In a way, that big term Search Engine Optimization (SEO) just sounds complicated, doesn’t it? But if you think about how you search for products and services for yourself, it’s not so hard. Take the phrase ‘pizza delivery’ for example. Type in that exact phrase on Google and voila! Just like that, you’ve got a list of local places that deliver deliciousness to your door in a matter of minutes. And just like that, you’ve thought of how consumers search and find products and services on the Web.
But how do you remain authentic in the content delivery and still get the most out of what local SEO can offer? We have a handful of ideas for you.
1. ACT NATURALLY
From what I’ve learned, it’s always good to be natural. If you try too hard, people will see through it and realize it’s forced. So the same applies when writing for SEO. Think about how a user would find your business or product information. What words would you naturally type in? Your client is the closest to their customer, so pick their brain about what types of phrases their consumers would be searching.
Once you have a good list going, get your Web developer involved to help refine these selections. Then write your creative messaging the way you normally would, infusing these keywords and phrases in natural places. Don’t over-manipulate copy to the point of sounding generic to satisfy SEO, but create a fine balance. Remember, you can always add the final list of keywords in places like the title, tags, meta description and header tags if need be. Consider it more of a conversation, than a negotiation. Use an organic method to reflect an organic thought process.
2. LOCAL LISTING LEVERAGE
As a local business, you’ll want to make sure you get listed with the three most important directories: Google+ Places, Yahoo Local and Bing Places. And don’t forget to take advantage of their search results by filling out your business profile completely to be fully optimized. When a search engine discovers a business name, address and phone number on additional business directories, it will begin to assign more authority to that local listing. So it’s best to not leave any spaces blank.
If there’s a spot to upload videos, images or write a detailed description using keywords, do it. And make sure the information matches other avenues of output. For example, your contact information should be the same from your website to social media to your business card. Paying close attention to these little details will increase your overall local SEO. It may take a little more time on the front end, but the long-term SEO results will amaze you.
3. A REVIEW OF YOU
Here’s the part that will keep you on your toes. Many times businesses shy away from open forums and online reviews to avoid potential negativity. But detailed, positive reviews can bump up your local SEO impact like never before. So if you’re doing your part to send out your best work every day, you’ll see the results coming back to you tenfold. Positive reviews on the pages mentioned can play a major role in amping up your local SEO.
4. QUALITY, NOT QUANTITY
It’s like anything in life, if you put your name on something of low quality and low value, that’s probably what you’ll get in return. Similarly, if you put your name on a low quality site, you’ll generally get low quality search results. This follows that the better the directory, the better the listing should be. So just because you can put your name out on a million directories, it doesn’t mean that you should. Being particular about where you place your name will help you get the most bang for your local SEO buck. And putting your energies into being listed on major directories with a solid reputation will place you in a better position against your competition…literally.
5. ALL ABOUT MOBILE
Right now, it’s all about mobile. And with anything new and evolving, new terms are bound to arise. The most recent one rolls off the tongue like a new age energy drink – SoLoMo. This stands for Social, Local, Mobile. And you should take advantage of this in real-time.
Customers are hooked on mobile and convenience. Think about how often your customer is out shopping and searching at the same time. Local SEO tailors these results to where the customer is physically located while on their mobile device. If you’re missing out on these mobile and social customers, you’re missing out on half of your local target.
So when you think about the daunting world of Search Engine Optimization (SEO), just step back and take an authentic look at how natural it all really is, and know that following just a few simple steps will increase your green by a landslide.