Competition in the online space is vicious: you could be on top of the search rankings one second, then drop down after a few minutes.
This is because competition online isn’t just in the local scene – it’s worldwide. So if you’re doing business in Singapore and trying your hands on online marketing so the local market will see you, you’re also competing with competitors in UK, US, and even Africa.
So, how can you find the right market and rank well in their search results? By improving your local search efforts!
What is “Local Search”?
Before we get into how to improve your local search, let’s first understand what local search is. According to Moz, Local search or local search marketing is “anything you do on the web to promote a physical business that makes face-to-face contact with its customers. It applies to both single-location small and medium businesses (SMBs), national enterprise brands, and chains.”
Thus, if you’re a local brand with a physical store or operate within a local area and would like to encourage people to visit your business, improving your local search efforts is very important. By doing effective local search marketing, you increase your chances that people in the local area will see you, instead of other businesses not within the locality.
Local Search and Google My Business
Starting your local search marketing is hard without first letting search engines know that your business actually exists. Of course, you can’t just go up to search engine providers and give them your business portfolio.
But thanks to a tool called Google My Business, you can easily list your business with Google’s search index. This will make it easier for Google to tag your business when people search for something within your neighbourhood or area of operation. Using Google My Business, along with other important SEO components, will greatly increase your visibility in local searches.
Improving your Local Search
Now that you have an idea what local search is and how important it is in growing your business within your neighbourhood or area operation, let’s see how you can improve your local search ranking through some effective local SEO tips:
Information is Key – Your business information is a powerful tool when you enter the online competition. If your business information is not accurate or is out-of-date, then search engines won’t know how to tag your business properly in their index. This means your business location won’t appear in the accurate spot in Google Maps, or your business hours will not be accurate to your actual business hours.
And if your information is outdated, potential customers looking for your business will not be able to find you. And this doesn’t only hurt your sales, but also your company’s image. Before you enter your business information in any business listing service online, make sure you have accurate and updated information with you.
Build a strong and authoritative website – Building a strong website is VERY important; it’s like your castle in the online world. And like all castles, there will be people who will try to attack it when it becomes too big.
Also, your “castle” should tell everyone where you are located! That means getting a URL structure that tells everyone what country you are located in (like having those “.jp”, “.ph”, “.sg” you see at the end of websites) this will help search engines tag your site properly into a specific country, so you’ll increase chances to get quality traffic that could be potential clients.
Make your website user-friendly – having a user-friendly website can help you in two ways: one, it increases the chances to entice visitors to subscribe to your services; and second, it makes your website fast, and Google loves fast loading websites.
Because website speed is one of Google’s criteria when it comes to ranking, you can improve your local search ranking when your website loads fast. You can do this by minimizing file sizes, reducing server response time, or combining files together.
It’s time to improve your local search marketing
Simply doing SEO won’t increase your visibility in the community. Yes, it will increase your presence on the Internet where almost everyone is connected, but if you want to really get that quality traffic into your website and get some good amount of conversions, it’s time you look at local search optimisation.
Doing local search marketing and SEO requires some SEO magic. If you plan on bringing up your game and beating the local competition in the online market, you’ll need help from efficient SEO specialists.