Build your business’ web presence from the ground up

If you’re a business that relies on the local population for your living, then you know that having a web presence that is optimized to rank highly on search engines is essential to being competitive in the local market. Everyone is doing it, but few are doing it the right way. The facts behind local SEO are staggering: 50% of all mobile searches are for local results, and 61% result in a purchase.

But how do you do it? A lot of small business owners are stuck between a rock and a hard place – they don’t want to shell out big money to do their SEO, but they don’t know how to do it themselves.

Welcome to local SEO boot camp. Here is how to do it for your company, from the ground up.

Step 1) Choose which keywords and phrases you want to target

Keywords and phrases are simply the words that people will type in to find your business. Doing research is costly in both time and money, but it’s possible and relatively easy to do it yourself. Just determine which words or phrases most closely relate to your main bread-and-butter products or services.

Once you have them, go to Google and search them in your area. See what the competition is doing, and how you can improve upon it. 70-80% of people ignore the paid ads, so organic traffic is your best bet for driving people through the door.

Step 2) Local SEO-ify your website

There is a lot of nuance in local SEO, but there are a few simple things you can do right away to make your site rank higher on Google instantly. If you want to improve your local SEO right away, then:

  • Be descriptive with your URL – What do you do? Where do you do it? is far better than
  • Use hyphens to separate when necessary- Your URL should use hyphens to improve readability.
  • NAP- Putting your name, address, and phone number (NAP) on your site is essential. On-page signals like your NAP account for 20% of your search engine ranks.
  • Put the keywords front and center- Sprinkle your keywords throughout the pages of your site. Put them in the title on your homepage, write an about us with your location and some keywords, and mention the local area on every page.
  • Start a blog- A blog is the by far the best way to reach your audience. Provide information about your business, news from the local area, and tips and tricks from your industry. 70% of customers prefer to get to know a company via content rather than ads.

Step 3) Set up your social media

The final step in part 1 of local SEO boot camp is to set up your profiles across social media. The networks that you use should reflect who you are and what you do. Do you market to other businesses? If you do then you should use Linkedin. If you are in tourism or the restaurant/cafe/bar industry, then consider Pinterest. You need a profile on the following sites:

  • Facebook – The largest social media network, Facebook is the place to go for your business regardless of industry. Set up a Facebook business page, put your info there, and share your posts with your following. Use it to engage users, get reviews, and run promotions.
  • LinkedIn – This professional network is great for companies that market to other businesses. 62% of marketers surveyed said it was the best network for B2Bs (business-to-business companies).
  • Google + – Claiming a Google My Business page is essential to success in the local market. Set up your page, put your information there, and start making contacts in the local area.

93% of marketers use social media for their businesses now. You need to join the club!

Increasing your customer base, driving new leads, and growing your business are the main goals of all companies, but doing it the right way across the web can prove difficult. Use these great local SEO tips to get yourself started on the right foot. Optimizing your web presence is essential for success and not as difficult as you might think. Get started today.