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Get Found In Local Google Search Results!

August 12, 2021

Get Found In Local Google Search Results!

How to reach your audience with local search engine optimization

Your website’s ranking on Google’s search results is increasingly important. In many cases, this is how your business gets found. It’s as simple as this, when customers don’t see you in their search results, they’ll click on one of your competitors.To newer companies, small businesses, and those that don’t currently rank well on Google, competing with top-ranking websites can be intimidating. They have years of presence, tons of content, and huge budgets invested in website optimization. The hard truth is that outranking these companies isn’t practical for small businesses.

But the good news is that you don’t need to.

Google has gone increasingly “local” for its search results. Which means you don’t have to compare yourself to the big guys. To take advantage of search engines, you’ll need to create a local SEO (search engine optimization) strategy to boost your online presence and make you appear in front of your ideal target audience.

Here’s what you’ll need to know to get started:

How does Google work?
What is SEO?
What is local SEO?
Why is local SEO important for small businesses?
Important steps of a local SEO strategy
How to create a local SEO strategy


How does Google work?

Google is such a huge part of our lives that it’s become a verb. We use it daily, but have you ever asked yourself how Google selects your results? When you search for something in Google, the search engine uses various processes to rank millions of websites. In just fractions of a second, they present you with a list of websites that they think are the most likely answers to your query. These are called “organic results”, meaning not paid or sponsored. Google has over 200 of these searching and ranking factors, or algorithms, which determine the results you see.

So what is Google looking for in your website? The most common factors that make your website rank better on Google include:

  • Speed: Having a website that loads fast. This is especially important for the mobile version of your website.
  • Backlinks: Having other quality websites link to your website.
  • Content: Quality and quantity of content are equally important.
  • Keyword optimization: Use of the right combination of keywords in the right places on your website. Keyword optimization should be used in all the content on your site.
  • Metadata and related codes: There are many places to include content on a website that aren’t visible to a regular visitor. Meta titles, meta description, image alternate and link titles are all parts of your website code that can influence your search ranking.
  • Mobile friendly: Most of the traffic to websites comes from mobile devices, which introduce many limitations. Your website should give a great mobile experience.


What is SEO?

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, the continuous process of optimizing a website so it ranks better in Google and appears higher in search results. Successful SEO will increase the quality and quantity of traffic to your website.

When you hire an agency to develop your website, SEO should be a huge part of their process. From the planning stage to the development stage, the SEO strategy should be one of the biggest considerations for your website. After publishing, maintaining your website should include constantly updating and optimizing its content.


What is Local SEO?

Google search results are not the same for everyone. If two people search for the same keywords, they’ll get different results. Google uses algorithms to personalize and tailor your search results to your likes and needs. Your previous searches, the device you’re using, and your location will all influence your search results.

That’s right – location! Google has become adept at understanding when you’re looking for results from anywhere in the world and when you’re searching for something nearby. This is great news for small businesses! When a potential customer searches for businesses like yours, you have a fair shot at reaching them.

For example, if you google “how to make a pizza” you’ll get search results from the top recipe websites in the world. But if you google “order pizza” or “pizza near me”, Google understands that showing a search result for a pizzeria in New York would be of little value if you live in Ocala, Florida.

You don’t even need to write the word “pizza in Ocala”, because Google already knows that you’re in Ocala. It even knows which part of Ocala you’re in, especially if you’re searching on your phone. Your search results will include chain pizza restaurants as well as small local businesses located a few blocks away from you.


Why is local SEO important for small businesses?

Local SEO changes the playing field for small businesses. You won’t be competing with thousands of websites from across the world – just other businesses in your area.

This keeps local businesses from getting drowned out by national competition. You’ll have a fighting chance to show up in Google’s search results (including Google Maps). This lets you be visible to your target audience without breaking the bank on Google search ads.


Important steps of a Local SEO strategy

The fact that Google favors local results on its search doesn’t mean that your work is done. Businesses need a strong local SEO strategy to take advantage of Google’s local search results.

Take these steps to start improving your local SEO today!

  1. Optimize your website to include your location. Include location-related content in key places in your site copy and website code. Don’t just add your address to the footer on your website and call it a day – the more you mention your location, the better.
  2. Set up a Google Business Profile account. They uses to be called Google My Business. These accounts are key to improving your local positioning. This tool allows users to find you, understand what you do, and get in touch. These interactions, and adding to your online presence, can boost your ranking in search results and on Google Maps.
  3. Create local-based content. Include information related to your location in your blog posts, news, articles, tips, events, and more. Make sure to include the name of your city and other identifying keywords when you can.
  4. Build dedicated pages for each location. If you are serving different cities or counties, mention them on specific pages on your website. This often looks like separate contact pages for each area you service.
  5. Update your location on different local citation websites. There are hundreds of places where your business information can appear – Facebook, Yelp, Tripadvisor, and industry-specific business directories. Add your address and contact information to those that apply to your business – it’ll improve your local positioning online!


How to create a local SEO strategy

So now you understand why local SEO matters and how you can boost your ranking. Now how do you go about putting this information to work for your small business?

The best local SEO strategy includes everything we’ve talked about so far as well as “traditional” SEO strategies. This is not a checklist. You’ll need to keep updating and improving your online presence to stay on top.

  • Web maintenance: Keep your website content and code up to date. Check for errors and fix issues often. Include analyzing your keywords and viewing your search ranking often.
  • Content: Regularly create and update content on your website. Local content will get you far in local search results while using keywords makes your business appear with relevant search terms.
  • Google Business Profile: Keep your GBP up to date and use it to post images, videos, company updates, and more.
  • Local citation: Constantly update and push your information on location citation websites. Remember to check that the information is exactly the same everywhere.


Need a hand?

Not every business owner is ready to jump head-first into implementing a local SEO strategy. Especially since improving your rankings requires continuous updates, recurring website content, and a little bit of keyword research.

That’s where the team at Liquid Creative comes in! We can build you a website from scratch, optimize your current site, create social and GMB content, and maintain your presence with local SEO in mind. Contact us to get started!