If you’re a small local business, your most important customer base has to be your local community. Recently, however, we’ve seen more and more huge national brands using targeted local advertising campaigns, particularly with the help of local influencers with small but loyal followings. But why would national brands with multi-million-pound marketing budgets be bothering with targeted campaigns designed to reach a small, localised audience? According to Google, 46% of all searches have a ‘local intent’ – namely, people are looking for stuff in their local area almost half the time they use Google. That’s an unfathomable amount of potential traffic, and therefore custom, for businesses. It can be difficult for smaller businesses who can’t afford a huge marketing spend to take advantage of this, however, there are some really simple, easy and free steps you can take to drastically improve your chances of taking a slice of the pie. We’ve compiled our top 3 tips on how to be found locally on Google. Get in touch today for more advice on how best to optimise your website to drive traffic and conversions.
Google Is Your Friend
You don’t have to be an SEO expert to make sure your website or web presence is fully optimised for Google. The first and most simple step for local businesses to ensure they appear in relevant searches is to make sure your Google My Business profile is fully populated with as much information as possible. The information must be accurate and up to date, so make sure any changes are put in place as soon as they are made. Move premises? Update Google. Change of phone number? Update Google! Did you know you can also submit your website directly to Google? This shortens the indexing process enormously, maximising your chances of being found. If your marketing budget is higher, or you know someone who has the skillset, try to ensure the content on your website is optimised. A great way to add content to your site with a local flavour follows in the next tip!
Start A Blog
When you’re a business owner, it can seem like your to-do list stretches to infinity. And now you’ve got us trying to make you write a blog too! Many people see a website blog as time-consuming and maybe even pointless. However, if you want to make local people aware of your presence, and considering almost 50% of Google searches are locally driven, what better way to introduce yourself to your community than by creating content that is locally driven, interesting and inspired by you and your business. Something as simple as a monthly blog detailing your favourite local places to eat, or local events that are coming up that you’re excited about, will help you appear in more locally based searches. It will also help you grow your brand and audience; perhaps someone might read your blog and tell a friend about it, and through word of mouth your business has the potential to grow and grow! So many local businesses are using blogs to grow their audience, so if you’re looking for some ideas, try reading the blogs of some businesses near you and give it a go yourself. If you don’t fancy yourself a writer, contact Koncept today to discuss your requirements with our dedicated content team. It’s much more affordable than you’d think.
Old School Directories Still Have Weight
While it may seem old fashioned, it’s crucially important to get your business into as many directories as possible. I’m not talking the paper version – directories have gone digital and there are hundreds of opportunities to make your business easier to find in joining a few. Not everyone will just Google if they’re looking for a certain business. Some people prefer to head over to either a local or national directory as they feel the information they’ll be getting will be 100% accurate and up to date. While some online directories are free, most require a small fee be paid on a monthly or annual basis. You can also pay slightly more to add images to your profile on some sites, which will help you stand out against competitors. Finally, appearing on online directories will enormously boost your website in terms of ranking. Linking to trusted websites makes Google think your website is more trustworthy, and as such it will rank you higher. The key is visibility – links back to your site in as many places as possible will work wonders in helping your local presence increase.