On Tuesday 1st November Julia Giles from JG Digital Web Design talked to the Warsash Small Business Networking Group about ‘Local SEO’ and how we can get this working more for us. Here is a brief overview of what we covered in the form of a gentle step-by-step guide.
Local businesses looking for local customers.
Local SEO is about local businesses looking for local customers, there are two ways of using the Internet to achieve this, on-page marketing and off-page marketing.
On-page: Changes made to your website
Off-page: Changes made outside of your website
Google My Business
- Keyword rich services
You should be listed on the following sites, which link to your website. Google ranks links highly; this will help work towards a higher ranking.
- Check out moz.com/local
- Bing places
- Four Square
Local Business Directories
Where are your customers looking to find you? Get your name out there as much as possible using local papers and business directories.
NB: Be consistent with your name, address and phone number
Are you consistent across all social networks with your NAPs (Name, Address, Phone Number)? You should be, this way your social media will be associated to your company and therefore grow your company profile online.
NB: Just one typo or changing the information will confuse a robot.
Connect and share local events, be seen to be part of the local community.
Where possible always try, and share a link to your website or email address.
The Loop (other local community magazines)
Look at the opportunities for your company in local networking magazines such as The Loop for the Warsash area.
Google reviews help increase your ranking locally, and where possible you should always try and respond to reviews good or bad.
- Ask for reviews in your email footer.
- Check out uk.trustpilot.com – as this ranks third party reviews higher
Check out the competition
Look at your key words and how you rank in comparison to your competition.
Optimise your logo
It should be your company name and the title of the file
Guide for all photos and logos on your website
Wondering why the images from your website do not appear in Google Images – maybe it’s something to do with the fact they are called ‘IMG_101’? All images should have the following and in a meaningful way:
- Alt Tag (these are read by the robots)
Get your local NAPs in order
Your Name, Address, and Phone number should be consistent (no typos) in both content and order. They should be on your ‘Contact Us’ page as well as in the footer of your website.
Map it on Google
Google has done a lot of the hard work for us, so let’s use that to maximise our opportunities. Use Google Maps to reinforce where you are and create a map in Google My Business.
Meta Title and Description
Every page on your website should have a meta title and description, rich in your keywords so you are telling Google and other search engines exactly what is on that page. Include your city, country and region where possible to increase your local SEO.
Use Yoast, a plug in for websites to help with optimisation. Speak to your website developer to get this enabled and then make sure the information contained within it is correct. This plug in as with most things is only useful when the information you put in is accurate.
Content and Link
By now we have probably established that Google love links. Determine your content and have links, within your website and to other websites to, including social media. Things to note:
- When linking internally – use the same tab
- When linking externally – use a new tab
Set your language
Make sure your website is set to English UK, it is so easy for it to have defaulted to English US.
Present your team
Time to stand yourself out from the crowd, have photos of your team, with correct title, alt tag, description and caption. In additional add the following links:
- Personal LinkedIn profile
- Personal Google + profile
Separate out your services
Try not to group what you do onto one page, every service / product you offer should have its own page on your website, populated with a Meta title, a description and be rich in key words.
As this is about connecting with local customers, connect with local events and publicise these, sharing on social media using local hash tags to your area.
This is quite a lot to take on board, so if in doubt we are happy to guide you on your way. Are you based in Warsash, Hampshire? If so why not coming along to our networking group, contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
The presentation was brought to the Warsash Small Business Group by Julia Giles from jgdigital.co.uk.