Local SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is an effective way to market your location-based business. It presents nearby customers with your product or service while they’re searching online. When someone types a term into Google, including a city name, zip code, or phrase like ”near me,” the search engine delivers a unique set of results. Above the SEO results, they will see three local businesses and a map. These highlighted companies are the local SEO results.

Be Visible to Consumers

As reported on HubSpot, 78 percent of location-based mobile searches result in an offline purchase, and 72 percent of people who perform local searches visit a store within five miles. In this way, local SEO connects your online marketing efforts with ready-to-act consumers.

Ranking a small to medium-sized business in local search results requires constant effort, so you may need professional help. However, here are three  steps you can take to increase the local traffic from your digital marketing efforts:

Register with Google My Business

Claiming your business on Google My Business may be the most important step in local SEO. Even so, only about half of medium-sized and small businesses register their business with Google. Until you claim your business, your location will not show up on Google maps.

Google dominates the search engine traffic but Bing Places and Apple Maps also are worth checking out. Each of these search engines requires a separate registration.

Once you’ve registered your business, improve your conversion rate by optimizing, which includes:

  • Adding more categories
  • Uploading photos
  • Highlighting services
  • Including any other details that customers will find useful or engaging

Make Citations Accurate and Consistent

A citation is any place your business’s NAPW information (Name, Address, Phone number, Website URL) appears together online – often in an online directory or business listings website.

Consistent NAPW information across the Web serves to verify the data Google or another search engine has on file. Cleaning up citations on the internet for consistency and accuracy improves your online marketing and your credibility.

Ask for Reviews

Reviews from satisfied customers will increase your company’s trustworthiness, as reported by Inc.com. Some medium-sized and small businesses have automated review-request process while others keep it direct and personal by simply asking happy customers for reviews.

Of course, not every review is rosy. Even a negative review can build consumer trust if you manage it effectively. Start a dialogue with any unhappy customers. Show that you care about their experience and are committed to resolving problems. Future customers will appreciate your responsiveness.

Digital Marketing with Local Results

Every day, people are on their smartphones searching for local businesses. With effective local SEO, your business can be one of the first they see.  Following through on these three online marketing efforts will help put your business on the search results map.

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