Local SEO; How to Optimize Your Website for Location Based Listings

Sometimes, you get useless SEO traffic which can hardly convert to any sales or conversions. This isn’t because they’re robots or they don’t need your products, but they may be out of range.

Imagine, for example, that you run a digital marketing class in Los Angeles. Every Tuesday, you give digital marketing tutorials to your students. Just to get more students, you decide to source for students online.

You created your website and did some SEO work. When the results started showing, you found out that most of your website visitors are actually from Nigeria, days away from your country. The possibility of getting any leads from Nigerian visitors are actually faint.

However, local SEO makes that whole process easy, because when properly done, you get most of your search engine traffic from the location you optimized for.

Local SEO is not a setting in search console or webmaster tools, it is a process of strategically optimizing your page for location-specific results.

Local SEO doesn’t just happen overnight. There are a lot of deliberate actions that must be taken to show the search engines that our website is a business, and it is based in a particular location.

In this article, I’ll show you how you can tell the search engines to send you traffic from particular locations only. Here you go.

Why Local SEO?

Local SEO is not so hard. Sometimes, it can be easier than the regular SEO you’re used to.

Here are the reasons why local SEO can be easier than regular SEO. If you want to rank for a keyword worldwide, you automatically compete with millions of others trying to rank for that same keyword.

Also, new websites are more likely to spring up, and if they make a big launch, you’re likely to lose most of the keywords you currently rank for.

Before we jump to the important local SEO techniques, let’s steal some data from the Search Engine Journal which may convince physical business owners to start doing some local SEO.

 50% of people who made a search on a mobile device made a purchase at a local store. A great percentage of these might not be unrelated to the search they made earlier.
 34% of those who made a search on their desktop device visited a store too.
 12% of search engine users look for a local business online every day, and by the end of the year, 97% of search engine users must have done this.

These interesting stats suggest that the suggestions made by Google really influence the actions of the searchers. The best thing you can do for your organization is to get yourself high on Google’s local results and get physical customers too.

Here’s how you can do that without much stress.

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How to do Local SEO

A decade ago, trying to rank a business locally on the search engines was much of a difficult task. Fast forward to 2020, it has become more difficult to achieve that feat.

I want to know something, however; “it’s not IMPOSSIBLE”. If it isn’t impossible, that means you can do it. Here are the tweaks you need to make to get the difficult magic done without any stress.

1. Buy a local domain

This is one of the basic tweaks you need to make at the onset.

In case you don’t know, a local domain is a domain name with a country-specific extension. For example, Healthie.com.ng uses the Nigerian local prefix “.ng.” There are local extensions for almost every country. However, local extensions without the .com before them, such as ‘example.in” are usually more expensive than the regular domains.

Nonetheless, country-specific domain names are a great indication to Google that you’re actually based in that particular country, and they’re likely to rank you higher for queries relating to that location.

2. Use localized keywords in your content

People looking for a local business are more likely to include: ”near me” or the name of their locality to their search queries.

For example, someone looking for a digital marketing class in Los Angeles will literarily type “best digital marketing class in Los Angeles.” Otherwise, they search for something like a “digital marketing class near me.”

For maximum local SEO benefits, adding the locational prefix to the end of your keywords are necessary for solid rankings.

3.Build links from local sites

It is no news that links are a big factor search engines consider ranking websites. Links will make or break your SEO strategy. You need quality, authoritative and relevant links to rank and nothing more than useless links to lose the rankings immediately.

When links are used strategically, they can be a great tool for local SEO success. The strategy behind links for local SEO that differentiates it from the freestyle link building you’re used to is that in local SEO, local links count most.

Google is smart. They know that a furniture website in Delhi cannot tell the quality of a digital marketing class in Los Angeles.

So, be smart too. Build links from local websites that are relevant to your business, else, Google fucks you off.

4.Feature your website on Google My Business listings

Sometimes, you discover that when you search on Google, they bring you ta list of three businesses, with the name, address, and phone numbers. Google even shows you its location on Google maps and gives you directions.

This is because they claimed their business on Google My Business. It is easy to do this and takes a few minutes. Once you verified your website, you should also work to keep it in the local-3 pack, which is what you see when you search for a business online.

You should also select the correct category for your business and don’t forget to add photos, –it boosts rankings.

5.Claim your Bing Places for Business

Bing has 33% of the search market. 33% is too enormous to lose. That’s why you should also claim your Bing Places for Business account.

Bing Places for Business is much like Google My Business. It takes a few minutes to get your business registered and start getting customers from there.

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Conclusion

Local SEO is important. Trying to rank on the local search engines involves doing some local work. If you’re ready to do these, only then can you see any results. Otherwise, I pity your business.

Thanks for reading.

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