Today a companies online presence is more important than ever before. Even for local businesses, the benefits of a well-built mobile-friendly website with enhanced SEO visibility cannot be understated. Let’s take a look at why local search engine optimization is so important and how to enhance your presence straight away.
Local Search is More Important than Ever Before
Search engine optimization isn’t just for large multi-national corporations looking to get ahead. Instead, SEO is important for every business looking to get a leg up on their competitors, and in local markets that is more important than ever before. There are a few key reasons for this:
- people use Google and other search engines to look for local goods and services more than ever.
- the percentage of local businesses advertising on Google is higher than ever before.
- Google Maps is incredibly useful for consumers and a powerful competitive tool for businesses in the know.
- Reaching a local audience requires a local search focus.
- People looking for local services will gear their searches accordingly
- The search phrase including “near me” is now one of the most common Google search queries daily (for example, “barbershop near me”)
- and more
Let’s look more closely at a local search user’s typical query.
Searches Including “Near Me” are On the Rise
When people look for local goods and services they typically do it in one of two ways. First, they may write something like “barbershop in Monroe, NY”, and get a display of local barbershops in the town of Monroe, NY. Or they simply search for “barbershop near me” and Google does the rest, filling in the best suitable local barbershops based on the persons’ location.
Because Google uses a person’s location to display relevant ads for local services you need to be set up and indexed properly in Google to be visible. If Google isn’t able to find your business or website, it will not be able to display your business to locals searching for what you’re offering. How you connect your business to Google Search Console will make a huge difference in your ability to gain traffic and new potential customers.
Using Google Search Console
Through the updated Google Search Console, business owners and website managers have an updated array of tools to enhance their search visibility. You will not only index your website through the Google search console, but you can do a multitude of other important search enhancements. The issue is that if you’re unfamiliar with using this system, it can seem like advanced calculus. If done wrong you can hurt or eliminate your website from Google entirely, so getting this done right is a critical part of local search.
Updating Content is the Local Search King
Google functions as a database and displays relevant information and web pages to a user based on the search they are doing. Keeping your content current and regular is just one of the pieces Google looks at when displaying a search. Staying up to date is a must. Let’s take a look at an example of 2 local competitors.
Example: we have 2 local barbershops. ‘Barbershop A’ set up their website a few years ago and have made no changes or updates, not making any posts or connecting to social media. ‘Barbershop B’ is a newer business but has put a focus on regular content updates, promotion, and interaction with their customers through social media.
Someone searches “barbershop near me”, who do you think will get the better results? The website that has had no new information for years or the website with constant updates and user interaction? The business with up-to-date information and a properly connected Google local indexing will get more exposure every time.
Think about it in terms of news. Google News isn’t going to display last year’s headlines today, are they? No, just as news is changing every day, Google displays the most current information. The same applies to local businesses. Google is looking for the most relevant businesses and that means staying current.
For the best in Local Search Engine Optimization NYC look no further than right here at Eternal.NYC and over 15 years of web development expertise.