SEO for Local Businesses: Should You Take Advantage of Local Search Engine Optimization Services?

Posted at Oct 14, 2021 8:30:00 AM by THAT Agency | Share

Why is SEO for local businesses so important? 

Where do you turn when you want information? The internet! No more wondering who that guy is that played in every movie you ever saw or how to make a great whipped coffee. We just ask the search engine and get our answers. But when we need more specific, more immediate, and more local information, where do we go? Same answer: online. 

Nearly half (46%) of search engine inquiries have local intent; that is, people are searching for a business or organization near them to fill a specific need. Further, 97% of search engine users search for local businesses. 

At the risk of overloading you with stats… we’re going to give you a few more. Almost 80% of local mobile searches will result in an offline purchase; 70% of customers visit a store after a search; “near me” searches grew by 136% last year, and more than half of those searches resulted in an offline visit.

Should you invest in local search engine optimization services? The numbers say “yes.” More importantly, potential clients and customers are also saying “yes.”

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SEO for Local Businesses Is Mission-Critical 

Search engine optimization, or SEO, is the art and science of developing and maintaining a web presence that catches the attention of search engines. It involves a plethora of techniques, from page load speeds and backlinks to metadata and keywords. To underscore the importance of SEO, we’d like to share a (bad) joke.

Q: What’s the best place to hide a dead body?

A: The second page of Google.

We told you it was bad. But it’s also true - in a metaphorical sense. The first result on the Google search results pages sees almost 30% of the traffic for a given inquiry. First-page results get between 70 and 90+% of clicks, and second-page results get a scant 6% of traffic. The punchline, if you will: if you’re not on page one - and if you’re not at the top of page one - people will never know you exist.

As mentioned, almost half of all searches have local intent. This equals billions of inquiries every day worldwide. In your own corner of the Earth, there are countless people who are looking for you. They are looking for services that you provide, products that you offer, and solutions you can deliver. 

But can they find you? 

This is where SEO for local businesses comes into play.

What Is Local SEO for Businesses?

Local SEO operates in much the same way as standard SEO, but it is hyper-targeted to your specific location. Search engines like Google have one goal: to deliver the most relevant results to users. To this end, they crawl, index, and rank online content to filter the best from the rest. In a local context, you are not striving to compete with every other company in the entire world (literally); you are working to differentiate yourself in your own local market.

You will employ many of the same techniques, but you will focus on location-specific keywords, backlinks to local events/organizations, and the needs of your particular community.

Why Seek Out Local Search Engine Optimization Services?

What can local SEO do for your business?

  • Boost Your Online Profile. Investing in local search engine optimization services helps you establish a strong presence in the search engine results pages. As mentioned, if you don’t rank at or near the top of the results, potential customers/clients are going to pass you by. Not because your competitors are better at delivering a service, product, or solution, but because they have a more effective online profile. 

Targeted local SEO techniques improve your organic results, your traffic, and ultimately, your profitability. 

  • Attract More Relevant Traffic. Not all traffic is great traffic. You want to attract people who are truly interested in your solutions - and who are primed to click “Contact Us” or, better yet, “Buy Now.” Local SEO optimization allows you to reach your target audience more effectively and efficiently while boosting the odds that they will complete your desired calls to action. 

Most (72%) local inquiries result in an in-person visit within 5 miles of the searcher. Simply optimizing your content and website with a local lens allows you to capitalize on this interest.

  • Build Trust, Credibility, and Authority. People trust search engines. They enter a query and get answers immediately. Now, it’s up to them to parse those and determine their validity, but they tend to assign a level of credibility and authority to sites that Google places first on the results pages. Google has a host of ranking factors that their algorithm considers when they rank sites, and trust is arguably the most significant. When you attain a top ranking, it confers credibility and authority to your business. 
  • Encourage Repeat Customers. More of us are looking to support businesses close to home and bolster the local economy. With SEO for local businesses, you not only attract new customers, but you also keep yourself top of mind for existing buyers. When they find themselves in need of your solutions again, you will be at the top of their search query. 
  • Lower Ad Costs. Everyone wants to trim their budgets. Local SEO can help you do this. Organic (i.e. free) traffic is essential for businesses. When you employ techniques that boost your local rank, you can use Google as a free advertisement tool. You’ll get more relevant, valuable clicks without having to pay as much for ads. 

The concept is simple; local SEO builds your business. The practical is more complex. Local search engine optimization services free you from the technical aspect of attracting high-quality traffic so you can focus on the real business of converting leads into sales and growing profitability. Start now. Start with THAT. 

Tags: SEO

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