Get to know local SEO
Have you ever searched for something on Google search engine with an additional location behind it like "Cafe Surabaya"? Users will usually use specific keywords to find local businesses around them. That way, the Google algorithm will provide search results based on area.
Local SEO is an SEO optimization method to increase the visibility of local businesses. This will help your business get on the first page of search engines so that users can find you easily based on your location or nearby area. With the right implementation, you will bring more traffic to your website and increase purchases.
Research says that 46% of Google searches are local information searches. Information with the type of "near me" or "close by" has also increased over the last two years, reaching 900%. This shows how important it is to use local SEO as a business strategy, especially if your goal is to master the local area.
Tips for implementing local SEO
The majority of people will search for information on the internet first before deciding to buy something. This is where the role of local SEO, will help the nearest potential buyers to find your business. Not a few end up visiting business locations and even making purchases. So, how do you make this strategy work optimally?
1. Use Google My Business
Are you already using Google My Business? If not, immediately create an account and verify. If you already have an account, try checking the completeness of your profile again. Make sure you've done the following so that your business is easier to find in local searches:
Fill in the name, location, active phone number, business category, hours of operation, photo, and attributes or business description. Do an update if there is a change in information.
Inviting customers to provide reviews so that your business is more credible, and don't forget to respond to them.
With complete Google My Business data, your business will be more easily detected or indexed by Google so that it appears on Google Search and Google Maps. It looks like this:
2. Keyword research
Using the right keywords will increase your business ranking in search engines. That's why it's important to do research. When doing keyword research, pay attention to search volume, keyword difficulty, keyword suggestions, Search Engine Result Page (SERP), and search intent. You can use Google Keyword Planner to target more specific local keywords so that it targets those who are more likely to make a purchase. In addition, you can also use Google Trends to make sure the keywords you choose are still being searched for.
3. Create local content
Local content is closely related to the location of your business. For example, if you are running a hotel business in Bali, you can explore local content around Bali such as various interesting tourist attractions to visit, must-try Balinese specialities, upcoming or ongoing events, and so on. Find out what is trending in the local community. The key, the more relevant content will make it easier for users to find your business.
4. On-page SEO optimization
The purpose of on-page SEO optimization is to make it easier for search engines to identify, as well as assess the context of the content and the relevance of the website to keywords. In addition to attractive titles, maximize the use of headings and subheadings in the content. Also, add meta tags which include title tags and meta descriptions. Use Google Webmaster Tools to analyze and ensure that your website is indexed correctly by Google.
5. Competitor analysis
Analyzing competitors will help you to develop the right plan or strategy so that you can outperform them. Know who your competitors are in local keywords and what citations they use, check competitors' backlinks by entering their URLs on a link analysis website, see how many reviews you need to rank high in search engines.
6. Improve link performance
External links (backlinks) that point to your website are important. The more links from other websites to your website, the more domain authority scores you collect. This shows a good relevance of the content to users so that it has the potential to enter the top search results. In addition to backlinks, you also have to pay attention to internal links. These internal links will help increase page authority, which is when users spend more time on your website because they can easily move from one page to another.
7. Consistent NAP
NAP consists of name, address, and telephone number. This simple step to displaying your business profile is the key to relevant local searches. This is important in winning the Google algorithm. So, apply NAP consistently across various platforms such as Google My Business, websites, and even social media.
8. Pay attention to consumer reviews
Reviews are closely related to local SEO. 87% of people read online reviews when doing a local search. 9 out of 10 people read online reviews before making a purchase, and one of the parts that is often seen is the star rating. Therefore, interact by inviting customers to give reviews and respond to their reviews. The number and diversity of reviews are two important indicators of the credibility of a business.
9. Make sure the website is mobile-friendly
Most internet users have used mobile devices. Mobile-friendly means the website has been optimized to be adaptive to various screen sizes or to suit mobile devices. Google also prefers this type of website. That way, the chances of your website being accessed and the business being contacted are higher.
10. Conduct a performance audit
SEO is an ongoing strategy so it is necessary to check periodically to see if optimization has worked as expected. In this case, it's a good idea to do a comprehensive performance audit to actually achieve your goals. The following questions can help you carry out the evaluation:
- How is your Google My Business, is the information accurate?
- Are there any missing elements that hinder indexing?
- How is the website ranking, is on-page SEO optimal?
- How about your link performance?
- How does your website's search results position compared to competitors?
Local SEO is a great method of attracting local potential customers by increasing the visibility of a business in search engines. You need to do optimization by considering various SEO tricks so that your business gets on the first page or even top rankings. Apply the 10 tips above to improve the online performance of your business.