For anyone practising SEO, ensuring your website is targeted locally is crucial to being seen in the Search Engines. Many have predicted that 2019 will be the year of local search, where mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones have changed the way many people find what they are looking for. We’re a nation on the move, and people are likely to search for things as and when they’re out and about, so ensuring you’re seen when someone is searching for a local business is absolutely crucial.
So then, how do you optimise your website so that you get seen when people search for local businesses? Well there are some fundamental things to implement and also some more sophisticated technical elements; but for anyone who just wants to know where to start, the following are 5 easy tips to get your business visible in the SERPs when people search locally.
1. Localise your Meta
Meta titles and descriptions are a huge ranking factor, and also help to improve Click through Rate. That’s because they tell search engines the context of your website, and for anyone searching locally, they’ll see in the SERPs your website, what you offer and your location far more clearly than any other site. For example, if someone is looking for an electrician, they are likely to search for “Electrician in…” followed by a city, town or village name. So be sure to include the term you are targeting, as well as your location within the Meta.
2. Implement contact details on every page
Your address and local telephone number should be placed within the footer of every single webpage. This way you will be adding local information, so that anyone visiting your site will clearly see where you are located. If you have multiple addresses, be sure to include them within the footer. However if you have more than two or three, this could look untidy and affect usability, so only include your HQ within the footer and add a Find Us page for each of your other locations.
3. Add a Contact Us Page
Another way that people will check the location of the company is by visiting the Contact Us page. If you haven’t got one of these, then you could be missing out on a huge number of conversions purely because users can’t get in touch. Be sure to optimise this page by including your full address and local telephone number, as well as all your other forms of communication such as email, Twitter and Facebook, etc.
4. Include a map and directions
Be sure to include an interactive Google Map here, not just a static image as this can be quite frustrating for users. When a user visits the section, the map should start zoomed in with you Google Places highlighted on the Map. The user can then use the interactive map to establish how far they are from your location etc. Also, add directions to your company. Be sure to include any famous or well known landmarks and make sure your directions are clear and well written.
5. On-site content
The final tip is to add your location within your on-site content. Since Google’s Panda algorithm update there has been much emphasis on quality content, and so each of your web pages should have at least 500 – 1000 words of content. This will explain to the search engines the relevancy of that specific page, so including local search terms where possible will be hugely advantageous. Please don’t try and crowbar this into your copy – make sure it fits naturally and reads well. Also be creative with local search terms, so don’t just add your town name, but also use synonyms and words around your local area.
These are just some of the basic on-site changes you can make to ensure your site gets the local exposure it needs. There are a number of other way in which you can optimise your site locally, so be sure to keep checking the blog for forthcoming local SEO tips.