Chances are if your business has looked into SEO that you’ve found it can be a time consuming and complicated process. It’s also not always the cheapest option when it comes to online marketing. But further to our previous blog around what you can implement yourself if you’re working on a budget, there are even easier avenues you can take when it comes to ranking for location-based keywords, which might not always be the highest volume search terms, but most of the time will have a higher chance at converting into business than their broader counterparts for obvious reasons. For this blog we’ll focus on SEO in Spring Hill, but the instructions are translatable to any location.
Here’s our must follow approach for local SEO:
Do your Keyword Research
As we just said above, when you’re looking at very specific location based keywords, you’re more often than not dealing with lower search volumes. For this reason, it’s extra important that you don’t just guess when it comes to what might have search volume. There are ways to be certain that what you’re chasing isn’t a waste of time. The most readily available way to do this is using Google’s own keyword planner, which will give you their own search volume data. You have to sign up for a Google Adwords account if you don’t have one already, but you don’t actually have to run an AdWords account to get broad data. It won’t be as exact as the data you’ll get if you do have AdWords running (because Google has put more of a focus on monetizing their data in recent years), but you can still know whether there is search volume or not and get a ballpark idea of what that volume is.
Alternatively, you can find a lot of good keyword research tools as hand-picked by the experts here, although most require payment.
Plan and implement Local Content:
Once you know the keywords that you’re targeting you’ll want to make sure the content on your website is relevant. With regards to the existing content onsite, the first obvious port of call would be your location or contact us pages. Simply listing your business address can help make you more relevant but it also never hurts to have a little bit of a blurb about the suburb itself and how to find you. If you service multiple locations then you’ve also got the opportunity to flesh your content out with a page for each location provided you only have a few, don’t over-do it. But aside from Spring HIll you might want to target SEO for Fortitude Valley or the Brisbane CBD or possibly further north or south. The effect will be the same.
It can also be worth lightly sprinkling the content throughout your site with mentions of your local area to reinforce the sentiment with search engines, but aside from this your blog would be your most important asset when it comes to adding keyword relevant content (full disclosure, there is a reason we’re blogging about SEO in Spring Hill right now). If you’re not already planning your blog content then we’d suggest checking out our advice on this here so that you’re not overdoing it with keyword density and have a good idea of how best to implement this strategy.
Acquire links to your site:
If you’ve ever engaged in link building or are aware of how important links are then you’ll have some idea of how difficult it can be to acquire any. Harder still is trying to do this in a way that search engines appreciate. But engagement with your local community can fix this problem in some small sense. Location-based links are worth their weight in gold when you’re trying to rank for location-based keywords and having a good relationship with the businesses in your area automatically gives you a foot in the door to discuss acquiring them. Friendly locals are much less likely to be hard negotiators when you’re trying to get them to place a link from their site to yours. It’s also an old myth that reciprocal links (when you link to a website and it links back to you) aren’t worth anything so long as you don’t overdo it. A one-way link is always more powerful as you’re showing search engines that people point to you for relevant information without receiving anything in return, but a reciprocal link will do in a pinch.
Just be sure when placing these links that you steer well clear of “exact match anchor text”. An example of this would be if we had another site link to us and they used “SEO Spring Hill” as the text containing the link itself. This is seen as spammy by search engines so try to use something along the lines of “Click Here” or simply your business name or domain. Also be sure that they use a “follow” link so that the authority does actually pass through to your website.
Google My Business
It is no secret that Google holds the keys to the success of many businesses when you are talking about online visibility. To ensure that you’re getting the best viability in Google search results you need to make sure you register your business locations with Google.
By registering with business.google.com you get access to a range of ways to improve the visibility of your business in Google search results including Google maps. Google is actively improving and investing in their Google My Business listings platform as a replacement for Google + recently launching a host of new features. This means that you now have the ability to show more relevant information about your business than ever in searches for your business, or your business type locally including:
- Links to the bookings section of your website
- The ability to posts updates (expire after a week)
- A facility to promote offers and offer codes with expiry dates
- Ability to manage all locations of your business in one place
- Ability to manage other businesses from the same login (great for business owners of multiple businesses or digital marketers managing client listings)
To sign up visit https://business.google.com/ and sign up and start filling out all the details you can about your business and be ready with photos and logos as well. To get the most out of it you will need to verify your location with Google which happens via a code sent in the mail to your address. https://support.google.com/business/answer/6300716
List your business on Apple’s ‘Mapp Connect’
While Apple maps do not have the integration features with Google Search and dominance that Google enjoys they are growing and included in every Apple device as standard. In fact, Apple has been investing heavily for years now in Apple maps with it recently reported that they have collected their own mapping data with Google like cars over the past 4 years to improve the quality and accuracy of the service,
As well as this investment, the introduction of Apple’s CarPlay to many new cars means that Apple Maps is the primary way that people will discover and navigate to local businesses.
To register your business go to https://register.apple.com/placesonmaps/.
And there you have it! A few simple tips that should help you. While your individual circumstances are going to heavily influence how effective adapting all of the above will be for you, we’re sure that a lot of you could have a bit of success with it, especially if your business is located in a smaller suburb or very specific location. So have a go and best of luck!
If you’d like to know about any of this in more detail and/or look at engaging in a local SEO project feel free to contact us.