7 Local SEO Tips Your Small Business Can’t Survive Without

Photo credit:  hollykl (Flickr)

One of the things I tell anyone who is a small business owner is that, if you have a place of business with an address and a door to enter, then you need local Search Engine Optimization. Many of them will just look at me like I started speaking a foreign language. For many small business owners, the words “local SEO” have no relation to their business. All they know about is word of mouth, newspapers, and the plain old sign in the window that says, “We’re Open”.

That said, there’s no shame in not knowing about local SEO; before I started marketing, years ago, I didn’t even know how to get my site to show up in the search engines; there was nothing to “optimize”! But today, if you want to dominate your local market, and show your competitors that you’re the top dog in your city, then think about implementing local SEO on your website. And then do it.

To get you started, here are some factors that play the biggest role in ranking top dog in your city. Here are my best local seo tips:

1. On-page Optimization

If you live in the Shreveport LA, and you want to show up in the search engine for “Shreveport Lawyer”, then *make sure* you put that title into the home page of your website. Use it in your description and about 3 to 4 times in the body of the website to let the search engine know what your site is about.

2. List Your Contact Info

Search engines are getting smarter then the average person these days due to the 1,000 factors they use now to rank websites. But one of the easy ways to get local rankings is by including your business name, phone number and address, as well as your own name somewhere on your website. Contact information is a factor that, for sure, is helping businesses get local rankings faster and easier.

3. Gaining Back-links

I can talk about this all day long, but for now, I’ll keep it short and sweet. It’s best to seek out websites where you could provide a guest-post to link back to your own. You can do the same thing by writing content for article directories, which need to be approved by the directory staff before going live.

4. Getting Reviews

This form of branding your business will not help your rankings that much, but it will give it a boost. I say submit your website on Google Plus, Manta, and Yellow Pages to name a few, and ask your customers to come over and leave a well thought out review. The risk is, of course, that it builds positive or negative content off of your website; either way that will help your website visibility in the search engines.

5. Social Me

It’s not proven, (but like everything online, you can never know what’s working the best unless you try it) but I’m beginning to believe the claims that the social world can help you rank locally. If you’re able to implement some local SEO by having your customers and readers “like” or “tweet” something about your website or content, then you just might out perform the competition. Basically, the buzz around that shared link will get picked up by the search engines;
they take all that sharing to mean the link is an important one.

6. On Site Time

How much time do people spend on your website? After ranking many websites and pages over the years, I have notice that the sites that post relevant content seem to rank higher than the others. Why? Relevant content, presumably, holds the searcher’s attention. People are going to read and think about it, not just scan it and go on to the next thing. The search engines know how long a searcher has stayed on any given site, and can compare that with other sites. The search engine measures relevance by tracking time on the site and click-through rates. So focus on making your website content as relevant as you can to the keyword you’re trying to rank for. You want to captivate your audience, and keep them there for awhile.

7. Claim Authorship

Google Authorship is the photo Google puts by your content when someone googles a keyword. This authorship photo is a great opportunity to share your business’ brand. Plus, it tells the search engines that you own that content, and ranks it according to the keywords you’re targeting. This can be a powerful branding tool — from a local and international point of view.

Local SEO isn’t brain surgery; these 7 SEO tips will get you started. In no time you will be dominating your local market.

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Antonio Coleman teaches local seo marketing to website owners who are looking to dominate locally. He even wrote a guide on how he was able to get 474,095 visitors to his website only working 2 hours a day.

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