With the number of businesses competing for limited space at the top of various search engines growing exponentially day by day, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) remains one of the essential digital marketing tools for any business to master. Not only is it crucial in the process of increasing your site’s visibility, but it helps turn leads into customers, thereby increasing profitability.

Likely, most people looking to start a business have at least heard the term and have a basic understanding of what it encompasses. Perhaps less well-known is that there are different forms of SEO, each playing a different role and serving another purpose. Local SEO should be an essential strategy for growth and development for many companies.

This article will explore SEO (including its local component), how it works, and the benefits SEO can bring to local businesses.

Why Is SEO Important

With the number of businesses competing for limited space at the top of various search engines growing exponentially day by day, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) remains one of the essential digital marketing tools for any business to master. Not only is it crucial in the process of increasing your site’s visibility, but it helps turn leads into customers, thereby increasing profitability.

Likely, most people looking to start a business have at least heard the term and have a basic understanding of what it encompasses. Perhaps less well-known is that there are different forms of SEO, each playing a different role and serving another purpose. Local SEO should be an essential strategy for growth and development for many companies.

This article will explore SEO (including its local component), how it works, and the benefits SEO can bring to local businesses.

What is SEO?

Type anything into the search bar of Google, Bing, or any other search engine, and you will be met with page upon page of results. Those that appear on the coveted first page did not get there by accident. They used a core set of SEO strategies and tools to significant effect.

SEO makes your site, blog posts, and products more visible to an online user through organic search results. The more effective your SEO strategy, the higher up the search list you will appear, and the more traffic will be driven to your site. 

Research has shown that most people will not go past the fifth page of a search result, so if your website appears on page six and beyond, you will find it hard to attract eyes to your site, let alone convert those leads into sales. Further to this, it was found that appearing as a number one Google search result can translate to a click-through rate (CTR) of up to 34%.

Local SEO effectively follows the same principles and strives to achieve the same result, but with one notable difference. Rather than targeting all users through organic results, local SEO involves specifically targeting local users and appearing as a local search at the top of the page, known as the ‘Local Pack’. Studies have found that up to 46% of Google searches were for local information.

How Does SEO Work?

For search engines, the process involves indexing every single web page ever created and then delivering this collated information in the form of search engine results. This process, known as ‘crawling’, is undertaken by bots. They will scan the information presented on each website and rank its effectiveness and result order against many vital factors.

It is these factors that companies have to get to grips with if they wish to appear high on a search result. 

There are hundreds of nuanced factors that are taken into consideration. Still, when looking to apply effective SEO to your website, there are three fundamental areas you should look to maximise.

Keywords

These are a core list of words and phrases that you have determined will most likely appear when a person searches your sector, service, or product. They must be well-researched and strike a perfect balance between being too vague and too specific.

Secondary and tertiary keywords can help with this. They can give extra context to your content and your website. This can sometimes help search engines decide where to place your content, as it will have more to work within its indexing.

You should also ensure that these keywords appear in your titles, URLs, and meta descriptions. 

Content (On-Page Optimisation)

These are the building blocks that make up the website itself and what your site visitor will see. On-page optimisation ensures that every page of your website is primed to appear high on a search engine’s list of results.

This will mean that the landing page and other commercial pages will require a high keyword relevance score. Having the landing page bursting with perfect keywords and phrases is no good. If all other pages are missed during searches, they could otherwise have hit. 

Internal links are another vital component. They can often help search engines learn about what your site consists of, with specificity often being an essential component in SEO. If a person makes a search and lands on one of your commercial pages, internal links are there to guide them back to the landing page where they can access other content across your site.

Marketing (Off-Page Optimisation)

Your site traffic need not be the only way to maximise your website’s SEO potential. Off-page optimisation, in which you create effective backlinks on other websites, is a crucial strategy for successful SEO.

Backlinks are found everywhere on social media. A person’s social media marketing presence can be a gateway to drive traffic to a website. Infographics and videos that can be shared widely and quickly by others serve the same purpose in showcasing what you have to offer before a user chooses to visit your site.

Guest posting is another growing trend. While you may ultimately compete with another website, offering content for their website and vice versa can be mutually beneficial and will, at the very least, create more meaningful backlinks. Many worthwhile backlinks generate authority for your site, driving it further up the rankings.

Why SEO Is Important

Strategies for Local SEO

While any website that is looking to build should consider the strategies listed above, those looking to utilise local SEO have additional aspects to consider and another avenue they can take to make the most of local searches.

main factors can determine how successful a business or website is at driving local traffic:

  • Relevance – to match your listing to local searches, you will need to ensure a high level of focused and detailed information that search engines can work with. The more they know about your business, the easier it will be for them to pinpoint precisely when a search is relevant.
  • Distance – often, a person will search for a business or product in a specific location. A company should look to make sure its place is clear for the search engine to discover so that a potential customer who is close by does not miss out on your business.
  • Prominence – a business will have a better chance of appearing on the ‘Local Pack’ on Google if it has an online presence that demonstrates authority and trustworthiness. Social media, authentic backlinks, and positive reviews are all used to calculate a business’s ranking. 

Google Business

Formerly known as Google My Business, this option is available for any business looking to build its local presence online through SEO. 

A Google Business profile allows you to list details about your business and register them with Google’s business directory. It is entirely free. As with the general advice when it comes to relevance, the more detail you can provide, the quicker Google will be able to index and rank.

Once the profile is live, it will appear on Google’s organic search results. When used in tandem with the other strategies provided, you will be able to maximise your SEO potential and perhaps find yourself within the Local Pack.

Benefits of Effective Local SEO

Most businesses are likely implementing SEO to some degree, but as determined by the search engine rankings, some are more effective than others. 

As a result, these high-ranking websites are likely to see the following benefits:

Increased Consumer Trust

Those websites at the top of the rankings are there because they have committed to SEO for an extended period. During that time, they have been able to demonstrate to the search engines that their website is reputable through regular, optimised content, quality, numerous backlinks, and positive customer interaction.

As a result, consumers can feel safe knowing that those at the top of the list are trustworthy.

Improved Website Functionality

Websites on the first page of a search result can drive consumers to their site, but they keep them there by their website being user-friendly

Companies that invest the time and effort into making sure their websites are easy to navigate and with effective SEO on every page stand a better chance of retaining the traffic that comes their way. 

Reduced Costs

There is such a thing as paid channel marketing. This is when a company will invest vast sums of money to ensure its website ranks highly, predominantly through social media ads. 

A company that has reached the first page through organic SEO strategies will not have those costs to deal with. It will take longer to get there than if you were to buy your way, but the net results could be well worth it.

Effective Local SEO Strategies With Warren Digital

Here at Warren Digital, we have been helping our clients reach the top of search engine results for over ten years. We are committed to developing innovative, tailor-made, and robust digital marketing strategies perfect for your business.

Connect with us today for your FREE consultation, and let’s get started on maximising your business potential.