166273950Whether you’re a mom-and-pop shop or a global corporation, search engine optimization is impacting your business. It doesn’t matter if you have one location or many, local search engine optimization is worth focusing on.

But the SEO process is increasingly more complex and it can be difficult to pinpoint exactly what you need to optimize for local business SEO, regardless if you have one or multiple locations. Here's what you need to know to ensure you're correctly capitalizing on local SEO and ultimately, your company's success.

Just One Location?

If you only have one location, the recent focus on local search has the potential to revolutionize your client base. You just have to know where to start. Luckily, there are a few actions to take today to jump start your SEO success. Here’s what to do on and off your website to improve your SEO efforts.

On-Page SEO

  • The way you’re contacted on your site matters. Implement a consistent NAP (name, address, phone number) and make sure it’s easy to find on your homepage by placing it in the header or a visible sidebar. Listing the name of your business, coupled with the city and state you’re operating in, promotes local business targeting and strengthens your connection with the area you’re servicing. Put this information on page content and as image alt tags and H-tags.
  • Link to social media and review sites as prominently as possible. By pushing users to these sites on your homepage, you’re wielding the credibility on your homepage to boost your profiles on these sites. Use your homepage as a portal to get your social media and other business review efforts some love.
  • Your “contact us” page has to provide a holistic, easy-to-access view of your company. NAP is a must, but don’t forget business hours and a Google Map so your customers are easily able to find you.

Off-Page SEO

  • Since what you do off your website affects your SEO success tremendously, make sure that your NAP info and URL are consistent across all business directories. Don’t let an old website URL or phone number keep you from gaining a customer.
  • Give Google some attention. Build your profile on Google+ and create a Google My Business account. Make sure that your pin on Google Maps leads to your precise location, eliminating any confusion for travelers.
  • Pay attention to your social media profiles. Update them regularly and include keywords in all of your posts. Interact with both potential clients and others in your industry. Also, monitor your reputation on business review sites.

Have Multiple Locations?

Just because you aren’t necessarily local doesn’t mean local business SEO isn’t for you. There are plenty of steps to take to remain prominent in local searches.

On-Page SEO

  • Create subpages for your locations. Tailor each subpage with its specific NAP, address, Google Local Map, business hours, etc. But it’s imperative that you keep this information only on those specific subpages. If you include it anywhere else on your site, Google (and those searching for you) gets muddled results.
  • Your URLs matter. Creating clear URLs for your location pages is easy and beneficial. For example, provide unique URL structures for your locations like yoursite.com/locations/specific location.
  • Create location-specific content for the subpages. Highlight how long each location has been in business. If it’s involved in the community, include that, too. And don’t forget to mention events or coupons specific to that location.

Off-Site SEO

  • Create local business listings for all of your locations. Include keywords, link back to the subpages and match all of your NAP information to that on the specific location subpage.
  • Create profiles for every location, in addition to your main business profile, on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+, Instagram, etc. Include links to these profiles on your location subpages.
  • Use local social media the right way. Your local profiles should promote local events, campaigns and promotions, and coupons specific to the location.

Small business SEO and multi-location business SEO share similar strategies. Local search SEO is a growing industry movement and it’s worth investing your time into.

Start Today Tip: Review your local search SEO practices. Are there new tactics you need to employ? Set immediate goals and incorporate these principles to get fast SEO results. Want more SEO info? Check out the latest edition of 2Inbound magazine!

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Originally published Nov 19, 2014 11:00:00 AM, updated January 18 2023