How to Improve Your SEO Ranking in Google Local Search
Currently the growth of mobile users accessing Google results is growing at great speed. In addition to that there have been recent changes with the Google search engine which place a greater emphasis on local results being returned based on the searchers geographic location. Because of this, Google local search rankings are becoming more important to businesses that serve a specific geographic location.
If you run a business and have a website which you want to rank better for local search terms then there are some steps you can take in order to help you get a higher position – all of which cost nothing to do, apart from taking a little bit of time and patience.
Google Plus Local Listings
By simply creating a Google Plus local business page you can get more visibility in Google. Many local businesses are not even aware of this – so this is just one step you can take in order to get your website ahead of the competition. By ensuring that your business address is properly registered you can help because this is where Google derives their data from in order to return map search results – for example when you search for a local restaurant and a map appears in Google with the small pins on it.
Creating a Google Plus local page only takes a couple of minutes. Google will verify your listing by sending a postcard to your business address. The Google postcard will have a code number on it which you will need to type into the admin area in Google Plus. Once verified your local listing will then go live.
Get Authentic Customer Reviews
It’s recently become apparent that the businesses that appear higher up in the Google local listings are the ones that have good customer feedback. On a Google Plus page it’s possible for a customer to leave a review… hopefully positive. Businesses with more positive reviews tend to be listed higher in Google. Believe it or not, Google also looks at reviews on websites such as Yelp too in order to factor all of this information together. Try to foster good relationships with regular customers to encourage them to leave reviews for you on Google Plus as this will hugely benefit your local SEO efforts over time.
Make Sure Your Business Address Has Citations
By making sure that your business address is also prominently featured on your website it will help Google to make the connection that you have are a bona-fide business that deserves to be in the local listings. Having citations from other sites with your address on also helps – for example make sure that your address details are on websites such as Yelp, the Yellow Pages and other business directory websites of this nature. Google will look at all of these citations and move you up the local listings after time.
Optimise Your Website for a Location
If you have restaurant website and your business is located in Manhattan, then make sure that the Meta Title on your website refers to that – so for example your title could be “Jim’s Pizzeria in Manhattan New York” – as well as having the Manhattan keyword referenced a couple of times within the website content itself.
Some SEO Specialists are now also recommending that you include a Google map with your location somewhere on your website. This will be another indicating factor to Google that you are a local business within a specific area.
Backlinks from Relevant Local Sources
Finally, any relevant backlinks from local websites can also help you. So if you own a restaurant website in Manhattan, try to add your website to local Manhattan review websites or business listings. Also see if you have any existing partnerships with other local businesses who could perhaps link back to your from their own website – it all adds to the SEO power for a local listing.
Credits: This SEO article was researched and compiled by the team at Expert SEO Bournemouth. They are a UK-based search engine optimisation company that provides local SEO services to businesses in Bournemouth and the Dorset area of the United Kingdom.