The search through the mobile is a worldwide trend. Google has revealed that 86% of smartphone users do a shopping search using the device.
In addition, it has reinforced the importance of mobile in organic searches, penalizing websites that do not adapt to responsive web design .
Among the many changes caused by new trends, one of them stands out: the importance of local SEO .
The SEO , Search Engine Optimization , consists of the optimization of pages of the site and the domain as a whole to achieve an organic positioning in the search engines.
The strategy has been used for years by companies of different segments and sizes to improve the ranking of pages in engines such as Google, Yahoo, Bing and others, and increase site traffic and sales.
So, what would local SEO be?
Local SEO is a strategy that points to other optimization alternatives to allow the user to find a solution near the place where he is and thus have easier access to the service or product he is looking for.
For example, if you search for “Japanese restaurant" on your smartphone, Google understands that you are looking for a result close to you that you can contact immediately and have your problem solved, moving to the place in the shortest possible time.
For that, present the results of Japanese food restaurants that are closer, according to your location at the time of the search.
The local SEO also works when the user searches for something in a certain region, such as “Japanese restaurant in X neighborhood", and shows the most relevant results of the search, although the user’s location at that time is another.
Thus, we can understand local SEO as an attempt by search engines to offer more accurate and relevant results for the user .
But how can strategy interfere with a company’s digital marketing plan?
The initial goal of local SEO is to be advantageous and practical for users, however, many companies can benefit from the solution.
Mainly SMEs that find in the alternative a possibility to compete directly with larger companies.
For that, they need to correctly execute the local optimization and take into account the updates of the Google algorithm .
Attract a new audience
Local SEO allows attracting potential customers who are close to the business but who do not yet know it, such as tourists , for example.
When looking for and finding the next business, well evaluated and with all the information accessible, the first impression will surely be positive.
Increase in sales
By having a greater number of people finding the business through the smartphone, the opportunities for sales growth also increase.
A good service and quality in the service or product offered is essential to retain the customer who knew the business through the local search.
Loyal customers spontaneous advertising, therefore, give importance to the quality of care and encourage positive reviews.
More relevance in online presence
Being between organic results and local search results is essential to increase the user’s confidence in the company and add value to the business image.
Local SEO offers several advantages for businesses from different areas. Since Google’s “Pigeon" update, that kind of specification has gained more weight and allows local businesses to excel in search results.
For the company to have a prominent position among the results, however, it is essential that it follows a series of good practices related to local SEO, with the use of relevant keywords and other solutions so that the search mechanisms understand the real relevance of the site for that investigation.
As in any digital marketing strategy, it is necessary to correctly work the local SEO to provide the expected results.
The professionals who have been working in the area for some years point out that the trend of searches is to become more local, directly impacting the companies that have this concern and also those that have not yet developed specific strategies.
Some tactics are almost unanimous among the experts. We separate those that have presented the best results.
Citation of local NDT
The acronym NDT refers to three essential information about the business: name, address and telephone number.
These are the first information that must appear for the user when he / she performs the search, since with that he / she has the option of contacting or going to the premises, for example.
According to an Inside survey, 41% of companies that have inconsistent NEP data have problems ranking pages locally.
The NDT must be included in all pages of the site, in case the user is browsing, and also as a direct result in the search engines.
In the first case it is common that the contact data is at the bottom of the page, in the second case the information can be added from Google My Business .
Positive local evaluations
One of the first elements observed when doing research for the contracting of a service or product is the evaluation of other consumers .
It is essential to leave that option enabled so that users can evaluate and comment on your business.
If the evaluations are bad, use the feedback to investigate what you need to improve. Also, do not forget to invite your loyal customers to do evaluations.
Disabling the evaluation box will leave the impression that your company hides something and prevents you from benefiting from the positive experience of other consumers.
In addition to the evaluation option that appears directly in the searches, as part of the Google My Business information, several searches result in evaluation sites or guides, such as TripAdvisor, Guide of the week and also local guides.
To appear in the results of those searches, it is fundamental to optimize the lists in those local directories, in addition to keeping the information always updated, since it is common to find incorrect and obsolete data.
These data should not be added in the image format, since this prevents the searcher from identifying them, it is also necessary that the phone contains the area code so that it can be related to a location.
Google My Business
As we said, Google My Business is essential in a local SEO strategy, if you still do not have your company registered, start now .
After enrolling in the Google service, you can take advantage of a series of resources to optimize the positioning of your site and make it more relevant to search engines and, mainly, to the user.
Know some of the care with the configuration you must have:
Add a business description with more than 400 words, preferably, with links and relevant terms;
Add the business in the appropriate categories;
Upload good quality photos, including a high resolution profile photo;
Add business hours of operation;
Fill in the basic information correctly: name, address and telephone number;
Enable the option of ratings and comments for customers.
With Google My business properly configured, the chances of obtaining good results in local searches grow considerably, in addition to offering information in a more interesting and intuitive way for the user.
When talking about local SEO, the responsive site is the basis of the entire strategy.
With searches on the mobile increasing exponentially and Google updating its algorithm to assess that aspect, it is essential that the user can access the site of any device.
Remember that a responsive site is organized in another way in the mobile to offer the most relevant information for the user without harming the navigability and intuitiveness in the process.
The data about the company must remain accessible and the images must be configured to meet that demand.
Local SEO on the pages
When the topic is the optimization of the pages, the local SEO requires some efforts similar to the traditional SEO On Page .
The most recurrent tactics may already be known, but it is important to reinforce that, if the objective is to be found locally, it is interesting to make local references in the content that is being produced.
It is possible to quote the city or region in relevant aspects of the page, such as: title of the page, URL , alt title of the image, etc.
Local content marketing
Finally, relevance in a city or region is built by talking about that issue.
Not through facts of the city, but you can create content presenting the main tourist attractions of the region, talk about the options of walking, indicate typical regional events, among other things.
In addition to the content created for a blog of their own , backlinks and social networks are still relevant to this type of SEO.
According to a study by Moz , local backlinks influence positioning by 18.3%, while social networks account for 5.8%.
This shows that, even locally, worrying about traditional strategies is fundamental.
To help in the development of a publication more oriented to the demands of Google for local businesses it is possible to use plugins, such as Yoast SEO and local Yoast SEO, among other tools that help in the process.
When to invest in local SEO?
After this series of tips and benefits about local SEO, you may be wondering if the strategy would be relevant or not relevant to the company in which you work.
A good way to reflect on that is to think how many clients close to the business have been positively impacted.
If that is not an audience that has gained attention in the digital marketing strategy, maybe it’s time to rethink the online performance.
Stagnant sales may also indicate that the company is not adequately exploring its potential with potential customers who are close to the business, but who do not know it yet.