- Do you run a local business but you’re struggling to rank well in Google?
- Does it frustrate you that your competitors show up in local searches but your business is nowhere to be seen?
- Would you like to grow your online presence to attract new customers?
If you run a bricks and mortar business or even a home business that relies on local custom, making it visible online is still incredibly important unless you’re happy to rely on footfall past your premises. But how do you get your business noticed in local searches?
This blog is all about the importance of local SEO for local businesses. Keep an eye out later in the article for some exciting news from SEO+ about our online course to help you ace your local SEO and attract new customers by getting ahead of your competitors on Google.
But before we rush ahead…
Why local SEO matters
If your business is dependent on local trade to thrive and grow, then local SEO is the key to increasing your visibility online and bringing new customers through the door. Although you can advertise locally and create an enticing shop window, these approaches may not be enough on their own.
Google’s sophisticated algorithms can put your business in front of a vast number of people who are searching locally for the products or services you offer.
In a recent blog – A definitive guide to online reviews: where to feature them and how to get them – I explored the fact that 92% of consumers now look for online reviews before they make a buying decision, trusting them as much as personal recommendations. If you set up your local SEO properly, you can help to flag up your Google reviews at the same time as providing your business contact details, both of which – according to Search Engine Land – are key pieces of information people want to find in local searches.
The importance of mobile searches and ‘local intent’ for local SEO
With the meteoric rise of mobile devices, the way people search and use the internet is evolving. A recent study by Google and IPSOS showed that 70% of mobile searchers will call a business directly from a search results page without even visiting their website for more information. Of those searchers, 61% said that initial call was the single most important step in their purchase journey. Sixty-nine percent of the 3,000 respondents said that the ability to call from search results was most important for local businesses.
The takeaway is clear – people want quick and easy, and what could be quicker and easier than being able to make a phone call straight from the search results?
This is especially relevant if you run a business that’s dependant on local traffic. These days, Google is sophisticated enough to identify a searcher’s location and return search results for local businesses if they think a search has ‘local intent’. For example, if you search for a ‘hairdresser’, ‘fitness classes’ or ‘restaurants’ without mentioning a location, Google is going to make the fairly safe assumption that you’ll want details of businesses that are close to you rather than at the other end of the country and return results based on distance as well as relevance.
Here’s an example. I’m based in Newton Abbot; when I use my mobile to search for ‘restaurants’ nearby, this is what Google shows me:
As you can see, Google has given me a choice of restaurants, each less than a mile away. I didn’t even have to be logged into Google or state my location to receive these highly relevant search results. All I need to do is click on an option to see detailed information about my chosen restaurant including images, Google reviews, directions, and that all-important ‘call’ button. I haven’t even needed to visit the website to make my booking.
I could run the same search in Google from my desktop and be able to access the same information, but with even more organic search results. Faced with such targeted results, the majority of searchers will click on one of these options without making a deeper search into pages two and beyond of Google. If you can appear in these prominent positions, it can only be good news for your clickthrough rates and conversion rate optimisation.
Back in October 2015, research by Google into local search behaviour found that 50% of consumers who conduct a local search on their mobile phone visit the store in person within 24 hours of their search, and 34% of people who use tablet to search do the same. When people search for local businesses, it’s often because they have an immediate need.
If your business isn’t showing up in local searches and therefore not attracting calls direct from the search results, the chances are that your local SEO needs some immediate care and attention.
The good news is, that when it comes to local SEO, there are some specific ranking signals that we know can improve your local visibility online.
Find out how to make that happen using The Local SEO 7-Step System to Make YOU Irresistible to YOUR Local Customers
The ‘Local SEO 7-Step System to Make YOU Irresistible to YOUR Local Customers’ is a practical, step-by-step online local SEO course that will help you outrank your competitors and attract the customers you deserve.
The course consists of easy-to-follow, bite-sized modules that cover the SEO elements that you need in order to appear on Google’s first page for local searches. It’s a combination of really solid, proven SEO tips and techniques and my own experience in increasing traffic and sales growth, without all the fluff and guff.
Seven simple steps over fourteen weeks
Implementing the seven simple steps in this system will lead to YOU being the chosen one, save you a ton of cash on hiring an SEO company to do it for you and actually make you a ton of profit as you attract more and more customers.
And the best bit is that you don’t need a single nugget of experience in SEO to complete the Local SEO Course. There’s meaty content that everyone can take away and action, whether you’re an SEO novice/phobic, or you’re making some confident strides into SEO’s ever-changing waters.
The course materials consist of downloadable worksheets and instructional, easy-to-follow videos. A new module will be available every two weeks, making this a fourteen-week course that you can fit around your busy schedule.
Extra support just for the Local SEO 7-Step System course members
As part of my 7-Step System, I’ll also be giving you lifetime access to the online membership area and private Facebook support group where I’ll be on hand to give advice, feedback and support.
By the end of the Local SEO 7-Step System
If you take a short amount of time out of each week to action the Local SEO 7-Step System, your business will benefit from:
- A prominent position in local searches
- More calls/enquiries straight from the search results
- Ranking above your local competitors
- Attracting new Google reviews
- Greater online authority
- An increase in sales and profitability
This fourteen-week course is currently available for just £295, which is less than what many SEO companies charge for a single month of SEO support.
Based on my years of experience, the local visibility of SEO+ in Google and the results our current students are getting as a result of following this 7-Step SEO System, I am confident that you will experience the benefits of this course for a long time to come, especially as you will have the knowledge to implement what you learn time and again.
Ready to get your website noticed on Google and skyrocket your local traffic?
Hazel Jarrett, director of SEO at SEO+, is well-known in the SEO space, has won many awards during her 20-year career and has been published on various well-known sites. Through her services and training programs, her SEO strategies have generated 10s of millions of sales for her clients, earning her a big reputation for delivering the results that matter.
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