October 14, 2019

Top 6 Local SEO Tips for Small Businesses

In this week’s blog you will learn about the TOP 6 Local SEO TIPS for Small Businesses! If you have a small or local business, then this video is for you!

What you will learn….

1. Basic info about Local SEO (Search Engine Optimization
2. Why SEO is Important for Small Business
3. Free Tools & Resources

Before reading, find out your SEO Score by using this FREE SEO Tool.

Welcome back to another installment of our SEO series! This blog is a follow-up blog from Top 5 Best Content for Google My Business. Stay updated on our latest blog posts by signing up to our email list here. 

Ranking high on Google is incredibly important towards reaching potential clients searching for your products and services.

However, it is even more important when discussing local ranking. Small businesses reside within a local Map Pack, which is the group of 3 businesses that appear in a box at the top of the search page just after the advertisements. 

Many leads and conversions come from this map pack alone as it drives clients to your page. Protofuse states that 90% of clicks comes from organic results seen only on the first page. More than 20% of those clicks come from the Local Map pack in search results.

Speaking from the point of view as a company ourselves, Momentum Digital and our sister brand Phone Repair Philly, receives 90% of our customers online. To break this down over 70% of our leads come from Google alone, with over 50% of that then coming from Local Map Pack Search Results!

Example of a Google Map Pack which features Momentum's side business Phone Repair Philly.

As you can see, we dominate the local listings to rank at the top for Local Map Search Results, right below the paid ads. This is what builds our business and increases visibility.

So, now that you know it works … let’s talk about the 6 most influential tips towards helping to rank and convert for local businesses:

1. Google My Business:

Free and easy to use tool that allows businesses and organizations to manage their accounts across the platform! Not only that, but within the past year 64% of consumers have used Google My Business to find contact details for local businesses. 

The biggest tip we can give you when setting up your Google My Business account is to make sure to optimize it to its fullest through filling out your entire profile. This proves legitimacy to both google as well as your potential leads!

It is useful for a number of things, according to Brightlocal including; 

  • Google app search
  • Searches in third-party browser or Google Chrome (mobile/desktop)
  • Maps in mobile/desktop browser
  • Different Maps apps
  • Google Home voice search
  • Google Assistant voice search
Example of the Google My Business layout and format.

If you’d like to read about about Google My Business and what it can do for you, here’s a link to Google’s very own support page.

2. Local Listings

Refers to other listings, directories or citations that link back to your website or business. These contain your business’s name, address and phone number (otherwise referred to as NAP) and should be consistent across platforms. 

They might also contain a brief company description or important visual media connected to your company. This is why it’s important to fill out everything on your Google My Business to keep these listings and your Google account consistent.

According to Aarthi Narayanan a Content Marketer at Synup, “Local Business Listings give more visibility for your business and every new listing that you create enhances your chances of being found online by customers. The more directories that you are listed on, the more visible you are. If your business is visible online, search engines trust the accuracy of your business data and thus, your chances of ranking on top for local searches shoot up.” 

Some popular local business directories include; 

  • Facebook 
  • Hubspot 
  • Yelp 
  • Yellow Book 
Highlighting different directory sites that you can utilize for your business to take advantage of local listings.

Here is more information about the best local listing directories for small business seo published by Hubspot.

3. Website Optimizations

Google cares deeply about your original website. This means they analyze what is linking to and from it, what content you post, even whether or not it’s optimized for SEO. 

Important things to take into consideration while Auditing your website for SEO optimization are; 

  1. Page speed – which means how fast your page loads both on mobile as well as desktop.
  2. Mobile-friendliness – how well your website performs on a mobile device. This is incredibly important since according to a recent report by Hitwise, more than 50% of Google searches are now done on a mobile device.
  3. Content – what you post and how relevant it is to your business and customers
  4. Backlinking – who links back to your website and whether these citations are consistent across all platforms. 
  5. Metadata – meaning the title, description and optimizations for your website.

Ahref’s video WordPress SEO Tutorial for Beginners (Search Engine Optimization Basics), has a more detailed step by step guide to help you understand and implement SEO into your website. 

Example of metadata which appears as captions in and around search engine results.

4. Content

Content is incredibly important towards optimizing any website and ranking well within search engines. It includes both what’s written on your website as well as how it is structured, and everything in between. Learn more about creating and optimizing content from this Yoast article.

The three major elements of content are; 

  1. Keyword Strategy – this is the research done to create an extensive list of keywords you would like to rank for. This should take into account what your audience is searching for and cater to that with long tail keywords.

There are four important steps within this. They are;

  • First, you write down the mission of your business;
  • Next, you make a list of all the keywords you want to be found for;
  • Look at search intent
  • Finally, you create landing pages for all these keywords.

2. Site Structure – The ideal structure for your website would be similar to that of a pyramid. Your homepage would link to important pages, then those pages would link to more and so forth. 

This is important for two reasons; 

  • Google can read (or crawl) your website better 
  • You’re not competing with your own content 

3. Copywriting – You should write articles that are attractive to read, and that makes your audience want to stay on your website. At the same time, you want to make your SEO content attractive for Google.

Graph which depicts how keywords are found and placed in an article.

Content is also important towards both Google as well as your customers as they will be the ones looking for important information within them. 

5. Reputation Management

This refers to making sure you have a really good social reputation online (mostly review based).

This is done in a number of ways, but can include; 

  • Google reviews
  • Facebook reviews
  • Customer testimonials 
  • Responding to comments or questions
  • Thanking people for reviews

Through implementing this you can create an environment where both your clients feel heard and valued, as well as creating important legitimacy with Google as they view reviews as added content. Miles Beckler’s video “Reputation Management 101” can be a valuable source if you’d like to learn more on this topic. 

Cartoon showing reviews can boost SEO.

6. Backlinking

Also referred to as “inbound link”, are trustworthy, authoritative link building through relationships and content. Backlinks are especially valuable for SEO because they represent a “vote of confidence” from one site to another, according to Moz. By receiving multiple backlinks search engines can infer that your content is credible and will rank your site higher. 

Though, it is important to avoid spammy backlinking as they should be done with a specific purpose in mind. 

Strategies you can implement to garner more backlinks are; 

  • Guest blogging for larger sites 
  • Ask other bloggers to consider reviewing your site 
  • Offer your content as a resource to others
  • Try answering questions on Quora.com
  • Get listed on directories 
Graph which depicts how backlinking works on sites.

Learn more about backlinking from this video by Brian Dean

By following these Top 6 Local SEO tips for small businesses you can improve the ranking of your business and get more Free Customers!

Let us know in the comments what tip you’re most excited to check out or which seems the most daunting. We would love to help or give you some more information! 

What SEO strategy have you tried or are struggling the most with? Please comment below! 


Written by Samantha Hughes.


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