How to Improve Local Search Results – SEO Tip Week 31

Written on August 3, 2007 – 11:42 am | by Shell Harris |

SEO TipsIn SEO, local search should never be overlooked. It can provide a boost in traffic has a higher tendency to convert more visitors to customers since most people prefer working with local companies, even SEO companies.

Here are some factors that Big Oak SEO feels are important and should be considered when trying to get higher rankings for your site, whether or not you are marketing to a national or local market. I have tried to list them in order of importance but it really depends how important local traffic is to your site.

Location in the Title of your Pages
Including your city and state, especially if you are counting on local customers is imperative. Don’t overdue it, but be sure to include it. I talk about this in detail on my SEO Titles: Using the Title Tag post.

Link Building with City and State Keywords
When building links to your site, include some with local terms like we do in this example: Richmond Virginia Search Engine Optimization Company. You get the idea.

Tell the Search Engines Where You Work
The physical location of your site should be on the footer of every page. If you work from home, get a P.O. box and list that address. It is important for the city, state and zip code be on every page.

Submit Your Site to Google’s Local Business Center
You can’t get found in a search unless Google knows where you are. Submit your business to Google’s Local Business Center even if you don’t have a website…yet.

Keep Your Contact Page Connected
Your physical address should be at the top of the contact page, above your contact form. At the very least it should be easy to find and accurate.

Link to your address on the Google Maps and Yahoo Maps. For example, go to Google Maps and then do a search for you physical address. After finding your location you will see a “Link to this page” link. Click that and then copy and paste that link on your contact page.

Adding written driving directions will allow for many local keywords to be included so having this in addition to a link to maps.google.com is a good idea.

List Coverage Area
Big Oak SEO is located in Glen Allen, Virginia, but very few people have heard of or search for Glen Allen. We are in the Richmond, Virginia area so we use Richmond in our footer and mention it on our company page as well as other local locations. Try to include the metropolitan areas on your site if that is what people will be searching for.

Add Listings in Yellow Pages, Superpages & Similar Sites
While I don’t often feel the cost is warranted for phone book sites, if you can get a free listing or a discount because you are already paying for a printed listing it can help to have a link pointing to your site from the online listing.

Provide a Local Phone number on Every Page
It is a no-brainer to have your 800 present at the top of every page, but be sure to list your local number in the footer as well. Don’t forget to include the area code.

List your Site in Directories for Local businesses
Sites like Yelp.com and Citysearch.com are good places for local businesses. They can also provide real traffic and not just higher rankings. I’m looking more into Yelp and hope to write a post about them soon.

Get your site or business reviewed
I think this is undervalued in importance, but getting a few reviews from a site like CitySearch and Yelp is a good thing for search engine rankings. Submit your site and ask friends to review for you. Of course this isn’t applicable to all businesses, but it should be part of the marketing plan if you count on local consumers.

Google Coupons
This isn’t new but not many people are using it. Google coupons was announced in August 2006. It may help your ranking, but it can’t hurt, especially if you have actual cost savings to offer over your competition.

Do you have any ideas or have any advice that has worked for you concerning local search. If so, send us an email or submit a comment to this post. We are always looking for new ideas to share.

Shell Harris co-founded Big Oak on January 1, 2004. In a previous career he was a print & web designer and often developed the sites he designed before focusing on his current passion for search engine optimization and Internet marketing. He is an avid researcher, SEO specialist, company mouthpiece and is always looking for the next big thing in Internet Marketing.

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  1. 5 Responses to “How to Improve Local Search Results – SEO Tip Week 31”

  2. By Local Biz Bits on Aug 4, 2007 | Reply

    These are great tips. Another idea is to create a separate busines profile page, which links to your main website.

  3. By Universos Virtuais on Aug 4, 2007 | Reply

    Shell, thank you for sharing this SEO tip. I am trying to learn about SEO. Here in Portugal we have some local SE, that have 50% of the searches, the other 50 % are from Google. Yahoo just is known for advance internet users!!

    Have a great weekend!

  4. By Shell Harris on Aug 7, 2007 | Reply

    Adding a business profile page is a great idea. You can do this on other sites, but of course adding it to your own site is easiest of all. I can see it being used in addition to your About page. Good suggestion. Can anyone provide a example?
    I did find this site with and about us page on Big Oak we added. http://www.aboutus.org/BigOakInc.com

  5. By Brian Whaley on Aug 9, 2007 | Reply

    This series of articles is fantastic! I have referred my readers to 52 SEO Tips as a primary resource for SEO Tips on my blog, http://btw73.blogspot.com. Keep up the great work!

  6. By Bill on May 27, 2008 | Reply

    Agreed. Local SEO is a big thing that a lot of businesses, who focus on the big picture, miss out on. Local seo can produce repeat customers and even have a higher conversion rate.

Sorry, comments for this entry are closed at this time.

Big Oak SEO Blog

This SEO blog is provided by Big Oak SEO, a SEO Company. Most blog posts are related to search engine optimization, short reviews, SEO tips and increasing site conversions. Email us at contact@bigoakinc.com or give us a call 804-741-6776 to see how we can help your company. More

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