Many small businesses want to rank higher online but aren’t sure how to show up on Google or Bing. This can be a problem because if your business isn’t found online, you’re missing out on a lot of potential customers.
Local SEO (search engine optimization) can help you get your locally owned business ranked on the top of the first page for relevant keywords that are important for your industry. If you own a local business, you need to make sure your website and online listings are optimized for local search in order to attract business.
Website optimization and local SEO can seem daunting and time consuming. Following are three of the most important strategies that will enable you to enhance your online presence.
How to Rank on Google Maps
Create and Maintain Your Google Business Profile (Also known as Google My Business – GMB)
As of December, 2021, Google dominated the search engine market, with a 91.94 share. Clearly, it is important for your business to perform well in Google’s local search results. Claiming your business on My Google Business is the first step to improving your local SEO.
Like its other services, Google Business Profile is easy to set up and manage. Take your time and provide correct details and information including the following:
- Business name and logo
- Correct business categories
- Contact information
- Location or areas served
- Hours of operation
Continue to keep your Google My Business page updated by posting regular articles and update your hours and closing dates as needed.
How to Get Online Reviews
Ask for Reviews
Online reviews are a major component of your business and they can have a huge impact on the success of your company. There are many ways to get online reviews, but most importantly you need to be able to manage them effectively.
A lot of companies don’t realize how important it is to collect reviews online. It’s not enough to just have a website, you need to be everywhere, and that means having an online presence with reviews on sites like Google, Facebook and Yelp.
Positive or negative, you must always respond to reviews in a professional and friendly manner. Prospective customers can make a buying decision based solely on a positive review. But if you’ve resolved an issue, it indicates to prospective customers that your business is willing to go above and beyond to rectify any potential issues.
As important as reviews are, how your business responds to those reviews is just as important. Building an ongoing relationship with your clients should be an absolute priority. Negative word-of-mouth can cripple any up-and-coming business. If a customer has a legitimate complaint, you need to try to rectify it.
How to Get Free Traffic to Your Website
Optimize Your Website For Search
To avoid missing out on prospective customers you need to pay attention to the overall design and layout of your website. The following should be considered when optimizing your website:
- Your website should be easy to read and navigate.
- Make sure your website displays correctly on desktop computers, laptops, tablets, and mobile devices.
- Include separate pages for each of the cities you serve and each of your main services
- It should be easy to contact your business via your website and all relevant business information should be available.
The internet has fundamentally changed the way people do business. It’s now possible to connect with customers all over the world, regardless of where you are located. Numerous factors can improve your business’ online presence and position in search engines like Google and Bing.
In the past few years, the importance and stature of local SEO has grown to such a point that it can really benefit a small business. You should continue posting relevant and timely content to your business website and social media outlets.