If you want to expand your business, you will need more than just an online booking system. You will also have to conduct some promotional activities. Remember, if your business website doesn’t appear on Google’s search results pages, you will be missing out on potential sales opportunities. This simple guide will highlight how you can generate more appointments with the help of local SEO strategies (search engine optimization).
Of course, it is completely understandable if you are hesitant about spending a significant proportion of your budget on online advertising. Fortunately, you can improve your search engine ranking by adopting an organic (and free) approach.
Why do you need to use local SEO strategies?
Although customers may always be in need of your services, many of them will turn to the internet to find service providers in your area of expertise. Studies have shown that more than 50% of potential customers go online to research a business before making the initial contact.
By implementing search engine optimization, you will be able to expand your online presence, enhance the reputation of your brand and boost the ranking of your website. You can also be visible to searchers who want to book an appointment to hire your services.
For this reason, if you want your business to appear to your target customers, it is imperative that you utilize search engine optimization. In particular, you need to adopt SEO for local business strategies.
What’s the difference between standard SEO and local SEO?
Unlike standard SEO, local SEO will enable you to provide relevant search results that are more specific to customers near you. Moreover, local SEO can also give you a competitive edge over larger or even national organizations.
How will your website benefit from local SEO?
- More organic online traffic
- More relevant online inquiries and potential sales
- Reduced online ad costs
- Improved brand awareness and trust
- More local backlinks
- Improved social awareness
- Enhanced user experience
Choose keywords that relate to your business
You need to use keywords or search terms that will drive traffic to your site. The Google Search Console tool can help in this regard as it will enable you to identify the search terms that both existing and new customers will use to find a business like yours. The Search Console can yield valuable keywords as well as opportunities for generating more online traffic.
When examining the data, look for high-volume keywords that will give your website a higher ranking (at least in the top 50 spots). However, make sure it doesn’t capture a high online traffic rate. Here are some excellent uses of keywords:
- [your business] near [your city]
- Best [your business] in [your town]
Build your authority by creating well-researched content
Once you have identified your keywords, you need to incorporate them into the content you are creating for your target audience. This will improve your search engine ranking. In addition, try to create authoritative content and then take steps to boost its ranking by:
- Creating web pages whose URL and page title includes the target search term or keyword.
- Publishing web pages that contain at least 1,000 words.
- Including a table of contents as well as section headers that are familiar to readers and search engines. This will make it easier for your site to rank online.
- Incorporating images and videos to generate more interest.
- Making sure your web pages load quickly. Consider using speed monitoring tools such as Google PageSpeed Insights.
- Identifying and including other related and high-volume search terms through the use of SEMrush.
- Writing authoritative content to generate trust among your potential customers.
If you want to enhance your local standing even further, remember to write about local events, businesses, and even “places of interest.” However, you must make sure your content is engaging if you want to encourage readers to share it with their friends and colleagues.
Include localized landing pages
A localized landing page can also help your organic local search ranking. You should also optimize your content with geo-specific location keywords.
In addition, your landing page should make use of:
- Optimized headings (H1 to H6)
- Internal links
- Optimized mobile search
If you want to generate both organic and paid traffic, you should include paid ads on your landing pages. Don’t forget to add strong call-to-actions (CTAs) to encourage customers to contact you and book an appointment.
On-page optimizations to improve your SEO
- Map the keywords: Each web page should have at least one (or possibly several) relevant keywords.
- Optimize titles and meta descriptions: Ensure your titles and meta descriptions are unique and include a target keyword.
- Add internal links between your web pages: By adding internal links, users will be able to quickly search for information on your website.
- Optimize your images: While images will entice visitors to your site, you can still optimize it even further. If possible, include an alt-text with a target keyword. You can also improve the loading time by reducing the size of your files and images.
Obtain valuable backlinks
Another important strategy involves building backlinks, the process of linking your website to an external site. Try implementing these three approaches as part of your local SEO strategies:
- Partner with other local companies – If you write about other businesses in your local area, they will almost certainly backlink your blog and promote it on their social media feeds.
- Promote your business by offering discounts and other incentives – This type of promotion is always gratefully received and will result in your business being advertised through word of mouth.
- Tell the media about your industry – You can contact the media, including local TV stations and newspapers, and offer your services as a reliable source of information. This will again enable you to obtain valuable backlinks.
Create and manage your business listings
When it comes to local listings, Google My Business is one of the most effective tools. Backed by the largest search engine, every Google user will have access to your business information. As an added bonus, it’s free! Remember to ensure that your listing is accurate and contains up-to-date information. Although one or two locations will be manageable, consider using professional listing services for multiple areas.
Although it can take some time for local SEO to produce results, it will almost certainly lead to more appointments and in turn business growth. You should consider splitting your marketing strategies into long-term and short-term goals. A well-planned and well-executed approach will help you generate more web traffic and therefore more online appointments. In summary, local SEO strategies are an essential marketing tool, especially if your industry is highly competitive.