Local SEO Your success depends on it
As a consumer, the most apparent and suitable are search results are those that appear locally, even if it isn’t a business that a consumer is actually going to visit. Why you ask? Looking at the Google results when you search for a specific term you will see a big section that are local businesses with a link to a website, along with a link to a Google Map, and when the consumers mouse floats over it, it provides the consumer with the information they need, even a telephone number.
With most people today taking out a smart phone to find a business, a telephone number or Google’s map directions connecting to your business is that golden nugget you need. Recently Search Engine Watch did a study that shows more than 70% of all consumers contact a business immediately from one of those first page local search engine results, without ever even visiting the website! And instead, as an alternative, simply tap on the phone number or the Google map address for either directions or to contact the business by phone.
Understanding this, Google and the other search engines are now more influenced by local results, wanting to always provide the best possible consumer experience. Consumers are dependable on search engines like Google to intuitively provide what they want and need and so the search engines have begun to perfect their algorithms as consumers are becoming less detailed in their searches. With a growing trend and the search engines such as Google knowing that 80%, if not more, of the users who don’t get the results they need tend to add more local type terms, Google and the others are now starting to routinely provide results that are more narrowing for the consumer.
What if I want to target cities outside that of my business?
When considering local SEO most business owners don’t realize that it doesn’t have to necessarily be in their local area, but instead we can target any city in the U.S. that you, the business owner, may consider a target market for your business. Let’s just say your business is located in Boca Raton, but you know that your target markets extend into larger cities like Miami, SerpHaus SEO can carve out a strategy to enhance your presence in such a way to get you noticed in local results for even those markets. SerpHaus Local SEO services will assist you in becoming more and more visible to consumers that may have otherwise would not have known that you even existed, suddenly introducing you to a much larger pool of potential customers.
Local Search Ranking Factors
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) plays a crucial role in improving the visibility of a website. Steve Olenski, writing for the Forbes, says that search engines are grabbing more of the market share each and every day. The higher the ranking of a website on the search engine, the higher the number of online visitors, and in turn the higher the rate of conversion.
An increasing number of entrepreneurs are appreciating the positive role the local search ranking factors play in determining the relevance of a business in the local market. For example, if a person suffers a toothache at night, there is strong likelihood that he or she will visit the nearest dentist. Similarly, a homeowner will contact the nearest plumber in case there is a water leak or there is a water problem.
Having said that, it is paramount that business owners gain a comprehensive understanding of the local search engine ranking factors in order to make relevant and informed decisions.
Local Search Ranking Factors
There are several local search ranking factors that are used by search engines. To start with, most of the leading practitioners of local search engine marketing, say that business signals are the most important in determining local SEO. These include business title and proximity. Similarly, proximity to the search is going to be more significant than proximity to the centroid. This is because search engines lay a strong emphasis on information accuracy and results that are reflective of your physical location. In particular, the company should have a clear physical address. In addition to that, the title tag should send a very strong message not only to the search engines but also to the users.
Second, behavioral factors affect ranking. These include click-through rates, pogo-sticking, and click on directions. Darren Shaw, writing for IMEC Labs Research, says that behavioral signals are in fact increasing in importance in search engines.
Third, Social signals continue to have a positive ranking correlation in search engines. In this regard, well positioned URLs of local companies can command a significant number of the local market share. The social media is influential because of the fact that quite a number of people spend a significant amount of time in social media channels. How a business handles the social media marketing strategy affects local search engines ranking.
Fourth, the authority of the domain is dominant in local search ranking factors. In other words, the strength of your website is a key factor in determining the ranking. Moz provides a toolbar known as Mozbar which can be used to access the Domain Authority of a website on search engines. Factors that make up the domain of a website include its age as well as the number of links pointing to the website. In this regard, entrepreneurs should strive to have a user-friendly and optimized website.
Fifth, the quality of the links, as well as their authority, can determine ranking in the local business environment. This is because search engines generally rely on organic results. Sources of authoritative sources include newspapers, reliable bloggers, think tanks, and professional bodies. Other sources of solidifying the quality of links include link buying and link building.
Lastly, the quantity of the traditional third-party reviews is significant in determining search engine results. In regard to this, having reviews in third-party platforms is of great importance. Developing a web-based portfolio will be of great asset when it comes to the ranking of your website and local marketing. However, business owners should check the active review sites commonly popular in their locale.
The Future of Local Search Ranking Factors
The business environment is highly turbulent and continues to evolve. Business practices will continue to evolve in order to respond to the emerging business needs and drop obsolete business practices. The local search ranking factors are not an exception.
Sarah Angeles, reporting for the Business Daily, says that mobile-optimized websites will rank higher on search engines. Similarly, content from mobile apps will be searched and ranked. By implication, Google’s algorithm will require that website owners develop responsive websites. By implication, there will be a change in the local search ranking factors.
In this light, it is the responsibility of the website owners to be informed and keep a tab of the changes in the search engine ranking factors. This will help them exploit the vast business opportunities available via search engines. In addition to that, entrepreneurs ought to be well-versed with the various dynamics shaping the local SEO landscape.
There is no doubt whatsoever that SEO has a great bearing on the success, or lack thereof, of a business. In fact, it could be the drawing line between success and failure of a business. Similarly, the value of the local search ranking cannot be underestimated. It plays a crucial role in promoting the relevance of a business in the local market. Overall, understanding the local search engine factors is indispensable.