This post is a checklist of what you should be doing on and off your website in order to be found locally.
Local SEO is different than everyday SEO and by following this, you should be able to get ranked for local search terms (home theater installation + city) in weeks rather than a months. Then, all you have to do is keep your site there.
Onpage Checklist - (Stuff to do on your website that Google likes)
You start off with getting your keywords (phrases your ideal customers type into google in order to find you) and write some content around them.
Have 3 or 4 main keywords/phrases per page.
Use the suggestions that Google comes up with at the bottom of the search results and scatter them throughout your content as well.
Make sure that you have at least 500 - 700 words of original content per page and that you do not put your keywords in too much. Once each is enough.
- Title Tag Optimized – Keyword|Brand|City
- URL Structure – Domain.com/Category/Product
- Meta Description – Main and Secondary Keywords
- Use h1, h2, h3 and h4 tags in your content
- Rich Media (Videos, Images or Audios on the site)
You should have your logo visible and best practice is top left with your contact info and phone number right.
Your business name, address and phone number in the footer of every page using schema.
You also want to link out to an authority site (wikipedia) from your content as well.
- Google Maps - have one on your location page.
- Review Badges – (Bright Local or similar review generator)
- Contact Form
- Links to your social media properties – FB, Twitter, G+, Pinterest, Instagram and Youtube
Next is to add your site to Google and Bing Webmaster Tools:
- Add The Site And Verify
Next and lastly is to add Google analytics so you can see how your website is performing.
That is pretty much it for on page apart for not using Flash (it doesn't work on mobile devices) and to make your site mobile ready and compatible for those searchers using their phones.
Do these things properly and you will be head and shoulders above your competition and, if you already have a site, sorting this out on all your pages will make a stark improvement to the rankings you already have.
OffPage Checklist - (This shows Google how important you are so they rank you higher)
This is about getting your business name, address and phone number (NAP) out there and getting some backlinks that are relevant, authoritative and local.
You want to get your NAP on the big 4 social media channels:
Make sure that your NAP is consistent across all and use your business name as the title for each channel.
Next is citations:
The info you need for your citations are as follows:
- Business NAP
- Website URL
- Hours of Operation
- 10-15 High Quality Geo Tagged Images
- 300-500 word introduction, LSI optimized (LSI are keywords that are closely related to what you do. E.G. Main keyword is "home theater installers"- your LSI keywords could be: home cinema install, custom cinema build, custom theater design etc.)
- Categories your competitors rank for
- Name@Domain.com Email Address If Possible
- Year Business Was Established
- Keyword Driven Tagline
- URLs to Yelp, Facebook, Twitter, etc
- Google My Business
You can then get some brand driven Web 2.0 properties sorted out:
Go and create an account on Onlywire and fill out the details for each of the properties there. Or get someone to do this for you on Fiverr.com
- Don’t set up Facebook, Twitter, Google+, or YouTube through them
- Use Brand Name for Username, have a backup Username.
- Logo as profile pic
- Brand Driven Description
- NAP Consistent Everywhere
Next, you want to get authority links. Think places like...
- Chamber Of Commerce
- Industry Associations
- Industry Directories
- Industry Review sites
- Industry Associations
- Industry Certifications
- Education -Alumi
- Local Directories
- Local Groups
Next is the use of press releases and make sure of the following:
- Only use Branded or Bare links for press releases (http://yourwebsite.com)
- No Follow links only
- Do Real Press Releases
- Locally News Worthy
- Launching a new site
- Updating their site
- Facebook Likes Mile Stone
- New Team Member
- New Product
- New Service
- New Client
- Local Event
- Use Real, Paid Distribution
One of the last things to set up your business properly for local search is the actual citation building.
Do a citation audit to make absolutely sure that all your NAP data is consistent across everything. Check for occurrences of where certain sites have already filled in details for you automatically and maybe got them wrong. Such as Google My Business. You then want to claim or dispute pages with the wrong information.
Lastly, reviews are important for your rankings as well. You want to:
- Claim Citations on Review Sites
- Google My Business
- Yahoo Local
- Get Reviews
- You can have something on the bottom of your receipts for them to go and give a review of your business.
- Also make sure you have buttons on your website to where you want reviewers to go in order to leave a comment. I suggest getting Google My Business ones mainly as this will show up in your search listing in Google and also help you get ranked higher in the 3-pack.
There you have it. After doing all of this you will be head and shoulders above your competition. If you find yourself languishing a bit lower than you would like, get some more backlinks. A good idea is to get them from high authority sites in your niche and, if possible, in your community.
Of course, nobody can tell you with 100% certainty that you will get to number one in Google or even on the first page unless they own Google but these outlines have got businesses ranked 9 times out of 10.
Here is my agency ranking number 1 in the 3 pack of Google for my main keyword term on a Samsung cell phone. Notice it is ranking in my local vicinity without the need for a location attached to the search term.
What could this do for your business?
A word of warning though...
You don't get backlinks at 100 in the first week and then none and then 1000 etc as it is not natural. You want to find out the link frequency of your competitors and go after their backlinks and then add your own once you have caught up. Using the methods here, as they are higher quality than what you competition will have gotten, you might only be good getting 2 backlinks a week depending on what the average in your city etc is.
That is pretty much it. By following this, you will see your business rise up the search results pretty quickly and allow you to attract more customers online and beat your competitors.
However, i know it is a lot to take in and you may not have the time so...
If this seems a bit too much, or you just don't have the time, book an information session where we can answer any questions you have and come up with a few ideas to help you get to the top.
Remembering no strings attached and no obligation: