Local search is becoming increasingly important as Internet users turn to the net and search engines for more local content, businesses and community sites.
Location has come to become a significant force in the search landscape. And since Google has recognized geographical relevancy as a key parameter for search engine rankings, location has come a key element of the search engine optimization process.
And one of the effective ways to get high rankings in Google search results is to optimize your business website for Google Local Search. When users enter a search phrase that includes a geographical descriptor like the name of a city or country, the local search listings appear at the top of the search results, along with a map.
Here is a list of step-by-step process to optimize your website for local search listing followed by some great tips to get better rankings:
Focus on Local Search Engines & Directories
In addition to universal Google search, don’t forget to pay attention to local searches engines and directories on the web. While most of these websites will let you register for free and edit your information, some would only allow you to add and edit some of the basics. Having a steady presence on these local platforms is the first step to getting local organic traffic. Here are some websites that you need to start with:
Yahoo! Local Listing
Bing Local Listings
MSN Live Local
These are some of the common ones. With a little more research, you will be able to locate more directories that are specifically relevant to your business location and get you more targeted and local traffic.
Fill In Relevant Information
When you create your profile and list your business on these platforms, make sure you fill in all the information that ask for be it images, operational hours of your business or anything else. Also, don’t forget to use the maps to plot your business on websites that have that provision.
Include your Geographical Data on your Website
Another determining factor of your local search results listing is the geographical information that you provide on your website. Local traffic comprises of users who search for general keywords along with some sort of geographical term such as pin codes, area codes, street name, city, country etc. And if you want to cash in on this segment of users, make sure you have details of your physical location listed on your website. Also, consider including your target geographical keywords and key phrases within your page titles etc. The more local information you can pack into your site, better will be your chances to get displayed in Google local search results.
Get Some Reviews
Another great way to boost your ranking on local search results is to get more and more reviews from your clients and customers. More the number of reviews, greater will be the strength in the local listing when they come up.
Article written by Kabir Bedi, guest author.