If you want to promote any business within one city, then you should pay attention to local SEO.
First, a few statistics:
- According to the Search Engine Roundtable study, 46% of all searches on Google are local.
- According to RankRanger, 26% of all search queries contain a so-called “local package”, I’ll tell you what it is below.
- According to Google itself, 76% of users who entered local queries visit the company on the same day.
It follows from this that local SEO can significantly increase traffic both to the site and to the company offline.
Since my main specialization is medical marketing, I will give examples related to clinics in this article. If you want to see a nice graph of traffic growth, look for it at the end.
What the Local SEO Pack consists of
In Google and Yandex, Local Pack consists of two main elements.
1. Issuing a pack of cards
2. And organic delivery itself
The task of the optimizer is to bring the site to the TOP of both maps and SERPs for all local queries. It should be noted right away that the ranking factors for promotion on maps and in search results are different, although there are overlaps.
There is also what it all starts with and what unites any SEO promotion work: the collection of semantics.
Where to get search queries
There are several places where you can grab search terms for local SEO. You don’t even need a Key Collector to collect them.
The easiest way to find promotions is to check search suggestions.
The hints are formed by the users themselves. The screenshot shows which clinics are most often searched for. You can use these queries to promote on the local market, for example, for contextual advertising or page optimization.
There are currently no tools showing all queries that are entered by voice. But we can represent these requests by simply putting ourselves in the shoes of the users. For example, the query “Dentistry Kaliningrad” easily turns into “Dentistry near me”.
Please note that in the pack of maps, the first place was taken by a clinic that has neither reviews, nor ratings, nor even a website. She’s just next to me.
Think about what voice queries your users might ask and use them to optimize your pages.
GKP – Google Keyword Planner
You can see queries from competitors’ sites in Google Keyword Planner.
Always use this opportunity to analyze key phrases, perhaps there is something there that you do not yet take into account to promote your site.
Ranking factors for pack of cards
A year ago, MOZ conducted a ranking factor study for a set of Google maps. Further I will describe everything that affects the position of the site in the issuance of maps.
Configuring GMB and Ya Reference
Setting up an organization profile on Google My Business is a primary factor for ranking in Google Maps. Similarly, for Yandex – to get into the maps, you need to set up an organization card in Yandex.Directory.
Be sure to fill in all the fields to the maximum, Yandex will even give you a confirmation checkbox for this.
Keep in mind: the relevance of the information must be confirmed on a monthly basis, otherwise the check mark will disappear.
Provide the same data everywhere
An interesting ranking factor. If you decide to promote on the local market, then you need to indicate the same data wherever possible. The more often search engines see one address and phone number, the more they become convinced that the company is actually there.
Simply put, search trusts you more if you don’t specify a different company address every time. This also applies to the telephone.
Reviews and responses to them
The presence of positive reviews greatly influences the promotion of the company in the pack of cards. It should be borne in mind that search analyzes reviews not only in its own services, but also on popular third-party sites, so be sure to keep an eye on your company’s reputation.
Keep in mind that it’s not just the reviews that matter, but the business’s responses to them as well. Thank those who leave positive reviews and try to help those who leave negative ones. There is nothing better than a negative review turned into a positive one.
Search engines rate the quality of each review. It is important who wrote it, the user’s geography, the length of the review.
Standard SEO Techniques
In no case, do not forget about the standard methods of website promotion and technical optimization. It also affects your place in the rankings for the set of cards.
Be sure to write down key phrases, work on loading speed and behavioral factors.
Links in local SEO
In general, the rules are the same as in regular link building, but I will give you some tips on how to get links that will definitely help you in local SEO.
If you have been in the market for a long time, then most likely you already have various partners with whom you work. These can be private companies, government agencies, or just contractors.
You can ask them to link to you as a partner from their sites. Few people do this, but it greatly helps the promotion within one city.
The second way is that you can join various associations in your industry and get a link from the websites of these associations. By the way, if you do charity work or sponsorship of local companies and events, then you will also receive links from their sites.
Local media are always a treasure trove of opportunities for PR and promotion. If you have any news feeds, then just ask the media to cover them. The same charity or simply holding city events helps to get into the media.
No newsfeeds? Create them. You can think of anything. Become the first “green eco-office” in your city, spread the news. Thus, a link to your site can go anywhere, even in the federal media. At the very least, you’ll get a lot of new brand mentions.
A few more ranking factors
A few more not-so-obvious ranking factors that will help you get ahead in local SEO.
Using maps on the site
Be sure to use Yandex and Google maps on your site. Please include the company address and label on them.
Don’t forget about place names
Place names are extremely important in local search results. You should use them in all meta tags, link anchors, and even site content.
Do not remove the toponym far from the beginning of the title, use it immediately after the main keyword. For example, “Dentistry in Kaliningrad” or “Dentist in Kaliningrad” are good examples, but “Dentist at Genesis Clinic Kaliningrad” is bad, since the phrase with the toponym turned out to be diluted.
Local communities on social networks
Social media communities are always good. It is even better if the community contains the same contact information and phone number as in the search engine directories.
Don’t forget to be active in groups as well. The more active the group, the better for the business.
Now it is worth answering the main question: what will the promotion in local search give? I will answer with a case.
We have a city with a population of up to 500,000 and a dental clinic. Over the years, a lot of optimization work was carried out on the site, which did not give an effect.
After the clinic started doing local SEO in February last year, the following result was achieved:
I will not lie that there was no additional technical optimization. We also continue to correct countless errors on the site and expand the semantics, but articles on the site have not been written for more than half a year. That is, the traffic is not article traffic.
Of the work done, one can single out:
- Work on updating (permanent) search engine directories.
- Expansion of semantics by queries + toponyms.
- Work on company reviews.
- Technical optimization.
- Development and updating of the price functionality, in dentistry it is very important for users.
- Improving website conversion.
Thanks to the work done, traffic and conversion rates have been significantly improved in a very limited market.