For many small and medium businesses, competing with larger corporations can be a massive challenge. Larger corporations often have access to greater resources, but smaller enterprises can use a strong local SEO strategy to level the playing field. Regardless of your industry, there is likely to be competition with more resources and a greater budget to build your web and search engine visibility, but local SEO has slightly different rules that don’t require massive amounts of funding or hundreds of links to be relevant or visible to local audiences. Here we’ll explore some strategies that can be cost effective for small and medium businesses.
Verify Your Google My Business Page
The first step to increase your online visibility is to link your details with Google My Business. This feature allows SMEs to ensure their information is updated across Google Maps, your Google my Business profile and Google Search in one step to ensure that any potential customers can find you on any device.
Local searches tend to lead to more purchases, compared to non-local searches, so verifying your Google my Business allows you to monopolize the search results for your brand name, particularly for the Local Business Card. Unfortunately, anyone can edit the details of your business listing, but once all your details are logged with Google My Business, you can check in with the dashboard regularly to ensure that there have been no unwanted changes to your business listing.
Pay Per Click
Launching a great website is just the first step of SEO, and your marketing strategy should include Pay Per Click as a crucial element of success in the digital landscape. Pay per click strategies can benefit virtually any SME to build a web presence. You should identify relevant, targeted keywords to drive the best types of leads. Since there is a high purchase intent on mobile devices for local searches, PPC can be invaluable as it dominates a larger proportion of the mobile screen space, so you’re more likely to appear as a business “near me.”
Local SEO optimization is not limited to just the text of your site. It is increasingly common to see images on search listing pages, so you need to ensure that all your images are optimized for search engines.
To ensure that your images are optimized and search engine friendly, you need to create a descriptive file name, so it doesn’t become lost in the billions of images online.
You also need to ensure that the tags are optimized. Search engines cannot read images, so you need to use alt tags to describe your images accurately to ensure that it will appear during relevant search queries. You should write a relevant, concise description containing the appropriate keywords. You should also write content both above and below your website images, to relate to the image and be sure to add local keywords for optimized blended results.
Peer to Peer Reviews
Reviews are seen as a major ranking factor by Google and are beneficial for potential customers on SERPs. Peer to peer reviews are particularly powerful as they allow your potential customers to obtain a good sense of your goods and services.
The search engine spiders appreciate unique and frequently updated content, and reviews are an effective way to accomplish this. User-generated content is more likely to be unique, and the words and phrases used in the reviews are often common search terms, increasing the chances to rank well in search queries.
While there is no one simple way to reach the top of the rankings, strategies that leverage your geographic location allow you to selectively overcome the competition in a specific key area.
Bearcat Media is a leading digital marketing agency located in Hackettstown, NJ. They specialize in website design & development, search engine optimization (SEO), and graphic design. They help local businesses increase their online presence through professional websites, local SEO strategies, and high-quality branding.