SEO is more important than ever.
Say you’re sitting at home with your family on Friday night trying to figure out what to do for dinner. You want Thai food and they want hamburgers. How are you going to get both of those things without driving all over town?
You’re probably going to pull out your phone and search “restaurants near me” into Google. That way, you can look at a map and find a Thai place and a burger place in the same area that both have decent reviews.
For businesses, location-based SEO is the new big thing in getting new customers. People are always on the go and where they get their goods and services depends on convenience and quality.
In this article, we’re going to discuss the state of search in 2019 and how you can implement local SEO to find new customers.
Understanding the State of Search
To get a grasp on how important local SEO is, we’ll need to look at the numbers:
- 72% of local searchers visited a store within 5 miles
- “Near me” searches have grown by 900% in the past 2 years
- 30% of mobile searches are related to a location
So, what do these numbers mean?
They mean that people value their time and convenience over the minuscule difference in service cost and quality. If there’s an auto mechanic an hour away that has the best reviews in the state and another one 10 minutes from your door that has pretty good reviews, which will you choose? Probably the latter.
As a business owner, you need to be able to capitalize on your surroundings. Local SEO has to do with what information you provide about your company in relation to the search terms. Inputting your name, address, and phone number (NAP) into Google My Business will help your local SEO.
Local SEO and good old fashioned regular SEO work with another to provide results. If you’ve got your social media in order, good reviews in local listings, and your NAP in Google My Business, then you’ll show up in searches.
How to Locally Optimize
There are easy steps you can take to improve your local SEO. Some of it is common sense, but the jargon surrounding it makes it sound more difficult than it is. One way to make sure that it’s done correctly is to hire a local marketing service to take care of it for you.
Your title and meta description tags are important. For SEO to work, you need to include all of the relevant information for your business in your title while using the right keywords to appeal to the user’s search.
Your meta description is basically a concise advertisement, so do your research and learn the proper SEO techniques to get noticed.
As mentioned, you need to take advantage of online directories. Yelp, Merchant Circle, City Search, and Google My Business should all have consistent information on your business in order for you to show up at the top of their listings.
People tend to trust online reviews, so you should always encourage your happy customers to leave you a good review on your listings. This will drive your business to the front page of the local listings.
Always Keep Up With Local SEO Changes
To keep up with the constant change in the state of search, you have to always pay attention to recent trends in local and non-local SEO. Trends say that more people are relying on map-generated results than ever before, so you have to appear on those listings.
But, that’s today. A week, month, or year from now could be completely different. If you have your finger on the pulse of changing trends, you should see success.
About The Author: Kevin Watts
Kevin Watts is the founder of Raincross, a premier web design, development and digital marketing agency headquartered in Riverside, CA.
Kevin got his start in online marketing and website design by working for some of the most prominent names in online retail. He's most recognized for helping to start e-commerce retailer Organize.com in 1998, and spent 12 years running the company's e-commerce and online marketing operations. He has been recognized and has received several online retail, marketing and merchandising awards throughout his career.
Kevin grew up in Riverside, CA and graduated from the University of Wyoming. In his spare time, Kevin is an avid fly-fisherman, college football fan, and enjoys spending time with his son Matthew, daughter Kate and wife Lindsey.
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