quality traffic can make a big difference in your conversion rates.

Making Local SEO Easy

The steps to optimize your digital assets for local SEO are not complicated, but there can be a long list of places to check, update, and maintain. Plus, any business in a highly competitive market may struggle to get found even if everything is in top shape.

That’s where we come in! Whether you need help updating a single profile or want someone to revamp your entire local strategy, we’re standing by. Contact us today to get started.

About the Author

Creative Director Jason co-founded Hometown Design Studio of New Lenox, IL in 2013. He spends his days guiding and consulting industrial clients and small businesses owners on their marketing strategy and projects. Jason enables everyone to be successful and grow their business by sharing his knowledge and experience.
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