Local SEO may not be at the top of your list of priorities when it comes to digital marketing, but there are many reasons why it’s well worth the investment. In this blog, we’ll outline five of the key reasons to pay more attention to this facet of search engine optimisation in preparation for 2020…
1. Beat local competition
Smaller businesses are becoming increasingly savvy about the digital marketing space, which means that you need to follow their lead or be left behind. Google estimates that almost half of searches performed have a local intent, while more than 8 in 10 smartphone users turn to their devices to perform local searches. With such a wealth of consumers all seeking local businesses, optimising your site for local pack visibility is a great way of staying ahead of the competition.
2. Clear ROI
If you’re frustrated with an inability to track ROI from activities such as social media, the benefits of local SEO are much clearer. Local SEO is based on visible, actionable information, which places it in direct contrast to other locally-based advertising activities with a traditional approach (such as placing an ad in a newspaper).
Local SEO will allow you to develop a solid strategy and track your progress clearly and ROI can be measured both offline (store visits) and online via Google Analytics and web traffic.
3. Purchase-ready searches
Consumers performing a local search tend to have high levels of intent and this is often why they are looking locally rather than further afield. This creates a tremendous opportunity for increased sales and in store foot traffic – provided you have a strong local pack presence of course.
To put it another way, local search users tend to turn to Google when they have an immediate need so you’ll find that ‘near me’ searches rule when it comes to local traffic. If you’ve ever pulled out your smartphone to search for a local bar, restaurant or even garage to fill up while on the road, you’ll know just how strong the local intent can be. Because users tend to search for a local business at the moment they need it, local SEO offers a great opportunity to be visible at the exact decision making moment.
4. Targeted and specific
Local traffic tends to be more specific than general search, which makes it simpler to create very relevant content. The precise nature of local search also means it’s easier to perform keyword research and begin optimising your site, even if you’re a relative newcomer to SEO.
5. Access more reviews
Strong reviews are a ranking factor for local search but, being visible locally can also help you to accumulate more reviews so there is a certain degree of synergy between the two. Research shows that more than 9 in 10 local consumers trust online reviews as much as they do a personal recommendation and around 6 in 10 local consumers will leave a review for a local business. Investing in local SEO can therefore be a great way to build a strong online review profile.
Want to find out more about local SEO and tapping into the benefits for your business? Contact the Identify team today.