If your business has any kind of physical location, then local SEO is essential for your Internet marketing strategy. But what exactly is local SEO? How is it different from SEO? And how does it impact your business’ marketing strategy?
What Is Local SEO?
Local SEO is search engine optimization that specifically targets a local audience. Up to 45% of all Google searches that are made are for local companies. For example, a local search is “coffee shop near me” or “dog groomers in Portland”. Optimizing for local SEO will help your business to be found in searches made for businesses in your area or in your city.
How Is Local SEO Different from SEO?
In many ways, local SEO and SEO are the same thing. Both aim to make your website easier for users online to find. The difference is in the focus location. Local SEO focuses on getting your business found by users searching for companies like yours in their location. Regular SEO focuses on getting your business found on a more global scale.
Who Needs Local SEO?
Local SEO plays an important role for any business that has a physical location. If you have an actual brick-and-mortar building for your store, restaurant, salon, office, or another type of business, then local SEO will help you to get found by searchers. It’s also important for companies that may not have a physical location but do have a physical presence in that they operate in a specific area, such as caterers, musicians, electricians, etc.
The only types of businesses that do not need local SEO are those that are online only. For example, an e-commerce company or a company that offers exclusively online services won’t need to advertise a local presence because there isn’t one.
How Does Local SEO Help Businesses?
Local SEO helps businesses rank on search engine results pages for searches made by users looking for local businesses. Having a local SEO strategy can even help you if your business doesn’t actually have a website. This is because some local SEO optimization techniques involve using Google.
How Do You Optimize for Local SEO?
- Claim your business profile on Google My Business (GMB)
- Completely fill out your GMB profile
- Include your location in your keywords
- Link building
- Customer reviews
- Optimize your website for mobile
To optimize for local SEO, you’ll need the following:
What Is Google My Business?
Google My Business, or GMB, is an online database of business profile listings run by Google. Even if you haven’t claimed your business on GMB, your company likely already has a profile. If you haven’t claimed your GMB profile yet, then it may not perform as well as it could for your local SEO. Once you’ve claimed your business, you can fill out the profile completely. The more information your GMB profile has about your business, the more it will help your local SEO.
GMB is also how businesses that don’t have a website can still have a local SEO strategy.