Tips and Tricks: to improve SEO for local searches
Welcome to our new series from our Partner Success team. They will be sharing tips and tricks to ensure that you are able to get more from our products. If you put these tips and tricks into practice, you will get the best results for your business.
To start off the series we will guide you through what SEO means; why citations are important for you and how to run in your customer’s shoes to be able to have the best keywords that work out for your business.
If your business offers products and services to its customers online or if you have a local presence, then it’s important to know that your potential customers are using search engines to look for local products and services. Search engines are getting good at giving users exactly what they want with some very specific local types of search results.
It can be difficult to successfully have your business featured in these special local search results that are found by searchers with local intent or while they’re physically nearby. To ensure your business is found and chosen by the potential customers focus on local search engine listings, citations, and some optimizations you can make to your pages.
First off, you need to have a Google my business listing. While Google enjoys a large proportion of the search market, you should also cover all the search engine platforms, or at least the most important ones such as Bing, Yahoo and Ecosia.
When you work on local SEO, you will need to understand the concept of citations. Each and every mention that search engines find around the web of the name, address, and phone number of your business is considered a citation. The more citations a business gets from quality sources, the more the search engines trust that this is what business searchers are looking for and the higher it will rank in local search results.
Why are keywords important?
Keywords are what people search for when they type into search engines like Google, Bing and many more. The search engines will return results with the most relevance for the search query based upon the user profile and the content available. It’s important to remember that search engines have difficulty understanding what a user is looking for unless it’s clearly spelt out for them. This is why the first search a user inputs are often followed up with a search that is more descriptive to receive useful results.
With this in mind, it is essential that you put our customer hat on and not type the first thing that crosses your mind when adding your keywords. For example, let’s say you sell cars; you may think “car” is the word you will be findable the most. Yet, if you think like your customers, it’s very unlikely that you will search for the word cars. They may be looking to “repair” our car or “wash” our car, or “rent” a car. It’s all about the relevance of our keywords.
Using this method will allow you to strategize about your keywords plan. With billions of queries searched each month, it is crucial to do this often and change your keywords.
How can I research keywords that work for me?
The most important part of keyword research is to put yourself in the shoes of your potential customers rather than simply looking at it from the perspective of your business. Imagine your customer is looking at your business’ details provided by Listings. A basic question they might ask is “What products and services do I offer?” Try to make a list of as many keywords or phrases as possible.
Take, for example, a discount travel website; you might be tempted to write down keywords like high-value air transport or fare class eligible discount tickets. But at the end of the day, none of your prospective customers is typing that into a search engine. While those things make sense to you, your customers are looking for “cheap flights” or “last minute flights”.
It all comes back to intent; understanding the intent of your customer search is critical in developing a good seed list of keywords. There’s no right or wrong way to do this; only a way that works for you and allows you to manage these groups of keywords as you optimize for them.
Remember, in the end; this is an exploratory and discovery exercise. Everyone searches differently. Be open-minded, put yourself in the mindset of your potential customers, and make sure to consider all of your options as you evaluate your keyword performance over time.
Time to Try for Yourself
Now, add all these keywords to our Listings platform, and let us help you by creating relevant citations.
Getting found and chosen online doesn’t have to be time consuming or overwhelming anymore. SO Connect’s Listings product is clear, easy to use and can instantly update information for your locations online. Having solid keywords means you will get a better ranking in search results and therefore enjoy the increased revenue of being chosen more often by customers. Next time make sure your business is chosen over your competitors by using Listings to succeed online.