Mastering local SEO involves executing On-page and Off-page SEO to optimize your online platforms for long-term search visibility. When done correctly and with the right techniques, brick-and-mortar businesses will have the opportunity to rank in local directories and bridge the information gap between prospective clients and readers with your location, solutions, and services.
More than one out of three customers use the Internet to find local businesses on a weekly basis. The Internet has become an fundamental part of consumer behavior and has largely galvanized modern consumerism. For brick-and-mortar stores, they need to invest in an online platform to ensure that they can attract a growing, Internet-savvy generation. This is a generation of consumers that are finding services, solutions online; comparing companies, and investing in online brands – and it is important that you’re part of that conversation.
Benefits of the Local SEO Services
By outsourcing local SEO, brick-and-mortar stores will be able to experience increased online visibility, better online reputation, and a more intimate connection with clients and readers.
Local SEO concentrates on improving online visibility by honing in on several factors that will influence local search rankings. These factors include listing accuracy, consistency, and review signals.
With the emergence of mobile users, more and more people are doing “on the go” searches on the whim, and Google has been driving online users to hyper-local searches. This type of search improves visibility by focusing on relevant and trustworthy businesses within an extremely localized area. Even though hyper-local centers on an extremely small target area, you can rest assured knowing that the people who actually do visit your brick-and-mortar store will be highly receptive to your mission statement, your products, and your solutions.
With the help of local SEO, you can also be part of the online conversation surrounding your services, products, and industry figures. Internet users, especially those in the younger generation, put a significant amount of clout on a online brand’s ability to appease their curiosity. Online consumers are susceptible to the proposed validity of online brand and companies. It is very easy for your competitors to attack your store’s reputation; even if the claims are nebulous, it can still influence the behavior of prospective clients and how they view your business. Local SEO is largely proactive in its approach, but it can also position you to be defensive of your reputation when need be.
A study by Forbes Insights found that the majority of customers research online before making a purchase. This is a group of people who are highly educated, know exactly what they want, and are willing to invest in brands. This awareness makes your online reputation one of the most important aspects that you need to protect. The majority of online users will trust reviews as much as personal recommendations, especially if these reviews are coming from a trusted online community or website. A business with better reviews and a better overall online reputation will fare much better than a small business that has been disparaged.
Opportunities Brought on By Local SEO Search
Visibility for your brick-and-mortar store. Use online trust signals to draw attention to the local area. By ranking for crucial local search queries by emphasizing your store’s location, you can improve foot traffic.
Brand awareness. Word-of-mouth recommendations are one of the more powerful ways to attract customers. It can create a similar effect online with the help of endorsements and reviews from those within your industry.
Manually Created Listings vs. Automated
Online business listings – also known as local citations – are an essential aspect of local SEO. Having accurate, enhanced listings improve the rankings of a brick-and-mortar business on Google and other major search engines. Incorrect, duplicate, or rather poorly optimized listings can hamper your business’ ability to rank well, impeding your return on investment. There are two standard methods when it comes to local citations: manual and automated listings.
Automated listings use data aggregators to gather information about a local business, distribute that data through a network including directories, GPS services, and apps. Even though automated listings help save time, it’s also prone to errors that may be difficult to remediate. Not only that, but the information isn’t customized, with the same information being posted all over with very little customization.
Manually created listings are generated by manually inputting business information directly into third-party platforms to help with local SEO. Manual submissions enable you to cover as many websites as necessary without any particular limitations. Since the data is inputted manually, there is a sense of completeness and personalization that cannot be emulated with automated listings. The more a listing is complete and enhanced, the more the major search engines will read the listing as being relevant to potential searchers. This will ultimately help your visibility online and allow your online listing to stand out amongst your competition.
Since an actual human being inputs manual listings, your investment will be much more viable. Automated listings are mass produced, and success is mostly based on luck. However, manually created listings are more intimately designed, with each listing being composed with your brand’s mission statement in mind. The font, pixel, and design will be optimized for each directory or service that your listing is submitted to.
Too many brick and mortar stores are relying on antiquated methods to make sure that their information is accessible to tentative customers. The age of the internet has killed the yellow pages and has undermined this industry. However, local SEO is like the virtual form of the antiquated yellow pages.
Contact us to learn more about the importance of online visibility for your brick and mortar store. Whether you’re a big box store or an entrepreneur who just opened a new storefront, local SEO will help you notify those around your business about the existence of your store. Manually created listings will ensure that your business information is verified and stored correctly in online directories.
Invest in making a first good impression, without the wrong phone numbers and outdated addresses undermining your local SEO strategies.