Boosting Your Local Search Credentials for 2015…
Whilst the net is filled with general SEO tips about how to boost your national ranking, going local has proven to be the way to go in the last year or so. With a range of local search strategies being accepted and even championed by the search engine that we are know and love, local SEO is an excellent way to gain brownie points throughout markets based a little closer to home.
But with Google changing its algorithm some 500 to 600 times last year, the local search strategy as we know it is changing, and with Google owning 67% of the search engine market, no one can escape it! Ensure you stay ahead of the game with our top tips for boosting your local search credentials and adapting your current local SEO strategies for the coming year.
New name, similar game
Google+ has become the backbone of improving local SEO, and now Google My Business has taken the reins. Formerly Google Places and then Google+ Local, this free service is still an excellent tool for those wishing to improve their local reach via the web. Providing a one-stop shop for business sharing, Google My Business offers access to a range of tools including Google+, insights, reviews, analytics and hangouts.
The Google My Business App, launched in October, has also been instrumental to local search promotion on the go. 2015 will be all about continued use of Google My Business, which allows you to improve local presence whilst responding to reviews and communicating with customers in the immediate area.
Feed the Pigeon
The Pigeon update last year sent many businesses across the globe into a state of pure panic as many previously highly ranking websites across the recruitment, real estate and film markets noted declining influence, some by as much as 68%! But like any update the Pigeon highlighted certain SEO aspects that we should focus on and some that we should leave in the dust.
Whilst local SEO is still favoured, factors such as geographical keywords in the website URL and location keywords in the business name became less important in 2014. However, location does still matter, and after a 5,000 page case study, Search Engine Land reported that links, citations and reviews, not over-optimisation, should be relied upon.
Some quick tips for local SEO
Like 2014, 2015 is set to be the year of local SEO and honing a strategy for the New Year couldn’t be easier. Here are our quick tips for local search…
- Use mobile friendly design to take your share of smartphone traffic
- Optimise your Google My Business page
- Get listed on a number of business directories
- Make every bit of your website useful for users, not just search engines.