Boosting business visibility with local SEO
In the ever-evolving landscape of business, establishing a robust local search presence has become paramount. In today’s digital age, traditional word-of-mouth recommendations have taken a backseat as consumers turn to their smartphones for reviews and recommendations. For businesses to thrive, embracing listing management services, cultivating customer reviews, and elevating search visibility are essential strategies.
Why local SEO is critical for local business success
We have seen in the last few years, people decide to “shop local” more and more. This is coupled with search data that shows local and organic traffic make up 69% of overall digital traffic and that local search makes up 22.6% of website traffic. At this point, “local” should be a key part of every SEO strategy for brands with local store fronts. Without it, they will miss out on a lot of potential business simply because customers aren’t spotting them in local search. In an online environment where local SEO strategy is essential, ConvergenSEE is here to help.
Local SEO factors that influence search visibility
While on-page optimization remains a foundational practice, it’s insufficient in today’s fiercely competitive market. For businesses to truly stand out in local search marketing, consider these key approaches.
Leverage data aggregators
Data aggregators are indispensable in the local SEO toolkit. They gather crucial business information and disseminate it across an extensive network of sources. Platforms like Data Axle and Foursquare play a pivotal role in ensuring a business’s data reaches local search engines, GPS navigation systems, mapping apps, directories, and more.
The significance of this approach was recently emphasized by Google’s guidelines update. Google now relies on trusted data sources like Data Axle to evaluate the eligibility of a Google Business Profile (GBP). In essence, data aggregators are a linchpin of a successful local SEO strategy, a fact Google has finally acknowledged.
Focus on quality directories
Numerous directories accept business submissions, but quality reigns supreme. When choosing a platform to partner with, seek out platforms that focus their efforts on the most important sites and directories for a business’s sector. That being said, in today’s world of local search, Google is very dominant. Google no longer needs to reference hundreds of directories to confirm data; it gets it direct from the business, so sending to hundreds of directories is no longer needed for success.
At ConvergenSEE, we submit to many different vendors that we categorize as tier 1, 2, and 3, each of which boasts its own, robust user communities. Below are some examples of the sites, data, aggregators, and directories that are in each tier (this is not a complete list of all vendors but just a sample).
- • Apple Maps
- • Yellow Pages
- • HERE Maps
- • eLocal
- • Data Axle (formerly Infogroup)
- • LSSi Data
- • Unique industry specific sites (Zomato, Tripadvisor, etc.)
Expand reach with listing distribution
Citations have long been essential for local presence management. However, submitting to data aggregators, directories, and other platforms demands a systematic approach. Listing distribution combines both manual and automated submissions to ensure accuracy across the network of sites while adhering to each platform’s guidelines. This ensures that whether a business’s customers use Google Maps, Apple Maps, or a combination of other sources, their data is easily found and correct.
Add reputation management strategy
As of 2023, review signals make up 16% of Google’s local ranking factors (the third most important ranking factor). Beyond just being a ranking factor, review signals are a critical source of information to potential customers. Customers will read reviews not only looking for information on products but also what to expect when it comes to customer service. The strategy should include the following:
- • Review tracking (from all sources and locations)
- • Review responses (both positive and negative)
- • Review analysis (to gain insight into each location)
In conclusion, the era of local business success hinges on a robust local SEO strategy. With consumers increasingly relying on maps directories like Google Maps and Apple Maps to find local businesses, it’s imperative to build a strong online presence. Businesses can embrace the power of data aggregators, focus on quality directories, expand reach through listing distribution, and ensure customers know how much they are valued with a robust reputation management strategy. By doing so, businesses can position themselves for lasting success in the digital age.
For more information about ConvergenSEE and how our platform can help your business improve its local SEO strategy, simply reach out to us today.