What is Local Search Engine Optimization (SEO)? Simply put, Local SEO is a method to display businesses in local searches. Maybe you’ve felt the benefits when searching for nearby stores or restaurants through search engines.
Why is local SEO important?
A Local Business website can rank higher in Local searches through Local SEO methods. More than 80% of all international Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a process that enables you to rank in the first position of results given by search engines when someone types keywords related to your services or products in these local searches. Local SEO is essentially a way to help buyers find your business through search engines when they are searching for nearby stores or restaurants. Local SEO is also known as Local Search Engine Optimization, Local Internet Marketing, and Local Business Marketing.
Local SEO provides you with the opportunity to rank higher in Local searches so that potential customers can easily find what you can offer them in their Local searches. Local SEO techniques have been used by businesses for quite some time, but Local SEO has truly become the best Local Marketing strategy and Local Advertising method for those who are interested in boosting their local search results through extensive research.
What a great opportunity, isn’t it?
In other words, local SEO can help potential buyers nearby find your business. They can also get a variety of complete information, ranging from the products you offer, the address, to the hours of operation.
So, are you ready to learn local SEO? In this article, we will give you six practical steps to apply it. Let’s get started!
6 Easy Steps to Local SEO Optimization
Based on research, there are several factors that most influence local SEO:
- Google My Business Signals (25.12%) – indicators are Google users’ locations, business categories, and keywords in business names.
- Link Signals (16.53%) – influenced by anchor text, domain authority, and domain quantity.
- Review Signals (15.44%) – influenced by the number of reviews and diversity of reviews.
- On-page Signals (13.82%) – influenced by nap and keyword usage.
- Citation Signals (10.82%) – influenced by NAP consistency across multiple platforms.
Knowing the above factors alone is not enough. You should also be able to take advantage of it. Therefore, next we will explain one by one the methods that you can use to optimize these factors.
In USA alone, 88.84% of internet users still rely on Google’s search engine. While other search engines on average only control less than 12% of the market share – far from significant.
Therefore, we recommend starting the implementation of local SEO with Google My Business optimization.
First of all, let’s get acquainted with the Google Snack Pack. This is the search results box that appears when a user performs a local search. Here is an example of a snack pack box with the keyword “geprek chicken shop in Yogyakarta”:
As you can see, inside the snack pack box there is a map containing the points of location of the nearest geprek chicken shop. Below are three businesses that are considered the most relevant. The location of this box is always at the top of the search results page.
Want your business to be listed in the snack packbox? Wait a minute. You’ll need to register and verify your business on Google My Business. Then fill in your Google My Business profile completely.
According to Google, here’s the information you’ll need to complete to make it easier to find in local searches:
- Location. Include an address, and verify your business location.
- Phone number. Make sure the phone number listed is active.
- Category. Select the appropriate category to add relevance.
- Attribute. Explain what your business has to offer.
- Operating Hours. Make potential customers know when is the right time to call or visit your business.
- Photo. Display a variety of photos to build consumer expectations.
You can start completing your business profile from the sign-up stage. But if your profile isn’t complete, you can still update your Google My Business profile with these steps:
- Sign in to your Google My Business profile.
- In the left menu, click Info.
- Edit the section you want to fix by clicking the pencil icon on the right (be it a name, location, category, or phone number). Then, click Apply.
Keep in mind that you can only change your business information after verifying your profile.
Local SEO is not limited to putting your business in a snack pack box only. Increasing your website’s ranking in organic search results is also a form of local SEO practice.
2. Keyword Research
Okay, so how do I rank your website in organic search results?
Keyword research is the answer.
Keywords are keywords that potential customers type when searching. By doing keyword research, you’ll understand what consumers want, especially when they’re doing a local search.
To identify keywords, you can use SEO tools that have keyword research features, one of which is Google Trends. In addition to showing the trend flow of a keyword, this tool will also display a collection of related keywords.
Suppose you want to sell martabak, then you can try to insert the keyword “martabak” into the keyword research tool. Here are the results in Google Trends:
It appears that martabak is a keyword whose search trend is relatively stable over the last 12 months. Don’t worry, you can change the time range, really. From the last hour to a decade ago.
Just below it, you will find the areas that most often search for the keyword “martabak”.
Of course, this can be used as a reference if you plan to expand to other regions. But remember, don’t just make this a benchmark. You should also consider the interests of the user when searching for the keyword “martabak”. It could be that they are just looking for martabak recipes or photos of martabak only.
Therefore, make sure you do some in-depth research before making a decision.
Below it again, you’ll find a set of topics and keywords that Google users are currently searching for. In this case, it can be seen that many are looking for keywords such as “nearest sweet martabak” and “martabak cheese milk”.
By using these keywords, your website will have a greater chance of ranking in local search results.
In conclusion, Google Trends is the right choice to find new keyword inspiration, while ensuring that the keyword search trend is stable or increasing.
But if you want to do more in-depth keyword research, you can use the Keyword Explorer feature on Moz or Ahrefs. Both will provide more detailed information about each keyword, ranging from search volume, keyword difficulty, to ranking history in keyword search results.
Whatever keyword you choose, make sure the keyword has a high volume potential. So you can get attention from more potential customers,
Then after getting the right keywords, what should you do?
You can insert it into your website content, Google My Business description, or use it in the SEO on-page process (which we’ll discuss next). Thus, your business can become increasingly relevant to your target market search.
To understand the process of keyword research process in more depth, you can visit our article that discusses the procedure of keyword research.
3. Do On-Page SEO
The main function of on-page SEO is to make it easier for search engines to understand the content of your website. The easier your content is understood, the easier it will be for your content to appear in search results.
This applies also to local SEO. When your website is easily identified by search engines, then your website will more easily appear as relevant results in local searches.
As is common on-page SEO practice, you should include keywords (which you can from previous keyword research) into meta tags, such as URLs, Headings, Titles, and Meta descriptions of your posts.
To do so, you can use WordPress plugins like Yoast SEO.
Among the many on-page SEO practices, one of the commonly used to optimize local SEO is Schema Markup. With this method, you’ll give Google additional code to better understand the context of your website.
The application is quite simple. You can simply sign in to the Google Structured Markup Helper, and follow these steps:
- On the Website tab, select Local Businesses
- Enter your website address in the URL field, and click Start Tagging.
- Fill in all the fields on the right side of the screen. From business names to addresses and business hours. How to fill it is quite as simple as. For example, if you want to fill in the business name,then you just highlight your business name on the left side of the screen. Then right-click and click Name. So are the other columns.
- Once you’re done filling in all the columns, click the Create HTML button in the top right corner.
- You’ll get a script that needs to be tested first using the Google Data Structured Testing Tool.
- If after the test there is no error, you just enter the script into the header of your website. You can do this on the WordPress admin page by accessing the Appearance > Theme Editor.
Try to fill in most of the fields in the schema markup process, especially in the address section. Because the more accurate the information you provide, the more likely your website is to appear in local search results.
If you are interested in learning other on-page SEO optimization methods, you can read our article that discusses the full on-page SEO.
4. Build links
In addition to being relevant to the needs of users, the authority or popularity of the website also determines whether your website appears in the top search results.
Then how do I measure authority? In this case, you need to understand the concept of Domain Authority and Page Authority.
Domain authority is a score that predicts how high a website ranks in search engines. While Page Authority, as the name implies, is a score that predicts how high the page ranks in search engines.
Both are determined by the number of links from other websites to your website. The more links you get, the better your website authority.
Want to know how big the website authority is through the domain authority indicator and page authority? You can check it out with Moz Link Explorer.
In the context of local SEO, you should get links from various local websites and related industries. Therefore, start by offering your website link to the website of your business partner (such as a supplier or distributor).
Here are the steps you can take to get them to enter your website link:
- Make a list of your business partner websites.
- Identify their website pages that are relevant to your business (such as business partner pages, blog posts, and the like)
- For example, if you’re a supplier, offer distributors to put your website link on their business partner page, like this:
- Want to make them more interested? Create interesting content to install on their website (it can be statistics or visual content). Or give them testimonials that they can list on the main page. Don’t forget to include your website link.
In addition to offering your website links to business partner websites, you can also spread links to the websites of local events. Either through sponsorship, or local media coverage.
Make sure you don’t get any origins when spreading links. Because it could be that the link you spread has no effect at all on the authority of your website. Therefore, here are some characteristics that can make your links quality:
- The link comes from a page with high authority.
- Links from relevant websites.
- Links contain relevant keywords.
- The link is placed at the top and the contents of the page.
Link building is just one of the off-page SEOmethods. If you are interested in learning other methods, please stop by our article that goes deeper on off-page SEO.
5. Add NAP Citations
NAP citations are excerpts of your business bio on the internet. The basic formats are: Name, Address, and Phone number.
Why is this important? Because NAP citations are also one of the factors that can make your business relevant in local searches. The more often your business bio appears on the internet, the more your business exists.
Where can you start adding NAP citations? Don’t go far, start from your own platform – like websites, social media accounts, and Google My Business.
In addition, you can also enter your business information into relevant sites, such as:
- Website marketplace. If you sell products through marketplaces like Tokopedia or Bukalapak, complete your business profile as completely as possible there.
- Related industry platforms. Find a platform that fits your business. For example, if you have an accommodation business, enter your business NAP in your Traveloka, Agoda, and other travel platforms.
- Website listing. You can also include NAP citations on specialized websites that offer business listings. You can check the collection of websites at Loganix.
Remember, in addition to building as many NAP citations as possible, make sure that the information you enter is always the same. For example, don’t let the address or phone number you enter in Google My Business be different from what’s listed on social media.
To check if your NAP citations are the same across all platforms, you can do a NAP Audit. The easiest way is to use the citation finder tool as offered by WhiteSpark. Unfortunately, this service is paid for.
If you want a free way, you can do a nap manual audit by checking your business bio one by one on various sites through search engines.
6. Pay Attention to Every Consumer Review
The latter is a review. While it sounds simple, 82% of consumers refer to reviews when looking for a local business. In addition, reviews are also one of the factors that affect local SEO.
Wait a minute, what does a review have to do with local SEO?
It is worth noting, that the number of reviews and the diversity of reviews are included in the Indicators considered in local SEO.
For example, let’s look at the reviews column on Google My Business:
In addition to being a medium of interaction with customers, the review column also displays ratings that can be considered by other potential customers.
With satisfying products and services, the review field can also be a medium of Word of Mouth Marketing – in other words, your customers can promote your business.
Not quite there. In Google My Business there’s also a column that specifically shows Q&A:
You can use it to convince potential customers that your business is providing what they want.
Let’s talk about the diversity of reviews, which is the number of websites that review your business. So, prospective buyers can get references not only from Google alone. Here’s an example of a business with a good diversity of reviews:
In Indonesia, the diversity factor of reviews is still not very commonly used. This is because reviews on Google My Business are still a mainstay. While overseas many potential consumers refer to reviews on other sites such as Yelp or OpenTable.
That said, you should pay attention to all the reviews on each platform. Not only in Google My Business but also in blog posts and social media accounts. Make sure the response you provide is friendly and helpful.
With good review management. Not only is local search relevant to what you can, but it’s also improving your business reputation.
How do I find my local SEO ranking
The world of SEO is difficult to navigate and it can be a challenge finding your local ranking. To find your local search engine rankin you need to Check PageRank– This will tell you how many links Google has found from other sites that point back at your site. You want this number as high as possible for any given page on your website because it means more people have linked to it in an effort to promote that page or content, which gives Google’s algorithm a better idea of what those pages are about and whether they might be relevant for users’ searches.
How to win Local SEO?
In today’s world, there are lots of ways potential customers can find you. There’s Google search , social media, Yelp and other review sites, and blogs. But what does it mean for you as a business owner? How do these different channels impact your prospects’ decisions about where to spend their money? The answer is that it depends on which channel they’re using.
If someone finds you on Google (or any other platform!) then social media probably won’t matter much for them – unless they know people who have connected with you through Facebook or Twitter. On the other hand if they find out about your company from a blog post or article written by an influencer in your industry that how you are, then your social media channels will be much more important because of the trust that has been established. Local Search is especially a channel where reviews and ratings play an important role – Google offers Local Business Listing’s (LBLs) where customers can leave their review/ratings ( star rating ) about your business which plays an important role in Local SEO. Local search also includes Local Maps , Local directories like Yelp or Yellow Pages and Local Google+ Local listings .
How do I monetize my contributions to Google Maps Local Guides?
Google Maps Local Guides is a new way to contribute and share your knowledge of your favorite places with Google. Its goal is to make finding information about local businesses easier, more consistent, and more comprehensive. The program has been around for years but they’re making it much easier now that you can sign up without having to download an app or enter any personal information. After signing up and completing the simple qualification process, you’ll start earning points that translate into rewards like gift cards from popular retailers like Amazon or Target. You’ll also be able to give back by sharing reviews on Google Maps which will help other users find helpful tips when visiting their favorite restaurants, stores, museums, etc. It’s easy: just take a few minutes out of each day to
Why Are NAP Citations Important?
NAP citations are important because they are the first step to improving your search engine ranking. Google knows how to rank your website for different search queries. If you want to increase traffic and maintain a strong online presence, it’s essential that you get NAP citations from other websites about your business. There are many different factors that go into SEO, and NAP citations will help you rank higher in Google. One of the most important parts of SEO is making sure that your business information is correct on all websites where it appears online. Your company’s name, address, phone number, website URL, and social media profiles should be consistent across every site where they appear. This ensures high rankings by showing Google that your business is reputable and serious about being found online.
Showing your business in local search is a great step to attract more customers. You can do this by means of local SEO optimization.
In this article, we’ve shown you six easy ways to practice it. Here’s a quick summary:
- Complete your Google My Business profile – fill in all your business bio details in Google My Business.
- Keyword research – search for keywords that can make your business relevant in local searches.
- On-page SEO execution – make it easy for search engines to find your website content by filling in meta tags and schema markup.
- Build links – add the number of links from your local website to your website.
- Add NAP citations – multiply your business information quotes on the internet.
- Pay attention to every review – give a quick, friendly, and helpful response to your potential customers.
If you are not familiar with the basic concepts of SEO, please stop by our other articles to learn SEO in more detail.
Or you want to know more about how to rank up your website and learn how SEO works? We also provide ebooks that discuss the full range of SEO.