3 Local SEO Tips
As a local business owner you should always have an eye out for your local business listing rank position. Google reports, “97 percent of consumers conduct a search for local businesses before shopping.” That number is damn close to 100 percent which means you better crack Google’s local listing pack (3 pack, 7 pack, or 10 pack) if you want to be competitive in your local business space.
Now granted that the biggest factors in local search rank position seem to be your business name, address, and business category; there are three other controllable factors for which you can help your business earn a top local rank position.
1). Use of Authority Citations
One of the quickest ways to help Google verify your local business listing and to also increase your local business rank position is to have other websites mention your business name, address, and phone number in proximity to each other. When another website mentions your business including your address and phone number this is known as a “citation”. A citation is viewed from Google as verification that you business does in fact have the address and phone number that you have listed on your place page.
Google looks for citations on the web in order to verify your physical business address. Each citation helps Google feel more confident that your physical business address is correct on your listing and is not fake by means of stealing a local search listing position. (Imagine businesses creating fake addresses in order to steal search positions in cities and states where they do not have a physical store location.)
Citations help Google not only verify your listing but helps to determine the order in which listings rank. In scenarios where several business may have the same criteria for a rank position Google may turn to the number of citations and the prominence of those citations to determine which local listing deserves the position. Google’s location prominence patent states that, “the highest score of documents referring to the business” will indeed serve as a ranking factor in its algorithm.
Local SEO Action Tip: Increase the number of citations for you business using other local directories!
2). Use Inbound Anchor Text
Location keywords in anchor text will also help your business earn a higher local rank position. Location specific inbound anchor text is also seen by Google as verification that you business provides service in a particular geographic region. Although inbound anchor text is not known to be as big of a ranking factor as citations are, there is no doubt that it will certainly aid in your local search rank position.
Local SEO Action Tip: Increase the number of location-specific inbound anchor text links!
3). Ask for Google Reviews
Google reviews help your business rank position for several reasons. First, reviews helps Google to verify your listing. Secondly, revie ws also imply that people are visiting your place page. For every place page visit by a logged in Google user, that page becomes indexed in that user’s search history. Thus it is more likely your business place page will be a search result for that same user in the future as a result of Google most significant algorithm change known as, Search Plus Your World.
Local SEO Action Tip: Ask your customers to leave your business a review!