Top 6 Local SEO Strategies to Boost Your Rankings In 2019

SEO is a very flexible marketing technique that can adapt based on the company’s requirements. This means different kinds of businesses require different SEO marketing strategies. A company with a nation-wide presence, they might need different types of keywords, content, and related strategies. A company with a local presence will need location-specific keywords, content, and strategies.

SEO is a highly competitive field that requires planning, focus, and proper execution. This is especially true for local SEO because getting attention on local search can bring a lot of traffic. Around 46% of all searches involve people seeking local information. Around 97% of the people surveyed in a HubSpot study said they were looking for a local business.

In this article, we discuss several vital strategies to help boost your rankings in the local sphere during this year.

1. Get Listed on Local Directories

 

One of the first steps to do is to get listed on local directories. This can be a bit of a tedious process because it involves contacting all directories with a local presence and get your business listed on them. However, it is important to get listed to gain more visibility.

While most people will rely on search engines like Google to find local businesses, a directory presence never hurts. It is a good idea to seek out the most reliable directories in your local area and ask to be added. Some of the biggest ones are Yellow pages, White pages, Yelp, Foursquare, and Yahoo.

2. Make Sure Your Contact Information is Accurate 

Inconsistent contact information can tank your company’s reputation quickly. The last thing you want is for a prospective customer to call a listed business number and reach the wrong person. It’s worse if the customer drives to the listed business location only to find that the business moved to a different location months ago. 

That’s why it is important to check all of your contact information like name, phone number, address, business open/close hours, etc. Inconsistent information also influences Google listings. Google takes business contact information from various sources and can post inaccurate information if enough sources have wrong details. This can severely impact your prospective customers. 

3. Claim Your Business on Google My Business

When you search for a local business, there’s a large box that appears on the SERP with all the business information. This box includes the company’s name, contact information, location, related photographs, open/close times, and even reviews. 

Your business will still show up in the box, especially if it has been around for some time. However, you will have no control over the information or no ability to edit it unless you claim the business. A GMB listing will give you a lot of visibility, especially in the local sphere. 

You can add a lot of content there, from company pictures, Q&As, to small blog posts. All of this will enjoy a great deal of visibility. 

4. Create Content for Local Audience 

A local audience will have different needs and expectations from a business. This goes beyond just mentioning the location in the content a couple of times. Make sure you provide information that is specific and relevant to local people. 

For example, if you’re a company that sells bicycles, you can write articles about the best bikes for your local trails and parks. If you’re a gardener, you can create content on the best plants for the local weather. 

This will not only help you attract a more local audience, but also help you get a ranking boost due to LSI words, or Latent Semantic Indexing words. The LSI algorithm tries to understand the context of the content based on the types of words used. If the context matches up with the search engine user's intent, Google will rank the page higher. 

5. Get Backlinks from Local Publications 

Local publications draw audiences who are interested in local information. That means these individuals are more likely to visit your store and buy something. Link building is a very important marketing strategy and can boost your rankings significantly. In fact, Google considers it one of the three most important ranking factors. 

You will have an easier time finding links through local publications because there’s a lot less competition in this field. All you need to do is:

Create link worthy-content.
Compile a list of trustworthy and authoritative local publications. 
Send outreach emails to them with your content. 
Find dead links or links with poor content on their website and offer to replace them. 
Find your unlinked brand mentions and ask the publication if they would be willing to addlinks. 

Don’t use illegal or black hat link-building techniques because they will do more harm than good. Google has become very efficient in finding purchased or poor-quality links. The company will blacklist websites that use such techniques. 

6. Optimize for Voice Search 

Think about how most people find local businesses while they're out and about. Most will ask their mobile phones for information. It has become quite common to go, "Hey Siri, where's the nearest coffee shop?" or "Ok Google, find an art supply store."

Around 20% of all mobile searches are done through voice search. Speculations suggest that 50% of all searches might be voice-based by 2020. Mobile voice searches are much more likely to be local-based than text-based. 

All of these facts indicate that you can’t afford to ignore voice search in your marketing campaign. Optimizing for voice search isn’t difficult. You just need to change the keywords and content style to suit voice-based searches. For example, people are more likely to ask questions like how, who, what, why, where, etc. through voice. They’re also more likely to speak full sentences and use a conversational tone. 

Succeeding in the local SEO sphere can be a challenge, but it offers rich rewards. You need to make sure you have a strong online presence with your website, profiles on local directories, and social media for maximum visibility. 

Author Bio 
Justin Kemp is working as a Jr. content writer and blogger with Ranking By SEO. He can be seen blogging about digital marketing, SEO, SMO, PPC, etc.

How To Troubleshoot Google’s Local Ranking Failures?

 SEO pic 

After having put in a lot of time and effort towards building a flawless website, it can be daunting to encounter a fallout in Google’s local ranking. The trauma of suffering from a lower Google local ranking can lead into a reduction in the company’s reputation as a whole.

Fortunately, when there are problems, there are solutions as well. The same goes for reduced Google local rankings as well. Being familiar with the steps for troubleshooting this issue, you can easily combat the local ranking failure for your website. So, without letting you wonder anymore, let me walk you through a tutorial that will outline the steps that can turn beneficial when it comes to troubleshooting a website’s falling Google local ranking.

Step 1- Check for reports of mass issues or bugs
 
Searching Google for Local Rankings


As the first and foremost step in troubleshooting low or lost Google local ranking, you must gain an instant access to reports that contain a collaborated list of issues that might be present in the website. Look out for any unresolved bugs that might be interfering with the Google local ranking of your website.

Talking about mass issues, the thing that you need to discover is whether a single issue is causing your website’s Google local ranking fallout or whether there are a number of issues causing the problem. You can start discovering this by visiting the Google and Your Business Forum where you can search for the problem you’re experiencing with your website. If you detect multiple threads reporting your identical issue, right from the time you’ve been encountering the problem, then there are good chances that a specific bug or a recent Google update might have been the reason for the problem. Once you’re clear on the issue, you can re-access the forum for related solutions that have been provided by experts.

Step 2- Check out for any Google Quality Violations 


One of the most significant reasons behind a lower Google Local ranking is a possible violation of Google’s quality guidelines. So, if you’re a bit dicey about having violated any Google standard, then it’s better to go through the Google Places Quality Guidelines and check out whether your website follows each one mentioned here or has violated anyone of the rules mentioned here.

Check whether mistakes have been made in relation to the naming of your business, phone number, address and other related components. Remember, breaking even a single Google rule can cost you a lot on your Google rankings. Hence, be sure your website hasn’t violated any of these rules.

Step 3- Watch out for any duplicate Google+ Local Listings

Google Duplicate Listings
Excluding multi-partner practices like law firms, hospitals, restaurants etc. every business is allowed to have just a single Google+ Local Page per location. If your business website has more than one Google+ Local Page, it is likely to cause a lower/lost Google local ranking. While sometimes, duplicate Google+ local listings are created intentionally, there are times when they are built by spammers for undertaking hazardous manipulations. In either of the cases, duplicate local listings can cause a considerable harm to the website under focus.

Components that allow you to detect local listing duplicates include the name of business, address, phone number, product/service categories and product/service descriptions. Even if you find it challenging to detect any variance, it is better to check your website for duplicate listings, especially if your website is facing local ranking issues.

Step 4- Discover Website Quality Issues

Spelling Grammar Punctuation

Yet another critical reason behind a lower/lost Google local ranking is a bad performing website. As an entrepreneur, it’s your website’s on-page quality and methods you use for marketing it that play a vital role in the local search rankings. While troubleshooting local ranking issues for your website, it is recommended to look into aspects including the following:
  • Is your website optimized for the local search engines?
  • Do your website’s title tags contain related keywords?
  • Does your website feature clear and crawlable navigation?
  • Do Google Webmaster Tools indicate 100% crawling of your website?
  • Does your website look professional or is it full of spelling and grammar errors. 

Wrapping Up
So, these were the 4 basic steps, which if followed seriously can allow you to troubleshoot the lost/low Google local ranking for your website. I’m sure you’d have found these steps easy-to-follow. Don’t forget being friendly with Google means a greater customer base. Hence, make efforts to ensure that your website is in sync with all the standards that form the basis of a well-defined search engine friendly website.

Please don’t forget to share your views/opinions on the above post. 

Author Bio:
Edword Jones is a web developer by profession and a writer by hobby and works for OSSMedia Ltd a leading Custom Joomla Development company. He loves sharing information regarding Drupal, Joomla, Magento and Wordpress development tips & tricks. If you are looking for Joomla Developers for Hire then just get in touch with him.