If you are running a small business and you have an online presence, chances are that you have at least heard about things like local SEO and local search directories. If this didn’t sound too familiar for you, I will clear things out. First of all, local SEO refers to the onsite and offsite actions that a small business could take to optimize their websites for keywords that contain the city or area where the shop, service provider, manufacturer (etc.) is located.
Why Should You Choose Local SEO?
You increase online exposure by promoting your products and services to those people who are most likely to contact your company. The reason why local SEO should be a small business’ best friend is that it is very cost effective. If your company hasn’t expanded yet, you have little financial resources that must be managed with extreme caution. Casting your net too wide in the SEO world means almost certain failure. But focusing on more geo-targeted keywords means not only will you zero in on customers more likely to be in your area but they’re also more likely to be looking to purchase as well!
How To Get Started
It’s recommended that you start with onsite optimization. This means you need to display consistent and accurate information about your location. Include phone number, physical address, contact emails and other online presences. This should appear above the fold on every single page. Of course, you need to keep it brief and give straight to the point information.
The history and the reasons why people should choose your service will be listed on the ‘About us’ page that must not be neglected. Next, you claim your listing in Google+ Local, Bing Maps and other local search directories. Now you need to rank high for your keywords. An expert is recommended once you get to this step.
Should I Hire an Expert?
Well, that depends – are you in the business of SEO? If the answer is “no” then you might want to consider hiring an expert. If you happen to be a business owner that runs a pet store and you have an electrical problem, do you fix it yourself? Not likely. The same is the case with SEO. In a best case scenario you may only waste some money. In a worst case scenario you could get yourself removed from search engines entirely if you go about it the wrong way. In the end, spending a little money up-front and hiring an expert may end up costing you less in the long run.