What is Local SEO?

6 mins read -
October 20, 2022

Benefits of local SEOSearch Engine Optimisation (SEO) is one of the best methods for adverts that have been tried and tested by experts for years on end.

SEO is the method that digital marketers use to boost your website's rankings to appear as one of the top results when inputting specific keywords. There are various types of SEO and many techniques under the strategy, including local SEO.

Local Search Engine Optimisation is a branch of ESO focused on providing the best results based on local search queries.

Overall, local SEO is an excellent strategy to get your website to appear on the first page of Google's search results, right at the top.

Are you interested in learning more about how local SEO can boost your business' websites? Keep reading to find out more!

What is local SEO?

The definition of local SEO

Before we can delve into local SEO techniques and how your business can use it to your advantage, we first need to understand what local SEO means and why it's essential to have.

Local search engine optimisation is a sub-category of SEO that involves queries trying to find anything related to location. It is a strategy that helps businesses become more visible when users search for local search results on Google. For example:

  • Restaurants near me
  • Dentists near me
  • Lawyers in (insert city name here)
  • Tutors in the (insert area here)

The typical SEO strategy involves content, on-page optimisation, and link building. On the other hand, local SEO focuses on ensuring that potential local signals on Google's search landscape are consistent and correct.

If the information about your website or page is incorrect, it could affect how the results show up for those searching for a service or product.

What is Google local SEO?

Unlike regular blogs, local SEO provides a more customised search experience for users looking for specific information on Google.

This all seems vague so let's break it down using a practical example:

You are driving around, looking for a restaurant to eat in because you're hungry and craving for a good, juicy, American style burger. Unfortunately, you can't spot any, so you go on your phone and search for "American burgers near me." Four restaurants pop up with burgers on their menu. They all contain the description of the burger, how much they cost, where the restaurant is, the restaurant’s contact information, and how long it will take you to get there. It even displays customer reviews through starts and comments so you can fully evaluate your options.

Thanks to Google and local SEO, you were able to select the restaurant that suited your price range and cravings the best.

Local SEO is a way for businesses to be found, including all the pertinent information for you to reach out and avail of their products or services. Without the information provided by local SEO, users would not find your business at all.

How local SEO works

Local SEO is like a standard Google search except more personalised to provide the best answer to a user's query. This means that Google uses a different set of ranking factors to determine the best result.

Here are some direct benefits of local SEO:

  • Gaining more online real estate in industries that are dominated by eCommerce giants
  • Driving footfall to brick-and-mortar stores or locations
  • Boosting traffic your website
  • Increasing the number of phone calls, bookings, and/or leads
  • Building trust, loyalty, and engagement with searchers

Local SEO is what you see when searching for a restaurant or store that has a physical location. It contains their address, contact information, reviews, ratings, and other pertinent information such as, "dine-in" or "takeaway" options.

Below the local SEO, you’ll find the normal search results that come up when searching for a blog, for example.

With local SEO, you can view your options, how far away they are from you, and you can directly place a call to connect with the location in question. You can even view how past customers or clients found their experience in that restaurant or store through the reviews and rating section, to be able to make a fully informed decision.

How to rank local SEO

Here are some ways Google ranks local SEO:

  • The location that the person is searching from
  • NAP citations
  • Presence of Google Business Profile
  • Keywords used in Google Business Profile
  • The sentiment of online reviews
  • Keywords used in online reviews
  • Number of “check-ins” at that location
  • Shares on social media
  • Google Maps star rating for that business

So, Google would display the top options for a search such as "best hair salons near me" and the typical search results underneath.

Are you looking to set up your website to cater using local SEO? Set an appointment with us at Smarter Media for more information about how you can appear first on local Google search pages.

Who needs local SEO?

Although all companies and businesses can benefit from local SEO, some companies and individuals get better results. So if you have a physical location, you will benefit from local SEO. These include:

  • Lawyers and law firms. Because local SEO provides potential clients with a number to call or further contact details, clients are more likely to get in touch with law firms that provide this information upon searching them up. A user can even get in touch with a lawyer that specialises in what they need.
  • Doctors, health clinics, and other medical practices. One of the most popular searches on the web related to doctors is "doctors near me." Most don't want to travel hours just to see a doctor for a few minutes, so they opt to find a reputable one nearby. And since local clinics aren't common knowledge, boosting local SEO as a small clinic will benefit your practice.
  • Plumbers. Plumbing issues are usually emergencies - whether it's a cracked pipe or a leaking faucet, most don't go to the store looking for replacement parts. What do they do instead? They go onto Google and search the phrase, "plumber near me."
  • Restaurants. Restaurants and local food chains benefit from local SEO in the list as local SEO provides the restaurant’s location, reviews, and even menus on the page results. People are also able to view similar restaurants for them to have many options.

To be clear, businesses without physical locations can still benefit from local SEO due to the reviews and contact details features.

Why is local SEO important to your business?

If it's not clear at this point, local SEO is an essential part of any business that wants to be found on the web - which should include everyone.

In today's digital age, everyone can be found online, specifically, on their mobile devices. Follow your audience by going where they browse using local SEO.

Here are some of the benefits of local SEO for businesses:

  • Local SEO helps potential customers find your business amongst thousands.
  • Local SEO provides the information users require to make an informed decision.
  • Local SEO provides the power to take action through the "call" button.
  • Local SEO helps customers find reviews about your business.

How to boost local SEO

Are you confused as to how to use local SEO? Here are ten ways to start optimising local SEO today.

  1. Create a Google - My Business Account. Add all the pertinent information such as logo, hours of operation, payment methods, descriptions of the products you sell, photos, and contact details. The more information you can put, the better.
  2. Ask your customers to review your services to boost ratings! It also helps future customers gain the confidence to try your services out because others liked them.
  3. Enable voice search for accessibility and disabled-friendly searching.
  4. Create blogs and other content based on local events.
  5. Be sure that your website is mobile-friendly.
  6. Use local keywords to guide you.
  7. Make use of location pages or location-specific "About Us" pages.
  8. Use online business directories.
  9. Get high-quality backlinks
  10. Create a webpage for each product or service you offer.

SEO with Smarter Media

Using SEO is not an easy feat - it takes a lot of effort, patience and expertise, and is definitely something that cannot be done alone. In order to fully appreciate and take advantage of the benefits of SEO, it's best to work with an expert in digital marketing.

Experts in the field know how to use SEO and customise it to the way you want your results to be. They can also help track and monitor your webpage to keep it fresh and up to date with the latest strategies in the field, ensuring you the top spots on the Google search engine.

Are you ready to embark on an SEO journey to business success? Get the expertise of Smarter Media today by booking an appointment with us.

Boost your local SEO today!

Smarter Media is a digital growth agency using our Smarter Approach to help your business grow digitally. Working side by side with our clients, we use our 'Smarter Way' Process to create a plan that delivers results and our 'Smarter Promise' to do what we say we will. For a more comprehensive look at SEO, or to find out how you can achieve a better ROI with SEO & Paid Media working side by side, set an appointment with Smarter Media today!

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