Local SEO in 2017: The Basics
What is Local SEO in 2017?
Picture this: you are a tourist in Myanmar. You have come to this place, Yangon specifically, to sample the culture and their way of life. However, if you were to be 100% honest, you would say tour love for food brought you here. You have heard so much from your fellow pack packers about the Burmese cuisine, and your fear of missing out could not allow you to spend another moment without sampling some of their sumptuous mohinga and greasy fish curry.
So here you are without the slightest idea where to find the much-hyped street food. Then you get the bright idea to check it on Google maps, and voila! Myaung May Daw Cho right there, waiting to be explored. That is local SEO at work. How does the owner of this food joint benefit from this optimization? Easy. He gets all the lost tourists, like yourself, looking for a place to satiate their hunger. He might end up becoming your favorite even after you have had the chance to sample tens of others – that first time effect.
Why is Local SEO relevant in 2017 and Beyond?
Times have changed so much such that the strategy taken by businesses and their clientèle three years ago is not the same at all. For starters, people are using their smartphones now more than ever. Information search has shifted from computers to mobile phones, and this is not likely to change in the future. With 50% of smartphone users reaching for their devices first thing after waking up, mobile marketing is taking root and is bound to continue this trend beyond 2017.
Measuring the Results with Local SEO
When you have tour business page ranked in Google, you can tell the flow of traffic. You are able to measure how many people come to you through this campaign. It helps if you are ideally optimized, and your page ranks on the first page of the search engine, and so you catch a customer’s attention faster than your competition. When you can tell the traffic coming through a certain mode of marketing, you are able to allocate a section of money in your budget to it, because you can foresee the potential income. The same cannot be said for traditional methods of marketing because with them it is more of a spend-and-hope formula. It is quite difficult to allocate an amount with certainty to advertising through other media.
In the same breath, we can say that optimization makes for a much cheaper mode of advertisement because most people will only seek your business when they need it. They come to you as opposed to you going for them.
So, How Do You Get Ready For 2017?
The year is still young, and you have plenty of time to catch up if you have not. The first thing that you note is that you have to get ready for mobile indexing. Since mobile searches occur more often than desktop, it is ideal that you index your site to be compatible with mobile searches.
The way to go about that is by creating a mobile version of your site. Several formats exist, such as responsive, m.site, PWA, and adaptive. With this, you will be on the way to beating the competition.
Once that is done, ensure that the content and pages on both platforms – mobile and desktop are the same. By doing this, you will be presenting a united front, but with each platform optimized accordingly.
Listing with a Local Search SaaS
Local Search Software-as-a-Service have been helping local businesses centralize their information, and then they push that info to various channels by digital marketers. When companies list with these marketers, they expect to see a return on their investment, which is usually in subscription fees and other expenses to keep the business visible.
While SaaS are a favorite of managers who do not want to invest too much time and energy on engine optimization, the digital process needs human interaction to ensure the accuracy of information and whether the listing of their business is visible on other platforms apart from Google. It is imperative to check whether the content meets what the business wants to out there in order to improve user experience, which will subsequently boost SEO ratings.
Why SaaS is Good For Local SEO
Your business’s information, address, location, and what you do is distributed to a wider channel and gives the brand more coverage. You get to be visible on social sites, sites linked with your line of business, and the local directory. Eventually, these rankings help scale to your brand’s organic ratings.
Additionally, SaaS platforms allow for cost sharing to ensure so your organization will not spend too much money on its own. The content is regularly updated, but you would be better off ensuring that it is in line with what your business is up to.
Other business directories that favor local businesses include Yelp, Local.com, and 411.com.They are paid programs that help you list your business online, and then help you manage that listing. They take all your information, location, and content and put you on the map, literally. The major search engines do not factor them in when ranking your business, but they make all the difference in the local scene.
These days, your social media mentions will out you on the map. If someone searches your kind of business and you have an updated, dynamic page, it will indeed show up. Social media can be cheap, and if well optimized, it will market you well in the local arena. Reviews also help in making your name known as a trusted establishment.
The main search engines, Google especially, change their algorithms ever too often, which nullifies yesterday’s knowledge on SEO. However, staying informed at all times and looking out for new releases of information will keep your business on the first page.