Local SEO Tips & Advice

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These local SEO tips are for businesses who want to improve their visibility in local search results, which are those for which Google lists 3 local businesses and a map above their normal search results.

Depending on your business, and how your website is set-up, you might not be able to implement all of these tips, but implementing even 75% of them is enough for most local businesses to rank highly in the local search results.

Have an address in the town or city that you’re targeting

Without an address there, you can’t rank in the local search results for that location. You can, however, still rank in the normal search results for localised keywords, which are normally displayed below the local business listings.

Create and verify your Google+ Local page

After creating your Google+ Local page, verify your address (by entering the PIN code that’s posted to you), website (by linking to your Google+ Local page from your website), and email address (by clicking the link in the email that’s sent to you).

Remove duplicate Google+ Local pages

If your business’s name, address or phone number are listed on more than one Google+ Local page, then delete duplicate listings if you have login details for them, or report them to Google if you don’t have login details for them.

Fully complete your Google+ Local page

Write a 100+ word description of your business (which includes your keywords and services), provide your contact details and opening hours, and upload at least 5 photos and 1 video.

Decide what page of your website to list on your Google+ local page

Assess whether your homepage, another page on your site (contact, about us, services, etc.) or a newly created page is most relevant, in terms of on-site optimisation (title tag, header tag, written content, etc.), to list on your Google+ Local page.

Choose appropriate categories on your Google+ Local page

Choose categories that accurately describe your business and ensure that your category choices state what your business is (e.g. dentist, cosmetic dentist, dental clinic, etc.), rather than the services you provide or the products you sell.

Use a local phone number

List a phone number, with an area code associated to the town or city that you’re targeting, on both your Google+ Local page and on the specific page of your website listed on your Google+ Local page.

Be consistent with your business’s name, address and phone number

Ensure that the business name, address and phone number listed on your Google+ Local page exactly matches the business name, address and phone number on the specific page of your website listed on your Google+ Local page.

Make it easy for people to contact and/or find you

Put your business’s address, phone number and email address in a clear, prominent position (that doesn’t require people to scroll down to see them) on every page of your site and add a contact form to your site’s sidebar or footer.

Add a map of your business’s location to your website

Search for your business’s address on Google Maps, click the ‘Link’ button to get the embed code for the map, and include that code on your website – ideally on the the specific page of your website listed on your Google+ Local page, but if not then on your contact page.

Include your location and keyword on your website landing page

Include the location and primary keyword that you want to rank for in the title, header tag and written content on the specific page of your website listed on your Google+ Local page.

Create a separate page on your website for each location that you want to target

If you operate in multiple locations, create a new page on your site for each of them, and optimise (title tag, header tag, written content, etc.) each of those pages specifically for that one location.

Create a separate page on your website for each product/service that you offer

Create one page that summarises all of your products/services and have that page link to other pages that each cover in detail the specifics of one of your products/services.

Write unique content for every page of your website

Using near identical text (for example, only changing the town or city name) on multiple pages of your site is more likely to get your whole site penalised than to achieve high rankings for multiple keywords.

Ensure your website looks good and is usable on multiple devices and screen resolutions

If your site fails to meet common user expectations (readable text, easy to navigate, no horizontal scrolling, etc.) on desktops, laptops, tablets and smartphones, pay a web designer to make the necessary adjustments to your site’s code.

Get your business listed on 3rd party websites

Get your business’s name, address and phone number listed on trustworthy and authoritative websites. Ensure that exactly the same name, address and phone number is listed each time.

Get ratings and reviews on your Google+ Local page and on 3rd party websites

Ask customers to rate your business and leave reviews (mentioning specific services or products) on your Google+ Local page and on 3rd party websites (Yell, Yelp, Scoot, etc.). Ensure that ratings and reviews are spread out over a reasonable timeframe and are not fake.

Build links to your Google+ Local page and website

Build links to your Google+ Local page and website (homepage and the specific page of your website listed on your Google+ Local page) from websites that are relevant in terms of topic and/or location.

Keep your Google+ Local page active

On a weekly basis, use it to share news and updates, link to good content (on your own site and on others), publicise promotions and offers, and to engage with customers and others businesses in your area.

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