By now you have probably heard the term “SEO” in relation to digital marketing strategy. You may already know that SEO means “search engine optimization”. You may also know that SEO has to do with your business getting found in online searches.


SEO can get complicated fairly quickly, but there are a few important things for local small business owners to understand about SEO. The most relevant information to business owners regarding SEO pertains to local SEO. In this post, we’ll explain what local SEO is, how to improve local SEO, and why local SEO in particular is important for your local business.


What is Local SEO?


Local SEO is based on optimizing local search results for your business. Local search is search that has a geographic component. For example, if you are a home remodeling company in Cincinnati, you want to concentrate on showing up in searches for “home remodeling Cincinnati” as opposed to simply “home remodeling”.


A search without the geographic component (organic search) is most likely not looking for a home remodeling business nearby. A search for a broad term like “home remodeling” is possibly looking for more general information, like home remodeling tips or ideas.


If a user searches for industry + location, the search engine knows there is a local intent in that search. And all search engines want is to give the user exactly what they’re searching for.


How can you improve local SEO for your business?


Search engines love to help us find what we’re looking for. As a business owner, you need to help the search engine know what type of business you have and where you are located. Search engines need to know exactly where your business is located so that when someone searches for a location, the search engine can find the businesses that are located there.


At the minimum, you want to make sure your business’s name, address and phone number (NAP) is consistent across local listing directories as well as your website.


Another way to help with local SEO for your business is through your website design and development. You want to make sure the person or company that creates your website is familiar with local SEO and uses title tags, page content, meta descriptions, and URL structure to optimize for local searches.


In addition to on-page SEO for your website, you can also build local SEO through off-page strategies like generating links from other sites and social media shares.


Why is Local SEO important?


It’s important for your business to show up in relevant local searches because 50 percent of searchers visit businesses within 24 hours of a local search. More and more people are turning to online searches to find the product or service you offer. Take some time to evaluate your local listings, website, and social media to determine whether your business is optimized to show up for local searches. If your local SEO is not making it easy for search engines to find you, be sure to make local SEO part of your digital marketing strategy for 2017. Contact BizIdentity for help with SEO and get your business found online.