SEO is key for helping your site rank well, but if you do business primarily with local customers then “local SEO” is something you need to keep a close eye on.
Gaining exposure online is one thing, but what if you want to focus on local traffic? This is where local SEO can help you stand out.
At its core, local SEO is pretty simple; you just need to make sure your business’s name, address and phone number (“NAP”) are identical on every online local directory listing. This includes sites such as Google, Yelp, Foursquare, Superpages, Citysearch, Bing, YP and dozens of others.
While this is seemingly rather straightforward, it gets complicated by two factors:
When we say your NAP needs to be identical, we’re not kidding. If your address is listed as “123 Main St.” on one site and “123 Main Street” on another, those aren’t identical. In addition, if you use tracking phone numbers to see how customers contact you (which can be very helpful), those varying phone numbers across directories will negatively affect you as well.
While it can be fairly easy to see where the inconsistencies lie, it can be more difficult to correct some of those items. You’ll need to prove your identity via phone calls or postcards and stay on top of those things to make sure you get everything changed. This can take weeks for some of the directories out there.
If you want to rank well when people search for “your city + your industry”, you simply can’t ignore local SEO.