Admit it, you’ve heard the term, search engine optimization or SEO but you’re not exactly sure what it means. Now let's add “local” to the term and you may or may not be more confused. Small business owners are just too busy to stay on top of every new digital marketing term or opportunity.
Google is now providing local listings for searches and this makes sense. If you live in Toronto and you’re looking for a flower shop, a listing showing flower shops across Canada or outside your neighbourhood is likely not what you need.
This makes local search engine optimization really important for small businesses and here are 3 local SEO tips for small businesses.
The first thing every small business owner should do is make sure they have a Google My Business page and complete it as thoroughly as they can. List your:
· Business address
· Phone number
· Operating hours including holiday hours if applicable
· Photos of your business or a virtual tour
· News posts with photo’s
· Special events
In addition to all this information you can set up text messaging so that people who find your business on Google can text message you without ever seeing your phone number. This is a quick and easy way to communicate with potential customers who need answers fast. If you’re bad at responding to texts or don’t want to be disturbed this is obviously not a good idea.
2. Verify your, Name, Address, Phone number (NAP)
Many business owners may be part of an association or have various business listings throughout the internet which list the name, address and phone number of their business. What’s important is that all these listings are the same. If there are discrepancies in your listings this could affect the way Google ranks you or shows your listing to a potential customer.
When checking your listings be sure that your address is always the same. For example if your address is a Boulevard, and you also list it as Blvd or Drive and Dr. you must fix this and make it consistent.
3. Geo tagging images
This is not a well known strategy but it works! When you’re taking photos be sure to allow your camera to geo tag the images. This can be done afterwards as well but it will save you a lot of time and possibly money.
We hope you enjoyed these 3 local SEO tips. Let us know what your favourite local SEO strategies are and we’ll mention them on a future blog post.