How to Perform Well in Local SEO in 2017

If you’ve used SEO strategies for a period of time, you likely understand that SEO is constantly changing. Local SEO is no exception, requiring you to consistently optimize your on-page and off-page SEO strategies if you want to be found.

Here are some of the most effective local SEO strategies you can utilize to help boost your business in search engines this year.

Meta Data is Important

In today’s SEO environment, meta titles and description tags are still as vital as ever. This is what people will see in search results, which you can view as a “mini-ad” of sorts.

Google measures meta titles and descriptions in pixels, with the total width of the search results space sitting at 600px. This allows for generally 50-60 characters in title tags, and up to around 156 characters in descriptions.

There are many tools available that you can use to preview the SERP appearance and determine if a title or description is too long.

You Need Online Directories and Local Citations

According to Google, a majority of consumers—four out of five, to be exact—use search engines for local searches. However, many small businesses neglect to list their business online in even a single listing, missing a huge opportunity to improve their SEO.

You should try to get your business listed in various outlets, including Citysearch, Yelp, and Merchant Circle, among others. You can also check with the local Chamber of Commerce and newspapers to see if they have any local business directories that you can appear on.

Getting local citations is also important; get your business’s name, phone number, and physical address on citation aggregators such as Neustar, Acxiom, Infogroup, and Factual.

Claim and Optimize Google My Business Listings

Google My Business is different from other directories because it can directly impact performance on Google. You can claim your business listing on GMB by visiting www.google.com/business and going through the verification process, which entails entering a PIN number that Google provides in a physical postcard sent to your address.

Just remember that only the business owner can claim a GMB page.

You can also optimize your GMB listing with a detailed description, categories, types of accepted payments, and business hours, along with other details. Also, upload a logo and at least three photos of the business, services, and products.

Get Online Reviews

Online reviews are very important if you want to attract new customers. A majority of people trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, with most likely to leave a review if asked.

You can get reviews for Trust Pilot, Vendasta, Reputation Loop, and Get Five Stars, among other platforms.

With these local SEO tips, you can be on your way to better rankings and a great reputation among your audience. Local SEO is necessary for good performance on search engines, making it as integral as traditional SEO. If you want people to find you, practice these local SEO strategies and you’ll likely find yourself excelling beyond your competitors.

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