If your business operates in a 20-mile radius around your location then local SEO is the right choice for you. Since rankings that are nationwide will not help you garner clients or customers it makes sense to focus all your energy on ranking on local organic results. So how does this differ from running a national organic rankings campaign? Factors are different for the local algorithm so some different things need to be addressed in order for you to have success in ranking locally in your area.
What is Local SEO?
Local SEO is different from national campaigns in by that it is geared towards organically ranking for terms that are specific to an area. For example, if you have a cannabis dispensary in Las Vegas. You would want to rank on searches like cannabis dispensary Las Vegas, Dispensary near me. Basically, any term that identifies your location and what you do or sell is what you would want to be visible on.
The way that search engines like Google do this now is that they actually locate you and then use your current location to append the locality to the search. So let's pretend you are in Las Vegas. While you could still type in dispensary Las Vegas now you could just type in Dispensary and google would append Las Vegas to the search. More specific searches are somethings that you want to consider ranking on is your search term "Dispensary + Local Zip Codes" this would get you in front of people that are looking for your services around the area so someone may search for "dispensary 89107" and if you are in that zip code with proper optimization you will come up in the search.
So local SEO is much more focused around your actual location and the surrounding area where national SEO campaigns are looking to rank all over the nation. So if you only do business locally then it makes more sense to focus on the local aspects of ranking rather then to try and rank nationally where you will get in front of potential clients you can not service. This tends to aggravate the visitor to your site as well as possibly causing unnecessary inquiries you will have to deal with that you can not turn into a lead or sale.
Another Factor Here Is Cost
It is usually much cheaper to just focus on running a local SEO campaign than a national one. Since your only focus is to outrank businesses in your area the competition will not be as stiff, which means it will take fewer resources and therefore can be done at a more reasonable cost. Local Seo campaigns can start at as little as $500 and range on up into the $1000's and 10,000's depending on your industry. The city you operate in is also a big factor in this. In metropolitan areas, it can be much tougher to rank then in smaller more rural areas. Understanding your budget will help you to set the proper goasl for your campaign. The more focused the less it will take to make it happen. The more broad the more it will take to move the bar.
We have worked with all sorts of different budgets from small to quite large. No matter what your budget is let us take a look at your project and see what can be done within the constraints of your budget.
What Does A Local SEO Campaign Look Like?
Local rankings have gotten more and more competitive, especially ranking in the map listings. Where Google used to show 6 places they now only show 3 before you have to click to see more. So competition for the top 3 spots is fierce. However, you can also get natural organic rankings below the map listing which can also bring more visitors to your site.
Local SEO Variables that are of Importance:
- GMB Listing - This is your Google My Business Listing which is your most important listing in Google for local. Optimizing is a vital part of a good local ranking strategy.
- Citations - Are references to your business on the web. There are some major citation sites that you will want to be in and then there are minor ones. These help build the authority of your business
- NAP Consistency - Consistency across citations and NAP aggregators to show your business name phone number and address are consistent. The more accurate and consistent the better for local SEO
- Site Optimization - Actually optimizing your website to fall in line with your local business address. This means using the area you operate in your content and all thru out the website. Also using schema as well as having your actual business address on the site to show your actual location.
- Local Links - These are actual links coming from local sources like local news sites, local event sites, sponsorship of local sports teams. Any link that shares your location is basically what you are after.
- Authority & Relevant Links - Links that are industry related or come from authoritative sites.
These are some of the bigger factors that go into a local SEO campaign. Difficulty and how much of these factors will need to be correct will depend on how competitive the industry you are in is.