Let’s imagine it’s Saturday night, and you want to go outside to eat in a fancy restaurant with your family, friends, or a couple. Or, it’s Wednesday night, you just came tired from work, and you don’t have enough energy to cook something tasty. You may even know where you want to eat but must remember its location. And we could go on with thousands of examples. So, what do you do in those cases?
Take time to think about it, grab your cellphone, and Google it! You look for that info on Google, as 83% of searchers use this search engine to learn more about nearby businesses. That’s a local search, and if you own a business, whether it’s a big multinational company or a local bakery store, you should keep reading to get the insights we have at Globant for you to make sure your business is the answer the client is looking for and to get even closer to your buyers.
At Globant, we’ve been powering the world’s leading businesses for decades, so we have experience matching users’ needs with influential brands to create magical relationships.
What is local SEO?
If you own a business, marketing is a must. But how could you optimize your business to appear for local searches like “the best hamburgers near me” or “hardware stores?” Local SEO is the strategy you were looking for. So, let’s dive into this concept.
Local SEO is the marketing process that helps businesses improve their visibility in local search results, for example, Google Search Result Pages, Google Maps, Waze, Yelp, and Bing Business, among others. This process will directly impact your business by helping reach more people, driving more conversions, and enhancing your reputation.
Why is it important? Numbers don’t lie.
To see the real impact of local searches beyond our daily behavior, let’s see some statistics:
- According to Google, 76% of people who conduct a local search on their smartphone visit a business within 24 hours.
- 28% of those searches result in a purchase.
- 30% of all search processes are related to location. That’s one every three searches!
- A recent local SEO survey found that 82% of consumers read online reviews for businesses during a local search.
So, let’s make a quick recap. Almost one in three searches is related to local businesses. And nearly 80% of people who conduct a local search visit that company within 24 hours. If you want your business to increase its visibility in searches, you should pay attention and start gaining visibility for those searches.
Four tips for implementing your Local SEO strategy:
Create your account on Google Business Profile.
As Google and Organic Search are the single largest traffic source for every niche and drive eight times more traffic than all social media networks together, the first thing you should do for Local SEO is create your profile on Google Business Profile: This tool indexes the content you provide across Google Search and Maps. It is a precious tool to use that helps you:
- Control, index, and display pertinent business information.
- Interact with potential customers and manage your online review reputation.
- Curate customer photos, videos, and other user-generated content.
- Gather insights regarding how your customers are arriving on your site.
Once you create your company name, you should move on with the other business fields:
- Commercial Category
- Location (Store) & Address
- Phone number & website
- Verification method
- Opening hours
- Message option
- Company Description
One of the most important tips related to Google Business Profile is keeping your information updated (open-close hours and days, photos, prices, products, etc.) and answering your client’s reviews. As we saw before, almost 80% of consumers read online reviews, so pay attention to them, ask your clients to write reviews, and if you have bad reviews, don’t erase them; answer them. This will show the new user what happened and help them to see you care about them.
2. Use schemas.org on your website.
To help Google better understand the topic of your site, we recommend using schemas.org so you can choose between several options related to a physical business, branch, or organization. This includes a restaurant, a particular branch of a restaurant chain, a branch of a bank, a medical practice, a club, a bowling alley, etc.
Remember that relevant schema categories will help Google better understand your website. Select the most relevant schema category for your local business. For example https://schema.org/IceCreamShop (If you can’t find one, use the default category: https://schema.org/LocalBusiness).
For some data, you must include URL, Name, OpeningHours, Telephone, Image, Logo, Address, Geo, etc.
3. Be in as many local directories as possible.
Although Google is the most used search engine, sometimes it takes information from another specific directory, so creating and optimizing business profiles in other local authoritative guides may be a precious resource for the users and search engine positioning.
For example, Yelp, Bing Places for Business, Meta for Business, and Foursquare are other local directories people might look for information.In this cases, we recommend:
- Selecting and creating profiles in the appropriate authority local web directories.
- Optimize and standardize NAP (Name, Address, Phone).
- Optimize the business profile with relevant and updated information such as locations, services, opening hours, photos, social media, etc.
- If you have a blog, create content of interest to your local audience.
- Launch campaigns that link the digital with the in-person experiences.
- Always ask the user to evaluate their experience. And optimize your strategy based on it.
4. Add CTAs
Remember to add a call to action on your Business Profile to generate interactions with the audience. You could choose among several options, like sending a message, visiting a website, signing up, and buying.
Local SEO for enterprises and big companies with a lot of branches
I know what you might think: “I have a big company with multiple franchises in different cities and countries. I don’t care about local searches.” Well, you’d be mistaken, my friend.
First, you should adopt a multi-location SEO strategy to tackle all your franchises. This will help local customers get relevant information on the products and offerings in its correct branch. Then, on your website, you should create a page for each location and consider that Google will only know your page is for a specific area if you try to optimize it, paying particular attention not to generate duplicate content.
Tip: for each page, we recommend you create localized content and personalize it, including not only the legal information such as store location, images, and product pages but also try to make posts for that specific location to attract local customers based in that particular region or city.
Tip: Create a business group on Google My Business to allow and optimize each location of your brand. This option will enable you to manage multiple sites and keep them organized, managing all the information for each branch and keeping them updated. Google also has the opportunity to import the business location to make it quicker and easier. You must download the template, fill in the information, and upload it again.
It’s time to act
Most of the time, as we saw, companies need to pay attention to the information on Google. Sometimes, customers look for information, such as opening hours, read what’s on Google, and then go to that store. But, if that information needs to be updated or was taken from another page, and it’s wrong, you will lose a purchase, and that customer will be angry with your business.
At Globant Create, we can not only create a Local SEO strategy to tackle your needs, but we’re also used to designing end-to-end digital marketing strategies for brands to unlock business growth, no matter the company’s needs, momentum, and maturity.
So, what are you waiting for to implement your Local SEO Strategy? Need to know how? Contact us, and we will be happy to help you!