Local SEO Strategies: Getting Found by Customers in Your Area  

Whatever business you own needs to be surfaced and well exposed in search engine results after surviving massive competition. SEO (Search Engine Optimization) helps you to rank high on search engines like Google and Bing. Suppose your business is focused on serving people in various geographical locations and has offices at many locations. In that case, you will need to get your hands on the local search to get found by the customers in each specific area. Let’s leap into more elaborate insights regarding local SEO, including local SEO best practices, local search ranking factors, benefits, and so on.   

What is Local SEO  

Local SEO can be defined as optimizing your business to get found by the customers in your area. It increases the visibility of your business when local users or customers search for it online. Local SEO can be done through various methods, which include link building, on-page and technical optimization, content, and webpage creation to target specific areas or locations.


What is Local Search and Local SERP  

Local search is the process of searching on a search engine to find products or services which is available in a locality. For instance, if your vehicle got stuck somewhere with some problem and you need to fix it, and you don’t know the area, you will search on Google for “vehicle workshop near me” or something like that. This kind of search is known as local search. The result page that you get for a local search query is known as a local SERP (Search Engine Result Page).   

Importance of Local SEO  

Plenty of people are looking out for services or products that are available in the local area. It could be any kind of shop like a restaurant, saloon, vegetable shop, hotel and so on. Hence, an optimized site is a must-have thing for local businesses and one of the local SEO best practices. This optimized site should inform people about the services and products, the areas in which they are available, and other important details.   


How does Local SEO Work  

Various ranking factors are used by Google to rank local search results. Some of the local search ranking factors used by Google are the following. The number of people searching for a business from the area it is located, Google My Business listings, keywords and online reviews, availability of Google Maps, number of businesses ‘check-ins,’ and the location of the user who searches for a company or business.     

Businesses having a physical presence in locations where customers can visit (stores, offices, etc.), businesses focusing on a specific group of people defined by a particular geographical location (catering services, restaurants, etc.), businesses that take the services to the customers’ locations (local delivery networks, plumbers, electricians, etc.) etc can benefit from local SEO.

Google My Business (GMB) and Local Search  

The need to provide local search results began in 2003-05 as Google started rolling them out for the first time. Eventually, local search has improved beyond expectations. Google My Business (GMB) was introduced in 2014 and was well-accepted by local SEO experts and site owners, and the Google My Business profile optimization came to be. Google My Business allows companies to create business listings on Google, which helps local users find and reach them easily. GMB can provide important business information, including directions, contact details, website addresses, etc. 

Moreover, reviews and ratings on GMB and the website can help users understand the quality and popularity of a certain company’s services or products, which affects the decision to purchase. A business that provides quality products/services and has local search-optimized pages has the highest possibilities of customer attention in an online search. Hence, Google My Business profile optimization is crucial for any business.


Ranking Factors for Local SEO  

Some of the major ranking factors for local SEO are listed below;   

  • On-page Elements:

    For Local SEO, authentic business information and optimized meta descriptions are important. High domain authority is also essential for the success of a website.  

  • Backlinks:

    The authority and relevance of a linking domain are essential for SEO.  

  • Google My Business Listings:

    The distance from the search location is essential for appearing in local SERPs. Including appropriate keywords and business categories in page titles also matters.  

  • User Behaviour:

    CTR (Click-through Rate) is crucial once the optimization is done properly. Elements like rich results can influence CTR. Increased CTR means more chances of ranking in SERPs. NAP phone calls on important sites can also help.  

  • Social Signals:

    Google boats are everywhere to keep track of every activity you make online. The links that you share on social media platforms send signals to Google regarding your activity.   

  • Reviews:

    Elements like the content, number, diversity, and frequency of the reviews posted on your site and other major review sites are crucial.  

  • Citation Signals:

    Ensuring that the correct Name, Address, and Phone number (NAP) are listed across various local directories is exceptionally important.  

Local SEO Best Practices:  

Local SEO optimization simply means driving more people in your area to your website, which will eventually result in the growth of your business. Let’s look at some of the major practices of local SEO.   

  • Keyword Research:

    For local SEO optimization, keyword research is compulsory. It includes finding the worthwhile keywords that potential customers use when they search for products or services. Guessing keywords will cause missed opportunities, so careful research is essential to target the correct ones and increase your business’s exposure in local search results.  

  • Mobile-Friendly Website:

    As the number of mobile users grows, it is essential to optimize your site for mobile gadgets. Your site should be mobile-responsive, modifying its sizing, layout, and ratios to display perfectly.  

  • Google My Business (GMB):

    Google My Business supports businesses and organizations to manage their online activities and presence on Google Search and Maps. It allows businesses to lure local customers and deliver them the products and services they offer accordingly.  

  • GMB Reviews:

    Examine customer feedback and reviews on GMB and other sites to understand where improvement is required. Interact with the customers to attain trust and to rank better in search results. Reply to users’ comments on GMB to indicate your interest and value their opinions.  

  • NAP (Name, Address, and Phone Number):

    Accurate NAP (Name, Address, and Phone Number) data across local directories, citation sites, partner sites, and Google My Business matters in local SEO success. You can target generic and niche-specific sites, such as ‘Justdial’ and ‘Zomato,’ according to your industry.  

  • Social Media Marketing:

    We all know that a social media presence is indispensable for any business. Proper engagement with your customers on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram by handling queries, declaring new products, sales, and events, and sharing informative content can transmit favorable social media signals to Google.  

  • Local Online Citations:

    Examine your competitors’ online listings on local directories like Indiabizlist, India Mart, Trade India, Yellow Pages, and others to grasp the regional market. Search for domain-specific directories to upgrade your local SEO strategy. This can be called Citations, referring to an online reference to your business name with the exact NAP.  

  • Local Partner Websites:

    It’s alright to exchange links between local business partners often if you keep it at a moderate rate. Overly trading links can be noticed as manipulative and may look like a plan to Google. Since there’s no clear explanation of what counts as excessive, you can always test to find the correct number.  

Let’s Conclude  

Local Search Engine Optimization (SEO) involves technical, off-page, and on-page elements and activities to focus on. You can employ skilled professionals to enhance the local SEO practices for your business. Since the number of users who search online for nearby businesses, local SEO is becoming a more and more important factor in your business’ success. Hence, optimize your business for local search and reap maximum success by getting found by the customers in your area.  

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