The Ultimate Local SEO Checklist – 10 Easy Steps

The Ultimate Local SEO Checklist

Estimated reading time: 14 minutes, 32 seconds

Do you own an online store? Then you must be aware of how important it is to have Local SEO to gain foot traffic. So if you want to know all about the Local SEO checklist then this blog is worth a read.

Why Is Local SEO Crucial?

As we all know, most users use their smartphones to do searches. Either they use voice-activated searches or type “near me” in the search engine.

Whether you own a salon or garment store, local SEO can be your “Wingman”. Even if you have a brick and mortar store, it is necessary to do local SEO. The reason for the same is that people are so advanced these days. They don’t like to waste their time. If they spend hours of their day visiting the local market or shop, they will want to know about the famous shop in the town. And the best way for doing so is searching for the same on the internet. This is where local SEO comes into picture. It helps businesses to gain recognition and traffic.

Having local SEO is very crucial whether you have an offline sweets shop or an online thrift store. To get more knowledge on local SEO, tap on the local SEO guide.

Complete Local SEO Checklist

Do you know that around 46% of searches on Google have local intent? You might not have paid attention to it, but in one of the press releases, Google itself claims that this number will grow in upcoming years as most people are using mobile over desktop. Not only this, but people are also leaning towards GPS based apps to find local shops. Consumers use these apps to navigate their way through the shop.

Further, to stand out in the crowd, many business owners put their energy on local intent. Considering all this, if you are still not following the Local SEO, you are redirecting your customers to your competitors. Most people have heard about the benefits of local SEO, but only half of the users are doing it right. So if you are still confused about what to do and what not when it comes to local SEO. Then, we have prepared the complete local SEO checklist.

The points mentioned below are essential, and they can help your business appear on the first page of the search engine. Know that the first page of a search engine is a place where most business happens. Every business owner in the world is fighting for that spot. Without a doubt competition is high. That’s why it is more important to follow a local SEO checklist.

1. Website Optimisation

One of the common misconceptions people have is that traditional SEO tricks are not necessary for local SEO. That is not true. In local SEO services, it is a primary task to optimise the website for search engines. If you have a website, you need to follow all the conventional methods to rank it on Google. It doesn’t matter what kind of business you have; the website must be flawless, optimised, indexable, structured, mobile-friendly and all. Other than this, there are some crucial points you need to consider from a local SEO perspective.

  • The “Contact Us” page of the website must include the exact address, number, and business email. If you have multiple stores, then it should mention the exact address of every store.
  • Make sure to keep the phone number highlighted and clickable. Guess what? Nobody has time to write down the phone number; people generally click on the number if they are interested in the business. So it is imperative to optimise the phone number for mobile devices.
  • Often, people screw things up by mentioning different numbers in the directory. So it is crucial to mention the same number, name, and address everywhere that is highlighted on the business's official website.
  • Further, it is necessary to link all the location pages to the main navigation menu.

2. Content is King

There is no denying that content is a crucial part of every online business. If SEO is the kingdom, then the content is the iron throne. The importance of content should not be overlooked in any way. Make sure that your website has engaging and unique content. Below are the ways to generate unique content to have a positive impact on local searches.

  • User-generated content is ruling everywhere. Whether it is Starbucks or Netflix, they are leading their Instagram with user-generated content. But people think that user-centric content is only helpful on social media platforms. That's not the case; you can use it on your website to ladder up your way to the first page of a search engine. To do so, make a unique testimonial of a customer that has used your service and is happy with it.
  • Knowledge is power. And what is a better way to utilise this power other than having a blog page? Customers are interested in knowing about business, so it is necessary to have a blog page. Further, it keeps the freshness alive in your industry.
  • Other than this, it is important to have a bio of the staff member because customers will love to know about the person who will greet or serve them. If you have multiple stores, then mention the staff of every store.
  • Further, to get unique content, it is important to organise or host events.
  • Another way of generating content is by conducting interviews with experts in your field.
  • Not to forget to write about the content that helps your targeted demographic.
  • Moreover, adding images and videos with appropriate transcription and tag is also a necessary part of the content.
  • Besides, if you are offering services in multiple cities, it is a must to have unique content for each city targeting the keyword.

3. Citation is Must

Citations are by far essential components of any effective local SEO plan, and they're also one of the simplest things to do. To improve your local connection in Google's sights, make sure your business name, phone number and address are all provided online in the same way. When similar material appears on several reliable websites, it becomes more credible and likely to be accurate. As a result, Google is much more likely to show it, propelling you higher in the results. The points to keep in mind while doing citations for local SEO are:

  • If you have multiple offices or stores, create a unique citation for every store and ensure the name, address, URL, and contact number is accurate.
  • Avoid duplicate citations by all means.
  • Different platforms allow different variations, so make sure to check the abbreviation while building citations.
  • Further, it is crucial to build citations for genuine physical stores only; you can't do the same for virtual stores.
  • Besides, it is necessary to redirect the citation to the correct landing page if you have multiple stores.

Citation building is a time-consuming process, so either you can do it manually by yourself or choose to pay for the service

4. Google My Business

If you don’t have a profile on Google My Business, you will surely miss out. Google My Business can help attract clients, distinguish yourself from the competition, and produce more revenue. And this all can be done without paying a single penny. Click here to learn how you can create Google Business account. It is certainly the foundation block to generate more foot traffic and visibility in your local area. With 86 percent of customers using Google maps to find a business, there are plenty of options to increase engagement. And the best part is building a profile on Google My Business taxes only minutes. Below are some of the points to keep in mind.

  • The very first thing you need to do is add your business to Google Map. Not just add it; it is necessary to claim your listing too..
  • It is important to target the local keyword in your Google My Business listing.
  • If you haven’t embedded the Google Map on your website, then do it. By doing so, you are telling Google that your business is located exactly as mentioned in your listing.
  • Consistency is key; if you post regularly on Google My Business listing, you are showing Google that you are managing your business correctly.
  • If you have listed more than one phone number and location, then Google will discredit all. So it is important to clear out duplicate listings.
  • Further, if you are not uploading photos on your listing, you are setting up an impression that you are not active or legitimate.
  • Having a business description in your listing is as much as important as other things.

5. Keyword Matters

Search engines algorithms work on keywords. So the importance of keywords needs no introduction because your business would be nothing if you are not employing the right keywords. Your business and service should cover the intent of the general audience. Every local SEO company prioritises keyword planning because it is an integral part of the SEO strategy.

Let’s take for an example; I am looking for the best pizza place near me, so the keyword here is best pizza place and based on my search Google will displace the results, And guess what, the one who appears on the top is the one who has optimised his site for the best pizza place keyword. The points you need to keep in mind while doing keyword research for local SEO.

  • It is better to use keyword research tools such as Semrush, Ubersuggest or Ahrefs. These tools allow you to discover the most widely used search keywords for businesses similar to yours as well as how challenging it'll be to rank for them locally. It will help you strategize everything.
  • Long-tail keywords rank more fastly as compared to short-tail keywords. So it is important to make most of the long-tail keywords.
  • To convince algorithms and people, you need to use unique keywords on each site page in the places where they generally look.
  • Further, most businesses overlook the power of Google auto-suggest. One can utilise Google auto-suggest to locate more specific questions.
  • Do not just stuff keywords; try to create unique content around them.

6. Location

Location is an essential element when you are targeting the demographic in your area. Ensure that all of the business listings reflect the NAP references on your location website in terms of punctuation, look, and so on. All this information contributes to the validity of your company's listing. If it's not done right, then customers can have trouble finding your business, as well as problems with the algorithm's assessments of your on-site local SEO. Some points should be kept in mind regarding the location for better local SEO impact.

  • The name of the place must be included in the title tag of your business.
  • Further, it is crucial to cover location in heading and body copy too.
  • Not to forget about the meta description. It should specify the target location of your demographic.
  • Moreover, add location in the URL, too, whenever possible. It becomes mandatory if you have multiple stores. Let’s take an example, RVS Media has offices at two different locations one at London and another at Birmingham. In such a case, you can simply mention the location like that www.rvsmedia.co.uk/magento-agency-london

7. User Reviews and Ratings

Reviews and ratings are important for local SEO. If your site has reviews and ratings, then Google will show it higher on the search engine. So it is important to ask customers for a genuine review. You might have noticed whenever you visit some fancy place or location, then on your way back home; a notification appears on the screen asking about the place.

By writing a review, you are contributing to Google Maps and helping the local business. Not just this, customers also love to read reviews before paying a visit to a place. So reviews and ratings should not be overlooked in any case. Some of the points you should keep in mind are as follows.

  • It is important to know all about the platform’s guidelines before asking for a review. It will save you a lot of time.
  • Some businesses set up their review stations which is not a correct approach. Let customers do it with their cellphones and laptops.
  • Review is a necessary part of business; it should be done regularly if you are in business for the long haul. So make sure to maintain consistency.
  • Don’t get demotivated if you receive negative reviews. Good and bad is a part of the business. The only way to shadow the negative review is to provide excellent service to write good reviews.
  • It is crucial to properly list your business on the central review platform like Yelp, Facebook, Google My Business and all.

9. Mobile Usability

Do you know that 76% of online searches are made through mobile devices. And not to forget that mobile plays an essential role in local SEO. Many businesses are unaware of the value of having a mobile-friendly website, yet not having one harms your SEO and the public's image of your company. It has been revealed in a report that 52% of consumers leave the site right away if they find the mobile experience not up to the mark. So it is essential to have your site well optimised for mobile devices too. Some points that will help you in achieving high mobile usability.

  • It is vital to keep an eye on site load time. If the site does not load quickly, the customers won’t shop. So it is crucial to make use of Google PageSpeed Insights. This tool will show you how to enhance the load time of your site for mobile consumers.
  • Your layout heavily influences the way people find and access information. Users will become dissatisfied and quit the website if your design is too tricky to utilise. Develop mobile-friendly menus to guarantee that you're providing an excellent experience for users.
  • Many businesses will build a separate mobile URL when they optimise for mobile. You can establish a replica site for phone devices by using a dedicated mobile URL. It enables us to generate a unique experience for people who access your website via smartphones.

10. Schema’s Geographic Markup

Local business schema is a structured methodology of data markup code that you may use on your site to help search engines figure out what kind of company you are and how you are serving local people. This is an excellent approach to enhance the local SEO performance.

By including Schema code on the website, search engines will display ‘additional' data about that in search results, such as star ratings, pricing, or review details. Some of the things you can’t overlook when you are implementing Schema.

  • Google has several restrictions to limit spam schema code and ensure that it does not appear in the SERPs. It's important to highlight that schema organised data should never be spammy.
  • Always make sure that markup corresponds to the page's user purpose. This implies that any implementations of Schema code for that site should closely match the client's needs.
  • It is crucial to test the code before adding it to your website. For doing so, you can use Google's Structured Data Testing Tool.

Conclusion

That’s all! Here we have listed down all the crucial points of the local SEO checklist. The whole purpose of having a business is to generate more revenue. And when it comes to income, you can’t overlook the importance of the digital medium. Whether you are offline or online, the customer's of today's world are using the internet. So it is crucial to have an online presence. To be very clear, to achieve the same, you can’t overlook the local SEO. It can take your business to new heights. Managing the SEO on your own can become a little overwhelming. That's why you can reach out to RVS Media for any SEO related queries.

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