How to Ramp Up Your Local SEO (Part I)
Several years ago, local SEO was the internet equivalent of the Wild Wild West. With virtually no major competition in even some major urban niches, smart brands were able to move in and dominate in various SERPs. Today, however, there is much more competition and the playing field for local SEO doesn’t look much different than many other SEO niches. Brands and search engines alike have had to adapt to this changing landscape, making it more difficult to achieve the top spot in search. Today, we’ll begin the first of our two-part discussion on how to ramp up your local SEO performance in this ever-changing environment.
Utilize the Power of Blogging
Above all else, content is king in local SEO. Optimization along technical lines will only get you so far; at the end of the day, you’re going to need some proverbial meat. Any brand can easily maintain a blog alongside their website, which provides opportunities for producing helpful content that audiences will find enjoyable, entertaining or just useful. You can also use this as an opportunity to inject relevant keywords and geographic information that’ll better optimize your website for various local SERPs. By pinging search engines with this information, you’ll establish more expertise, authority and trustworthiness with them in your niche.
There are numerous ways to use geotagging features in order to further associate your brand with a local area. Some geotags can be used to help alert search engines to a specific location where your business is based, giving it real credibility within those SERPs. Other forms of geotagging are more generic, such as including location data in the meta data for each image, video or other form of content you publish. By associating one or more locations with each piece of content your brand publishes, you are sending more relevant signals to search engines about your location. The brands that do this the best tend to be the most dominant in search results.
Create Pages for Each Location
If your brand is targeting multiple areas – whether they are near one another or completely separate – then you should definitely create individual pages for each locale. By creating a unique website for each place, you’ll be able to more effectively compete for customers or visitors in each niche. While this will result in more work (you’ll need fresh, unique content for each page, for instance), you will be handsomely rewarded by the increased amount of traffic you’re generating through each local page. There are many ways to generate location-specific content that ties into your brand, especially if your business is active in these communities.
Local SEO relies on many of the same tenets as standard SEO, but there are a variety of unique elements to consider. From the use of geotagging to the creation of multiple pages for each locale, local SEO requires a bit more customization in many respects. Be sure to check in tomorrow for part two of how to ramp up your local SEO efforts!