Here is a quick local SEO checklist to let mobile customers know that you are open for business. Search engine optimization has seen many changes throughout the years. Mobile searchers have exploded in the past couple of years. Searching from a smartphone has taken over the desktop for the local search results.
Just think about it for a moment. When your in your hometown and looking for something you grab that smartphone and either use the voice search or type something in on Google search. So keep your website mobile friendly. Check your website using a smartphone, tablet, and desktop.
The first items that are going to come up are the 3 snack pack results. This is where you will see the top 3 local search results. After the snack pack, the organic search results is what you see next. You are more than likely to chose a business from the top 3 results that are displayed.
Those are the businesses that are more than likely within a 5-mile radius from where you are performing the local search. Google is trying to let you know the closest and which business did the better job with they’re overall ranking factors. They provided the most relevant search results based on the keywords you used, a few other ranking factors, and had the highest score.
It’s estimated that less than 50% of local businesses even claim their business listing with Google. That information is according to the local marketing institute. This should be one of the first things that you accomplish so that you have a chance to show up in the local search results.
5 Quick Local SEO Checklist Items To Drive Traffic
- Start And Claim Your Free Google My Business Account
- Make Sure Your Using Keywords That Someone Would Search For
- Titles And Meta Description
- Use Images And Variations of Your Keywords For The Titles Of The Photos
- Reviews for Your Google My Business & Facebook Fan Page
1. Claim Your Free Google Listing
Claiming your Google listing is one of the most important things you can do to get found online in your local community. Google offers this service for FREE. Take advantage of what they are providing for your business. It doesn’t take long to complete your Google listing and you can always update it as necessary.
One thing you will have to do is verify your listing with Google. This is a great place to focus on because it can pay you with some mighty fine rewards. That is getting more customers. Complete every little detail that you possibly can. Keep it updated. Plus make sure you update your hours during a holiday season.
2. Use Keywords That Your Audience Would Use To Search
You’ll want to ensure that you use keywords that your audience would search for. Let’s say you own a restaurant. You wouldn’t use the keyword restaurant. Be more specific. Like the best chicken wings in town, Biggest buffet breakfast, Southern BBQ Ribs, or whatever your specialty is.
Here are a few other examples: Seafood Restaurant, Italian Restaurant, or Best Japanese Steakhouse Miami. Orlando Plumber, Hot Water Tank Specialist, or Back Pain Relieve Daytona Beach. Try to use what your audience would search for.
Pick out 10-15 keywords and mix them into your website. Do not stuff your page or a post with your keywords. Try to keep the keyword density between 1/2% to no more than 4%. There really are no set limits but we have found using between 1-3% offers the best results for the businesses we have worked with.
3. Title And Meta Description
Include your keywords in your title and your meta description. Sometimes you can even include your local town or the suburb where you are located. Example; Best Burger In Daytona Beach would be an example.
Now if you have a WordPress website you can always use a plugin for your SEO that will help you like the Yoast SEO plugin. The Yoast plugin has an area where you can write a separate title and a meta description.
The title should be no more than 50-60 characters and your meta description should be less than 160 characters. That way nothing gets cut off in your mini ad that displays in the search results. Just think of this an advertisement for your business online. This is what is going to show up when people are searching for you.
The business that has the best little mini ad, will sometimes win that visitor. Some drag and drop website builders usually will have a place for the title and meta description information.
If you’re looking for a pixel perfect drag and drop builder that offers the best value you can visit Builderall. As a matter of fact, they even have an on-page SEO tool for you to use and it breaks everything down so you can achieve a higher ranking score.
4. Images & Titles
Make sure you use the best images that give your visitors a visual of the title or headlines that you will be using on your website. You’ll also want to use keywords for the titles of these images. You should use an image at a minimum for every H1 and H2 headline or title. Remember the old saying that a picture is worth a thousand words.
One thing about using images is they will slow your website speed down. Speed is a very important factor. So resize your images if need be. If your using WordPress you can use a plugin that will do this for you. The one we recommend is EWWW Image Optimizer.
It will take the weight off the image and keep your website speed where it should be. How fast should your website load? We recommend that you keep the loading speed of your website below the 2-second mark. Speed and mobile are other local SEO ranking factors.
5. Reviews for Google My Business & Facebook Fan Page
Reviews can give you a giant boost not just for the search results but more and more customers look at reviews. So it is best to get as many positive reviews as you can. Even if you get a bad review make sure you respond in a professional manner. Where do you want these reviews?
The 2 biggest places that you want the reviews will be on your Google My Business page and your Facebook Fan Page. You want to stay on top of your reviews and stay active. Positive or a Negative review make sure you respond. Some will require more work than others.
In addition, any other sites you may use will require you to stay on top of those reviews as well. These are testimonials from the customers you serve. Keep them in good standings and your audience will grow. Your business will also grow in the local search results.
Summary For The Quick Local SEO Checklist
- Make Sure Your Website Is Mobile Friendly
- Claim Your Free Google My Business Listing
- Use Specific Keywords Your Audience Would Use
- Title And Meta Description Its Your Mini Ad Online
- Use Images That Explain Your Titles
- Reviews From Your Google My Business & Facebook Fan Page
There are many other factors that you should consider when trying to get a better ranking score for the search engines. You can find more detailed information by reading this article, local SEO ranking factors for small business. It takes time, smart work, and you must stay on top of any changes that the search engines make in order to achieve a first-page ranking.
Bonus Tips For Local SEO
Here are a couple of little bonus tips that you can use to give your search rankings a little extra boost on Google. Make absolutely sure your NAP (Business Name, Address, And Phone Number) are exactly the same no matter where you have a listing.
Add a video to your Google My Business Page at least introducing your staff. List your business on a few citations. Chamber of Commerce if possible and citations or directories that pertain to your business.
Try to get listed in at least 2 or 3 every month. Use a slow drip process. The last thing, work your Facebook Fan Page or you’re social media sites that your customers hang out at. It only takes a few minutes to make it happen.
Mobile Biz Buzz gets your biz buzzing with local SEO.