With everyone working on their online presence, Google’s new local search tools have quickly become one of the essential parts of running a small business in 2022. But what makes a local SEO campaign successful, anyway?
Local SEO is still in its early stages, but it’s growing more competitive and important daily. Even at this early point, local SEO is bringing even the most well-known businesses a boost in search visibility. So what can we do to stand out?
Google My Business
Google My Business is a paramount SEO ranking factor! This free tool, produced by Google so that local businesses can access the tools they need, is a great way to make prospective customers and Google alike aware that your business exists. Your Google My Business listing is one of the first things customers see. So, your Google My Business listing must be fully set up and verified.
Google My Business signals like your location, contact information, categories and content help search algorithms decide who to show your business to. Therefore, it is not only essential for you to merely claim your Google My Business listing, but pairing it with a comprehensive local SEO campaign will give you the enhanced visibility you need.
Your Online Reviews
Think about the last time you bought something online. You at least read a review or two, whether it was for a chocolate bar, an appliance or a car, didn’t you? They may not have the best grammar, but customer reviews are a great source of unbiased information about a business or product. In addition, you will seem reliable and trustworthy if your company has many positive reviews. Not only this – positive reviews make a significant contribution to your local search ranking factors in 2022.
Local SEO ranking signals weigh the total number, diversity, frequency, and quality of your business’s reviews. A company with frequent positive reviews and ratings can see its ranking shoot up.
Search engines consider several on-page factors when analysing your page. One of the most critical factors is your use of keywords. We all know that search engines check for relevant and strategically placed keywords when considering your ranking. Local SEO is the same.
However, relevancy is crucial for local SEO. Choosing the correct keywords can get your site ranking in specific areas. Other important on-page ranking factors include giving your customers the information they need, like your name, address, and phone number – this information helps Google figure out proximity details. Then there’s your mobile-friendliness. People search for your business while out and about using their phone, after all. So, when people look for products and services close at hand, make it easier by optimising your website for local search.
Backlinks are imperative for any SEO campaign, but they are especially important for local SEO. Specifically, links from relevant local authorities can significantly impact your ranking. Getting good backlinks in your local area can be challenging, but remember that quality is more important than quantity.
Getting backlinks for your website from other authoritative sites is imperative for top placement in search results. Local SEO applies factors associated with backlinks to the quantity of the linking domains, how relevant the links are, how authoritative the linking domain is and even the anchor text you use.
User Behavioural Signals
There are numerous behavioural signals that Google uses to determine ranking order for local search results. Behavioural signals are users’ actions on your site and other local business listings. These include your Click-Through Rate (CTR), Mobile Clicks to Calls, and Social Media Check-ins.
Search engines analyse these factors to decide which businesses are most relevant and which need to receive the most valuable attention from the searchers. A good local SEO campaign will look closely at users’ behavioural signals to make changes that will better suit a local searcher’s user experience. If you keep track of user behavioural signals, you can boost your local listing rank to the top of the search results and draw in more local customers.
Online citations are a great way to get consistent information about your business out onto the internet and to get local backlinks from legit and trustworthy websites. For example, a person searching for a company like yours uses online citations and directories to find a business’ contact details. Search engines also use these citations to confirm necessary information about your business.
Regarding local SEO ranking factors in 2022, NAP consistency is integral. So, check that your business name, address, phone number and other contact information are the same across all your directory and citation listings. For both users and search engines, citations and directories confirm that your contact information is accurate.
It makes sense, but it’s easy to overlook simply producing local content. If you create content relevant to your local community, you can genuinely propel your local search rankings. Users adore interacting with relatable brands and have a sense of community, and search engines also love such websites. Local content is a surefire way to boost your local search rankings.
So, what would be considered local content? Well, blog posts, news pieces, videos, articles, and announcements for local events would all qualify. Local users and search engines should have no problem finding you if you use location-based terms and keywords in the copy.
The sooner you use local SEO, the better. Local SEO only gets more competitive every day. But thankfully, local SEO is easy when you know what to do. So, get to it! Start working on your local SEO, and you’ll see brand new customers walk through your doors any day now.