The local search wave has hit us and doesn't seem to be stopping any time soon.
In an effort to serve the best possible results to each individual who's searching, Google is placing more and more weight on factors such as location and engagement to define a website’s relevance.
In order to maximize your business's visibility in local search, you must familiarize yourself with the most important local SEO ranking factors.
Businesses like restaurants, dentists, mechanics, car dealers, etc. rely heavily on local customers and must optimize their local SEO to compete with nearby competitors. 28% of consumers who search for a type of local business on a mobile device call or visit that business within 24 hours.
Local SEO Ranking Factors
Throughout this post I will show you how to improve your local SEO with the following ranking factors:
- On-page SEO
- Google My Business
- Backlink profile
- Online citations
- Behavioral Signals
- Search personalization
- Social media
Keep in mind, when it comes to local SEO, there are two types of rankings that you'll want to pay attention to: local pack rankings and organic rankings.
- Local pack rankings: the small box with the map that shows the business's opening hours, reviews, and contact information.
- Organic rankings: good ole' fashion search results without, or, outside of the map pack
Local SEO Results - Google
Organic SEO Results - Google
Moz.com Local SEO Ranking Factor Findings
# 1 On-Page SEO
Content is an obvious place to start with for local SEO optimization. In fact, it's a great place to start for all SEO.
Content consistency is one of the most critical factors in Google's ranking because it makes the website more relevant or helpful for users. This led to an explosion in content marketing, which is now being used by 89% of B2B companies.
It's important to make sure your website's content is well written, helpful, and topically relevant. Although it's essential to include certain keywords throughout your website's content, you must make sure they occur naturally and aren't stuffed in there. Remember to use these keywords when possible in URLs, page headings, meta descriptions, alt text, and anchor text.
Another important aspect of local on-page SEO is to ensure you're business's Name, Address, and Phone number are present on every page of your website. Place them in the header or footer, which allows Google to find them without being inserted awkwardly in the main page contents.
Many websites also use blogs to provide authentic, related content to their sites. Local SEO activities would benefit further by concentrating on local matters such as news, events, and customers in your area.
#2 Google My business
Your Google My Business listing is one of the most critical factors in local search.
Make sure your business name, address, and telephone number are correct when you build or claim your GMB listing. This is useful not just for customers, but also because of the proximity of the business to the searcher is one of Google's main local ranking factors.
You want to ensure you've chosen the most suitable category and integrated essential keywords into your title and summary. Optimize the listing by completing it in full. Ensure your business hours are right, and the link to the website of your company is up-to-date.
The addition of your logo and some high-quality images will also improve your local or Google Maps presence. This, together with some excellent reviews, will make your business more attractive.
# 4 Reviews & Ratings
Examples of ways to get Google Reviews
- Email past customers that had a great experience working with you
- Put your GMB Review Link on stationery items like handouts like flyers, door hangers, business cards, etc.
- Offer discounted prices for people who leave positive reviews
- Put your GMB Review Link on receipts.
- If you're a restaurant, you can put your stationery items with your GMB Review Link inside checkbooks or with receipts