Local Businesses Need Local SEO
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) for local businesses (Local SEO) is very different from SEO for national companies. The good news is that local companies have far fewer competitors (as a rule) vs. national companies or websites, so in that sense Local SEO is easier. On the other hand, it’s also somewhat more complicated because the options are different and more varied.
As you can see in the image to the right (click it for a larger size), Google Search Results are shown in different ways. At the top are Google Ads that come from Google’s Adwords PPC service.
Next down the list ae the “Google Places” results, now called “Google My Business”. This is Google’s way of displaying local results when a city name is included as part of the search phrase. That makes it very important for local businesses.
Below these results are normal “organic SEO” results.
Optimizing for Google My Business
In some ways, optimizing a website for a local business (Local SEO) is more complicated than optimizing a site for a national market, because most searches will include location information (town, city, sometimes an area or region such as “Bay Area”) in addition to other “functional” search terms such as “chinese restaurant” or “dentist”.
Google My Business integrates Google Maps and Google Plus to provide their solution for local business search. Yahoo, and MSN’s Bing work in a similar way. How high your site will come up for an appropriate search depends on 4 different factors:
- Google Plus page, completely filled out with all info and photos as a minimum
- Consistent presence on 40+ business directories, called “citations”
- Number of reviews posted on your Google Plus Page
- Overall “domain authority” (SEO worthiness) of your website
We can make sure your site is properly set up on Google Plus, submitted to the appropriate citations directories in the correct way, and we can help you to accumulate positive reviews on your Google Plus page. se services as well as the “generic” search results for these Search Engines. This is especially crucial for retail stores, restaurants, professionals, and local service businesses. We provide these Local SEO services to many of our local Bay Area clients.
Organic SEO for Local Businesses
Google My Business can provide very good traffic to a local business if your site is positioned among the top 3. However, that is really only effective for the city where you have a physical location and address. Google does provide an option for businesses who call on other businesses, but in our experience that is rarely useful or effective. Hopefully in the future that part of Google My Business may be expanded. So what do you do to attract customers or patients from nearby towns in the mean time?
Many local businesses target consumers (B2C) or other businesses (B2B) in other towns near the one where they’re located. Since it’s not practical to rely on Google My Business for those areas, we have to rely on either PPC Advertising such as Google Adwords or organic SEO to maximize you Google search results. But there’s a twist.
The key is once again the way people search, which is often with phrases like “cupertino dentist” or “cosmetic dentist in Mountain View”, and we can optimize pages for such searches by building a page on your site for each city where your prospective customers/clients/patients are located. These pages focus on the specific town, with related information about that town as well as your services in the town or to residents of that town. With a little creativity and effort we can achieve good results for you in this way.
As with many forms of marketing, a combination of solutions usually brings the best overall results.
Give us a call, we’re here to help
We have the tools and expertise to drive high numbers of new prospects to your website. The result is a website that brings you more traffic, more appropriate visitors, and many new prospective customers.
If you would like to get started or if you have any questions (there are no silly questions), simply email us or call us toll-free at 888-283-8829 or locally at 925-417-7040.
Serving Businesses in Castro Valley, Concord, Danville, Dublin, Fremont, Hayward, Livermore, Modesto, Oakland, Pleasanton, San Leandro, San Ramon, Stockton, Tracy, Walnut Creek, the East Bay, San Francisco Bay Area, and Nationwide.