The Internet might be a globally connected place, but people still need to find information about their local area. Whether that’s finding the local barber, lawyer, or grocery store, these searches really add up, making local searches an important part of your SEO.
When users use certain search terms, Google knows that they are looking for local results, which means it’s going to feature local businesses at the top of its rankings. Many local searches look like these:
· digital marketing agencies near me
· lawyers near me
· lawyers in Birmingham
Through local search engine optimization (SEO), businesses can increase their chances of ranking for their searches, helping them win new business.
Why is Local Search Important?
When you’re competing for global search terms, the competition can be extremely fierce. If you’re a small law firm, then you might be competing for top spot in the rankings with some of the biggest firms in the world.
With local search, you can compete on whatever scale you want, whether that’s your city, village, or local high street. There’s still competition, but your business is much more relevant to the search query.
The best thing about these local searches is that the people who perform them tend to follow through and visit your physical store. The stats behind local search are impressive, and go to show how important it should be for local businesses:
· 50% of people who do a local search on their phone visit the physical store within one day
· 34% who searched on desktop or tablet visited the physical store within one day
· 78% of local searches on a mobile result in an online purchase
· 71% of people search a business to confirm it exists before they visit
· 97% of people searched for a local business in 2017, 12% did it every day
Some Things to Focus on for Local SEO
Local SEO follows many of the same principles as regular SEO, just with a focus on local. There are a number of different strategies you can use to help your SEO rankings.
Google My Business Account
Make sure your Google my Business account is properly filled out, as this is where Google will get many of the important details about your business from. This allows potential customers to find your address, contact details, opening times, and reviews on your business.
Just as we use keywords to signal to Google what our pages are about in regular SEO, the same is true of local SEO. Make sure you’re getting local keywords into your content that match the kinds of searches your customers might be performing.
Your backlinks are a strong sign of quality and trustworthiness, so if you’re getting good links from other local businesses, it shows Google that you’re a respected business in the area.
Create content that’s going to be useful to local people, and Google will rank it. If you’re a Birmingham lawyer, then write about the issues that are affecting the people of Birmingham and put your keywords in there in a natural way.